Sunday, May 29, 2022

M/M: Apollo and Hyacinthos, Pseudo Palaephatus, Peri Apiston 46

***Greek Text forthcoming*** 

De Hyacintho Narratio:

Hyacinthus adulescens Amycleus erat, pulcher & honestus satis. Hunc Apollo quidem vidit, vidit & hunc Zephyrus, amboque illius formae amore capti sunt, in cuiusque gratiam et honorem certatim artes uterque suas illi exhibebant. Sagittabat namque Apollo, Zephyr vero spirabat, sed ab illo cantus & voluptas veniebat, ab hoc vero timor non nisi ac perturbatio sibi erat. Itaque in Phoebi amorem sese iuvenis inclinat. Ob idque Zephyrum prae zelotypia ad bellum armare fecit. Post haec quaedam Hyacintho exercitamenta cum Apolline erant, in quibus cum sese exerceret a Zephyro sibi maxime timendum erat, discoque praesertim, quem cum adulescentis lusui Deus praeparasset, et ab illo iam descendisset, a pueroque mox levaretur, Zephyri fraude in eum ipsum decidit, qui ita mortuus est. Terra vero tantae calamitatis memoriam ullo modo desertam omittere non debuit, quin pro adulescentulo, quod fecit, florem Hyacinthi nominis emitteret, in cuius quidem foliis eius ipsius Hyacinthi nominis pricipium inscriptum fuisse memorant.

--Pseudo-Palaephatus, Peri Apiston 46; Translated into Latin by Phillip Phasiannus (1542)

Hyacinth was a beautiful and noble youth from Amyclae. Both Apollo and Zephyr saw him and were smitten by his beauty; both competed to win his affection. Apollo showed off his archery skills, and Zephyr sent a wind. Apollo approached Hyacinth with joy and singing; but Hyacinth felt anxious and fearful around Zephyr, so he shared his affection with Apollo. Because of this, Zephyr grew jealous and plotted his revenge.

 Later on, when Hyacinth was training with Apollo, (something he was too afraid to do with Zephyr), Zephyr maliciously struck down the discus that Apollo had thrown; it struck the youth, and he died. The earth could not erase the memory of such a tragedy, and so in honor of the youth, it created a flower with the name Hyacinth, and inscribed the first letter of his name on the petals of the flowers.



Name:  Palaephatus

Date:  4th century BCE

Works:  On Unbelievable Tales



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 about the life and time period of Palaephatus, but his book, On Unbelievable Tales, was a popular text in the ancient world. In this work, Palaephatus attempts to find logical explanations for popular Greek myths. Due to the high level of interest in the topic and the relatively straightforward grammar and syntax, Palaephatus’ work is a popular text for intermediate Ancient Greek classrooms.


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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