Friday, July 25, 2008

Shakespear I'm not, but....

The Muses were the daughters of Zeus and Mnemosyne, the goddess of memory. The number of Muses varies over time; initially there was but one, and later there is mention of three: Melete, Mneme, and Aoede (the Elder Muses). They were nymphs in Pieria, western Thrace, and their cult was brought to Helicon in Boeotia by the Aloadae. Usually there is mention of nine muses: Calliope, Clio, Erato, Euterpe, Melpomene, Polyhymnia, Terpsichore, Thalia, and Urania, the Younger Muses.

The eldest and most distinguished of the nine Muses. She is the Muse of eloquence and epic or heroic poetry. Calliope ("beautiful voice") is the mother of Orpheus and Linus with Apollo. She was the arbitress in the argument over Adonis between Persephone and Aphrodite. Her emblems are a stylus and wax tablets.

The Muse of historical and heroic poetry. With Pierus, the king of Macedonia, she is the mother of Hyacinth. She was credited for introducing the Phoenician alphabet into Greece. Her attribute is usually a parchment scroll or a set of tablets.

The Muse of lyric poetry, particularly love and erotic poetry, and mimicry. She is usually depicted with a lyre.

Euterpe, her name means "rejoicing well" or "delight". She was born from Zeus and Mnemosyne. Euterpe is the Muse of music and lyric poetry. She is also the Muse of joy and pleasure and of flute playing and was thought to have invented the double flute, which is her attribute.

The Muse of tragedy. She is usually represented with a tragic mask and wearing the cothurnus (the boots traditionally worn by tragic actors). Sometimes she holds a knife or a club in one hand, and the mask in the other.

Polyhymnia is the Greek Muse of the sacred hymn, eloquence and dance. She is usually represented in a pensive or meditating position. She is a serious looking woman, dressed in a long cloak and resting with an elbow on a pillar. Sometimes she holds a finger to her mouth.

Terpsichore is the Muse of dancing and the dramatic chorus, and later of lyric poetry (and in even later versions, of flute playing). Hence the word terpsichorean, pertaining to dance. She is usually represented seated, and holding a lyre. According to some traditions, she is the mother of the Sirens with the river-god Achelous. She is also occasionally mentioned as the mother of Linus by Apollo.

The Muse who presided over comedy and pastoral poetry. She also favored rural pursuits and is represented holding a comic mask and a shepherd's crook (her attributes). Thalia is also the name of one of the Graces (Charites).

The Greek Muse of astronomy and astrology. She is occasionally mentioned as the mother of Linus by Apollo. She is represented with a globe in her left hand and a peg in her right hand. Urania is dressed in a cloak embroidered with stars and she keeps her eyes towards the sky.

If anyone has seen any of these girls, please let them know I'm looking for them.

Even writing about muses provides no inspiraiton. That is messed up.

It's not that there isn't stuff to write about. Lord knows, this week with Mike V's opinion on gun registration, the Obamassiah over in Europe winning votes, McCain's display of snark talent, you'd think I could find something to write. But the muses, they have abandoned me.



Home on the Range said...

I work best with the frosty Guinness muse.

aepilot_jim said...

There's a frosty Guinness muse!?! Somebody introduce me quick! No, faster than that! Why don't people tell me these things?