Friday, March 5, 2021

Unwounded by Eros: Athena, Apollonius of Rhodes, Argonautica III.32-35

 When Athena and Hera plot to help the Argonaut Jason to find the Golden Fleece, Hera recommends recruiting Aphrodite to elicit Eros' aid. 

Juno, insciam me pater genuit huius ictuum,

nec rem aliquam novi quae vim habeat demulcendi amorem.

Si autem tibi ipsi haec sententia arridet, certe ego

assensum praebitura sum; tu vero compellandi vicem geres,

ubi conveneris.

‘Ἥρη, νήιδα μέν με πατὴρ τέκε τοῖο βολάων,

οὐδέ τινα χρειὼ θελκτήριον οἶδα πόθοιο.

εἰ δέ σοι αὐτῇ μῦθος ἐφανδάνει, ἦ τ᾽ ἂν ἔγωγε

ἑσποίμην: σὺ δέ κεν φαίης ἔπος ἀντιόωσα.’

--Apollonius Rhodius, Argonautica III.32-35, Translated into Latin by Joannes Shaw (1777)

“Juno, Father Jupiter bore me to be inexperienced with [Cupid’s] arrows,

Nor do I know any way to manage desire.

If you like this idea, then of course I will agree with it;

But you will have to do all of the talking

When you meet [with Venus].



Name:  Apollonius of Rhodes

Date:  3rd century BCE

Works:  Argonautica



Region 1: Peninsular Italy; Region 2: Western Europe; Region 3: Western Coast of Africa; Region 4: Egypt and Eastern Mediterranean; Region 5: Greece and the Balkans



 Little is known of this Hellenistic poet, but what is clear is that his surviving epic, the Argonautica, was wildly influential to later epic poets. According to the Suda, he was the Director of the Library of Alexandria and was a contemporary of the poet Callimachus (α.4319).


ARCHAIC: (through 6th c. BCE); GOLDEN AGE: (5th - 4th c. BCE); HELLENISTIC: (4th c. BCE - 1st c. BCE); ROMAN: (1st c. BCE - 4th c. CE); POST CONSTANTINOPLE: (4th c. CE - 8th c. CE); BYZANTINE: (post 8th c CE)

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