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Agamemnon’s Corselet in the Light of Cypriote Myth

Maria Papaioannoukyklos-logo
Prompted by the Iliad’s mention of Kinyras, the mythical king of Cyprus, in 11.20-23, I set out to examine a possible case of intertextuality between the Homeric Iliad and the Cyclic mytho-poetic tradition of the Kypria, which has been variously associated with the island of Cyprus. I am interested first in the how and why this interaction between the two traditions is carried out the way it is, focusing then on a brief assessment of the role of Kinyras as well as of other Cypriote elements within the mythological tradition of the Trojan War. [1]
My investigation is largely based on the relatively recent methodological approach of Oral Intertextual Neoanalysis, [2] which sees intertextuality as not occurring between written texts but between the Homeric poems and non-Homeric oral traditions, and recognizes the role and ability of the ancient, mythologically informed, audience to discern (significant) allusions to (Cyclic) mythological traditions. I thus assume a long-term, simultaneous, and interconnected development of fluid oral poetic traditions, during which poetic performance traditions refer to and are influenced, albeit not exclusively, by one another [3] ; the notion of referentiality may be extended to include the entire range of archaic Greek epic [4] as well as, in an even broader sense, the entire spectrum of a mythological tradition, which is “variously expressed in different media and notionally known throughout the culture.” [5]
Taking into account the circumstances of the long-term oral composition of Greek Epic, with its three essential factors of composition, performance, and diffusion, as they are explored in the work of Gregory Nagy, [6] I approach the poetic traditions more from the ancient audiences’ perspective rather than that of a monumental poet from a single point in time. Without excluding the presence of authorial intention on the part of composers-performers, especially on the early stages of a poetic tradition’s evolution, we can imagine that the listeners’ collective knowledge of the myth and, more specifically, their expectations for and reactions to a particular handling of traditional mythological material about the Trojan War, would have helped to shape a poetic tradition both synchronically and diachronically in the course of any given (re)composition-in-performance. As Jonathan Burgess points out “different ancient audiences will have had different levels of ability and interest. Performer and audience would need to negotiate the process of communication, and much would depend on the knowledge, alertness, and cooperation of an audience at any given performance.” [7]
I complete this methodological outline with a mention of Nagy’s theory for the distinction between Cyclic and Homeric poetry in terms of multiformity and Panhellenic diffusion, [8] on which I base my interpretation. This theory of the Panhellenization of epic narratives, with its crucial, definitive period starting in the mid sixth-century BCE Athens, has been extended in the scholarship with the further categorization of the poems of the Epic Cycle as “proto-Panhellenic.” [9] Occupying a middle ground between epichoric (pre-Panhellenic) song-traditions and the fully Panhellenic Homeric epics, cyclic epic poetry appears, as Jim Marks notes, “to have been designed to appeal to audiences with a more than local understanding of ancient Greek myths” while preserving the strongest epichoric elements of their original traditions. [10]
I turn now to Kinyras’ mention in the Iliad, which is part of Agamemnon’s arming scene at the beginning of his aristeia in Iliad 11. As the Achaeans are incited to war by Iris at Zeus’ command (11.14), Agamemnon leads the way, ordering his men to put on their armor while he himself does the same (11.15-16). In this type-scene the overall description of the king’s shining armor, which consists of greaves, corselet, sword, shield, helmet, and two spears, proceeds rather smoothly from a general narratological point of view. [11] In lines 19-23, immediately before the description of the corselet’s elaborate decoration (24-28), a brief digression is devoted, in a ‘typical’ explanatory account, to the item’s (Cypriote) origins:

δεύτερον ἆυ θώρηκα περὶ στήθεσσιν ἔδυνε,
τόν ποτέ οἱ Κινύρης δῶκε ξεινήϊον εἶναι.
πεύθετο γὰρ Κύπρονδε μέγα κλέος, οὕνεκ’ Ἀχαιοὶ
ἐς Τροίην νήεσσιν ἀναπλεύσεσθαι ἔμελλον.
τοὔνεκα οἱ τὸν δῶκε χαριζόμενος βασιλῆϊ.
Next he put on around his chest the corselet
which Kinyras gave him once as a guest present.

