Melicertes

Fr. 91

       α. . . . Μελικέρτα, μιῆς ἐπὶ πότνια Βύνη   

       

Fr. 92

       ση. .[.]τ̣[. . .]φ̣[          Λε]ανδρίδες εἴ τι παλαιαί

           φθ[έγγ]ονται[             ]υφαν ἱστορίαι.

Fr. 91 Harder (= 91 Pf., = 193 Mass.) P.Mil.Vogl. I 18 col. II 41
   [image], 
Trismegistos 59371

Fr. 92 Harder (= 92 Pf., = 194 Mass.)
  1-3 init. P.Oxy. 2170 fr. 1, 1-3 [image], Trismegistos 59370
  1-3 fin. PSI 1218c, 1-3 [image], Trismegistos 59370

Ino, the daughter of Cadmus, having been driven mad by Hera, fled her husband and jumped into the sea with her son, Melicertes. His body was washed up on the shores of Tenedos, where an altar was placed in his honor. Subsequently, whenever the city was threatened, a woman sacrificed her own child on this altar and was herself blinded. The custom was later abolished when the Penthelidae, the descendants of Orestes and Erigone (the daughter of Aegisthus), settled in Lesbos and exerted their influence on the nearby islands.

Fr. 91

Μελικέρτης, -ου, ὁ: Melicertes, son of Athamas and Ino, metamorphosed into a marine divinity under the name of Palaemon

πότνια -ης, ἡ: mistress, queen

Βύνη -ης, ἡ: Byne, an old name for the sea goddess Ino

Fr. 92

Λεανδρίς -ίδος: (adj.) Leandrian, of Leander, author of a local history of Miletus

φθέγγομαι: utter a sound

ἱστορία -ης, ἡ: inquiry; written history; story

Fr. 92a (= Diegesis II 41 - III 11 1.98 Pf.), P.Mil.Vogl. I 18 col. II 41 - III 11 [image], Trismegistos 59371

       Α. . . . Μελικέρτα, μιῆς ἐπὶ πότνια Βύνη

       Ἑξῆς• ἐπεὶ σὺν Μελικέρτῃ τῷ παιδὶ ἑαυ-

       τὴν κατεπόντισεν Ἰνώ, ἐξέπε-

       σεν εἰς αἰγιαλὸν τῆς Τενέδου τὸ σῶ-

5             μ[α] τοῦ Μελικέρτου• τοὺς δὲ ἐκεῖ πο-

       τε κατοικοῦντας Λέλεγας ποιῆσαι

       αὐτῷ βωμόν, ἐφ' οὗ ἡ πόλις ποιεῖ

       θυσίαν, ὅταν περὶ μεγάλων φο-

       βῆται, τοι[ά]νδ[ε]• γυνὴ τὸ ἑαυτῆς βρέ-

10           φος κα[ταθύσα]σα παραχρῆμα τυφλοῦ-

       ται. τοῦ[το δ' ὕς]τερον κατελύθη, ὅτε

       οἱ ἀπὸ Ὀ[ρέστου] Λέ[σβ]ον ᾤκησαν.

 

Α. . . . "Melicertes, august Byne on one. . ."

Next: When Ino threw herself into

the sea with her child Melicertes, the body

of Melicertes washed up on the shore

of Tenedos. And [he says] that the5

Leleges, who lived there at one time, 

made an altar for him, on which the city makes

a sacrifice, whenever it is afraid

great matters, in the following way: a woman sacrifices her own new-born

child [and] is immediately blinded10

Later, this was brought to an end

when the descendents of Orestes settled at Lesbos.

Fr. 91

O Melicertes, the august Byne upon one . . .

 

Fr. 92

. . . if the old Leandrian stories tell something . . .

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Suggested Citation

Susan Stephens, Callimachus: Aetia. Carlisle, Pennsylvania: Dickinson College Commentaries, 2015. ISBN: 978-1-947822-07-8.http://dcc.dickinson.edu/callimachus-aetia/book-4/melicertes