Melia (Oceanid)

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In Greek mythology, Melia (Ancient Greek: Μελία) was the name of one (or two) of the Oceanid daughters of Oceanus and Tethys, a consort of Apollo, and the wife of Inachus.[1]

Consort of Apollo[edit]

The late 6th–early 5th century BC Greek poet Pindar tells us that Melia, a daughter of Oceanus, was, by Apollo, the mother of the seer Tenerus.[2] The 2nd century AD Greek geographer Pausanias provides a more complete account.[3] According to Pausanias, Melia was abducted; Melia's father Oceanus ordered his son Caanthus to find her. Caanthus found her at Thebes being held by Apollo. Unable to get Melia away from Apollo, Caanthus set fire to Apollo's sanctuary, and Apollo shot and killed him. Pausanius says that, in addition to Tenerus, to whom Apollo gave the "art of divination", Melia had another son by Apollo, Ismenus, after whom the river was named.[4] However, according to the Scholia on Pindar Pythian 11.5– 6, Melia is instead the sister of Ismenus.[5] Pindar, calls her "Melia of the golden spindle".[6]

The 3rd century BC poet Callimachus appears to make this Theban Melia, rather than a daughter of Oceanus, one of the "earth-born" Meliae, the ash tree nymphs, who, according to Hesiod, were born, along with the Erinyes and the Giants, from Gaia (Earth) and the blood of Uranus (Sky), which dripped on Gaia when Uranus was castrated by his son Cronus.[7]

Wife of Inachus[edit]

According to the mythographer Apollodorus, another Melia, also an Oceanid (or possibly the same as the above Melia) was the wife of her brother Inachus, the son of Oceanus and Tethys, and the god of the Inacos River, by whom Melia had two sons, Phoroneus, and Aegialeus.[8] Inachus was also usually said to be (presumably by his wife Melia) the father of Io,[9] the ancestress, by Zeus, of the Greek dynasties of Argos, Thebes, and Crete.[10] However, according to the Latin mythographer Hyginus, Inachus fathered Phoroneus by an Oceanid nymph named Argia.[11] This Melia was also said to have been the mother, by Inachus, of Mycene, the wife of Arestor, and eponym of Mycenae.[12]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Parada, s.v. Melie p. 115.
  2. ^ Larson, pp. 40–41, 142; Pindar, Pythian 11.1–6 (Race, pp. 380, 381), Paean 9 fr. 52k 34–46 (Race, pp. 292–295); also Strabo, 9.2.34. C.f. Pindar, Paean 7 fr. 52g (Race, pp. 278, 279).
  3. ^ Larson, p. 142; Fontenrose pp. 317–318; Pausanias, 9.10.5, 6, 9.26.1.
  4. ^ Pausanias, 9.10.6; c.f. Pindar, fr. 29 1 (Race, pp. 232, 233).
  5. ^ Larson, p. 304 n. 57,
  6. ^ Pindar, fr. 29 1 (Race, pp. 232, 233).
  7. ^ Larson, p. 142; Callimachus, Hymn 4—To Delos 79–85; Hesiod, Theogony 187.
  8. ^ Hard, p. 276; Larson, p. 149; Apollodorus, 2.1.1; Ovid, Amores 3.6.25–26, which perhaps confuses or conflates Melia the wife of Inachus, with the Bithynian Melia who was the mother of Amycus and Mygdon, by Poseidon.
  9. ^ Tripp, s.v. Inachus, p. 318.
  10. ^ Tripp, s.v. Io, p. 319.
  11. ^ Hyginus, Fabulae 143 (Smith and Trzaskoma, p. 147).
  12. ^ Scholiast on the Odyssey 2.120 (West, pp. 160, 161 8*); compare with Pausanias, 2.16.4, which, citing the Great Ehoiai, says that Mycene was the daughter of Inachus and the wife of Arestor, without naming the mother.

References[edit]

  • 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. Online version at the Perseus Digital Library.
  • Callimachus, Callimachus and Lycophron with an English translation by A. W. Mair ; Aratus, with an English translation by G. R. Mair, London: W. Heinemann, New York: G. P. Putnam 1921. Internet Archive
  • Fontenrose, Joseph Eddy, Python: A Study of Delphic Myth and Its Origins, University of California Press, 1959. ISBN 9780520040915.
  • Hard, Robin, The Routledge Handbook of Greek Mythology: Based on H.J. Rose's "Handbook of Greek Mythology", Psychology Press, 2004, ISBN 978-0-415-18636-0.
  • Hesiod, Theogony, in The Homeric Hymns and Homerica with an English Translation by Hugh G. Evelyn-White, Cambridge, Massachusetts., Harvard University Press; London, William Heinemann Ltd. 1914. Online version at the Perseus Digital Library.
  • Hyginus, Gaius Julius, Fabulae in Apollodorus' Library and Hyginus' Fabuae: 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.
  • Larson, Jennifer, "Greek Nymphs : Myth, Cult, Lore", Oxford University Press (US). June 2001. ISBN 978-0-19-512294-7
  • Ovid. Heroides. Amores. Translated by Grant Showerman. Revised by G. P. Goold. Loeb Classical Library No. 41. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1977. ISBN 978-0-674-99045-6. Online version at Harvard University Press.
  • Parada, Carlos, Genealogic Guide to Greek Mythology, Jonsered, Paul Åströms Förlag, 1993.
  • 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.
  • Pindar, Olympian Odes. Pythian Odes. Edited and translated by William H. Race. Loeb Classical Library No. 56. Cambridge, Massachusetts: Harvard University Press, 1997. ISBN 978-0-674-99564-2. Online version at Harvard University Press.
  • Pindar, Nemean Odes. Isthmian Odes. Fragments, Edited and translated by William H. Race. Loeb Classical Library No. 485. Cambridge, Massachusetts: Harvard University Press, 1997. ISBN 978-0-674-99534-5. Online version at Harvard University Press.
  • Strabo, Geography, translated by Horace Leonard Jones; Cambridge, Massachusetts: Harvard University Press; London: William Heinemann, Ltd. (1924). Online version at the Perseus Digital Library, Books 6–14
  • Tripp, Edward, Crowell's Handbook of Classical Mythology, Ty Crowell Co; First edition (June 1970). ISBN 069022608X.
  • West, M. L., 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. Online version at Harvard University Press.