Unformatted text preview: APHRODITE APHRODITE Name (aphros=foam) Cytherea, Cypris Story of her birth (Hesiod’s Theogony, or daughter of Zeus and Dione (?) Double tradition about birth>double tradition of her identity Urania (=Celestial) or Pandemos (=Common). The View from Plato’s Symposium. Philosophical and religious complications. Sacred and profane love. Goddess of love, sexuality and marriage. Portrayed nude by the 4th century B.C. Latin name VENUS Homeric Hymn to Aphrodite Homeric Hymn to Aphrodite Three goddesses that Aphrodite cannot bend to her Three will: ATHENA, ARTEMIS, HESTIA. Great Zeus causes Aphrodite to fall in love with a Great mortal: ANCHISES. mortal: Focus on epiphany. Aphrodite’s speech to Anchises. Note how she says, Aphrodite’s Hermes snatched her away from choral dance in honor of Artemis (lines 117-118) honor Theme of abduction- Compare with Hymn to Demeter Theme Hymn Structures: Innocence-experienced in love. Structures: Aphrodite’s game (lines 133) Aphrodite’s Note hunting elements (connection with Artemis) line Note 159 159 Aphrodite, Artemis, and Apollo: Aphrodite, Artemis, and Apollo: Olympian Gods in councilthe proTrojan faction Treasury of the Siphnians in Delphi, ca 525 BC Birth of Aprhodite, Rome, Museo Nazionale delle Terme. The attendants possibly the Horae Ludovisi Throne, ca 470460 BC Birth of Aphrodite: Attic Pelike, Birth of Aphrodite: Attic Pelike, ca 370360 BC Aphrodite coming out of shell: Terracotta statue, Aphrodite coming out of shell: Terracotta statue, 4th century BC Aphrodite and Eros: Aphrodite and Eros: Terracotta stattue, 2nd century BC HOMERIC HYMN TO HOMERIC HYMN TO APHRODITE Homeric Hymns. Called Homeric because manuscripts preserving the Hymns name Homer as their author. Probably had different authors, products of an oral culture and tradition. Hymn= a poem in honor of a god Archaic HOMERIC HYMN TO HOMERIC HYMN TO APHRODITE Disturbance in natural order of the universe. Aphrodite, goddess of love, uses her power for her own amusement by making most gods, including Zeus, fall in love with humans. Zeus stops her scoffing>Makes her fall in love with a mortal, the trojan ANCHISES. Result of this union> birth of a son AENEAS (or spelled Aineias). Hymns, sung in praise of a divinity, by definition raise within their narrative frame the fundamental questions concerning the relation of mortals with the divine world. Hymns, sung in praise of a divinity, by definition raise within their narrative frame the fundamental questions concerning the relation of mortals with the divine world. In the hymn to Aphrodite, the goddess, although faithful to the image of the attractive young woman, pretends to be an inexperienced young girl thus taking the contrary side of her role as goddess. In her encounter with a mortal she makes up a remarkable story: She has been abducted by Hermes and is promised to become the wife of Anchises. Due to transliteration from original Greek you may see variant spellings of some names (ANCHISES or else ANKHISES), both the same. From Homeric Hymn to Aphrodite , archaic (p. 69, Homeric Hymns book) “To him then in answer spoke Aphrodite daughter of Zeus: Ankhises, greatest in glory of humans born on earth. I am no god. Why think that I’m like the immortals? No, I’m just a mortal, a woman the mother that gave me birth, Otreus my father…who over the whole of strongly fortified Phrygia rules.. But I have perfect knowledge of your people’s language and ours. For the nurse who reared me at home was a TROJAN, right from the first she received me, a tiny baby, from the hands of my mother, to tnend. But now, the slayer of Argos (=HERMES) who bears the rold of gold from the dance of Artemis, has snatched me away. We were playing, many nymphs and cattle yielding maidens, rigned by a measureless throng; But then the slayer of Argos who bears the rod of gold snatched me and carried me over the many worked fields of men… The god said that I would be called Anchises’ wedded wife… and showed me the way. Here to you I came.” The reaction of Anchises who initially addresses Aphrodite like a goddess, then falls into her trap and is persuaded by her story, and when she finally discloses her divine nature audaciously states that he indeed had understood her real identity but was deceived by her (l.185186). “You didn’t tell me the truth”, he tells her. . (Hymn to Aphrodite, L. 185186) MOMENT of abduction. One girl out of the many in the story of Aphrodite. Marker of wedding/rape narratives. Truth vs lies in the hymn. From the initial divine ambiguity and mortal ambivalence the hymn proceeds through a presentation of the clash in the communication to a “full” frightening revelation which will help identify and clarify the presence of the divine. It is after this moment that the question of truth and lies will be inserted and give a different dimension to the poetics of the hymn. Aphrodite after disclosing her glorious identity to Anchises, she will not only demand that he be silent about the parentage of their son who will soon be born, but also distort the truth by telling a lie, that a Nymph is his mother Reading truth and lies game as an Reading truth and lies game as an allusion to poetry and poetics. Aphrodite needs Anchises’ collaboration in order to continue playing her game. He has not only to remain silent but also tell a lie that a Nymph gave birth to Aeneas, not only hiding the identity of his mother but also fictionally creating a new one. He has to continue her own game and with his logos, with the story that he will make up according to her directions and demands, he should, persuade the others and make his lies believable. HE has to make his own MYTHOS. Mortals and Gods Mortals and Gods There are three steps in the scenes of epiphany (apparition of divinity to a mortal) first encounter of the gods with the mortals, then the clash in their communication and finally the reestablishment of their relation > cult, new beginnings. Aeneas the mythic founder of Roman history, Connection between Troy and Rome (Virgil’s AENEID). London, British Museum Aphrodite rides a goose: Pistoxenos London, Aphrodite Painter Painter Detail from an Athenian white-ground clay vase, about 475 BC. Marble statue of Aphrodite. Rome, Marble statue of Aphrodite. Rome, Museo Nazionale Romano Aphrodite of Cnidos: GrecoRoman copy after cult statue by Aphrodite of Cnidos: GrecoRoman copy after cult statue by Praxiteles Venus di Milo: Aphrodite of Melos, ca 150100 BC Venus di Milo: Aphrodite of Melos, ca 150100 BC Aphrodite of Melos, Louvre Museum, Paris-Late 2nd c. B.C. Copy of Aphrodite Praxiteles’Aphrodite of Cnidus (original in 4th century B.C.) Praxiteles’Aphrodite (original Aphrodite of Melos, Louvre Aphrodite of Melos, Louvre Capitoline Venus 3rd2nd c. BC Capitoline Venus 3 Venus: Venus: Pompeiian wall painting: Casa dei Venus, 1st century AD Sandro Boticelli Birth of Venus (15th century Sandro Boticelli Birth of Venus (15 ) Venus and Cupid: Venus and Cupid: Cranach, Lucas, 1531 Venus with a mirror: Titian, 15521555 Venus with a mirror: Titian, 15521555 Venus and Adonis: Venus and Adonis: Rubens, Peter Paul, ca 1610 CharlesPaul Landon : Vénus Aphrodite et Eros (1810).Musee des beaux arts, Nice CharlesPaul Landon : V ...
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- Fall '07
- Greek Mythology, Zeus, HERA, Twelve Olympians, APHRODITE APHRODITE