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Homeric Hymns 6 and 10 to Aphrodite

December 12, 2009

Trans: Athanassakis.

Homeric Hymn 6 to Aphrodite
Of august gold-wreathed and beautiful Aphrodite
I shall sing, to whose domain belong the battlements
of all sea-laved Cyprus where, blown by the moist breath of Zephyros,
she was carried over the waves of the resounding sea
in soft foam. The gold-filleted Horae
happily welcomed her and clothed her with heavenly raiment.
Then on her divine head they placed a well-wrough crown,
beautiful and golden, and in her pierced ears
flowers of brass and precious gold.
Round her tender neck and silver-white breasts
they decked her with golden necklaces such as the gold-filleted
Horae themselves are adorned with whenever they go
to lovely dances of the gods and to their father’s house.
And after they decked her body with every sort of jewel,
they brought her to the immortals, who saw and welcomed her,
giving her their hands and each one wished
that he might take her home as his wedded wife;
for they marveled at the looks of violent-crowned Kythereia.
Hail, honey-sweet goddess with the fluttering eyelids!
Grant me victory in this contest and arrange my song.
And I shall remember you and another song, too.

Homeric Hymn 10 to Aphrodite
I shall sing of Kythereia, born on Cyprus,
who brings sweet gifts to mortals, and whose lovely face
ever smiles radiant with lambent beauty on it.
Hail, goddess and mistress of well-built Salamis
and of sea-laved Cyprus! Grant me enchanting song.
And now I will remember you and another song, too.

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2 comments

  1. Beautiful! I love the Athanassakis translations.


  2. I do too. :) They’re *so* much better than the Taylor ones – which just leave something of a nasty taste in my mouth. I do need to try and get a copy of Athanassakis’ translations of the Orphic Hymns, though, which isn’t easy.



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