Greek Myth: Perseus

Card Set Information

Author:
asnodgrass
ID:
48083
Filename:
Greek Myth: Perseus
Updated:
2010-11-08 01:14:17
Tags:
Perseus Argive Plain
Folders:

Description:
Perseus and Myths of the Argive Plain
Show Answers:

Home > Flashcards > Print Preview

The flashcards below were created by user asnodgrass on FreezingBlue Flashcards. What would you like to do?


  1. Divine Line of Perseus
    • **not that important except to know that he is from a divine line

- All the way back to Io (mythological time - Hera turned her into a cow, guarded by Argo, then wanders --> give birth to son of Zeus (Ephaphys) whose Daughter (lybia) sleeps with poseidon --> twins Belus and Agenor, (europa and cadmus) hate each other.
    • Belus has Danaus (50 daughters) and Aegyptus (50 sons).

Danaus flees to Argos, daughter Amymone searching for water, satyr tries to rape, saved by poseidon (hurls trident into a rock), then raped by him. When pulls trident out --> water. --> Swamps of Lerna (dump the 49 heads of husbands). Only two left (Hypermnestra and Lynceus) have son Abas (unimpt.) who has hostile twins
    • Acrisius and Proteus. Acrisius king of Argos, Proteus king of tiryns (close). --> Acrisius is the grandfather of Perseus
  2. Birth / Childhood of Perseus
    • - Acrisius (king of Argos) hears oracle that his
    • grandson will murder him.
    • - Locks his daughter Danae inside bronze walls, Zeus impregnates her as a golden shower.
    • - Perseus born, eventually Acrisius finds out --> put him and Danae in a box, send them out to sea,
    • - caught by kings son Dictys (fisherman) on the island of Seriphos - he grows up there.
  3. "the girls tragedy"
    • - prohibition (cant get married)
    • - seclusion (in bronze walls)
    • - violation of prohibition (Zeus impregnates her)
    • - threat of death (box at sea)
    • - liberation (Dictys on Seriphos)
  4. Perseus - leading up to the quest
    • threat to a member of the family: King Polydectes
    • (brother of Dictys) likes Danae but wont confront while Perseus is around. --> Asks everyone for a horse as a wedding present (other woman, ploy), Perseus brags that he could get him the Gorgons head (doesnt have horse). So Poly. makes him go get it

Must prove that he is a hero, cannot not accept
  5. What is the object of Perseus' quest
    must bring back the gorgons head

3 gorgons – only one mortal – Medusa, head writhing w. snakes, boar tusks from mouth – terrifying. If you look her straight in the face --> turned to stone. They dwell far far away. Many have tried, not successfu. Live far far away - hyperborea
  6. Perseus: Magical Aids, from whom?
    • - threat to a member of the family: King Polydectes (brother of Dictys) likes Danae but wont confront while Perseus is around.
    • --> Asks everyone for a horse as a wedding present (other woman, ploy), Perseus brags that he could get him the Gorgons head (doesnt have horse). So Poly. makes him go get it

Must prove that he is a hero, cannot not accept
  7. What is the object of Perseus' quest
    must bring back the gorgons head

3 gorgons – only one mortal – Medusa, head writhing w. snakes, boar tusks from mouth – terrifying. If you look her straight in the face --> turned to stone. They dwell far far away. Many have tried, not successfu. Live far far away - hyperborea
  8. Perseus: Magical Aids, from whom?
    2 gods come to help

    • - Athena, Hermes (more surprising)
    • - 

Athena gives him (actually tells him where to find the Graeae, who tell him how to find the nymphs who give him these things)
    • 
- the cap of darkness - belongs to Hades, -makes you invisible
- - -- winged sandals
    • 
- kibisis

    - wallet to carry head so he doesnt look at it
* she also tells him how to findthe 3 Graeae

 Hermes - scimitar (curved sword)
  9. Myth from the 3 Graeae to the slaying
    Myth from the 3 Graeae to the slaying

    -
3Graeae: very old women; only have one eye and one tooth between them, only ones who know where the nymps are - only ones who know where the gorgons are (actually their sisters). he takes their eye and tooth to get info from them,then throw eye, tooth in the lake.

Go to nymphs and then finally to thegorgon's cave (fly over river Ocean). Uses shield as a reflector, cuts off the medusa's head as they are sleeping, gets away because he is invisible. *motifof temporary setback missing*

Medusa was pregnant by Poseidon --> Pegasus(flying horse) jumps out of her neck)
  10. 1st ending version of Perseus': simple return
    • arrives home with the Gorgon's head just in time; Polydectes is about to rape Danae (cowering in corner). Poly says prove that
    • you've accomplished it --> Perseus shows him the head, turns him to stone
  11. Second ending version of Perseus: travels
    • Second ending version of Perseus travels 
Goes to see the world. Flies over Ethiopia - ruled by Cepheus, Cassiopia, and beautiful daughter Andromeda. Cass. brags that her daughter is more
    • beautiful than the nereids, so poseidon floods the city and sends sea monster. They must sacrifice their daughter to pay --> chained to a rock to be eaten by a sea serpent. Perseus goes to Cepheus and says I will save your daughter, but then i want to marry her (even though already engaged to uncle Phineus). he saves her, then they hold a banquet and Phineus tries to attack with his
    • men, but Perseus turns him to stone. 

