Personification of day
|Abode||Sky and Tartarus|
|Parents||Erebus and Nyx|
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|Ancient Greek religion|
In Greek mythology, Hemera (//; Ancient Greek: Ἡμέρα, romanized: Hēméra, lit. 'Day' [hɛːméra]) was the personification of day. According to Hesiod, she was the daughter of Erebus (Darkness) and Nyx (Night), and the sister of Aether. Though separate entities in Hesiod's Theogony, Hemera and Eos (Dawn) were often identified with each other.
In Hesiod's Theogony, Hemera and her brother Aether were the offspring of Erebus and Nyx. Bacchylides apparently had Hemera as the daughter of Chronus (Time) and Nyx. In the lost epic poem the Titanomachy (late seventh century BC?), Hemera was perhaps the mother, by Aether, of Uranus (Sky). In some rare versions, Hemera was instead the daughter of Helios (the Sun) by an unknown mother.
Night and Day passing near greet one another as they cross the great bronze threshold. The one is about to go in and the other is going out the door, and never does the house hold them both inside, but always the one goes out from the house and passes over the earth, while the other in turn remaining inside the house waits for the time of her own departure, until it comes. The one holds much-seeing light for those on the earth, but the other holds Sleep in her hands, the brother of Death—deadly Night, shrouded in murky cloud.
Roman counterpart Dies
Hemera's Roman counterpart Dies (Day) had a different genealogy. According to the Roman mythographer Hyginus, Chaos and Caligio (Mist) were the parents of Nox (Night), Dies, Erebus, and Aether. Cicero says that Aether and Dies were the parents of Caelus (Sky). While, Hyginus says that, in addition to Caelus, Aether and Dies were also the parents of Terra (Earth), and Mare (Sea). Cicero also says that Dies and Caelus were the parents of Mercury, the Roman counterpart of Hermes.
Identified with Eos
Although Eos (Dawn) is a separate entity in Hesiod's Theogony—where she is the daughter of the Titans Theia and Hyperion, the mother of Memnon, and the lover of Cephalus—elsewhere Eos and Hemera are identified. For example, the geographer Pausanias describes seeing depictions, on the "Royal Portico" at Athens and on the throne of Apollo at Amyclae, of Cephalus being carried off by a goddess whom he identifies as Hemera. He also describes a stone pedestal at Olympia which depicted Hemera pleading with Zeus for the life of her son Memnon. Similarly, although, in Homer's Odyssey, Eos is said to be the abductor of Orion, a scholiast on that passage says that, according to Euphorion, Hemera fell in love with Orion and carried him away.
There's little evidence of Hemera having received a cult in ancient times, however archaeological evidence has proven the existence of a small shrine to Hemera and Helios, the god of the sun, on the island of Kos.
- Tripp, s.v. Hemera; Grimal, s.v. Hemera.
- Hard, p. 24; Gantz, p. 4; Hesiod, Theogony 123–125.
- Bacchylides, Victory Odes 7.
- West 2002, p. 109 says that the Titanomachy was "composed in the late seventh century at the earliest".
- Grimal, s.v. Uranus; Eumelus fr. 1 (West 2003, pp. 222–225); compare Callimachus, fr. 498. According to Grimal the mother was "doubtless" Hemera, compare with Cicero, De Natura Deorum 3.44, which has Aether and Dies as the parents of Caelus (Sky).
- Pindar, Olympian Odes 2.32
- Scholia on Pindar's Olympian Odes 2.58.
- Tripp, s.v. Hemera.
- Hesiod, Theogony 748–757.
- Hyginus, Fabulae Theogony 1 (Smith and Trzaskoma, p. 95).
- Cicero, De Natura Deorum 3.44.
- Hyginus, Fabulae Theogony 1–2 (Smith and Trzaskoma, p. 95).
- Cicero, De Natura Deorum 3.56.
- Hesiod, Theogony 371–374, 984–987.
- Hard, p. 46; Tripp, s.v. Hemera.
- Pausanias, 1.3.1 (Royal Portico), 3.18.12 (throne of Apollo). For the abduction of Cephalus by Eos, see Euripides, Hippolytus 454–456; Ovid, Metamorphoses 7.700–704; Hyginus, Fabulae 270; Apollodorus, 1.9.4, 3.14.3.
- Pausanias, 5.22.2.
- Homer, Odyssey 5.122.
- Hard, p. 562; Euphorion fr. 66 Lightfoot [= fr. 103 Powell].
