Τρίτη 20 Φεβρουαρίου 2024

Eos, Goddess of the Dawn

 Ἦμος δ᾽ ἠριγένεια φάνη ῥοδοδάκτυλος Ἠώς,
νῆσον θαυμάζοντες ἐδινεόμεσθα κατ᾽ αὐτήν.
ὦρσαν δὲ νύμφαι, κοῦραι Διὸς αἰγιόχοιο,
αἶγας ὀρεσκῴους, ἵνα δειπνήσειαν ἑταῖροι.
- ΟΜΗΡΟΣ Ὀδύσσεια (9.152-9.215)
Εos (Εως), the Aurora of the Latins, in Greek Mythology was the deity-personification of the dawn, daughter of the Titan Hyperion and the Titaness Theia, therefore, sister of the Sun - whom she precedes each day on his celestial journey - and the Moon.

According to another tradition, she was the daughter of Euryphaessa (characteristic epithet of Eos) or Helios (born father from brother) and Euphrosyne (another name for Night).
Πήλινο αγγείο (Ηώς)

In Greek literature, Eos is presented as a daughter of the Titans Hyperion and Theia, the sister of the sun god Helios and the moon goddess Selene. In rarer traditions, she is the daughter of the Titan Pallas. Each day she drives her two-horse chariot, heralding the breaking of the new day and her brother's arrival. Thus, her most common epithet of the goddess in the Homeric epics is Rhododactylos, or "rosy-fingered", a reference to the sky's colours at dawn, and Erigeneia, "early-born". Although primarily associated with the dawn and early morning, sometimes Eos would accompany Helios for the entire duration of his journey, and thus she is even seen during dusk.

Eos fell in love with mortal men several times, and would abduct them in similar manner to how male gods did mortal women. Her most notable mortal lover is the Trojan prince Tithonus, for whom she ensured the gift of immortality, but not eternal youth, leading to him aging without dying for an eternity. In another story, she carried off the Athenian Cephalus against his will, but eventually let him go for he ardently wished to be returned to his wife, though not before she denigrated her to him, leading to the couple parting ways. Several other lovers and romances with both mortal men and gods were attributed to the goddess by various poets throughout the centuries.

Eos figures in many works of ancient literature and poetry, but despite her Proto-Indo-European origins, there is little evidence of Eos having received any cult or being the centre of worship during classical times.


Etymology

Ηώς < μονοτονική γραφή: αρχαία ελληνική Ἠώς< ἠώς (αυγή)
(ελληνική μυθολογία, θεωνύμιο) θεότητα προσωποποίηση της αυγής, κόρη του Τιτάνα Υπερίωνα και της Τιτανίδας Θείας
↪ Στον Όμηρο, η Ηώς είναι πάντα η «ῥοδοδάκτυλος Ἠώς».

The Proto-Greek form of Ἠώς / Ēṓs has been reconstructed as *ἀυhώς / auhṓs. It is cognate to the Vedic goddess Ushas, Lithuanian goddess Aušrinė, and Roman goddess Aurora (Old Latin Ausosa), all three of whom are also goddesses of the dawn.[1] Beekes notes that the Proto-Greek form *ἇϝος (hãwos) is identical with the Sanskrit relative yāvat, meaning 'as long as'. Meissner (2006) suggested an áwwɔ̄s > /aṷwɔ̄s/ > αὔως lengthening for Aeolic and */aṷwɔ̄s/ > *āwɔ̄s > *ǣwɔ̄s > /ǣɔ̄s/ for Attic-Ionic Greek.

In Mycenaean Greek her name is also attested in the form 𐀀𐀺𐀂𐀍 in Linear B, a-wo-i-jo (Āw(ʰ)oʰios; Ἀϝohιος), found in a tablet from Pylos;[b] it has been interpreted as a shepherd's personal name related to "dawn", or dative form Āwōiōi.

Heinrich Wilhelm Stoll offered a different (now rejected) etymology for ἠὼς, linking it to the verb αὔω, meaning "to blow", "to breathe."

Lycophron calls her by an archaic name, Tito, meaning "day" and perhaps etymologically linked to "Titan". Karl Kerenyi observes that Tito shares a linguistic origin with Eos's lover Tithonus, which belonged to an older, pre-Greek language

Origins
Proto-Indo-European dawn goddess
All four of the aforementioned goddesses sharing a linguistic connection with Eos are considered derivatives of the Proto-Indo-European stem *h₂ewsṓs (later *Ausṓs), "dawn". The root also gave rise to Proto-Germanic *Austrō, Old High German *Ōstara and Old English Ēostre / Ēastre. These and other cognates led to the reconstruction of a Proto-Indo-European dawn goddess, *h₂éwsōs.

*H₂éwsōs or *Haéusōs (PIE: lit. 'the dawn') is the reconstructed Proto-Indo-European name of the dawn goddess in the Proto-Indo-European mythology.

