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The Hysminae
Personifications of Fighting
Member of the Family of Eris
AbodeUnderworld (possibly)
Personal information
ParentsEris[1] or
Aether and Gaea[2]
Roman equivalentPugna

In Greek mythology, the Hysminae or Hysminai (Ancient Greek: Ὑσμίνας or ὑσμῖναι; singular: ὑσμίνη from hysmine means 'battle, conflict, combat'[3]) are the personifications of fighting.[4]


Hesiod's account[edit]

The Hysminai are represented as the children of Eris, the goddess of strife.[5] They were siblings to Lethe, Limos, Horkos, Ponos and many other daemons.[6]

And hateful Eris bore painful Ponos ("Hardship"),
Lethe ("Forgetfulness") and Limos ("Starvation") and the tearful Algea ("Pains"),
Hysminai ("Battles"), Makhai ("Wars"), Phonoi ("Murders"), and Androktasiai ("Manslaughters");
Neikea ("Quarrels"), Pseudea ("Lies"), Logoi ("Stories"), Amphillogiai ("Disputes")
Dysnomia ("Anarchy") and Ate ("Ruin"), near one another,
and Horkos ("Oath"), who most afflicts men on earth,
Then willing swears a false oath.[7][8]

Hyginus' account[edit]

In another account, Pugna/ Hysmine was called daughter of the primordial deities Aether and Gaia.[9]

From Aether (Air) and Terra/ Gaia (Earth) [were born]: Dolor/ Algos (Pain), Dolus (Guile), Ira/ Lyssa (Anger), Luctus/ Penthus (Lamentation), Mendacium/ Pseudologoi (Lies), Jusjurandum/ Horcus (Oath), Ultio/ Poine (Vengeance), Intemperantia (Intemperance), Altercatio/ Amphillogiai (Altercation), Oblivio/ Lethe (Forgetfulness), Socordia/ Aergia (Sloth), Timor/ Phobos (Fear), Superbia (Arrogance), Incestum (Sacrilege), Pugna/ Hysminai (Combat).[10]


Quintus Smyrnaeus depicted the Hysminae along with other daemons of war on the shield of Akhilleus.[11]

And there were man-devouring wars, and all horrors of fight: slain men were falling down mid horse-hoofs; and the likeness of a plain blood-drenched was on that shield invincible. Phobos (Panic) was there, and Deimos (Dread), and ghastly Enyo with limbs all gore-bespattered hideously, and deadly Eris (Strife), and the Erinyes (Avenging Spirits) fierce-hearted -- she, still goading warriors on to the onset they, outbreathing breath of fire. Around them hovered the relentless Keres (Fates); beside them Hysminai (Battle) incarnate onward pressed welling, and from their limbs streamed blood and sweat. There were the ruthless Gorgons: through their hair horribly serpents coiled with flickering tongues. A measureless marvel was that cunning work of things that made men shudder to behold seeming as though they verily lived and moved.[12][13]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Hesiod, Theogony 228
  2. ^ Hyginus, Fabulae Preface
  3. ^ "ὑσμίνη": Lexicon entry in LSJ
  4. ^ Scull, Sarah Amelia (1880). Greek mythology systematized. Porter & Coates. p. 42. ISBN 9780524012987. Retrieved 2 April 2010.
  5. ^ Hesiod, Theogony 228
  6. ^ Grimal, Pierre; A. R. Maxwell-Hyslop (1996). The Dictionary of Classical Mythology. Oxford: Blackwell Publishing. p. 152. ISBN 0-631-20102-5.
  7. ^ Caldwell, p. 42 lines 226-232, with the meanings of the names (in parentheses), as given by Caldwell, p. 40 on lines 212–232.
  8. ^ Hesiod, Theogony 226–232 Public Domain This article incorporates text from this source, which is in the public domain.
  9. ^ Hyginus, Fabulae Preface
  10. ^ Hyginus, Fabulae Preface Public Domain This article incorporates text from this source, which is in the public domain.
  11. ^ Quintus Smyrnaeus, Posthomerica 5.36
  12. ^ Quintus (Smyrnaeus) (1913). The fall of Troy. Translated, Arthur S. Way. W. Heinemann. p. 213. ISBN 9780434990191. Retrieved 2 April 2010.
  13. ^ Quintus Smyrnaeus, Posthomerica 5.25–42 Public Domain This article incorporates text from this source, which is in the public domain.