For he had heard on Cyprus the great rumor that the Achaeans
were to sail against Troy in their ships.
For this reason he gave the corselet to the king showing his favor to him. [12]

Given the rare and rather unimportant references of the Homeric poems to the island of Cyprus, Kinyras’ “entry” in the narrative seems unexpected. [13] We are certainly inclined to wonder what is the purpose of this reference and how an ancient audience would respond to it. To begin with some preliminary remarks, it is important to note that Kinyras is mentioned without any special introduction, which suggests that he was a figure familiar to the Pahnellenic Homeric audience. The Cypriote king appears, indeed, to have been a (vaguely) traditional character of Greek mythology, mostly known, at least according to early lyric references to him, as an immensely rich man as well as a priest of Aphrodite and a favorite of Apollo. [14] The Iliadic passage, furthermore, associates this fairly well-known hero with the mytho-poetic tradition of the Trojan War and in particular with the preparatory stages of the expedition (see ποτέ in line 22 as time marker for the past). Lines 21-22 reveal, in the form of an added (‘editorial’) comment (see the use of the explanatory γάρ in line 21), the special circumstances under which Kinyras’ generous gesture of friendship towards the Greek leader took place: the Cypriote king gave the marvelous corselet to Agamemnon when he heard that the Achaeans would sail with their fleet against Troy. Thus it seems that what we have here is a case of an Iliadic allusion to a ‘pre-Iliadic’ episode of the Trojan War, one of numerous such allusions, another obvious example being the Teichoskopia in Book 3 (155-244).

That Kinyras’ story was associated in the Greek epic tradition with the story of the Trojan War can be further supported by its presence in the Cyclic Trojan (mytho-poetic) tradition, as can be inferred from later sources. In the Epitome of [Apollodorus], for instance, we learn more information with regard to the same event. And since this Kinyras-episode is thought to have been also included in the narrative of the Kypria despite its omission in Proclus’ summary, [15] a comparison with the Iliadic reference is justified and interesting observations can be drawn from it. Thus, in Epitome 3.9 we read:

ὅτι Μενέλαος σὺν Ὀδυσσεῖ καὶ Ταλθυβίῳ πρὸς [Κινύραν εἰς] Κύπρον ἐλθόντες συμμαχεῖν ἔπειθον· ὁ δὲ Ἀγαμέμνονι μὲν οὐ παρόντι θώρακας ἐδωρήσατο, ὀμόσας δὲ πέμψειν πεντήκοντα ναῦς, μίαν πέμψας, ἧς ἦρχεν … ὁ Μυγδαλίωνος, καὶ τὰς λοιπὰς ἐκ γῆς πλάσας μεθῆκεν εἰς τὸ πέλαγος.
That Menelaus together with Odysseus and Talthybius went to Kinyras in Cyprus and tried to persuade him to join the expedition; and he gave to Agamemnon, who was not present, a gift of corselets, and although he additionally swore to send fifty ships, he only sent one with […] the son of Mygdalion as the commander, and having made the rest out of clay he threw them into the sea.

In the version of the Kyprian tradition two details stand out: 1) Kinyras learned about the Trojan War from the Greeks themselves, through an embassy, and he had in fact to be persuaded by them to join the expedition, even with a mere sponsorship. 2) He gave ample gifts to the Greeks (Agamemnon) but he also tricked them in his clever manner of keeping his oath.

