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For questions related to mythology. If the question is not related to Latin language, consider asking at mythology.SE instead: http://mythology.stackexchange.com/.

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Where does strīx come from?

Ovid's Fastī for June 1 relates a story about strīgēs, witches who could transform into owls and magically sap the life of infants. There seem to be two forms of this word, strīx, -gis and strīga, -ae....
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What does Geryon have to do with singing?

One of the Labors of Heracles involved a three-headed giant named Geryon (Γηρυών). I've never seen an explanation for this name, but at first glance it would seem to be connected to γηρύω "to sing" (...
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What exactly are βροτολοιγῶ?

From Procopius's Secret History (or Arcana Historia) XII.12-14: Διὸ δὴ ἐμοί τε καὶ τοῖς πολλοῖς ἠμῶν οὐδεπώποτε ἔδοξαν οὗτοι ἄνθρωποι εἶναι, ἀλλὰ δαίμονες παλαμναῖοί τινες καὶ ὥσπερ οἱ ποιηταὶ ...
7
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Are there literary attestations of werewolves in the Classical period?

The modern idea of werewolves seems to have arisen somewhere in the Middle Ages, after the spread of Christianity. But I vaguely remember a story in the Satyricon (specifically at Trimalchio's dinner) ...
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4answers
325 views

What is the most thorough description of Hades from Greek or Latin sources?

I was having a conversation with Joonas where we were pondering a three-headed Cerberus with three pairs of sunglasses. I joked that the sunglasses would protect him from the UV rays in Hades, which ...
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49 views

When was a pair of Greek and Roman gods first identified?

There is a canonical correspondence between some Greek and Roman gods and goddesses, for example Ares and Mars. However, these two were originally different deities: Ares represented rage in war and ...
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3answers
192 views

What is the etymology and origin of the name of Dido's sister Anna?

Dido's sister and confidante Anna has a name that I believe to be unusual in Latin. Where did this name come from? Is it perhaps Semitic and related to Hebrew Hannah and the derived name Anna? The ...
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66 views

Pentheus as “Divine Suffering”

Q: Can the etymology of Πενθεύς truly be divorced from divinity? Here's a name that even Graves translates merely as "grief". But as a student of Graves, this is one his translation may be too ...
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79 views

Does iron have magical properties?

I've heard that the Romans considered iron to have protective properties, similar to the more modern tradition of "cold iron" against the Fair Folk, or nailing a horseshoe above the door. Do any ...
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3answers
837 views

Can someone translate this paragraph from the book “Proxima” for me? And is it grammatically correct?

Fortasse accipio oratio stridens vestri. Sum Quintus Fabius centurio navis stellae "Malleus Jesu". Quid estis, quid agitis in hac provincia? Et quid est mixti lingua vestri?Germanicus est? Non dubito ...
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Did the ancient Romans have a myth about returning to Rome?

There is a modern myth (or perhaps rather folklore, superstition or something else) that if one throws a coin in Fontana di Trevi, faith will make them come back to Rome. Was there anything similar in ...
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122 views

Dioscuri and Discord

I'm trying to explore if there is any plausible connection between these words. I find them to be somewhat similar in English, where one might carelessly drop the initial "o". I believe there is ...
7
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1answer
563 views

What declension is the name, Aeneas?

How would you decline this noun? It can not be 1st, 2nd, or 3rd declension. Also, how would you say "of Aeneas", which is genitive case?
8
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459 views

How to translate “the Force” from Star Wars?

In Star Wars movies — and other media — there is an important concept called the Force. It is a magical energy field surrounding everything and giving special abilities for those who ...
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103 views

Did Ovid know of Mt. Ararat?

Here is a passage from Ovid's description of the flood in Metamorphoses 1, 293–4: occupat hic collem, cumba sedet alter adunca et ducit remos illic ubi nuper ararat. "This man occupies a ...
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109 views

Was Apollo the sun god in the Augustan era?

I had assumed that Apollo was the sun god in the Augustan era of Rome. I still think this is true. But I read a passage in Wikipedia that made me doubt this. In Hellenistic times, especially during ...
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278 views

Beaver and Pollux?

Castor and Pollux are famous mythological twins. Castor is also the genus of beavers. This makes me wonder two things: Are these two Castors related in any way? Was this double meaning observed in ...