Mycenae, Argos and Amyklai: Agamemnon’s Homes

Schol. ad. Il. 2.559 ex

“From Argos, the son of Zeus and Niobe, the daughter of Phorôneus. Because he used to live there, Argos was assigned to those under Agamemnon. For this reason, Homer used to call all the Greeks Argives.”

ex. <οἳ δ’ ῎Αργος τ’ εἶχον:> ἀπὸ ῎Αργου τοῦ Διὸς καὶ Νιόβης τῆς Φορωνέως. διὰ δὲ τὸ πρῶτον ᾠκίσθαι πρότερον ἐτάχθη τῶν ὑπὸ ᾿Αγαμέμνονα. ἀφ’ οὗ καὶ πάντας ῞Ελληνας ᾿Αργείους καλεῖ. b(BCE3)

Mycenae, Homer, Iliad 2.560-580

“Those who held the well-built city of Mycenae,
Rich Korinth and well-built Kleônae,
And those who inhabited Orneai, lovely Araithurea
And Sikuon where Adrastos first was king,
Those who lived in Huperêsiê and steep Gonoessa,
Pellênê and who lived near Aigios,
Aigalios, all through wide Helikê,
Strong Agamemnon led their hundred ships
Atreus’ son—by far the greatest and best armies
Followed him. And he was glorious in his shining bronze,
He stood out conspicuously among the heroes
Because he was the best and led the largest armies.”

Οἳ δὲ Μυκήνας εἶχον ἐϋκτίμενον πτολίεθρον
ἀφνειόν τε Κόρινθον ἐϋκτιμένας τε Κλεωνάς,
᾿Ορνειάς τ’ ἐνέμοντο ᾿Αραιθυρέην τ’ ἐρατεινὴν
καὶ Σικυῶν’, ὅθ’ ἄρ’ ῎Αδρηστος πρῶτ’ ἐμβασίλευεν,
οἵ θ’ ῾Υπερησίην τε καὶ αἰπεινὴν Γονόεσσαν
Πελλήνην τ’ εἶχον ἠδ’ Αἴγιον ἀμφενέμοντο
Αἰγιαλόν τ’ ἀνὰ πάντα καὶ ἀμφ’ ῾Ελίκην εὐρεῖαν,
τῶν ἑκατὸν νηῶν ἦρχε κρείων ᾿Αγαμέμνων
᾿Ατρεΐδης· ἅμα τῷ γε πολὺ πλεῖστοι καὶ ἄριστοι
λαοὶ ἕποντ’· ἐν δ’ αὐτὸς ἐδύσετο νώροπα χαλκὸν
κυδιόων, πᾶσιν δὲ μετέπρεπεν ἡρώεσσιν
οὕνεκ’ ἄριστος ἔην πολὺ δὲ πλείστους ἄγε λαούς.

Schol. ad Il. 2.569 ex

“Eurustheus used to rule Mycenae. After he died, entrusting it to the Athenians, they established Atreus to lead there after he fled with Thyestes for the murder of Chrysippos.”

ex. <οἳ δὲ Μυκήνας εἶχον:> Μυκηνῶν ἦρχεν Εὐρυσθεύς. ἐπεὶ δὲ συμβαλὼν ᾿Αθηναίοις ἐτελεύτα, ἱστῶσιν ᾿Ατρέα αὐτόθι διάγοντα, ἅμα Θυέστῃ ἐπὶ τῷ φόνῳ Χρυσίππου φυγόντα. b(BCE3)

Schol. ad Il. 2.572 ex

“For Adrastos, after he was exiled, lived with his mother’s brother Polybos and he assigned them to rule even though it was not the custom.”

ex. <῎Αδρηστος:> ἐκπεσὼν γὰρ ῎Αργους παρὰ Πολύβῳ τῷ μητροπάτορι ᾤκει, καὶ ὑπέταξεν αὐτοὺς οὐκ εἰωθότας ἄρχεσθαι. b

Hera on her three sacred cities, Il. 4.52

“Truly, there are three cities most dear to me by far:
Argos, and Sparta and wide-wayed Mycenae”

ἤτοι ἐμοὶ τρεῖς μὲν πολὺ φίλταταί εἰσι πόληες
῎Αργός τε Σπάρτη τε καὶ εὐρυάγυια Μυκήνη·

Il. 2. 561-568

“Those who held Argos and walled Tirunth,
Hermionê, Asinê, cities with deep folds,
Troizên, Êionai, and vine-bound Epidauros,
The sons of the Achaeans who held Aigina and Masêtês,
Diomedes good-at-the-war-cry led them
Along with Sthenelos, the dear son of famous Kapaneus,
And third with them went Eurualos, a man like a god,
The son of lord Mekisteus, the son of Talaôn,
Eighty ships followed them.”

