Maurus Servius Honoratus
Maurus Servius Honoratus was a late fourth-century and early fifth-century grammarian, with the contemporary reputation of being the most learned man of his generation in Italy. These works, In tria Virgilii Opera Expositio, constituted the first incunable to be printed at Florence, by Bernardo Cennini, 1471. In the Saturnalia of Macrobius, Servius appears as one of the interlocutors; the commentary on Virgil has survived in two distinct manuscript traditions. The first is a comparatively short commentary, attributed to Servius in the superscription in the manuscripts and by other internal evidence. A second class of manuscripts, all deriving from the 10th and 11th centuries, embed the same text in a much expanded commentary; the copious additions are in contrast to the style of the original. "The added matter is undoubtedly ancient, dating from a time but little removed from that of Servius, is founded to a large extent on historical and antiquarian literature, now lost. The writer is anonymous and a Christian", although not if, as is suggested, he is Aelius Donatus.
A third class of manuscripts, written for the most part in Italy, gives the core text with interpolated scholia, which demonstrate the continued usefulness of the Virgilii Opera Expositio. The authentic commentary of Maurus Servius Honoratus is in effect the only complete extant edition of a classic author written before the collapse of the Empire in the West, it is constructed much on the principle of a modern edition, is founded on an extensive Virgilian critical literature, much of, known only from the fragments and facts preserved in this commentary. The notices of Virgil's text, though or never authoritative in face of the existing manuscripts, which go back to, or beyond, the time of Servius, yet supply valuable information concerning the ancient recensions and textual criticism of Virgil. In the grammatical interpretation of his author's language, Servius does not rise above the stiff and overwrought subtleties of his time. Servius set his face against the prevalent allegorical methods of exposition of text.
For the antiquarian and the historian, the abiding value of his work lies in his preservation of facts in Roman history, religion and language, which but for him might have perished. Not a little of the laborious erudition of Varro and other ancient scholars has survived in his pages. Besides the Virgilian commentary, other works of Servius are extant: a collection of notes on the grammar of Aelius Donatus; the edition of Georg Thilo and Hermann Hagen, remains the only edition of the whole of Servius' work. In development is the Harvard Servius. Latin Wikisource has original text related to this article: Maurus Servius Honoratus Commentary on the Aeneid of Vergil at the Perseus Project in Latin. Commentary on the Eclogues of Vergil at the Perseus Project in Latin. De Centum Metris at Intratext.com De Centum Metris at Forum Romanorum Servii grammatici qui feruntur in Vergilii carmina commentarii, Georius Thilo, Hermannus Hagen, 3 voll. Lipsiae in aedibus B. G. Teubneri, 1881-1902: vol. 1, vol. 2, vol. 3 part 1, vol. 3 part 2
A centaur, or hippocentaur, is a mythological creature from Greek mythology with the upper body of a human and the lower body and legs of a horse. Centaurs are thought of in many Greek myths as being as wild as untamed horses, were said to have inhabited the region of Magnesia and Mount Pelion in Thessaly, the Foloi oak forest in Elis, the Malean peninsula in southern Laconia. Centaurs are subsequently featured in Roman mythology, were familiar figures in the medieval bestiary, they remain a staple of modern fantastic literature. The centaurs were said to have been born of Ixion and Nephele; as the story goes, Nephele was a cloud made into the likeness of Hera in a plot to trick Ixion into revealing his lust for Hera to Zeus. Ixion seduced Nephele. Another version, makes them children of Centaurus, a man who mated with the Magnesian mares. Centaurus was either himself the son of Apollo and the nymph Stilbe. In the latter version of the story, Centaurus's twin brother was ancestor of the Lapiths.
Another tribe of centaurs was said to have lived on Cyprus. According to Nonnus, they were fathered by Zeus, who, in frustration after Aphrodite had eluded him, spilled his seed on the ground of that land. Unlike those of mainland Greece, the Cyprian centaurs were horned. There were the Lamian Pheres, twelve rustic daimones of the Lamos river, they were set by Zeus to guard the infant Dionysos, protecting him from the machinations of Hera, but the enraged goddess transformed them into ox-horned Centaurs. The Lamian Pheres accompanied Dionysos in his campaign against the Indians; the centaur's half-human, half-horse composition has led many writers to treat them as liminal beings, caught between the two natures they embody in contrasting myths. The Centaurs are best known for their fight with the Lapiths who, according to one origin myth, would have been cousins to the centaurs; the battle, called the Centauromachy, was caused by the centaurs' attempt to carry off Hippodamia and the rest of the Lapith women on the day of Hippodamia's marriage to Pirithous, the king of the Lapithae and a son of Ixion.