The scholia to the Iliad paint a roughly similar picture regarding Kinyras’ hospitality and gift-offering on the one hand and his devious nature on the other. In one case Kinyras’ oath and trickery of the clay fleet is reported, [16] while according to another version the tremendously wealthy king offered hospitality to the Greeks and promised to send them the provisions necessary for the expedition. However, he neglected to do so and was cursed by Agamemnon [17] .
Against this background of relevant Cyclic information, Kinyras’ mention in the Iliad is in need of re-interpretation with an emphasis on what is missing from the brief Homeric version. Thus, the Iliad acknowledges Agamemnon’s corselet as Kinyras’ gift of hospitality and a gesture of loyalty towards the Greeks but remains silent as to the disturbing detail of his trickery, although an audience familiar with the myth (with both Homeric and non-Homeric material) would probably not have failed to perceive ‘darker’ notes in νήεσσιν (11.22), which would probably call to mind the king’s ruse of the clay fleet. One might argue that such a twist in the narrative would have been out of place within the limits and in respect to the needs of an arming scene. But if we take into consideration the Panhellenizing impulse of Homeric poetry as it took shape, it becomes apparent that the omission of this story of how the Greeks were tricked occurred under the pressure of the creative interaction of Homeric with Cyclic oral performance traditions. In particular, the Panhellenic tradition of the Iliad would tend to suppress any story in which the Greeks are tricked, since such a development would have been objectionable to any Greek (or pro-Greek) audience, as seems to be the case with, for example, Palamedes’ tricking of Odysseus into joining the Greek forces ([Apollodoros] Ep. 3.7). Put another way, as Cyprus became an increasingly “mainstream” part of Greece, potentially troublesome aspects of Kinyras’ myth with regard to the Trojan War would have been eliminated.
This brings us to a closer consideration of what seems to be a remarkably ancient mythological persona of the Cypriote king. As I mentioned earlier in passing, the information we have on Kinyras from the Archaic lyric poets suggests that the Cypriote king had a concrete identity and a place in Greek mythology at a fairly early point in time, an identity that the concision and allusive nature of the Iliadic reference seems, at least to a certain extent, to presuppose. Kinyras is mentioned alongside Midas for his proverbial wealth in Tyrtaeus, [18] while in Alcman [19] his name is used metonymically to denote the Cypriote origins of perfume oil, a high-value luxury item and a Cypriote industry going back to the late Bronze Age. [20] Two centuries later Pindar, documenting a stage in the “Panhellenization” of the Cypriote myth more advanced than that in the Iliad, knows Kinyras as the wealthy king of Cyprus, the dutiful priest of Aphrodite, and a favorite of Apollo, and uses him as a mythological exemplum of piety, excellence, and good fortune. Pindar’s Pythian 2.15-17, in honor of Hieron of Syracuse, provides the most comprehensive description:

ἄλλοις δέ τις ἐτέλεσσεν ἄλλος ἀνὴρ
εὐαχέα βασιλεῦσιν ὕμνον, ἄποιν’ ἀρετᾶς.
κελαδέοντι μὲν ἀμφὶ Κινύραν πολλάκις
φᾶμαι Κυπρίων, τὸν ὁ χρυσοχαῖτα προφρόνως ἐφίλησ’ Ἀπόλλων,
ἱερέα κτίλον Ἀφροδίτας: ἄγει δὲ χάρις φίλων ποίνιμος ἀντὶ ἔργων ὀπιζομένα.
For other kings, other men perform melodious hymns in their honor, a reward for their merit. Cypriote voices often praise Kinyras, the devoted priest of Aphrodite, whom golden-haired Apollo heartily loved; for reverent grace comes in return for friendly deeds.

