Hypermnestra

Hypermnestra (Ὑπερμνήστρα), in Greek mythology, is the daughter of Danaus and the ancestor of the Danaids.

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Niobe

In Greek mythology, Niobe (/ˈn.ə.b/; Greek: Νιόβη [ni.óbɛː]) was a daughter of Tantalus and of either Dione, the most frequently cited, or of Eurythemista or Euryanassa, and the sister of Pelops and Broteas.

Her father was the ruler of a city located near Manisa in today's Aegean Turkey that was called "Tantalis" or "the city of Tantalus", or "Sipylus". The city was located at the foot of Mount Sipylus and its ruins were reported to be still visible in the beginning of the 1st century AD, although few traces remain today. Pliny reports that Tantalis was destroyed by an earthquake and the city of Sipylus (Magnesia ad Sipylum) was built in its place.

Niobe's father is referred to as "Phrygian" and sometimes even as "King of Phrygia", although his city was located in the western extremity of Anatolia where Lydia was to emerge as a state before the beginning of the first millennium BC, and not in the traditional heartland of Phrygia, situated more inland. References to his son and Niobe's brother as "Pelops the Lydian" led some scholars to the conclusion that there would be good grounds for believing that she belonged to a primordial house of Lydia.

She was already mentioned in Homer's Iliad which relates her proud hubris, for which she was punished by Leto, who sent Apollo and Artemis to slay all of her children, after which her children lay unburied for nine days while she abstained from food. Once the gods interred them, she retreated to her native Sipylus, "where Nymphs dance around the River Acheloos, and although being a stone, she broods over the sorrows sent from the Gods". Later writers asserted that Niobe was wedded to Amphion, one of the twin founders of Thebes, where there was a single sanctuary where the twin founders were venerated, but in fact no shrine to Niobe.

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Hypsipyle

Hypsipyle (Ὑψιπύλη) was the Queen of Lemnos, daughter of Thoas and Myrina in Greek mythology.

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Medea

In Greek mythology, Medea (/mɪˈdə/; Greek: Μήδεια, Mēdeia, Georgian: მედეა) was the daughter of King Aeëtes of Colchis, niece of Circe, granddaughter of the sun god Helios. Medea figures in the myth of Jason and the Argonauts, known best from a late literary version worked up by Apollonius of Rhodes in the third century BC and called the Argonautica, but included early on by Hesiod in his Theogony, written around 700 BCE. Medea is known in most stories as a sorceress and is often depicted as a priestess of the goddess Hecate.

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Arachne

In Greek mythology (and later Roman mythology), Arachne (/əˈrækn/; from Greek: ἀράχνη "spider", cognate with Latin araneus) was a talented mortal weaver who challenged Athena, goddess of wisdom and crafts, to a weaving contest; this hubris resulted in her being transformed into a spider. There are many versions of the story's weaving contest, with each saying that one or the other won.
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Orithyia (Amazon)

In Greek and Roman legendary history, Orithyia, "woman raging in the mountains", was the daughter of Marpesia. Upon the death of her mother, Orithyia became the new queen of the Amazons. She co-ruled with Antiope, who some authorities say was her sister. She was famous for her perpetual virginity. Her war techniques were outstanding and brought much honor to the Amazon empire.

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Antiope (Amazon)

In Greek mythology, Antiope (/ænˈt.əpi/; Ancient Greek: Ἀντιόπη derived from αντι anti "against, compared to, like" and οψ ops "voice") was an Amazon, daughter of Ares and sister to Melanippe, Hippolyta, Penthesilea and possibly Orithyia, queens of the Amazons. She may have been the wife of Theseus and mother to his son Hippolytus, but differing sources claim this was Hippolyta.

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De Mulieribus Claris

De Mulieribus Claris or De Claris Mulieribus (Latin for "Concerning Famous Women") is a collection of biographies of historical and mythological women by the Florentine author Giovanni Boccaccio, first published in 1374. It is notable as the first collection devoted exclusively to biographies of women in Western literature. At the same time as he was writing On Famous Women, Boccaccio also compiled a collection of biographies of famous men, De Casibus Virorum Illustrium (On the Fates of Famous Men).