Theseus, a hero and founder of cities, who happened to be present, threw the balance in favour of the Lapiths by assisting Pirithous in the battle. The Centaurs were destroyed. Another Lapith hero, invulnerable to weapons, was beaten into the earth by Centaurs wielding rocks and the branches of trees. In her article "The Centaur: Its History and Meaning in Human Culture," Elizabeth Lawrence claims that the contests between the centaurs and the Lapiths typify the struggle between civilization and barbarism; the Centauromachy is most famously portrayed in the Parthenon metopes by Phidias and in a Renaissance-era sculpture by Michelangelo. The Greek word kentauros is regarded as being of obscure origin; the etymology from ken + tauros, "piercing bull," was a euhemerist suggestion in Palaephatus' rationalizing text on Greek mythology, On Incredible Tales, which included mounted archers from a village called Nephele eliminating a herd of bulls that were the scourge of Ixion's kingdom. Another possible related etymology can be "bull-slayer".
The most common theory holds that the idea of centaurs came from the first reaction of a non-riding culture, as in the Minoan Aegean world, to nomads who were mounted on horses. The theory suggests that such riders would appear as half-animal. Bernal Díaz del Castillo reported that the Aztecs had this misapprehension about Spanish cavalrymen; the Lapith tribe of Thessaly, who were the kinsmen of the Centaurs in myth, were described as the inventors of horse-back riding by Greek writers. The Thessalian tribes claimed their horse breeds were descended from the centaurs. Robert Graves, speculated that the centaurs were a dimly remembered, pre-Hellenic fraternal earth cult who had the horse as a totem. A similar theory was incorporated into Mary Renault's The Bull from the Sea. Though female centaurs, called centaurides or centauresses, are not mentioned in early Greek literature and art, they do appear in antiquity. A Macedonian mosaic of the 4th century BC is one of the earliest examples of the centauress in art.
Ovid mentions a centauress named Hylonome who committed suicide when her husband Cyllarus was killed in the war with the Lapiths. In a popular legend associated with Pazhaya Sreekanteswaram Temple in Thiruvananthapuram, the curse of a saintly Brahmin transformed a handsome Yadava prince into a creature having a horse's body and the prince's head and torso in place of the head and neck of the horse. Kinnaras, another half-man, half-horse mythical creature from Indian mythology, appeared in various ancient texts and sculptures from all around India, it is shown as a horse with the torso of a man where the horse's head would be, is similar to a Greek centaur. A centaur-like half-human, half-equine creature called Polkan appeared in Russian folk art and lubok prints of the 17th–19th centuries. Polkan is based on Pulicane, a half-dog from Andrea da Barberino's poem I Reali di Francia, once popular in the Slavonic world in prosaic translations; the extensive Mycenaean pottery found at Ugarit included two fragmentary Mycenaean terracotta figures which have been tentatively identified as centaurs.
This finding suggests a Bronze Age origin for these creatures o
Artemis, in the ancient Greek religion and myth, is the goddess of the hunt, the wilderness, wild animals, the Moon, chastity. Artemis is the daughter of Zeus and Leto, the twin sister of Apollo, she was the patron and protector of young girls, was believed to bring disease upon women and relieve them of it. Artemis was worshipped as one of the primary goddesses of childbirth and midwifery along with Eileithyia. Much like Athena and Hestia, Artemis is sworn never to marry. Artemis was one of the most venerated of the Ancient Greek deities and her temple at Ephesus was one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. Artemis' symbols included a bow and arrow, a quiver and hunting knives and the deer and the cypress were sacred to her; the goddess Diana is her Roman equivalent. The name Artemis is of uncertain etymology, although various sources have been proposed. According to J. T. Jablonski, the name is Phrygian and could be "compared with the royal appellation Artemas of Xenophon. According to Charles Anthon the primitive root of the name is of Persian origin from *arta, *art, *arte, all meaning "great, holy," thus Artemis "becomes identical with the great mother of Nature as she was worshipped at Ephesus".
