Alala

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Alala, (Ancient Greek: Ἀλαλά; "battle-cry" or "war-cry"), was the female personification of the war cry in Greek mythology. She was the daughter of Polemos, the daemon of war.[1] Her name means loud cry, esp. war-cry, from the onomatopoeic Greek word ἀλαλή [alalē],[2] hence the verb ἀλαλάζω (alalaző) "raise the war-cry". She was an attendant of the war god Ares, whose war cry was her name, "Alale alala". Alalaxios (Ἀλαλάξιος) is an epithet of Ares. Greek soldiers attacked the enemy with this battle cry in order to cause panic to the enemy lines. It is reputed to be derived from the horrific sound owls make.

In World War II, during the Greco-Italian War a similar battle cry "άέρα" (aera) was used by the Greek soldiers. During the Fascist "Ventennio", the same war-cry (modified as "eja eja alalà", where "eja" had the same meaning of war-cry, taken from Aeschylus and Plato) was adopted by the Arditi, a special corps of the Fascist Army. It was invented by Gabriele D'Annunzio after the Capture of Fiume.

Quote[edit]

"Harken! O Alala, daughter of Polemos! Prelude of spears! To whom soldiers are sacrificed for their city’s sake in the holy sacrifice of death." - Pindar. Dithyrambs, Frag. 78. Alala is the warrior princess, war goddess The name Alala comes from the Greek word Alalai which means warrior.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Theoi Project: Alala - ALALA was the spirit (daimona) of the war cry. She was a daughter of Polemos (war personified).
  2. ^ LSJ entry ἀλαλή