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Giovanni Boccaccio

Giovanni Boccaccio (/bˈkɑːibə-, -/; Italian: [dʒoˈvanni bokˈkattʃo]; 16 June 1313 – 21 December 1375) was an Italian writer, poet, correspondent of Petrarch, and an important Renaissance humanist. Boccaccio wrote a number of notable works, including The Decameron and On Famous Women. He wrote his imaginative literature mostly in the Italian vernacular, as well as other works in Latin, and is particularly noted for his realistic dialogue which differed from that of his contemporaries, medieval writers who usually followed formulaic models for character and plot.

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The Friar's Tale

"The Friar's Tale" (Middle English: The Freres Tale) is a story in The Canterbury Tales by Geoffrey Chaucer, told by Huberd the Friar. The story centers around a corrupt summoner and his interactions with the Devil. It is preceded by The Wife of Bath's Tale and followed by The Summoner's Tale.

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The Monk's Tale

The Monk's Tale is one of The Canterbury Tales by Geoffrey Chaucer.

The Monk's tale to the other pilgrims is a collection of seventeen short stories, exempla, on the theme of tragedy. The tragic endings of the following historical figures are recounted: Lucifer, Adam, Samson, Hercules, Nebuchadnezzar, Belshazzar, Zenobia, Pedro of Castile, Peter I of Cyprus, Bernabò Visconti, Ugolino of Pisa, Nero, Holofernes, Antiochus, Alexander the Great, Julius Caesar and Croesus.

Some literary critics believe that a large portion of the tale may have been written before the rest of the Canterbury Tales and that the four most contemporary figures were added at a later point. A likely dating for this hypothetical first draft of the text would be the 1370s, shortly after Chaucer returned from a trip to Italy where he was exposed to Giovanni Boccaccio's Concerning the Falls of Illustrious Men as well as other works such as the Decameron. The tragedy of Bernabò Visconti must have been written after 1385, the date of the protagonist's death. The basic structure for the tale is modeled after the Giovanni Boccaccio's Illustrious Men, while the tale of Ugolino of Pisa is retold from Dante's Inferno.

The Monk, in his prologue, claims to have a hundred of these stories in his cell but the Knight stops him after only seventeen saying that they have had enough sadness. The order of the stories within the tale is different in several early manuscripts and if the more contemporary stories were at the end of his tale it may be that Chaucer wishes to suggest that the Knight has another motivation for interrupting than sheer boredom. In Line 51 of the General Prologue, it is said of the Knight that: "At Alisaundre he was, whan it was wonne". If the Knight was at the capture of Alexandria then the implication is that he was probably part of the crusade organised by Peter I of Cyprus and that the reader should presume that hearing of the tragedy of his former military commander is what prompts him to interrupt the monk.

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Geoffrey Chaucer

Geoffrey Chaucer (/ˈɔːsər/; c. 1343 – 25 October 1400), known as the Father of English literature, is widely considered the greatest English poet of the Middle Ages. He was the first poet to be buried in Poets' Corner of Westminster Abbey.

While he achieved fame during his lifetime as an author, philosopher, and astronomer, composing a scientific treatise on the astrolabe for his ten-year-old son Lewis, Chaucer also maintained an active career in the civil service as a bureaucrat, courtier and diplomat. Among his many works are The Book of the Duchess, The House of Fame, The Legend of Good Women and Troilus and Criseyde. He is best known today for The Canterbury Tales.

Chaucer's work was crucial in legitimizing the literary use of the Middle English vernacular at a time when the dominant literary languages in England were French and Latin.

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De Viris Illustribus (Petrarch)

De viris illustribus (English: On Illustrious Men) is an unfinished collection of biographies, written in Latin, by the 14th century Italian author Francesco Petrarca. These biographies are a set of Lives similar in idea to Plutarch's Parallel Lives. The works were unfinished however he was famous enough for these and other works to receive two invitations to be crowned poet laureate. He received these invitations on exactly the same day, April 8, 1341, one being from the Paris University and the other from the Roman Senate. He accepted the Roman invitation.