Anton Goebel "suggests the root στρατ or ῥατ, "to shake," and makes Artemis mean the thrower of the dart or the shooter". The name may be related to Greek árktos "bear", supported by the bear cult the goddess had in Attica and the Neolithic remains at the Arkoudiotissa Cave, as well as the story of Callisto, about Artemis, it is believed that a precursor of Artemis was worshipped in Minoan Crete as the goddess of mountains and hunting, Britomartis. While connection with Anatolian names has been suggested, the earliest attested forms of the name Artemis are the Mycenaean Greek, a-te-mi-to /Artemitos/ and, a-ti-mi-te /Artimitei/, written in Linear B at Pylos. R. S. P. Beekes suggested. Artemis was venerated in Lydia as Artimus. Georgios Babiniotis, while accepting that the etymology is unknown states that the name is attested in Mycenean Greek and is of Pre-Greek origin. Ancient Greek writers, by way of folk etymology, some modern scholars, have linked Artemis to ἄρταμος, artamos, i.e. "butcher" or, like Plato did in Cratylus, to ἀρτεμής, artemḗs, i.e. "safe", "unharmed", "uninjured", "pure", "the stainless maiden".
Various conflicting accounts are given in Classical Greek mythology regarding the birth of Artemis and Apollo, her twin brother. However, in terms of parentage, all accounts agree that she was the daughter of Zeus and Leto and that she was the twin sister of Apollo. An account by Callimachus has it that Hera forbade Leto to give birth on either terra firma or on an island. Hera was angry with her husband Zeus because he had impregnated Leto but the island of Delos disobeyed Hera and Leto gave birth there. According to the Homeric Hymn to Artemis the island where Leto gave birth was Ortygia. In ancient Cretan history Leto was worshipped at Phaistos and, in Cretan mythology, Leto gave birth to Apollo and Artemis on the islands known today as Paximadia. A scholium of Servius on Aeneid iii. 72 accounts for the island's archaic name Ortygia by asserting that Zeus transformed Leto into a quail in order to prevent Hera from finding out about his infidelity, Kenneth McLeish suggested further that in quail form Leto would have given birth with as few birth-pains as a mother quail suffers when it lays an egg.
The myths differ as to whether Artemis was born first, or Apollo. Most stories depict Artemis as born first, becoming her mother's midwife upon the birth of her brother Apollo; the childhood of Artemis is not related in any surviving myth. The Iliad reduced the figure of the dread goddess to that of a girl, having been thrashed by Hera, climbs weeping into the lap of Zeus. A poem by Callimachus to the goddess "who amuses herself on mountains with archery" imagines some charming vignettes. Artemis, while sitting on the knee of her father, asked him to grant her several wishes: to always remain a virgin to have many names to set her apart from her brother Phoebus to have a bow and arrow made by the Cyclops to be the Phaesporia or Light Bringer to have a knee-length tunic so that she could hunt to have sixty "daughters of Okeanos", all nine years of age, to be her choir to have twenty Amnisides Nymphs as handmaidens to watch her dogs and bow while she rested to rule all the mountains any city to have the ability to help women in the pains of childbirth.
Artemis believed that she had been chosen by the Fates to be a midwife since she had assisted her mother in the delivery of her twin brother, Apollo. All of her companions remained virgins, Artemis guarded her own chastity, her symbols included the golden bow and arrow, the hunting dog, the stag, the Moon. Callimachus tells how Artemis spent her girlhood seeking out the things that she would need to be a huntress, how she obtained her bow and arrows from the isle of Lipara, where Hephaestus and the Cyclops worked. Oceanus' daughters were filled with fear, but the young Artemis bravely approached and asked for bow and arrows. Callimachus tells how Artemis visited Pan, the god of the forest, who gave her seven bitches and six dogs, she captured six golden-horned deer to pull her chariot. Artemis practiced with h
A nymph in Greek mythology is a supernatural being associated with many other minor female deities that are associated with the air, seas or water, or particular locations or landforms. Different from Greek goddesses, nymphs are more regarded as divine spirits who animate or maintain Nature for the environments where they live, are depicted as beautiful, young graceful maidens, they are divided into various broad subgroups, such as Aurai, Nereides and Dryades The Greek word νύμφη has the primary meaning of "young woman. Yet the etymology of the noun νύμφη remains uncertain; the Doric and Aeolic form is νύμφα. Modern usage more applies to young women at the peak of their attractiveness, contrasting with parthenos "a virgin", generically as kore "maiden, girl"; the term is sometimes used by women to address each other and remains the regular Modern Greek term for "bride". Nymphs were sometimes beloved by many and dwell in most specific areas related to the natural environment. E.g. mountainous forests by springs or rivers.