*H₂éwsōs is believed to have been one of the most important deities worshipped by Proto-Indo-European speakers due to the consistency of her characterization in subsequent traditions as well as the importance of the goddess Uṣas in the Rigveda.

Her attributes have not only been mixed with those of solar goddesses in some later traditions, most notably the Baltic sun-deity Saulė, but have subsequently expanded and influenced female deities in other mythologies.

The reconstructed Proto-Indo-European name of the dawn, *h₂éwsōs, derives the verbal root *h₂(e)wes- ('to shine, glow red; a flame') extended by the suffix -ós-. The same root also underlies the word for 'gold', *h₂ews-om (lit. 'glow'), inherited in Latin aurum, Old Prussian ausis, and Lithuanian áuksas.

The word for the dawn as a meteorological event has also been preserved in Balto-Slavic *auṣ(t)ro (cf. Lith. aušrà 'dawn, morning light', PSlav. *ȕtro 'morning, dawn', OCS za ustra 'in the morning'), in Sanskrit uṣar ('dawn'), or in Ancient Greek αὔριον ('tomorrow').

A derivative adverb, *h₂ews-teros, meaning 'east' (lit. 'toward the dawn'), is reflected in Latvian àustrums ('east'), Avestan ušatara ('east'), Italic *aus-tero- (cf. Latin auster 'south wind, south'), Old Church Slavonic ustrŭ ('summer'), and Germanic *austeraz (cf. Old Norse austr, English east, MHG oster). The same root seems to be preserved in the Baltic names for the northeast wind: Lith. aūštrinis and Latv. austrenis, austrinis, austrinš.[ Also related are the Old Norse Austri, described in the Gylfaginning as one of four dwarves that guard the four cardinal points (with him representing the east), and Austrvegr ('The Eastern Way'), attested in medieval Germanic literature

In the Greek pantheon, Eos, Helios and Zeus are the three gods that are of impeccable Indo-European lineage in both etymology and status, although the former two were sidelined in the pantheon by non-PIE newcomers. A common epithet associated with this dawn goddess is *Diwós Dhuǵh2tḗr, the 'Daughter of Dyēus', the sky god. In Homeric tradition however, Eos is never stated to be the daughter of Zeus (Διὸς θυγάτηρ, Diòs thugátēr), as she is instead the daughter of the Titan Hyperion, who plays little role in mythology or religion. Rather, a commonly occurring epithet of hers is δῖα, dîa, meaning "divine", from earlier *díw-ya, which would have translated into "belonging to Zeus" or "heavenly".

Eos's characterization as a lovestruck, sexual being who took many lovers is directly inherited from her PIE precursor. A common and widespread theme among Hausos's descendants is their reluctance to bring the light of the new day. Eos (and Aurora) is sometimes seen as unwilling to leave her bed in the morning, while Uṣas is punished by Indra for attempting to forestall the day, and the Latvian Auseklis was said to be locked up in a golden chamber so she could not always rise in the morning.

This probably of Proto-Indo-European origin goddess of the dawn was often conflated and equated with Hemera, the goddess of the day and daylight. Eos might have also played a role in Proto-Indo-European poetry.

Connection to Aphrodite
Eos also shares some characteristics with the love goddess Aphrodite connoting perhaps a semi-shared origin or influence of Eos/*Haéusōs on Aphrodite, who otherwise has a Near Eastern origin; both goddesses were known for their erotic beauty and aggressive sexuality, both had relationships with mortal lovers and both were associated with the colors red, white, and gold. Michael Janda etymologizes Aphrodite's name as an epithet of Eos meaning "she who rises from the foam [of the ocean]" and points to Hesiod's Theogony account of Aphrodite's birth as an archaic reflex of Indo-European myth. On the other hand however, it is generally accepted that Aphrodite's name etymology is Semitic in origin, and its exact meaning and derivation cannot be determined. Evidence is also provided by an Italic red-figure krater in which Aphrodite is shown holding a mirror beneath a solar disc while the Theban hero Cadmus slays the dragon, with a female figure nearly identical to Aphrodite being depicted on another krater labelled "ΑΩΣ", or Aṓs, the dawn; this shows that although Aphrodite is assimilated to Astarte/Inanna, in Greek artistic tradition she is sometimes presented in a similar matter to Eos.