It is composed of two books:

  • Liber I includes 24 to 36 moral biographies (depending on version) of heroes of Greek and Roman antiquity (much like Polybius The Histories and Plutarch's figures in his Lives).
  • Liber II includes 12 moral biographies of Biblical and mythical figures (much like that found in the Hebrew Bible, Greek mythology, and Islamic prophets).

There is as yet no English translation. Harvard University has it under contract to appear in the I Tatti Renaissance Library sometime in the future.

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Petrarch

Francesco Petrarca (Italian: [franˈtʃesko peˈtrarka]; July 20, 1304 – July 20, 1374), commonly anglicized as Petrarch (/ˈptrɑːrkˈpɛ-/), was an Italian scholar and poet in Renaissance Italy, who was one of the earliest humanists. His rediscovery of Cicero's letters is often credited with initiating the 14th-century Renaissance. Petrarch is often considered the founder of Humanism. In the 16th century, Pietro Bembo created the model for the modern Italian language based on Petrarch's works, as well as those of Giovanni Boccaccio, and, to a lesser extent, Dante Alighieri. Petrarch would be later endorsed as a model for Italian style by the Accademia della Crusca.

Petrarch's sonnets were admired and imitated throughout Europe during the Renaissance and became a model for lyrical poetry. He is also known for being the first to develop the concept of the "Dark Ages."

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Jacques Delille

Jacques Delille (French: [dəlil]; 22 June 1738 – 1 May 1813) was a French poet, freemason and translator. He was born at Aigueperse in Auvergne and died in Paris.

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1777 Georgics of Virgil Latin Poetry Agriculture Rustics Gardening Georgica ROME

The Georgics (/ˈɔːrɪks/; Latin: Georgica [ɡeˈoːrɡɪka]) is a poem by Latin poet Virgil, likely published in 29 BC. As the name suggests (from the Greek word γεωργικά, geōrgika, i.e. "agricultural (things)") the subject of the poem is agriculture; but far from being an example of peaceful rural poetry, it is a work characterized by tensions in both theme and purpose.

The Georgics is considered Virgil's second major work, following his Eclogues and preceding the Aeneid. The poem draws on a variety of prior sources and has influenced many later authors from antiquity to the present.

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1668 Italian Saint Bonaventure Antwerp Dutch ed Medieval Scholastic Catholic

Saint Bonaventure (/ˈbɒnəˌvɛnərˌbɒnəˈvɛn-/; Italian: Bonaventura [bɔnavenˈtura]; 1221 – 15 July 1274), born Giovanni di Fidanza, was an Italian medieval Franciscan, scholastic theologian and philosopher. The seventh Minister General of the Order of Friars Minor, he was also Cardinal Bishop of Albano. He was canonised on 14 April 1482 by Pope Sixtus IV and declared a Doctor of the Church in the year 1588 by Pope Sixtus V. He is known as the "Seraphic Doctor" (Latin: Doctor Seraphicus). Many writings believed in the Middle Ages to be his are now collected under the name Pseudo-Bonaventure.

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Saint Peter

Saint Peter (Syriac/Aramaic: ܫܸܡܥܘܿܢ ܟܹ݁ܐܦ݂ܵܐ, Shemayon Keppa, Hebrew: שמעון בר יונה‎ Shim'on bar Yona, Greek: Πέτρος Petros, Coptic: ⲡⲉⲧⲣⲟⲥ, Latin: Petrus; r. AD 30; d. between AD 64 and 68), also known as Simon Peter, Simeon, or Simon (About this sound pronunciation (help·info)), according to the New Testament, was one of the Twelve Apostles of Jesus Christ, leaders of the early Christian Great Church. Pope Gregory I called him repeatedly the "Prince of the Apostles". According to Catholic teaching, Jesus promised Peter in the "Rock of My Church" dialogue in Matthew 16:18 a special position in the Church. He is traditionally counted as the first Bishop of Rome‍—‌or pope‍—‌and also by Eastern Christian tradition as the first Patriarch of Antioch. The ancient Christian churches all venerate Peter as a major saint and as the founder of the Church of Antiochand the Roman Church, but differ in their attitudes regarding the authority of his present-day successors (the primacy of the Bishop of Rome).