Other nymphs appeared in the shape of young maidens, were part of the retinue of a god, such as Dionysus, Hermes, or Pan, or a goddess the huntress Artemis. The Greek nymphs were spirits invariably bound to places, not unlike the Latin genius loci, sometimes this produced complicated myths like cult of Arethusa to Sicily. In some of the works of the Greek-educated Latin poets, the nymphs absorbed into their ranks the indigenous Italian divinities of springs and streams, while the Lymphae, Italian water-goddesses, owing to the accidental similarity of their names, could be identified with the Greek Nymphae; the classical mythologies of the Roman poets were unlikely to have affected the rites and cults of individual nymphs venerated by country people in the springs and clefts of Latium. Among the Roman literate class, their sphere of influence was restricted, they appear exclusively as divinities of the watery element; the ancient Greek belief in nymphs survived in many parts of the country into the early years of the twentieth century, when they were known as "nereids".
Nymphs tended to frequent areas distant from humans but could be encountered by lone travelers outside the village, where their music might be heard, the traveler could spy on their dancing or bathing in a stream or pool, either during the noon heat or in the middle of the night. They might appear in a whirlwind; such encounters could be dangerous, bringing dumbness, besotted infatuation, madness or stroke to the unfortunate human. When parents believed their child to be nereid-struck, they would pray to Saint Artemidos. A motif that entered European art during the Renaissance was the idea of a statue of a nymph sleeping in a grotto or spring; this motif came from an Italian report of a Roman sculpture of a nymph at a fountain above the River Danube. The report, an accompanying poem on the fountain describing the sleeping nymph, are now concluded to be a fifteenth-century forgery, but the motif proved influential among artists and landscape gardeners for several centuries after, with copies seen at neoclassical gardens such as the grotto at Stourhead.
As H. J. Rose states, all the names for various classes of nymphs are plural feminine adjectives agreeing with the substantive nymphai, there was no single classification that could be seen as canonical and exhaustive. Thus, the classes of nymphs tend to overlap. Rose mentions dryads and hamadryads as nymphs of trees meliai as nymphs of ash trees, naiads as nymphs of water, but no others specifically; the following is not the authentic Greek classification, but is intended as a guide: The following is a list of groups of nymphs associated with this or that particular location. Nymphs in such groupings could belong to any of the classes mentioned above; the following is a selection of names of the nymphs whose class was not specified in the source texts. For lists of Naiads, Dryades etc. See respective articles. Sabrina Burkert, Walter. Greek Religion. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press. ISBN 978-0-674-36281-9. Larson, Jennifer Lynn. Greek Nymphs: Myth, Lore. New York: Oxford University Press. ISBN 978-0-19-514465-9.
Lawson, John Cuthbert, Modern Greek Folklore and Ancient Greek Religion, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 1910, p. 131 Nereids paleothea.com homepage Tomkinson, John L.. Haunted Greece: Nymphs and Other Exotika. Athens: Anagnosis. ISBN 978-960-88087-0-6; this article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domain: Chisholm, Hugh, ed.. "Nymphs". Encyclopædia Britannica. 19. Cambridge University Press. P. 930. Theoi.com: Nymphs Theoi Project – List of Nymphs
Guineafowl are birds of the family Numididae in the order Galliformes. They rank among the oldest of the gallinaceous birds. Phylogenetically, they branch off from the core Galliformes after the Cracidae and before the Odontophoridae. An Eocene fossil lineage, has been associated with guineafowl. Telecrex inhabited Mongolia, may have given rise to the oldest of the true Phasianids such as Ithaginis and Crossoptilon, which evolved into high-altitude montane-adapted species with the rise of the Tibetan Plateau. While modern guineafowl species are endemic to Africa, the helmeted guineafowl has been introduced elsewhere; this is a list of guineafowl species, presented in taxonomic order. Genus Agelastes White-breasted guineafowl, Agelastes meleagrides Black guineafowl, Agelastes niger Genus Numida Helmeted guineafowl, Numida meleagris Genus Guttera Plumed guineafowl, Guttera plumifera Crested guineafowl, Guttera pucherani Western crested guineafowl, Guttera verreauxi Eastern or Kenya crested guineafowl, Guttera pucherani Southern crested guineafowl, Guttera edouardi Genus Acryllium Vulturine guineafowl, Acryllium vulturinum Living Galliformes based on the work by John Boyd.
