Ovid's Metamorphoses - Characters Flashcards

Terms Definitions
The Golden Age
The world under Saturn, time of peace and prosperity
The Silver Age
World under Jove, added in seasons, laboring
The Bronze Age
Age of warfare, but not entirely evil
The Iron Age
Age of wickedness
(all these ref. Hesiod)
Lycaon
Served Jove in disguise a banquet of humans, turned into a wolf for his transgression
Deucalion and Pyrrha
The last virtuous couple spared from Jove's wrath (the flood); created new race by throwing rocks behind their shoulders - these turned to humans
Daphne
Turned into a laurel tree after being pursued by Apollo
Io
Lover of Zeus, punished by Hera - turned into a cow
Argus
Watchman of Juno, had many eyes - these became markings on the peacock's feathers after his death
Syrinx
Nymph pursued by Pan, turned into reeds - why reed flutes sacred to Pan
Phaethon
Son of sun-god; talked his father into letting him drive the sun's chariot for a day; was killed as he could not control the horses of the chariot
Arcadian nymph
Raped by Jove in disguise as Diana; turned into a bear by Juno, set in sky as constellation (never allowed to sink below the ocean). Mother of Arcas
Arcas
Tried to kill his own mother (scared by her bear form); stopped by gods who put them in sky as constellations
Coronis
Loved by Apollo; crow told of her meeting another man, Apollo killed her in anger, realized his mistake and blamed the crow (turning its feathers from white to black).
Ocyrhoe
Daughter of Chiron, nymph, gifted with prophesy, turned into a horse
Battus
Saw Mercury under disguise stealing cattle; sold him out after giving his promise not to tell; turned into a stone
Herse
Loved by Mercury
Aglauros
sister of Herse, demanded payment from Mercury to let him see her sister, punished by Minerva to be insanely jealous and eventually by Mercury (turned to stone).
Europa
Carried off by Jove in the form of a bull
Cadmus
Founder of Thebes, sent to find Europa but told by gods to found city, killed python and planted its teeth - these sprung into fighters which eventually became first citizens of Thebes
Actaeon
Grandson of Cadmus, accidentally saw a bathing Diana, punished by being turned into a stag and eaten by his own hunting hounds
Semele
Mother of Bacchus, was convinced by Juno to ask to see Jove in his full glory (and was therefore killed)
Tiresias
Man turned to a woman for 7 years, settled argument between Jove and Juno as to who enjoyed lovemaking more; was blinded by Juno
Echo
Nymph who loved Narcissus, cursed to only repeat what others had said after delaying Juno on Jove's behalf
Narcissus
Youth who fell in love with his own reflection
Pentheus
Spurned Bacchus, torn to pieces by his mother and his wife
Acoetes
One sailor loyal to Bacchus, rest of the sailors on his ship turned into dolphins for doubting the god
Minyas' daughters
Did not participate in Bacchic rites, instead stayed in and wove and told stories; turned into bats
Pyramus
Fell in love with Thisbe; killed himself after thinking Thisbe dead
Thisbe
lover of Pyramus, killed herself after finding him dead; their blood stained the mulberries red
Leucothoe
Loved by the sun-god, buried alive by her father
Clytie
Betrayed Leucothoe to her father, pined away due to lack of love and turned into a flower
Hermaphroditus
Loved by the nymph Salmacis who prayed that they should never be seperated; turned into hermaphrodite; waters of the spring cursed to enfeeble the men
Athamas and Ino
driven mad by Juno as part of her plan to destroy the house of Cadmus
Perseus
Conquered Medusa, turned Atlas into stone to steal golden apples of youth, rescued Andromeda.
Euippe and Pierus' daughters
Challenged the muses to a singing contest; lost, turned into magpies
Ceres
Goddess of the harvest, mother to Proserpina
Proserpina
or Persephone, captured by Hades to be his bride - stays in the underworld for 6 months (because she ate that number of pomegranate seeds).
