Archive for Epitaph

On Anacreon

Posted in Art, Poetry with tags , , , , on November 18, 2016 by Dylan Thomas Hayden

pandura

Oh beloved who didst love the clear lute, O thou who didst sail through thy whole life with song and with love.

Text: Anonymous, The Greek Anthology VII:23B translated by W. R. Paton. Cambridge, Mass: Harvard University Press, 1917
Image: Anonymous, Woman sitting on a rock and playing the lute or pandura, 1st quarter of the 3rd century BC, Musée du Louvre

On Alcman

Posted in Object, Photo, Poetry with tags , , , on November 18, 2016 by Dylan Thomas Hayden

stele

Do not judge the man by the stone. Simple is the tomb to look on, but holds the bones of a great man. Thou shalt know Alcman the supreme striker of the Laoconian lyre, possessed by the nine Muses. Here resteth he, a cause of dispute to two continents, if he be a Lydian or a Spartan. Minstrels have many mothers.

Text: Antipater of Thessalonica, The Greek Anthology VII:18 translated by W. R. Paton. Cambridge, Mass: Harvard University Press, 1917
Image: Marble stele [MAMA XI 70 (Sebaste)], 3rd century AD, Private collection

…for Orpheus dead…

Posted in Art, Poetry with tags , , on November 16, 2016 by Dylan Thomas Hayden

plaque

The fair-haired daughters of Bistonia shed a thousand tears for Orpheus dead, the son of Calliope and Oeagrus; they stained their tattooed arms with blood, and dyed their Thracian locks with black ashes. The very Muses of Pieria, with Apollo, master of the lute, burst into tears mourning for the singer, and the rocks moaned, and the trees, that erst he charmed with his lovely lyre.

Text: Anonymous, The Greek Anthology VII:10 translated by W. R. Paton. Cambridge, Mass: Harvard University Press, 1917
Image: Terracotta Funerary Plaque, ca. 520–510 BC, Metropolitan Museum

No more, Orpheus…

Posted in Art, Greek Myth, Poetry with tags , , , on November 16, 2016 by Dylan Thomas Hayden

orpheus

No more, Orpheus, shalt thou lead the charmed oaks and rocks and the shepherdless herds of wild beasts. No more shalt thou lull to sleep the howling winds and the hail, and the drifting snow, and the roaring sea. For dead thou art; and the daughters of Mnemosyne bewailed thee much, and before all thy mother Calliope. Why sigh we for our dead sons, when not even the gods have power to protect their children from death?

Text: Antipater of Sidon (late 2nd century BC), The Greek Anthology VII:8 translated by W. R. Paton. Cambridge, Mass: Harvard University Press, 1917
Image: Sculptural Group of a Seated Poet and Sirens, c. 350 – 300 BC, Getty Villa