The insect- and seed-eating, ground-nesting birds of this family resemble partridges, but with featherless heads, though both members of the genus Guttera have a distinctive black crest, the vulturine guineafowl has a downy brown patch on the nape. Most species of guineafowl have a dark grey or blackish plumage with dense white spots, but both members of the genus Agelastes lack the spots. While several species are well known, the plumed guineafowl and the two members of the genus Agelastes remain poorly known; these large birds measure from 40–71 cm in length, weigh 700–1600 grams or 1.5-3.5 pounds. Guinea hens weigh more than guinea cocks because of the larger reproductive organs in the female compared to the male guinea fowl; the presence of larger egg clusters in the dual purpose guinea hens may be a factor that contributes to the higher body weight of the guinea hens. The species for which information is known are monogamous, mating for life, or are serially monogamous. All guineafowl are social, live in small groups or large flocks.
Though they are monogamous, species of the least-derived genera Guttera and Acryllium tend toward social polyandry, a trait shared with other primitive galliformes like roul roul, Congo peafowl. Guineafowl travel behind herd animals and beneath monkey troops where they forage within manure and on items that have fallen to the understory from the canopy. Guineafowl play a pivotal role in the control of ticks, locusts and other invertebrates, they pluck maggots from carcasses and manure. Wild guineafowl are strong fliers, their breast muscles are dark, enabling them to sustain themselves in flight for considerable distances if hard-pressed. Grass and bush fires are a constant threat to these galliformes and flight is the most effective escape; some species of guineafowl, like the vulturine, may go without drinking water for extended periods, instead sourcing their moisture from their food. Young guineafowl are sensitive to weather, in particular cold temperatures; each gender has a different call which can be used to differentiate between male.
Guineafowl species are found across sub-Saharan Africa, some in the entire range, others more localized, such as the plumed guineafowl in west-central Africa and the vulturine guineafowl in north-east Africa. They live in semi-open habitats such as savanna or semideserts, while some, such as the black guineafowl inhabit forests; some perch high on treetops. The helmeted guinea fowl has been introduced in East Africa, the West Indies, the United States and India, where it is raised as food or pets. Guineafowl meat has a gamey flavour, it has marginally more protein than chicken or turkey half the fat of chicken and fewer calories per gram. Their eggs are richer than those of chickens. Madge and McGowan, Pheasants and Grouse. ISBN 0-7136-3966-0 Martínez, I.. "Family Numididae", p. 554–570 in. Handbook of the Birds of the World, Vol. 2. New World Vultures to Guineafowl. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona. ISBN 84-87334-15-6 Guineafowl videos on the Internet Bird Collection SPPA article on Guinea Fowl Early Birds: Guinea Fowl by Dennis Headley
Penthesilea was an Amazonian queen in Greek mythology, the daughter of Ares and Otrera and the sister of Hippolyta and Melanippe. She assisted Troy in the Trojan War. In the five book epic Aethiopis, part of the Epic Cycle on the Trojan War, the coming to Troy of Penthesilea and Memnon was described in detail; the Aethiopis is attributed to Arctinus of Miletus. The main character of the epic is Achilles, who fights Penthesilea and Memnon before he is himself killed. Although Aethiopis has been lost, the Epic Cycle has been adapted and recycled in different periods of the classical age; the tradition of retelling the epic fall of Troy is indebted to Homer's Iliad and Odyssey, which were grounded in oral storytelling and were only written down when the Greek alphabet was adopted in ancient Greece. In the Aethiopis Penthesilea is a Thracian woman warrior, she was an daughter of Ares, who comes to help the Trojans. She arrived with 12 other Amazon warriors. After a day of distinguishing herself on the battlefield, Penthesilea confronts Achilles.
