Sunday, April 18, 2021

Apollo, Unlucky in Love: Lucian, Dial. Deorum. 17.2

 In this satire, Apollo mourns the losses of Daphne and Hyacinthus. According to myth, both are transformed into plants, and Apollo honors them by wearing their leaves / blossoms in a crown.

Apollo: Ego vero alias quoque habeo Venerem minus propitiam ad res amatorias; quippe etiam quos duos maxime praeter ceteros amavi, Daphne & Hyacinthum, illa quidem aufugit, atque odit me, adeo ut in lignum converti maluerit, qu mecum rem habere: hic autem a disco interfectus est, et nunc pro illis coronas habeo.


ἐγὼ μὲν καὶ ἄλλως ἀναφρόδιτός εἰμι ἐς τὰ [p. 94] ἐρωτικά: δύο γοῦν, οὓς μάλιστα ἠγάπησα, τὴν Δάφνην καὶ τὸν Ὑάκινθον, ἡ μὲν Δάφνη οὕτως ἐμίσησέ με, ὥστε εἵλετο ξύλον γενέσθαι μᾶλλον ἢ ἐμοὶ ξυνεῖναι, τὸν Ὑάκινθον δὲ ὑπὸ τοῦ δίσκου ἀπώλεσα, καὶ νῦν ἀντ᾽ ἐκείνων στεφάνους ἔχω.

--Lucian, Dialogi Deorum 15.1, Translated into Latin by Jacob Micyllus

I am unlucky in love. I have loved two people more than anyone: Daphne and Hyacinthus. But Daphne ran away from me, and hated me to the point that she would rather become a tree than love me; and Hyacinthus was killed by a discus, and now all I have left of them are crowns.



Name:  Lucianus Samosatensis

Date:  125 – 180 CE

Works: Dialogue of the Courtesans*

               True History, etc.


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



 Lucian was a Turkish-born Roman satirist who wrote in ancient Greek. His works are a mixture of sarcasm, wit, and biting social criticism. He is without a doubt one of the most popular authors of the later Roman empire.


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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