In light of the Pindaric ode, it is clear that Kinyras was already well established as a local hero in some poetic form (κελαδέοντι; φᾶμαι) in the early fifth century BCE. In later sources Kinyras’ status as the ultimate culture hero of Cyprus becomes even more evident. He appears as the mythical eponymous ancestor of a guild of temple priests, the Kinyradai, who controlled the cult of Aphrodite at Paphos and practiced divination. [21] Tacitus in his account of the emperor Titus’ (late first century CE) consultation of the famous Paphian oracle, deems the origin of the worship and the ceremonial of the temple worthy of mention. He notes that according to later accounts the temple was dedicated to Aphrodite by Kinyras, on the spot where the goddess was said to have come ashore after her birth from the sea, but that the craft of divination was imported to Cyprus by Tamiras of Cilicia. [22]

This distant connection of the Kinyradai with Cilicia is not without significance, since it actually points to the broader connection of the figure of Kinyras with the Near East. Kinyras’ genealogy connects him consistently with Cilicia or Syria/Assyria, Aphrodite and Adonis. According to [Apollodorus] (Bibliotheke 3.14.3), for instance, Kinyras traced his ancestry back to Cephalus, son of Hermes (from Herse, daughter of Cecrops), who begot Tithonos (from Eos), who in turn begot Phaethon, the father of Astynous, who in turn begot Sandocus. From Syria Sandocus went to Cilicia, founded Kelenderis and begot Kinyras (from princess Pharnake), who then went σὺν λαῷ to Cyprus, founded Paphos, married Metharme (daughter of the Cypriote king Pygmalion) and begot, among other children, Adonis, who is of course connected with Aphrodite. [23] Not surprisingly, Kinyras’ name almost certainly derives from the West Semitic word for the divine/deified lyre, the knr (Ugaritic kinnarum, Hebrew kinnôr), with the Kinyradai being, then, according to West [24] a Greek rendering for the Phoenician *benê kinnûr (‘sons of the lyre’), a Semitic idiom for a guild of ‘professional lyre-players’, a kind of musician unions attested at Ugarit as early as the thirteenth century. [25] Furthermore, the word ki-nu-ra is, notably, also attested in Linear B tablets from Pylos (PY Qa 1301 and PY Vn 865, ca. 1200 BCE) in both secular and sacred texts with meanings that curiously bring Kinyras to mind. One reference is to the personal name of a manufacturer of ships and the other seems to refer to some kind of a religious office (related to the rank of a priest/priestess) possibly a ‘lyre-player’ of the temple. [26]
From this information it might be possible to infer a Bronze Age nucleus for the myth of Kinyras. The Pylian tablets could be taken to suggest, that is, that the legendary king of Cyprus might have already been an established figure associated with the island at the time of the Mycenaean migrations at the end of the Bronze Age. In other words, the Near Eastern etymology of Kinyras’ name together with its attestation in Bronze Age Greek contexts (Linear B) suggest that the figure of the Cypriote king originated in the East, entered Greek mythology at an early point, and continued to be part of it for centuries. As John Franklin argues in his thorough work on the subject, [27] the figure of Kinyras traced its origins in the divinized lyre of Syro-Canaanite tradition (reflected in his associations with music and divination), became a symbol of Cyprus’ pre-Greek population (with 1800 BCE as a possible terminus post quem for his introduction to the island), and was adopted as a maternal ancestor by the Greek populations who colonized the island as early as the late Bronze Age, as is reflected, for example, in the heroic tradition of Teucer marrying a daughter of Kinyras (Theopompus FGrH 115 F 103).
The end of the Bronze Age is the time (the first stage in Nagy’s ‘evolutionary model’ [28] ) during which the mytho-poetic tradition of the Trojan War starts becoming ‘pan-Hellenic’ in the sense that it is expanded through the gradual incorporation of various mythical material of local interest. [29] By the Archaic Age (the second stage in the ‘evolutionary model’ corresponding to Marks’ ‘proto-Panhellenic’ phase) the tradition would have preserved the most recognizable and acceptable epichoric elements. According to this model and given the references of both the Iliad and (as is strongly suspected) the Kypria to Kinyras, it might be said that his role in the preliminary stages of the war belonged to the traditional material of the Trojan myth and/or other epic themes dating back to the Bronze Age. Other Cypriote details of local relevance in the tradition of the Kypria seem to include a stay of Paris and Helen in Cyprus on their way to Troy ([Apollodorus] Epitome 3.3-4; Dictys 1.5) and the presence on the island of the two sons of Helen, Pleisthenes from Menelaos and Aganos from Paris (Kypria fr.12B = 10D). [30]