Οἳ δ’ ῎Αργός τ’ εἶχον Τίρυνθά τε τειχιόεσσαν
῾Ερμιόνην ᾿Ασίνην τε, βαθὺν κατὰ κόλπον ἐχούσας,
Τροιζῆν’ ᾿Ηϊόνας τε καὶ ἀμπελόεντ’ ᾿Επίδαυρον,
οἵ τ’ ἔχον Αἴγιναν Μάσητά τε κοῦροι ᾿Αχαιῶν,
τῶν αὖθ’ ἡγεμόνευε βοὴν ἀγαθὸς Διομήδης
καὶ Σθένελος, Καπανῆος ἀγακλειτοῦ φίλος υἱός·
τοῖσι δ’ ἅμ’ Εὐρύαλος τρίτατος κίεν ἰσόθεος φὼς
Μηκιστέος υἱὸς Ταλαϊονίδαο ἄνακτος·
συμπάντων δ’ ἡγεῖτο βοὴν ἀγαθὸς Διομήδης·
τοῖσι δ’ ἅμ’ ὀγδώκοντα μέλαιναι νῆες ἕποντο.

Schol ad. Il. 2.559 ex

“From Argos, the son of Zeus and Niobe, the daughter of Phorôneus. Because he used to live there, Argos was assigned to those under Agamemnon. For this reason, Homer used to call all the Greeks Argives.”

ex. <οἳ δ’ ῎Αργος τ’ εἶχον:> ἀπὸ ῎Αργου τοῦ Διὸς καὶ Νιόβης τῆς Φορωνέως. διὰ δὲ τὸ πρῶτον ᾠκίσθαι πρότερον ἐτάχθη τῶν ὑπὸ ᾿Αγαμέμνονα. ἀφ’ οὗ καὶ πάντας ῞Ελληνας ᾿Αργείους καλεῖ. b(BCE3)

Argos, Ibycos, fr. 282 (=fr. 1a) Oxyrhynchus papyrus (c. 130 b.c.); lines 1-32; cf. Aesch. Agamemnon

They also destroyed the famous,
blessed, large city of Priam
after leaving from Argos
thanks to the plans of Zeus,
taking on the much-sung strife
for the beauty of fair Helen
in that mournful war;
Destruction climbed the ruined city
because of golden-haired Aphrodite.

Now, I don’t long to sing
of host-deceiving Paris
or tender-ankled Kassandra,
or the rest of the children of Priam
and the nameless day
of the sacking of high-gated Troy,
Nor yet the overreaching virtue
of heroes whom the hollow,
many-banched ships brought
as the destruction of Troy.

Fine heroes and Agememnon was their leader,
a king from Pleisthenes,
a son of Atreus, a noble father.

The learned Muses of Helicon
might take up these tales well;
but no mortal man, unblessed,
could number each of the ships
Menelaos led across the Aegean sea from Aulos,
from Argos they came, the bronze-speared sons of the Achaeans…”

οἳ κ]αὶ Δαρδανίδα Πριάμοιο μέ-
γ’ ἄσ]τυ περικλεὲς ὄλβιον ἠνάρον
῎Αργ]οθεν ὀρνυμένοι
Ζη]νὸς μεγάλοιο βουλαῖς
ξα]νθᾶς ῾Ελένας περὶ εἴδει
δῆ]ριν πολύυμνον ἔχ[ο]ντες
πό]λεμον κατὰ δακρ[υό]εντα,
Πέρ]γαμον δ’ ἀνέ[β]α ταλαπείριο[ν ἄ]τα
χρυ]σοέθειραν δ[ι]ὰ Κύπριδα.
νῦ]ν δέ μοι οὔτε ξειναπάταν Π[άρι]ν
..] ἐπιθύμιον οὔτε τανί[σφ]υρ[ον
ὑμ]νῆν Κασσάνδραν
Πρι]άμοιό τε παίδας ἄλλου[ς
Τρο]ίας θ’ ὑψιπύλοιο ἁλώσι[μο]ν
ἆμ]αρ ἀνώνυμον· οὐδεπ̣[
ἡρ]ώων ἀρετὰν
ὑπ]εράφανον οὕς τε κοίλα[ι
νᾶες] πολυγόμφοι ἐλεύσα[ν
Τροί]αι κακόν, ἥρωας ἐσ̣θ̣[λούς·