Achilles kills her. Thersites rebukes Achilles for having fallen in love. Thersites is killed by Achilles, who travels to the island of Lesbos to be purified before returning to Troy and fighting Memnon. According to Homer, the Trojan king Priam had fought the Amazons in his youth on the Sangarius River in Phrygia, some 350 miles east of Troy. Writers of the antiquity located Amazons geographically in Anatolia and started an epic tradition where Greek heroes, such as Heracles and Theseus, fought an Amazon warrior of distinction; the Aethiopis version of the Penthesilea legend has become known as the Homeric tradition. Different traditions of the Penthesilea legend appear to have existed in the time the Epic Cycle was published. In a lost poem of Stesichorus, believed to have been published in the 7th or 6th century, Penthesilea rather than Achilles had killed Hector. At the Temple of Apollo Epicurius, built in the mid- to late-5th century BC, scenes from the Trojan War are preserved in the Bassae Frieze, a high relief marble sculpture in 23 panels.
Here the Greek army is charged by the Amazons, who gain the upper hand, at the height of the battle Achilles slays Penthesilea on a slab known as BM 537. Achilles and Penthesilea are flanked by an Amazon. Penthesilea is identified as a queen by a crown. Penthesilea, shown on the ground just before being struck, Achilles are exchanging a gaze; the final slab of the series on the Amazons depicts a truce between the Greek army and the Amazons at the end of the battle. According to Pausanias, the throne of Zeus at Olympia bore a painting by Panaenus of the dying Penthesilea being supported by Achilles. Pausanias wrote "And, at the extremity of the painting, is Penthesilea breathing her last, Achilles supporting her"; the motive of Achilles supporting a dying or dead Penthesilea has been preserved at the Temple of Aphrodisias and was reinterpreted in sculptures and mosaics in ancient Rome. A black figure vase from about 510–500 BC shows Achilles carrying Penthesilea from the battlefield; the subject of Penthesilea was treated so by the so called Penthesilea Painter, active between 470 and 450 BC, that Adolf Furtwängler dubbed him "The Penthesilea Painter".
A considerable corpus for this innovative and prolific painter, whose work bridged the "Severe style" and Classicism and must have had a workshop of his own, was assembled in part by J. D. Beazley. In the Pseudo-Apollodorus Epitome of the Bibliotheke she is said to have been killed by Achilles, "who fell in love with the Amazon after her death and slew Thersites for jeering at him". In the 3rd century BC Lycophron went against the grain of the Homeric tradition; the poet had been born in Euboea, the site of a shrine to wounded Amazons who had fought in a mythic Battle for Athens. Lycophron tells the story of the young Amazon Clete, Penthesilea's attendant, left behind in Pontus. Clete sets out with a company of Amazons to search for Penthesilea when she does not return from the Trojan War; the ship with Amazons is swept of course and after a shipwreck on the toe of Italy in Bruttium, Clete becomes the queen of the Amazons that settle there. In Virgil's Aeneid, written between 29 and 19 BC, the Trojan army falls back.
Achilles drags the greatest Trojan warrior Hector around the city walls and sells his dead body to king Priam for gold. Penthesilea is cast as a tragic Amazon queen; when Aeneas sees the panel of Penthesilea in the Juno temple of Carthage, he knows that the defeat of Penthesilea and Memnon presage a chain of events that would culminate in the sacking of the city. Penthesilea's fate foreshadows that of Camilla, described in detail by Virgil in the epic. According to Virgil, Penthesilea is a bellatrix who dared to fight men. Virgil based his narrative in Homer's Iliad, while relying on the Epic Cycle for his portrayal of Penthesilea. Virgil reworked oral legends into an epic on the foundation of Rome. In Aeneid the Romans descended from the hero Aeneas and Trojan refugees who sailed to Italy after the Trojan War; this interweaving of the Penthesilea legend with the founding legend of Rome can be traced to Lycophron. In his universal history Bibliotheca historica Diodorus Siculus in the 1st century BC celebrated Penthesilea as the last Amazon to win renown for valour in war.
Diodorus wrote that after the Trojan War the Amazons diminished and tales of their former glor
Pegasus is a famous pterippus, a mythical winged divine stallion, one of the most recognized creatures in Greek mythology. Although misused in popular culture, the term "Pegasus" is a proper noun, referring to a particular character, whereas the term "pterippus" is the generic name for the species of winged horses. Pegasus is depicted as pure white in color. Pegasus is a child of the Olympian god Poseidon, he was foaled by the Gorgon Medusa upon her death. Pegasus is the uncle of Geryon. Greco-Roman poets wrote about the ascent of Pegasus to heaven after his birth, his subsequent obeisance to Zeus, king of the gods, who instructed him to bring lightning and thunder from Olympus. Friend of the Muses, Pegasus created the fountain on Mt. Helicon. Pegasus was caught by the Greek hero Bellerophon, near the fountain Peirene, with the help of Athena and Poseidon. Pegasus allowed Bellerophon to ride him in order to defeat the monstrous Chimera, which led to many other exploits. Bellerophon fell from the winged horse's back while trying to reach Mount Olympus.