Aphrodite, like Eos, is predator and not prey, as no tales of men assaulting Aphrodite exist, but there are many where she abducts mortal men reversing the traditional theme of gods and men pursuing maidens, in the same fashion as Eos. Not only does Aphrodite abduct or seduce mortal men as Eos does, but even cites Eos' own adventures with Tithonus when she seduces Anchises. The two goddesses are presented as both maleficent and beneficent abductors, as they confer both death (maleficent) and preservation (beneficent) to their mortal lovers. The two goddesses exist almost side by side in the myth of Phaethon of Syria, with Eos as his mother and Aphrodite as his lover and abductor. Moreover, another telling point is how the name “Aoos” is recorded as both a name for Adonis, Aphrodite’s East-originating lover, and a son of Eos by Cephalus (like Phaethon) who became king of Cyprus, an island that was regarded as Aphrodite’s birthplace. This suggest a mixture of Mycenaean and Phoenician religions on the island; it is possible that Aoos was originally a generic name used for Eos’ son or lover, which was then attached to Aphrodite in the form of a consort of the same name as she developed from Eos.

Description
Eos was almost always described with rosy fingers or rosy forearms as she opened the gates of heaven for the Sun to rise. In Homer, her saffron-colored robe is embroidered or woven with flowers; while the singer in the Homeric Hymn to Helios calls her ῥοδόπηχυν (ACC), "rosy-armed" as does Sappho,[36] who also describes her as having golden arms and golden sandals; rosy-fingered and with golden arms, she is pictured on Attic vases as a beautiful woman, crowned with a tiara or diadem and with the large white-feathered wings of a bird. Mesomedes of Crete used χιονοβλέφαρος for her, "she who has snow-white eyelids", while Ovid described her as "golden". The delicate and fragile beauty of her appearance seems to be in total contrast with the carnal nature that was often attributed to her in myth and literature.

Family
Parents
According to Greek cosmogony, Eos is the daughter of the Titans Hyperion and Theia: Hyperion, a bringer of light, the One Above, Who Travels High Above the Earth and Theia, The Divine, also called Euryphaessa, "wide-shining" and Aethra, "bright sky". Eos is the sister of Helios, the god of the sun, and Selene, the goddess of the moon, "who shine upon all that are on earth and upon the deathless gods who live in the wide heaven". Out of the four authors that give her and her siblings a birth order, two make her the oldest child, the other two the youngest. In some accounts, Eos's father was called Pallas, who is also confirmed to the be father of Eos's sister Selene in some rare traditions. Even though the two goddesses are still connected as sisters in the traditions going with lineage from Pallas, their brother Helios is never included with them in those versions, being consistently the son of Hyperion. Mesomedes made her the daughter of Helios, who is usually her brother, by an unnamed mother. Some authors made her the child of Nyx, the personification of the night, who is the mother of Hemera in the Theogony.

Offspring
Eos married the Titan Astraeus ("of the stars") and became the mother of the Anemoi ("winds") namely Zephyrus, Boreas, Notus and Eurus; of the Morning Star, Eosphoros (Venus); of the stars; and of the virgin goddess of justice, Astraea ("starry one"). Her other notable offspring were Memnon and Emathion by the Trojan prince, Tithonus. Sometimes, Hesperus, Phaethon and Tithonus (different from her lover), were said to be the children of Eos by Prince Cephalus of Athens.

Η πανέμορφη Ηώς, πρόδρομος του Ηλίου, αρματοδρομούσα σκορπώντας άνθη και καταδιώκουσα το σκότος.

Interpretation of myths
As is obvious to any well-intentioned researcher of Greek Mythology, all Greek myths are allegorical and popularized reference to early observations. And in this case, the myths of Eos confirm it. Her name, as "original goddess" (born in the morning), has the same etymology as the Latin Aurora, descendant of Hyperion, (= the one who walks over the Earth) and "Euryphaessa" (= the one who diffused her radiance far away), or of "Theia" (= the current in the sky) and her affinities with the Sun, the Moon, Phaethon, the ancient Lucifer - who as a winged "demon" precedes the chariot of Helios - as well as her epithets , confess its identification with the anthropomorphic, ideal conception of the dawn. "Rhodactylus" and "chrysodactylus" are the first rays of the Sun, golden throne, golden, crimson, the first colors of the sky just before its sunrise. But the "erotolept" of her myths, combined with the brief enjoyment of everything beautiful that she loved, does not escape reality. The heroes and hunters who flee from the "wild dawns", as we would say today, in the myths appear to be abducted by the goddess and fall in love with her! While she continues to this day to scatter around her the observed morning dew and will continue to do so.

Love partners
Distinguished among the goddesses by her attractive beauty and the seductive graces she had, Eos attracted the loving gaze of the god Ares with whom she slept. When the goddess Aphrodite found out about this, she "cursed" her so that her life would be full of love affairs without finding complete satisfaction. As it happened. Now, the legendary traditions about the love affairs of Eos were innumerable.

First in the list of her husbands is Astraeus, (personification of the starry sky), with whom she obtained the numerous stars, Lucifer (Augerinus) and the four main winds, Argestes, North, Zephyrus and South (personifications of the main directions), as and one daughter Diki.