Perseus becomes the new king of Ethiopia, marries Andromeda and they have a son Perses 

Finally goes back to Argos w/ Andromeda
Flying back - blood of Gorgon dripping on desert --> scorpions, vipers, over sea, puts seaweed to clean --> coral
  12. Perseus: the Death of Acrisious
    • Goes back to Argos with Andromeda (famous by this time). Acrisius (grandpa) fells b/c heard that Perseus would kill him, but Perseus goes to find him. They are playing games (discus). P. throws the discus, kills grandpa by accident --> polluted

. Goes
    • to king of Tiryns (Megapenthes) and says lets switch
  13. Perspective 13.1: Vasari's Perseus and Andromeda
    • - Georgio Vasari - best known for his history of
    • Italian Ar, t Lives of the Best Italian Architects, Painters, and Sculptors
    • - gives an idea about how people through about art in Italy at this time
    • - Painted Perseus freeing Andromeda from the rock
    • - part of larger project to adapt large Palazzo Vecchio in Florence to living quarters for Medici family
    • - justified the mythical theme saying that even
    • though they are fake gods, they hide allegorically the concepts of philosophy -
    • division of the world into 4 elements

    • - followed the dangerous practice of using live
    • nude models (start with bones, then muscles, then flesh

    • - same with Antonia Pollaiuolo - dissected bodies
    • to understand them.
  14. Perspective 13.2 : Classical Myth and the Stars
    • - many figures from the myth of Perseus become
    • constellations (Perseus, Andromeda, Cassiopea, Cepheus, and Ceto) - he is the
    • only Greek hero to fly through the heavens

    • - the Greeks needed to use the heavens more than we
    • do - for time, seasons, directions, so they organize into bodies (give
    • mythological names) - myths provide a mythological framework for combining
    • stars into groupings so they could be examined systematically

    • - on earth looks like stars are fixed in positions -->
    • ancient astronomers thought they were fastened to the inside of a great sphere
    • that revolved around earth. But some (7 planets, sun, moon) dont -->
    • "wanderers" - pass along a group of 12 constellations (Greek
    • "animal show) irrationally

    • - greek gods are associated with planets - belief
    • that careful study (astrology) will reveal profound laws about the influence of
    • the planets, who are gods. Science of the stars in their true nature/ astronomy
    • - study of their positions

    • - Durers map based on Arabic celestial map -->
    • translated into Greco-roman mythical forms. Some connections far-fetched (Aires
    • - ram of golden fleece, gemini- twins are castor and pollux, Leo - nemean lion
    • of Heracles' first labour, cancer is the crab that snapped at his ankles as he
    • fought the hydra) Others are more obscure - Capricorn (goat horned) - Amalthea
    • - goat who nursed infant Zeus - raised to heavens as reward)

    • - slow change of the planets positions against
    • zodiac gives rise to the notion of ages (birth of christ -> sun from aries to
    • pisces - symbol of fish)
  15. Observations: Perseus and Folktale
    • -
    • Danae and Perseus is closest to folktale… see girls
    • tragedy

    • -
    • Perseus is a hero: extraordinary birth, partly
    • divine, strength will kill grandfather, performs impossible labors, comes home
    • to receive a reward. But has no close male friend, breaks no taboo.

    • -
    • Folktale – system of patterns and motifs – can have
    • a lot in common with heroic myth -
    • story about great men, same with women

    • -
    • But folktale concerned with recurring patterns,
    • ways of telling a story.

    • -
    • Heroic myth concerned with the meaning attatched to
    • a hero’s deeds
  16. Observations: Medusa’s Head
    • -
    • Freud thought the Gorgon’s head represents a vagina

    • -
    • Thought that the glimpse of the mother’s genitals
    • inspired the boy with a fear of castration – he could become like her, without
    • a penis.

    • -
    • However, the phallic snake reassures the boy about
    • his own penis; same with being turned to stone – erect penis.

    • -
    • Myth grows out of a social system in which mothers
    • control the lives of young boys (ancient Greece)

    • -
    • Beheading the Gorgon is to overthrow the negative
    • power of the mother, as a Greek boy did when he left his mothers care at
    • puberty and joined the society of men.

    • -
    • Earliest info about gorgons from Homer (Illiad, Oddessey) – “Gorgo” – bogey with
    • staring eues, a terrifying demon with a life of her own outside of the myth of
    • Perseus

    • -
    • Some associate with eastern monsters

    • -
    • Religious behavior – gorgon’s head used as an apotropaic (turning away device) magical
    • means to deflect the evil eye

    • -
    • Belief in evil eye – notion that an unfriendly look
    • can harm is precalent in many cultures, apotropaic eyes found in many cultures à often on interior of Athenian wine cups (b/c
    • intoxication makes one vulnerable to magical harm), reflect an unfriendly stare

    • -
    • Medusa in the myth of Perseus didn’t really have a
    • set identity – only later she aquired the attributes of the Gorgo

What would you like to do?

Home > Flashcards > Print Preview