Sunday, December 01, 2019


Who Was the Father of Priam's Children?

Alan Cameron, Greek Mythography in the Roman World (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2004), p. 118:
On the lines of schoolboy jokes such as "Who is buried in Grant's tomb?" some humorist scratched on a wall in Cyrene what, using the technical terminology, he solemnly characterized as a zetema: "Who was the father of Priam's children?"122

122. G. Pugliese Carratelli, Ann. Sc. Arch. At. 39/40 (1961/2), no. 192 = J. and L. Robert, Bull. Ep. 1964, n. 573. See R.A. Kaster, in Mnemos. 37 (1984), 457–8, who cites a similar joke from the Philogelos (197 ed. Thierfelder): "the ignorant grammarian, when stumped by the question "What was the mother of Priam called," answered "Out of respect we call her Madam" (κατὰ τιμὴν κυρίαν αὐτὴν καλοῦμεν)." Not an easy question, in fact. Ps-Apollodorus offers three different names: Strymo, Placia, and Leucippe (the first can be traced to Hellan. F 124c; the last to Pherec. F 136c).

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