- Farnell, p. 419.
- Apollodorus, Apollodorus, The Library, with an English Translation by Sir James George Frazer, F.B.A., F.R.S. in 2 Volumes. Cambridge, Massachusetts, Harvard University Press; London, William Heinemann Ltd. 1921. ISBN 0-674-99135-4. Online version at the Perseus Digital Library.
- Campbell, David A., Greek Lyric, Volume IV: Bacchylides, Corinna, Loeb Classical Library No. 461. Cambridge, Massachusetts, Harvard University Press, 1992. ISBN 978-0-674-99508-6. Online version at Harvard University Press.
- Cicero, Marcus Tullius, De Natura Deorum in Cicero: On the Nature of the Gods. Academics, translated by H. Rackham, Loeb Classical Library No. 268, Cambridge, Massachusetts, Harvard University Press, first published 1933, revised 1951. ISBN 978-0-674-99296-2. Online version at Harvard University Press. Internet Archive.
- Euripides, Andromache in Euripides: Children of Heracles. Hippolytus. Andromache. Hecuba, edited and translated by David Kovacs, Loeb Classical Library No. 484. Cambridge, Massachusetts, Harvard University Press, 1995. ISBN 978-0-674-99533-8. Online version at Harvard University Press.
- Farnell, Lewis Richard, The Cults of the Greek States vol 5, Clarendon Press Oxford, 1909. Internet Archive.
- Gantz, Timothy, Early Greek Myth: A Guide to Literary and Artistic Sources, Johns Hopkins University Press, 1996, Two volumes: ISBN 978-0-8018-5360-9 (Vol. 1), ISBN 978-0-8018-5362-3 (Vol. 2).
- Grimal, Pierre, The Dictionary of Classical Mythology, Wiley-Blackwell, 1996, ISBN 9780631201021.
- Hard, Robin, The Routledge Handbook of Greek Mythology: Based on H.J. Rose's "Handbook of Greek Mythology", Psychology Press, 2004, ISBN 9780415186360. Google Books.
- Hesiod, Theogony, in Hesiod, Theogony, Works and Days, Testimonia, Edited and translated by Glenn W. Most. Loeb Classical Library No. 57. Cambridge, Massachusetts, Harvard University Press, 2018. ISBN 978-0-674-99720-2. Online version at Harvard University Press.
- Homer, The Odyssey with an English Translation by A.T. Murray, PH.D. in two volumes. Cambridge, Massachusetts, Harvard University Press; London, William Heinemann, Ltd. 1919. Online version at the Perseus Digital Library.
- Hyginus, Gaius Julius, Fabulae in Apollodorus' Library and Hyginus' Fabulae: Two Handbooks of Greek Mythology, Translated, with Introductions by R. Scott Smith and Stephen M. Trzaskoma, Hackett Publishing Company, 2007. ISBN 978-0-87220-821-6.
- Lightfoot, J. L., Hellenistic Collection: Philitas, Alexander of Aetolia, Hermesianax, Euphorion, Parthenius, edited and translated by J. L. Lightfoot, Loeb Classical Library No. 508, Cambridge, Massachusetts, Harvard University Press, 2010. ISBN 978-0-674-99636-6. Online version at Harvard University Press.
- Ovid. Metamorphoses, Volume I: Books 1-8. Translated by Frank Justus Miller. Revised by G. P. Goold. Loeb Classical Library No. 42. Cambridge, Massachusetts: Harvard University Press, 1977, first published 1916. ISBN 978-0-674-99046-3. Online version at Harvard University Press.
- Pausanias, Pausanias Description of Greece with an English Translation by W.H.S. Jones, Litt.D., and H.A. Ormerod, M.A., in 4 Volumes. Cambridge, Massachusetts, Harvard University Press; London, William Heinemann Ltd. 1918. Online version at the Perseus Digital Library.
- Tripp, Edward, Crowell's Handbook of Classical Mythology, Thomas Y. Crowell Co; First edition (June 1970). ISBN 069022608X.
- West, M. L. (2002), "'Eumelos': A Corinthian Epic Cycle?" in The Journal of Hellenic Studies, vol. 122, pp. 109–133. JSTOR 3246207.
- West, M. L. (2003), Greek Epic Fragments: From the Seventh to the Fifth Centuries BC, edited and translated by Martin L. West, Loeb Classical Library No. 497, Cambridge, Massachusetts, Harvard University Press, 2003. ISBN 978-0-674-99605-2. Online version at Harvard University Press.