τῶν] μὲν κρείων ᾿Αγαμέ[μνων
ἆ]ρχε Πλεισθ[ενί]δας βασιλ[εὺ]ς ἀγὸς ἀνδρῶν
᾿Ατρέος ἐσ[θλοῦ] πάις ἐκ π̣[ατρό]ς·
καὶ τὰ μὲ[ν ἂν] Μοίσαι σεσοφ[ισμ]έναι
εὖ ῾Ελικωνίδ[ες] ἐμβαίεν λογ̣[ ·
θνατὸς δ’ οὔ κ[ε]ν ἀνὴρ
διερὸ[ς] τὰ ἕκαστα εἴποι
ναῶν ὡ[ς Μεν]έλαος ἀπ’ Αὐλίδος
Αἰγαῖον δ[ιὰ πό]ντον ἀπ’ ῎Αργεος
ἠλύθο̣[ν …..]ν
ἱπποτρόφο[ν …]ε φώτες
χ]αλκάσπ[ιδες υἷ]ες ᾿Αχα[ι]ῶν

Amyklai, Pind. Pyth. 11.17-37

“The nurse Arsinoe took [Orestes]
from his father murdered
by the strong hands of Klytemnestra
by the grievous trick
when she sent the Dardanian girl
with Agamemnon’s soul by means of grey bronze
to the dusty banks of Acheron,
the pitiless woman.
Was it Iphigenia, slaughtered
far away from her home near the Euripos
that moved her to heavy-handed rage?
Or was she overwhelmed by another bed,
made crazy by their nightly ‘sharing’?
This is the most hateful mistake
of young brides
and it is impossible to keep from other people’s tongues.
Citizens are vile-gossips.
Prosperity brings with it an equal-sized envy;
while the man who breathes close to the ground moves by unseen.
The hero son of Atreus himself died
when he came after a long time to famous Amyklai.
And he destroyed the prophetic girl too
after he despoiled the homes of the Trojans, burned for Helen.”

Β′ τὸν δὴ φονευομένου πατρὸς ᾿Αρσινόα Κλυταιμήστρας
χειρῶν ὕπο κρατερᾶν
ἐκ δόλου τροφὸς ἄνελε δυσπενθέος,
ὁπότε Δαρδανίδα κόραν Πριάμου
Κασσάνδραν πολιῷ χαλκῷ σὺν ᾿Αγαμεμνονίᾳ
ψυχᾷ πόρευ’ ᾿Αχέροντος ἀκτὰν παρ’ εὔσκιον
νηλὴς γυνά. πότερόν νιν ἄρ’ ᾿Ιφιγένει’ ἐπ’ Εὐρίπῳ
σφαχθεῖσα τῆλε πάτρας
ἔκνισεν βαρυπάλαμον ὄρσαι χόλον;
ἢ ἑτέρῳ λέχεϊ δαμαζομέναν
ἔννυχοι πάραγον κοῖται; τὸ δὲ νέαις ἀλόχοις
ἔχθιστον ἀμπλάκιον καλύψαι τ’ ἀμάχανον
ἀλλοτρίαισι γλώσσαις·
κακολόγοι δὲ πολῖται.
ἴσχει τε γὰρ ὄλβος οὐ μείονα φθόνον·
ὁ δὲ χαμηλὰ πνέων ἄφαντον βρέμει.
θάνεν μὲν αὐτὸς ἥρως ᾿Ατρεΐδας
ἵκων χρόνῳ κλυταῖς ἐν ᾿Αμύκλαις,
Γ′ μάντιν τ’ ὄλεσσε κόραν, ἐπεὶ ἀμφ’ ῾Ελένᾳ πυρωθέντας
Τρώων ἔλυσε δόμους.

One thought on “Mycenae, Argos and Amyklai: Agamemnon’s Homes

Leave a reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s