However, in general, and in spite of the Cypriote, as it is often thought, roots of the Kyprian tradition, [31] the use of Cypriote elements, whether they may concern adventures taking place on the island or more importantly stories related to local heroes, seems limited in scope and importance for the main story-line; some of them could indeed be easily omitted without affecting the poem’s overall architecture. [32] Naturally, it would seem, Kinyras’ ‘traditional’ avoidance of commitment to the Trojan War deprived Cyprus of a place in the Catalogue of Ships, or perhaps rather offered an innocuous explanation for it.
Considering Kinyras’ involvement in the Trojan War a traditional element of the myth, could offer fruitful avenues of inquiry about the mechanics of both the Homeric and the Cyclic poetic tradition. Following a different approach in his discussion of the Iliadic passage in question, Martin West denies Kinyras’ connection to the story of the Trojan War, as it is posited by the Iliad. The scholar sees no tradition behind the reference considering it more or less an ad hoc Homeric invention. [33] According to his interpretation “the darling of Apollo and priest of Aphrodite is not a man of arms and does not belong to the world of Agamemnon. The poet has introduced him gratuitously, presumably to humor Cypriot friends with the suggestion that although poetic tradition allowed their ancient king no part in the Trojan War, he did at least take a benevolent interest in it from afar.” [34]
It is true that Kinyras’ mythological attributes, as we have briefly surveyed them, would not have allowed him an active role in the Trojan War, not so much because of his being a priest/temple-singer/prophet instead of a warrior, for which we may compare the Trojan prince Paris, but perhaps because of his close associations with those two gods, Aphrodite and Apollo, who traditionally took the side of the Trojans. [35] Franklin argues for such a possible conflict of interests between the two kings and suggests that this might be reflected in the account of Dictys of Crete (Bellum Troianum 1.5) according to whom, on his way from Sparta to Troy Paris made a stop in Cyprus, where he acquired ships with which he sacked Sidon. Although Dictys’ narrative is vague as to how Paris acquired the fleet we may easily think that it was provided to him by Kinyras. [36]
Furthermore, the Iliad does seem to present the Cypriote king’s gift-offering as an act of benevolent interest (χαριζόμενος βασιλῆϊ, 23), but if we accept that the Kyprian version of Kinyras’ story was a traditional element of the Trojan Myth, then the Iliadic reference acquires more depth; it cannot be seen as a gratuitous addition in order to please a local audience, but rather as a meaningful omission (of the trick) in order not to displease, so to speak, the increasingly more streamlined, more pan-Hellenic audience of the Homeric poetic tradition, including (Greek) Cypriote audiences throughout the Archaic Age. The fact that the Iliad did not entirely omit the reference, even though it ran the risk to recall in the mind of certain listeners the king’s unfavorable trick, argues for the ‘traditionality’ of the episode and shows how the Homeric tradition utilizes the myth in order to promote its own concept of ‘truth’ (alētheia). [37] The positively valorized Homeric (Panhellenic) figure would represent a conscious polemic against the tricky, non-Homeric (epichoric) one.
