CLA204H.docx-Thebes.docx

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23 Apr 2012
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March 14th, 2012 Lecture #8
CLA204H -THEBES
Ovid Metamorphoses3-4
Ares is the divine ancestor of Thebes,
Cadmus is the historic divine of Thebes probably from Egypt etc- gives his name to the pop. Of
Thebes
Cadmus was abducted by his sister Europa
Thebiaya-series of Theban tales
Cadmus grandson is transformed into a stag and is killed by his dogs
Iono is transformed into a sea goddess
Boeotia- “boe”means cow
Harmonia the daughter of Ares and Aphrodite
The dragon that Cadmus kills had killed all of his friends, sews the dragons teeth in the groun to
get ppl to settle in the city = Spartoi “Sown men”
The Spartoi inter marry with the Cadmeans
Pg55
Death of Narcissus-admiring his reflection
dEath of pentheus-his mother and aunt are ripping him in pieces, Myenaids (womens in
appraised frenzy, crazed females)
Actaeon the hunter gets hunted-ovid , the dogs are sated with their masters blood
Diana and her nymphs-try to cover her body, she feels ashamed as Actaeon was spying on her
so Artemis transforms him into a stag and the dogs eat him, Diana is satisfied in pg 58 punished
for impiety
Cadmus’ line never has sons, even if they don’t
Semle persuades Zeus to reveal himself in his true divine form and then kills her. He removes
the embryo from Semele and sews the embryo in his thigh (Zeus thigh) =birth of Dionysus
Pentheus is punished for impiety as well for spying on the Myenaids b/c he wants to see their
odd sexual practices ,it is disrespectful to the god Dionysus
Tiresias
Tiresias-lives through all the births of the Cadmus lines, outstanding interpreter of the will of
Jupiter
Was blinded by the goddess Athena for seeing her while she was bathing, was given the gift of
prophecy to compensate for loss of sight
Transformation of Echo from nymph to stone
Echo falls in love of Narcissus, but rejects her love and fades away
Narcissus falls in love with himself and is punished for his cruelty and arrogance and therefore
dies
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March 14th, 2012 Lecture #8
Pentheus imprisons the god mistakenly not knowing he was Dionysus
Dionysus escapes the prison and drives Pentheus crazy and then dresses him up disguised as a
Myenad and sends him in the ritual , the Myenades tear him apart led by his mother Agave to
tear him apart and carries his head home
Minyads are devoted to Athena and spurn Dionysus
Minyads are too devoted to house chores and so on , refuse to pray and take part in rituals to
Dionysus
Dionysus demands them to do so, leads to the epiphany of Dionysus to the inyads that refus to
worship him
Pyramus & Thisbe
Parallel to midsummer’s night dream
Locus amoneus “pleasance”, erotic intrigue, sexual initiation,
The stories that the Minyads tell are all about sexual initiation-interested how the fruit of the
mulberry was transformed from white to black during the suicide of lovers sex=Aetiological
myth
Pyramus & Thisbe
Semiramis-queen who founded the city
Leuconoe’s Tale
Story of adultery of Mars and Venus- it was a comic ending (Ares and Aphrodite)
Ushers in less happy ending to the humans on Earth
Leuconoë, daughter of Minyas, in Orchomenos
Ovid uses homonyms, play on names for poetic purpose-somebody with the same name
Telling a tale of Leucothoë daughter of Orchamus in Persia
Sun sneaks in Leucothoë room who is disguised as her mother, who then is raped by her
Clytië, former lover of the Sun is jealous and spreads the rumor of her rape everywhere until it
gets to her father who buries her alive
Alcithoe’s tale
“cause” –Aetiology explanatory tale
Rape with magic pool of Salmacis
Hermaphroditus (Son of Hermes & Aphrodite) goes on an exploration for a
Salmacis likes to go out and pluck flowers, a nymph meets Hermaphroditus and proposes
marriage to him he blushes
Moon is associated with unbridal sexuality
Hermaphroditus tells her that he will leave her pool if she doesn’t leave, plunges into the pool
ans Salmacis clings to every part to his body
Resists her verbal advances and physical advances, Salmacis who clings to the boy prays to the
gods that they are forever bound- origin of Hermaphrodite
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