Phoenix (son of Agenor)

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Phoenix
Eponym of Phoenicia
Member of the Phoenician Royal Family
Phoenix-Agenor filius.jpg
Phoenix from Guillaume Rouillé's Promptuarii Iconum Insigniorum
AbodePhoenicia
Personal information
Parents(a) Agenor and Telephassa
(b) Agenor and Damno
(c) Agenor and Argiope
(d) Agenor and Tyro
(e) Agenor and Antiope
(f) Agenor
(g) Belus and Achiroe (probably)
Siblings(a, c) Europa, Cadmus and Cilix
(b) Isaea and Melia
(d) Europa, Cadmus, Cilix and Syrus
(e) Cadmus and Cilix
(f) Phineus and Taygete
(g) Agenor, Phineus, Aegyptus, Danaus and sometimes Ninus
Consort(1) Cassiopeia
(2) Telephe
(3) Perimede
(4) Alphesiboea
(5) unknown
(6) unknown
Children(1) Europa and Phineus or
(1) Carme, Cilix, Phineus and Doryclus
(2) Europa, Astypale, Phoenice and Peirus
(3) Europa and Astypalaea
(4) Adonis
(5) Cadmus, Europa and Thasus
(6) Cepheus

In Greek mythology, Phoenix or Phoinix (Ancient Greek: Φοῖνιξ Phoinix, gen.: Φοίνικος means "sun-red") was the eponym of Phoenicia who together with his brothers were tasked to find their abducted sister Europa.

Family[edit]

Phoenix was a son of King Agenor[1][2][3] of Tyre by either Telephassa,[4] Argiope,[5] Antiope,[6] Damno[7] or Tyro.[8][9] He was the brother of Europa,[10][11][12] Cadmus,[13] Cilix,[14] Syros,[15] Isaia and Melia.[16]

In some accounts, Phoenix's father was called King Belus of Eypt and sibling to Agenor, Phineus, Aegyptus, Danaus[17] and Ninus.[18] In the latter's version of the myth, Phoenix' mother could be identified as Achiroe, naiad daughter of the river-god Nilus.[19]

Phoenix was believed to have fathered a number of children with different women. By Cassiopeia, Phoenix had a daughter, Carme,[20] and three sons:[21] Cilix,[22] Phineus,[23][24][25] and Doryclus, as well as a stepson Atymnius, whose natural father was Zeus;[26] by Alphesiboea, he had Adonis.[3][27][28] Phoenix was also credited as the father of Cepheus, king of Ethiopia, whose wife was another Cassiopeia.[29]

According to early accounts, Europa was not Phoenix's sister, but his daughter,[30][31][32] while Cadmus was identified as his son.[33] Otherwise, Europa was called one of his two daughters by Perimede, daughter of Oeneus, the other one being Astypalaea;[34] she was also included on the list of Phoenix's children by Telephe, her siblings in this case being Peirus, Phoenice, and Astypale (apparently identical to the aforementioned Astypalaea).[35]

Telephe, daughter of Epimedusa, was probably the same as Telephassa, whom Moschus called Phoenix's wife and not his mother.[36] In another account, his children were Cadmus, Europa and Thasus.[37]

Mythology[edit]

When Europa was carried off by Zeus, her three brothers were sent out by Agenor to find her, but the search was unsuccessful. Phoenix eventually settled in a country in Asia or ?Africa, which he named Phoenicia after himself.[38] He was said to have founded Bithynia which was previously named Mariandyna.[39]

Malalas recounted following account about Phoenix and Heracles the Tyrian:

"Herakles the philosopher, called the Tyrian, lived in the reign of King Phoenix. It was he who discovered the purple-shell. He was wandering on the coastal part of Tyre city when he saw a shepherd dog eating the so-called purple-shell, which is a small maritime species like a sea snail. The shepherd thought the dog was bleeding, and took a clump of sheep’s wool and wiped off what was coming out of the dog’s mouth, and it dyed the wool. Herakles noticed that it wasn’t blood but the virtue of a strange dye, and wondered at it. Recognizing that the dye deposited on the wool came from the purple-shell, and having taken the wool from the shepherd as a great gift, he brought it to Phoenix, the King of Tyre. He too was surprised by the sight of the strange color of the dye. Admiring his discovery, he ordered that wool be dyed from this purple-shell dye and become a royal mantle for him. He was the first to wear this purple mantle, and everyone marveled at his royal raiment, as a foreign spectacle. From then, King Phoenix commanded that no one under his rule dare to wear such virtuous clothing on land or sea, except himself and those who ruled Phoenicia after him, so that they would recognize the King in the army and the crowd from his marvelous and strange clothing."[40]

Genealogical table[edit]

Comparative table of Phoenix' family
Relation Names Sources
Hes. Hom. Pher. Hel. Bac. Sch. on Pala. Sch. on Mos. Ps. Scy. Con. Apd. Dic. Hyg. Pau. Ant. Sol. Non. Mal. Sud. Tzet. St. Jer.
Ili. Sch. Eurip. Apl.
Parents Agenor [41]
Agenor and Damno
Agenor and Telephassa
Agenor and Argiope
Agenor and Tyro
Agenor and Antiope
Belus
Belus and Achiroe
Siblings Europa
Cadmus
Cilix
Thasus
Phineus II
Cepheus
Isaea
Melia
Taygete
Syros
Agenor
Aegyptus
Danaus
Phineus I
Ninus
Wife Cassiopeia
Telephassa
Alphesiboea
Perimede
Children Europa [42] [42] [43]
Cadmus
Phineus
Cilix
Doryclus
Astypale
Phoenice
Peirus
Thasus
Adonis
Cepheus
Carme

Argive family tree[edit]

Argive genealogy in Greek mythology
InachusMelia
ZeusIoPhoroneus
EpaphusMemphis
LibyaPoseidon
BelusAchiroëAgenorTelephassa
DanausElephantisAegyptusCadmusCilixEuropaPhoenix
MantineusHypermnestraLynceusHarmoniaZeus
Polydorus
SpartaLacedaemonOcaleaAbasAgaveSarpedonRhadamanthus
Autonoë
EurydiceAcrisiusInoMinos
ZeusDanaëSemeleZeus
PerseusDionysus
Colour key:

  Male
  Female
  Deity


Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Antoninus Liberalis, 40; Dictys Cretensis, 1.9; Malalas, Chronographia 2.31 & 5.96; Suda, s.v. Phoenician letters
  2. ^ Hesiod, Ehoiai 106 (139 MW) = Probus in Vergil, Bucolics 10.18 (III.2 p. 348.11 Thilo-Hagen)
  3. ^ a b Hesiod (2007). Most, Glenn W. (ed.). The Shield, Catalogue of Women, Other Fragments. Cambridge, Massachuesetts; London, England: Harvard University Press. pp. 176–177. ISBN 978-0-674-99623-6.
  4. ^ Apollodorus, 3.1.1; Moschus, Europa 37 ff.
  5. ^ Hyginus, Fabulae 178
  6. ^ Scholiast on Euripides, Phoenician Women 5; Tzetzes, Chiliades 7.165–166
  7. ^ Gantz, p. 208; Pherecydes, fr. 21 Fowler 2000, p. 289 = FGrHist 3 F 21 = Scholia on Apollonius Rhodius, Argonautica 3.1177-87 ff.
  8. ^ Malalas, Chronographia 2.30
  9. ^ Gomme, A. W. (1913). "The Legend of Cadmus and the Logographoi". JHS: 70.
  10. ^ Apollodorus, 3.1.1; Hyginus, Fabulae 178; St. Jerome, Chronicon B1444; Malalas, Chronographia 2.30
  11. ^ Hesiod, Ehoiai 89 (140 MW) = Scholium D on Homer, Iliad 12.397 (p. 392 van Thiel); cf. Scholia T Homer, Iliad 12.292 (III p. 359.49 Erbse cum apparatu)
  12. ^ Hesiod (2007). Most, Glenn W. (ed.). The Shield, Catalogue of Women, Other Fragments. Cambridge, Massachuesetts; London, England: Harvard University Press. pp. 158–159. ISBN 978-0-674-99623-6.
  13. ^ Apollodorus, 3.1.1; Hyginus, Fabulae 178; Palaephatus, On Incredible Tales 3; Malalas, Chronographia 2.30; Tzetzes, Chiliades 7.166
  14. ^ Apollodorus, 3.1.1; Hyginus, Fabulae 178; Malalas, Chronographia 2.30; Tzetzes, Chiliades 7.166
  15. ^ Malalas, Chronographia 2.30
  16. ^ Gantz, p. 208; Pherecydes fr. 21 Fowler 2000, p. 289 = FGrHist 3 F 21 = Scholia on Apollonius Rhodius, Argonautica 3.1177-87f
  17. ^ Nonnus, Dionysiaca 3.287 ff.
  18. ^ Tzetzes, Chiliades 7.159–160
  19. ^ Tzetzes, Chiliades 7.353
  20. ^ Antoninus Liberalis, 40
  21. ^ Pherecydes, fr. 21 & 3F86
  22. ^ Solinus, Polyhistor 38.3
  23. ^ Pseudo-Scymnos, Circuit de la terre 953 ff.
  24. ^ Hesiod, Ehoiai 96 (138 MW) = Scholia on Apollonius Rhodius, 2.178 (p. 140.1–3 Wendel); FGrHist 4 F
  25. ^ Hesiod (2007). Most, Glenn W. (ed.). The Shield, Catalogue of Women, Other Fragments. Cambridge, Massachuesetts; London, England: Harvard University Press. pp. 168–169. ISBN 978-0-674-99623-6.
  26. ^ Scholia on Apollonius Rhodius, Argonautica 2.178
  27. ^ Hesiod, Ehoiai 106 (139 MW) = Probus in Vergil, Bucolics 10.18 (III.2 p. 348.11 Thilo-Hagen); 107 (139 MW) = Ps. Apollodorus, Bibliotheca 3[183].14.4 (p. 159.4 Wagner)
  28. ^ Apollodorus, 3.14.4
  29. ^ Hyginus, De Astronomica 2.9.1
  30. ^ Homer, Iliad 14. 321; compare to Apollodorus, 3.1.1; Bacchylides, Dithyrambs 17.31; Dictys Cretensis, 1.2 & 1.9; Palaephatus, On Incredible Tales 3; Moschus, Europa 37 ff.
  31. ^ Hesiod, Ehoiai 90 (141 MW; 56 H) = P. Oxyrhynchus papyrus 1358 fr. 1 col. l; 6-13: P. Reinach 77
  32. ^ Hesiod (2007). Most, Glenn W. (ed.). The Shield, Catalogue of Women, Other Fragments. Cambridge, Massachuesetts; London, England: Harvard University Press. pp. 160–161. ISBN 978-0-674-99623-6.
  33. ^ Scholia on Homer, Iliad B, 494, p. 80, 43 ed. Bekk. as cited in Hellanicus' Boeotica
  34. ^ Pausanias, 7.4.1; Hyginus, Fabulae 157
  35. ^ Scholia on Euripides, Phoenician Women 5
  36. ^ Moschus, Idylls 2.42
  37. ^ Conon, Narrations 32 & 37
  38. ^ Apollodorus, 3.1.1; Hyginus, Fabulae 178
  39. ^ St. Jerome, Chronicon B1424
  40. ^ Malalas, Chronographia 2.32
  41. ^ Not named but implied in the context
  42. ^ a b Though Europa was unnamed in this text, she was definitely the daughter of Phoenix who coupled with Zeus.
  43. ^ Europa's mother was not named by Apollodorus, if her father was Phoenix.

References[edit]