CLASSICS CHAPTER 8 NOTES
THE BIRTH OF ATHENA
- She sprang from Zeus's head in her Homeric Hymn
- In Hesiod, Athena results from Zeus swallowing his consort
METIS, meaning wisdom, after imprgenating her for fear she would
bear a son that would topple him.
- establishes close bond between Zeus and his favourite
her three basic characteristics are allegorized in these myths:
● MASCULINITY OF HER VIRGIN NATURE (INSOFAR AS TO BE SPRUNG
NOT FROM A WOMAN BUT A MAN)
THE SCULPTURE OF TEH PARTHENON
THE PARTHENON was the great temple to ATHENA PARTHENOS (meaning
"virgin", a standard epithet for her)
- located on the Acropolis of Athens
- built between 447 and 438 bc
- the acropolis had been sacked by the persians in 480 when they
destroyed the "Old Parthenon." this reconstructionembodied their
triumph over them.
- west pediment depicts contest between Athena and Poseidon to
be god Athens. Athena won but anthenians worshipped poseidon a
lot too. in the contest, athena offered an olive tree and poseidon offered a salt spring. that's why olives are important
to the athenians.
- nearby the parthenon was a sanctuary for Poseidon called the
ERECHTHEUM after Athenian hero ERECHTHEUS who was alos
- images on the metopes of the exterior Doric frieze emphasized
the triumph of Greek courage over the barbarians and of the
greek gods over their predecessors.
- the Ionic frieze ran around the outter wall of the cella - the
interior part of the temple that housed the staue of athena and
the treasury. it depicts the athenians moving in procession as
they celebrate the festival in honour of their goddess,
- PHEIDIAS also made the statue here of Athena Parthenos.
- all the themes from the metopes repeated on her statue
- she has aegis, nike, medusa, snake, sphinx helmet, etc
PALLAS ATHENA TRITOGENEIA
TRITOGENEIA title is obscure. maybe a region where she was born
(lake Triton or Tritoni in Boeotia or in Libya). so scholars
think she may have once been a water god. she is, after all, to
have been reared after birth by TRITON.
- Triton had a daughter named PALLAS who Athena would hang with
and they would practice arts of war.
- they get into a fight and pallas goes to strike athena but
zeus sticks his aegis in there and athena takes that chance to
take slice at pallas, who dies. athena feels awful and makes a
statue, the PALLADIUM, which Zeus casts down from heaven and it
lands in Trojan land. In saga, this statue carries with it the
destiny of Troy.
- she take