Second, was Tithonus, a handsome youth, son of Laomedon, who was abducted by Eos to her palaces, on the shores of the Ocean (determining the horizon), after he had obtained from Zeus his immortality, forgetting, however, to ask for eternal his youth. And, though he fed Tithonus with ambrosia and clothed him in brilliant garments the hairs of his head began to turn white, wrinkles to furrow his face so that he became unrecognizable retaining only his sweet voice. Then, according to one tradition, Eos asked Zeus and turned him into a tettiga (cicada) and according to another, Eos kidnapped him to Ethiopia where she also had two sons, Imathion, (with most traditions in Thessaly and Macedonia ), and the much-loved Memnon, the celebrated hero of ancient myths and the main hero of "Aethiopida", the Arctic epic.

Eos's third romantic partner was the handsome hunter Orion whom she kidnapped from Tanagra and whom, however, she lost very quickly. Transmitting her incurable love passion to him, she was struck by the arrows of the goddess Artemis, on the island of Ortygia, either because he dared to challenge her to a discus match, or out of the goddess's ignorance, while he was swimming, at the instigation of Apollo (because he carried the love his bond with his sister), or for another reason. According to another version, Eos fell in love with the blinded Orion when he reached the limits of the Ocean (ideal perception of the horizon - today's expression "at the ends of the world") in search of healing, begging her brother to restore his sight with his rays.

After the murder of Orion and his transformation by the gods into the constellation of the same name, followed the Attic hero Cephalus, the son of the god Hermes and Hersis, the husband of Procris, of whom he inadvertently became her killer, and from whom he had the Phaethon. After he too was condemned by the gods, Eos sought a love bond from Melambodides Cleitos, the son of Mantios and a relative of Amphiaraus, but many others followed him as well.

Role in wars
Gigantomachy
Eos played a small role in the battle of the earthborn Giants against the gods, known as the Gigantomachy, who rose in rebellion. When their mother, the earth goddess Gaia learned of a prophecy that the giants would perish at the hand of a mortal, Gaia sought to find a herb that would protect them from all harm; thus Zeus ordered Eos, as well as her siblings Selene (Moon) and Helios (Sun) not to shine so that she would not be able to seek for it, and harvested all of the plant for himself, denying Gaia the chance to make the Giants indestructible. Moreover, Eos is seen fighting against the Giants in the south frieze of the Pergamon Altar, which depicts the Gigantomachy, where she rides hither on either a horse or a mule[98] right ahead of Helios, swinging herself on the back of her mount while a Giant already lies on the ground underneath her; a robe wound around her hips serves as her saddle-cloth.[99] She is joined in fight against the Giants by her siblings, her mother Theia, and possibly, conjectured due to the disembodied wing to the right of Eos's shoulder, the goddess Hemera.

Trojan War
According to Hesiod, by her lover Tithonus, Eos had two sons, Memnon and Emathion. Memnon, king of Aethiopia, joined the Trojans in the Trojan War and fought against Achilles in battle. Much like Thetis, the mother of Achilles, did before her, Eos asked the smithing god Hephaestus with tears in her eyes to forge an armor for Memnon, and he, moved, did as told. Pausanias mentions images of Thetis and Eos both begging Zeus on behalf of their sons. In the end, it was Achilles who triumphed and slew Memnon in battle. Mourning greatly over the death of her son, Eos made the light of her brother, Helios the god of the sun, to fade, and begged Nyx, the goddess of the night, to come out earlier, so she could be able to freely steal her son's body undetected by the armies. After his death, Eos, perhaps with the help of Hypnos (Sleep) and Thanatos (Death), transported Memnon's dead body back to Aethiopia; she also asked Zeus to make her son immortal, and he granted her wish. Eos' role in the Trojan War saga mirrors that of Thetis herself; both are goddesses married to aging old men, both see their mortal sons die on the battlefield, and both arrange an afterlife/immortality of sorts for said sons.

The work of Eos
This deity, according to Greek Mythology, was a daily precursor of the Sun to whom she opened the "Gate of the East" every dawn, with her rosy hands. Then she was crowned with flowers supplied by birds, and with a many-folded veil she mounted her fourfold chariot throwing flowers and with hydrias she spread rhododendron on the Earth ("morning dew"), the drops of which glittered like diamonds in the first rays of the Sun, which followed her .

This was the daily work of Heus, that beautiful deity whom ancient Greek poets praised and with admiration described her rosy fingers, her snow-white neck, her wondrous eyes, her glittering veil (image of a twilight), accompanying her name with a number of exclamatory adjectives or exclamations, such as faennan, voopin, euplocamon, crocopeplon, leukopteron, rhodopechyn (Aeolian dialect: brodopachyn), rhodostefi, rhodosphyron, rhododactylon, chrysinion, chrysothronon, chrysopedilon, etc.