The New Testament indicates that Peter's father's name was John (or Jonah or Jona) and was from the village of Bethsaida in the province of Galilee or Gaulanitis. His brother Andrew was also an apostle. According to New Testament accounts, Peter was one of twelve apostles chosen by Jesus from his first disciples. Originally a fisherman, he played a leadership role and was with Jesus during events witnessed by only a few apostles, such as the Transfiguration. According to the gospels, Peter confessed Jesus as the Messiah, was part of Jesus's inner circle, thrice denied Jesus and wept bitterly once he realised his deed, and preached on the day of Pentecost.

According to Christian tradition, Peter was crucified in Rome under Emperor Nero Augustus Caesar. It is traditionally held that he was crucified upside down at his own request, since he saw himself unworthy to be crucified in the same way as Jesus. Tradition holds that he was crucified at the site of the Clementine Chapel. His remains are said to be those contained in the underground Confessio of St. Peter's Basilica, where Pope Paul VI announced in 1968 the excavated discovery of a first-century Roman cemetery. Every 29 June since 1736, a statue of Saint Peter in St. Peter's Basilica is adorned with papal tiara, ring of the fisherman, and papal vestments, as part of the celebration of the Feast of Saints Peter and Paul. According to Catholicdoctrine, the direct papal successor to Saint Peter is the incumbent pope, currently Pope Francis.

Two general epistles in the New Testament are ascribed to Peter, but modern scholars generally reject the Petrine authorship of both. The Gospel of Mark was traditionally thought to show the influence of Peter's preaching and eyewitness memories. Several other books bearing his name‍—‌the Acts of Peter, Gospel of Peter, Preaching of Peter, Apocalypse of Peter, and Judgment of Peter‍—‌are considered by Christian denominations as apocryphal, and are thus not included in their Bible canons.

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De Viris Illustribus (Jerome)

De Viris Illustribus (On Illustrious Men) is a collection of short biographies of 135 authors, written in Latin, by the 4th-century Latin Church Father Jerome. He completed this work at Bethlehem in 392-3 CE. The work consists of a prologue plus 135 chapters, each consisting of a brief biography. Jerome himself is the subject of the final chapter. A Greek version of the book, possibly by the same Sophronius who is the subject of Chapter 134, also survives. Many biographies take as their subject figures important in Christian Church history and pay especial attention to their careers as writers. It "was written as an apologetic work to prove that the Church had produced learned men." The book was dedicated to Flavius Dexter, who served as high chamberlain to Theodosius I and as praetorian prefect to Honorius. Dexter was the son of Saint Pacianus, who is eulogized in the work.

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Jerome

Jerome (/əˈrm/; Latin: Eusebius Sophronius Hieronymus; Greek: Εὐσέβιος Σωφρόνιος Ἱερώνυμος; c. 27 March 347 – 30 September 420) was a priest, confessor, theologian, and historian. He was born at Stridon, a village near Emona on the border of Dalmatia and Pannonia. He is best known for his translation of most of the Bible into Latin (the translation that became known as the Vulgate), and his commentaries on the Gospels. His list of writings is extensive.

The protégé of Pope Damasus I, who died in December of 384, Jerome was known for his teachings on Christian moral life, especially to those living in cosmopolitan centers such as Rome. In many cases, he focused his attention on the lives of women and identified how a woman devoted to Jesus should live her life. This focus stemmed from his close patron relationships with several prominent female ascetics who were members of affluent senatorial families.

He is recognised as a Saint and Doctor of the Church by the Catholic Church, the Eastern Orthodox Church, the Lutheran Church, and the Anglican Communion. His feast day is 30 September.

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