Afterwards, Zeus transformed Pegasus into the eponymous constellation. The symbolism of Pegasus varies with time. Symbolic of wisdom and fame from the Middle Ages until the Renaissance, Pegasus became associated with poetry around the 19th century, as the fountainhead of sources from which the poets gained their inspiration. Pegasus is the subject of a rich iconography throughout ancient Greek pottery and paintings and sculptures of the Renaissance. Hypotheses have been proposed regarding the relationship between Pegasus and the Muses, the gods Athena, Zeus and the hero Perseus; the poet Hesiod presents a folk etymology of the name Pegasus as derived from πηγή pēgē "spring, well": "the pegai of Okeanos, where he was born."A proposed etymology of the name is Luwian pihassas, meaning "lightning", Pihassassi, a local Luwian-Hittite name in southern Cilicia of a weather god represented with thunder and lightning. The proponents of this etymology adduce Pegasus' role, reported as early as Hesiod, as the bringer of thunderbolts to Zeus.
It was first suggested in 1952 and remains accepted, but Robin Lane Fox has criticized it as implausible. According to legend, everywhere the winged horse struck his hoof to the earth, an inspiring water spring burst forth. One of these springs was upon the Muses' Mount Helicon, the Hippocrene, Antoninus Liberalis suggested, at the behest of Poseidon to prevent the mountain swelling with rapture at the song of the Muses. Hesiod relates how Pegasus was peacefully drinking from a spring when the hero Bellerophon captured him. Hesiod says Pegasus carried thunderbolts for Zeus. There are several versions of the birth of the winged stallion and his brother Chrysaor in the far distant place at the edge of Earth, Hesiod's "springs of Oceanus, which encircles the inhabited earth, where Perseus found Medusa: One is that they sprang from the blood issuing from Medusa's neck as Perseus was beheading her, similar to the manner in which Athena was born from the head of Zeus. In another version, when Perseus beheaded Medusa, they were born of the Earth, fed by the Gorgon's blood.
A variation of this story holds that they were formed from the mingling of Medusa's blood and sea foam, implying that Poseidon had involvement in their making. The last version bears resemblance to Hesiod's account of the birth of Aphrodite from the foam created when Uranus's severed genitals were cast into the sea by Cronus. Pegasus aided the hero Bellerophon in his fight against the Chimera. There are varying tales about; the next morning, still clutching the bridle, Bellerophon found Pegasus drinking at the Pierian spring, caught him and tamed him. Michaud's Biographie universelle relates that when Pegasus was born, he flew to where thunder and lightning are released. According to certain versions of the myth, Athena tamed him and gave him to Perseus, who flew to Ethiopia to help Andromeda. In fact, Pegasus is a late addition to the story of Perseus, who flew on his own with the sandals lent to him by Hermes. Pegasus and Athena left Bellerophon and continued to Olympus where he was stabled with Zeus' other steeds, was given the task of carrying Zeus' thunderbolts, along with other members of his entourage, his attendants/handmaidens/shield bearers/shieldmaidens and Bronte.
Because of his years of faithful service to Zeus, Pegasus was honoured with transformation into a constellation. On the day of his catasterism, when Zeus transformed him into a constellation, a single feather fell to the earth near the city of Tarsus. During World War II, the silhouetted image of Bellerophon the warrior, mounted on the winged Pegasus, was adopted by the United Kingdom's newly raised parachute troops in 1941 as their upper sleeve insignia; the image symbolized a warrior arriving at a battle by air, the same tactics used by paratroopers. The square upper-sleeve insignia comprised Bellerophon/Pegasus in light blue on a maroon background. One source suggests that the insignia was designed by famous English novelist Daphne du Maurier, wife of the commander of the 1st Airborne Division, General Frederick "Boy" Browning. According to the British Army Website, the insignia was designed by the celebrated East Anglian painter Major Edward Seago in May 1942; the maroon background on