Arachne
Challenged Minerva to a weaving contest; wove a tapestry mocking the gods; turned into a spider
Niobe
Bragged that she was greater than Diana and Apollo's mother because of having seven sons and seven daughters; turned into a spring (i.e. continually weeping)
Philomela
Sister to Procne, raped by Tereus, tongue cut out so she could not tell her sister - wove a tapestry instead
Procne
Married to Tereus, sister to Philomela; to punish her husband, killed and cooked their son
Jason
Stole the Golden Fleece with Medea's help among other adventures
Medea
Witch, used dark magic to aid Jason, tricked daughters of Pelias into killing their father by saying she knew how to restore him to youth
Cephalus
King, pestilence struck his kingdom but gods answered his prayer for a people as industrious and hard-working as ants - the ants he saw grew into his new subjects, the Myrmidons. Husband to Procris.
Procris
Loyal wife, heard her husband calling to 'aura' (i.e. the wind) and thought he was cheating on her; followed him out hunting and was accidentally killed
Scylla
Daughter of Nisus, betrayed her father (the king) because she was in love with the enemy Minos. Turned into a bird
Daedalus
Famous inventor, constructed maze for Minotaur, father to Icarus
Icarus
son of Daedalus, died after not following father's advice trying to fly to freedom
Calydonian Boar
sent as punishment by Diana, killed by Meleager, who shared his victory with Atalanta
Meleager
Killed his brothers in fight after killing Calydonian Boar; length of his life tied to a log his mother had pulled from the fire after hearing prophecy; died after his mother tossed the log on the fire again.
Baucis and Philemon
Old couple who welcomed Mercury and Jove into their home, generous even if poor. Gods granted to them to die at the same time - were turned into two entwining trees
Erysichthon
Cut down sacred oak, gave nothing to the Gods; was cursed by Ceres to be continually hungry
Pygmalion
Sculpted his ideal woman; blessed by Venus to have his statue become real
Myrrha
Loved her father Cinyras, tricked him into sleeping with her, punished by being turned into a tree
Adonis
Most beautiful youth, loved by Venus, but did not follow her advice and was killed while hunting
Atalanta
Turned away suitors, said the one that could beat her in a race could marry her.
Hippomenes
Tricked Atalanta into losing by throwing golden apples but did not give proper thanks to Venus, was turned into a lion along with Atalanta
Orpheus
Husband to Eurydice, killed by Ciconian women
Midas
Looked after Silenus for Bacchus, was granted one wish - turned everything to gold. Later judged a lyre contest between Pan and Apollo, Apollo gave him donkey's ears for choosing incorrectly
Thetis
Goddess of the sea, mother of Achilles
Chione
Lover of Mercury and Apollo, boasted that she was greater than Diana and was killed for this
Daedalion
father of Chione, turned into a hawk
Ceyx
King, killed in a shipwreck
Alcyone
Ceyx's wife, denied that he was dead until Ceyx came to her in a dream; turned into a bird along with her husband
Aesacus
Of noble lineage, pursued Hesperia - she stepped on a snake and died while trying to run away; flung himself off a cliff in grief, turned into a bird
Caenis
Girl raped by Neptune, turned into a man at her request
Cyllarus and Hylonome
Tragic lover centaurs
Polyxena
Sacrificed to appease ghost of Achilles
Polydorus
Son of Priam, sent away to foreign land but murdered by king there
Hecuba
Priam's wife, mother to Hector; killed Polymestor in revenge
Memnon
slaughtered son of Aurora (the dew = her tears)
Aeneas
If you don't know who he is by now I really can't help you
Anius' Daughters
Called upon Bacchus to save them as they were forced into marriage with enemy; turned into doves
Galatea
Pursued by Polyphemus, loved Acis instead
Acis
Lover of Galatea, crushed by Polyphemus, turned into a spring
Glaucus
Loved Scylla, went to Circe to try and find aid in making her love him; Circe fell in love with him instead and cursed Scylla
Circe
Daughter of the sun, witch
Scylla
Nymph turned into sea monster
Picus
Son of Saturn, scorned Circe and was turned into a bird
Vertumnus
Lover of Pomona, went to her in disguise to try and woo her
Pomona
Gardener, lover of Vertumnus (eventually)
Iphis
Loved Anaxarete, comitted suicide
Anaxarete
Turned into a statue at grief at seeing Iphis' funeral procession
Pythagoras
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