On a different level of inquiry, Kinyras’ promised but deviously denied help as an element of the tradition preserved in the Kypria remains puzzling. [38] It certainly points to a line of tradition about Kinyras and his relations with Agamemnon (and the Greeks), that is contrary to the picture of the generous ally and the reverent priest that we have from the Iliad or Pindar. Such a tradition is reflected, for instance, in the scholia to the Iliad, where Agamemnon is reported to have cursed Kinyras because of his failing to keep his promise for help (scholia in Iliadem 11.20α) or in a reference by Theopompos, also cited by Photius, in which Kinyras, appearing as the ancestor of an Eteocypriote (indigenous, pre-Greek) population of Amathus, is said to have been exiled by ‘the Greeks who were with Agamemnon’, whether that might have occurred in an alternative nostos of the Greek leader himself or of other Greek heroes or even at an earlier stage. [39]
One way to productively investigate the story of Kinyras’ treachery is by examining its reference in the poetic tradition of the Kypria, at least as it survived in Proclus’ summary. Thus, as part of the preliminaries of the war—the assembling of the Greek leaders and gathering of allies—Kinyras’ episode does not seem to be an essential element of the main narrative but rather an inset narrative enhancing the main storyline. As Marks has argued, [40] the extensive deployment of such stories by the poems of the Epic Cycle, an aspect most likely inherited from the tradition of storytelling in ancient Greece, is accomplished with the same level of sophistication found in the canonical epics. Various myths from a broad geographical and cultural background are artfully used in the form of flashbacks, flashforwards, ekphrases, catalogues, or genealogies to purposely dramatize the narration and assist or complement the interpretation of larger stories. In order for such a process to be successful, that is, for the audience to fully realize the deeper thematic connections between the inset and main narratives, as it was indented or anticipated by the composer-performers, this supplementary mythological material, however foreign and arcane, had to be well known. In other words, there would have been an increasingly mutual understanding between the composer-performers and the audience with regard to these myths (and their interpretation) in the Archaic Age.
In this way, the reference to Kinyras’ unreliability as an ally (especially after or close to the relevant reference to Odysseus’ feigned insanity) could function as an intended flashforward, alerting the audience as to the future problems Agamemnon will experience in the War, creating, we might add, a kind of dramatic irony. [41] Furthermore, as a type of story, Kinyras’ treachery and ruse of the clay fleet belongs, according to William Hansen’s classification, to the traditional, in Greek storytelling, folktale motif of shifty characters, who cunningly observe “the form but not the spirit of an oath,” promising great things when in need, but later offering back way less or nothing at all. [42]
Of particular interest to this Cypriote myth of the clay fleet is its striking and easily made association with a very ancient Cypriote tradition of constructing clay model ships as votive offerings. According to Reyes, the manufacture of terracotta votive sculpture in Cyprus, a varied and widespread industry and a truly locally inspired art form, went back to the Bronze Age and even earlier and continued through the Cypro-Geometric period. [43] It is, of course, impossible to specify when, in this broad time span, such an element of local cult might have been first associated with the figure of the Cypriote king and then incorporated into the mythological fabric of the Trojan War. [44] On the other hand, this archeological information definitely suggests a rich historical context for the trickery myth and supports the theory of the epichoric origins of Kinyras’ episode in the Kypria, since, unlike the myths of Panhellenic discourse, epichoric myths were “bound to the rituals of their native locales.” [45]
Kinyras’ trickery myth can be seen, then, as the most popular element of an earlier epichoric mytho-poetic tradition about the Trojan War [46] that made it through the Archaic Period, as part of that “fluid yet stable and unified” [47] tradition that produced both the Cyclic and the Homeric poetry. According to their individual narrative strategies and different cultural functions, the Kyprian performance tradition preserved the local element of Kinyras’ trickery while the Iliadic tradition omitted it promoting a version of Kinyras that bridged, in a sense, the cultures of mainland Greece and Cyprus.

