Translated by Catherine Proppe
December 16, 2014
This hymn includes a mish-mash of epithets, including:
- Thesmophoron/Law-Bearer (Demeter)
- Euboulos/Good Counselor (Pluto)
- Kyprian/Kythera (Aphrodite)
- Phrygian Mother (Rhea/Kybele)
This may be a hymn invoking numerous deities to bring blessings to the athletes, who, perhaps, represent many different regions and presumably their respective local temples. It seems to suggest that such a conglomeration of deities is both male and female.
42. Μίσης, θυμίαμα στύρακα.
To the Medium of Divine Power Synchronized
Divine medium: styrax, storax
Θεσμοφόρον καλέω ναρθηκοφόρον Διόνυσον,
Law-bearer I call, fennel-stalk bearing Dionysian,
σπέρμα πολύμνηστον, πολυώνυμον Εὐβουλῆος,
Seed of many memories, many-realmed Euboulos
ἁγνήν εὐίερόν τε Μίσην ἄρρητον ἄνασσαν,
Pure holy then unspoken Anassan
ἄρσενα καὶ θῆλυν, διφυῆ, λύσειον Ἴακχον·
Male and female, of two natures, releasing shouting
εἴτ' ἐν Ἐλευσῖνος τέρπηι νηωι θυόεντι,
Whether in Eleusis joyfully dwelling divine
εἴτε καὶ ἐν Φρυγίηι σὺν Μητέρι μυστιπολεύεις,
Whether in Phrygia with the Mother of many mysteries
ἢ Κύπρωι τέρπηι σὺν ἐυστεφάνωι Κυθερείηι,
Or Kypros rejoicing with well-crowned Kytheria
ἢ καὶ πυροφόροις πεδίοις ἐπαγάλλεαι ἁγνοῖς
Or the wheat-bearing plain upon proclamations pure
σὺν σῆι μητρὶ θεᾶι μελανηφόρωι Ἴσιδι σεμνῆι,
With thou Mother divine, black-bearing Isis-directed revered
Αἰγύπτου παρὰ χεῦμα σὺν ἀμφιπόλοισι τιθήναις·
Egyptian stream together the amphipolis nursing
εὐμενέουσ' ἔλθοις ἀγαθοῖς τελεουσ' ἐπ' ἀέθλοις.
Graciously come good, complete, upon the athletes.
 Although Μίσης is often translated as “hate,” that translation makes no sense in the context of this hymn. A more likely homonym may be “moon” (μείς). Literally, the name Μίσης translates as “medium of (Μ) + divine-power (ί) + synchronized (σης).”
 Thesmosphoros means law-bearer, an epithet of the immortal Goddess Demeter.
 Dionysos is the immortal God of wine and its effects. Wine is a medium of union with the divine.
 Euboulos means “Good Counselor,” an epithet of Pluto, the immortal God of the afterlife.
 Anassa means Queen, Lady; addressed to Goddesses.
 Eleusis is a holy city on the Rarian Plain of Greece, home of the Eleusinian Mysteries of Demeter and her daughter, Kore.
 Phrygia is in modern day Turkey.
 Kypros (Cyprus) is a Greek island sacred to the immortal Goddess of love, Aphrodite.
 Kythera (Cythera) is also a Greek island sacred to Aphrodite.
 Interestingly, the word for fire and root are identical: puro (πυρο).
 Isis is the celebrated immortal Goddess of Egypt.
 The Egyptian stream is presumably the Nile River.
 Amphipolis means “surrounding the city.”