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Footnotes

[ back ] 1. I am thankful to all the participants in the Kyklos project, and especially to Effimia Karakantza who coordinated the discussions and served as the respondent to my presentation, for their useful comments and suggestions. I am particularly grateful to Jim Marks for his generous advice, assistance, and encouragement.
[ back ] 2. On “Neoanalysis practiced from an oralist perspective with consideration to Intertextual theory” (motif transference) see Burgess 2006 esp. 166-77 Cf. Tsagalis 2011.
[ back ] 3. See Nagy 1990:53n8 for the term of “diachronic cross references” among poetic traditions as the discernible result of their interconnected development.
[ back ] 4. See Marks 2002:4.
[ back ] 5. Burgess 2006:166. For the distinction between mythological and epic traditions see Burgess 2006:177 who argues that [mythological] traditions cannot be identified or equated with particular poems, and it is not text that is transferred, in the sense of words and phrases, but rather notional motifs (consisting of narrative actions) that have traditionally been applied to specific heroes. Cf. Tsagalis 2011:229 who notes that since epic poetry had reached a level of wide diffusion, acceptance and an unprecedented status in archaic Greece, it is not unthinkable that mythological traditions would have acquired the status of epic traditions.
[ back ] 6. See, for instance, Nagy 1990:52-81.
[ back ] 7. Burgess 2006:173.
[ back ] 8. See, for instance, Nagy 1999:113.
[ back ] 9. Marks 2002: 20; Cf. 2008:11-12.
[ back ] 10. Marks 2010 Cf. Tsagalis 2011:217. In my treatment of the exact references to Trojan War tradition (Homeric and non-Homeric) I use relatively late sources such as scholia, epitomes of lost early epics, historians, and mythographers in an effort to approximate the epic/mythological milieu, the traditions with which the Iliad engaged while it was assuming its Panhellenic status.
[ back ] 11. For the overall structure and the particularities of the four Iliadic arming type-scenes see Clark 2004:134-135. Cf. the discussion of Homeric arming scenes in Rubin 1995:211-212.
[ back ] 12. Translations are my own.
[ back ] 13. This is, in fact, the only reference of the Iliad to either the island or Kinyras. In the Odyssey Cyprus is either associated with Aphrodite (9.362-365) or mentioned as one of the places of the heroes’ wonderings (4.83, nostos of Menelaus; 17.442-3, false tale of Odysseus-beggar to the suitors, in which a Dmetor Iasides, unknown from other sources, appears to rule Cyprus; cf. scholia in Homeri Odysseam 17.443).
[ back ] 14. See Tyrtaeus 9.6 (wealth) and Pindar Pythian 2.15-17 (beloved of Apollo, Aphrodite’s priest) and Nemean 8.18 (wealth). Cf. Alcman 3.71 (fragrance). For more on the mythological identity of Kinyras see my discussion later on.
[ back ] 15. See Wagner 1891: 181-182. Cf. West 2003 who links the [Apollodorus] passage to the Kypria in his edition of the Greek Epic fragments. Cf. West 2013: 91.
[ back ] 16. Scholia in Homeri Iliadem 11.20b: φασὶ δὲ αὐτὸν ἐν Πάφῳ ὀμόσαντα Μενελάῳ πέμψειν πεντήκοντα ναῦς, μίαν μὲν ἀποστεῖλαι, τὰς δὲ λοιπὰς ἐκ γῆς καὶ γηΐνους ἄνδρας.
[ back ] 17. Scholia in Homeri Iliadem 11.20a: ὃς [Κινύρης] ζάπλουτος ὢν παριόντας Ἕλληνας ἐξένισε, καὶ ὑπέσχετο αὐτοῖς ἐν Ἰλίῳ πέμψειν τὰ πρὸς τὸν βίον. φασὶ δὲ αὐτὸν ἀμελήσαντα ἐπικατάρατον γενέσθαι ὑπὸ Ἀγαμέμνονος·
[ back ] 18. 9.6: πλουτοίη δὲ Μίδεω καὶ Κινύρεω μάλιον.
[ back ] 19. 3.71-72: ‐κ ]ομος νοτία Κινύρα χ[άρ]ις, / ἐπὶ π]αρσενικᾶν χαίταισιν ἵσδει∙
[ back ] 20. Franklin “Kinyras and the Musical Stratigraphy of Early Cyprus.”
[ back ] 21. See scholia to Pindar Pythian 2.17b (ὁ δὲ Κινύρας οὗτός ἐστιν, ἀφ᾿ οὗ οἱ ἐν Κύπρῳ Κινυρίδαι τῇ θεῷ ἀνιέρωνται).
[ back ] 22. Histories 2.2-4; cf. Suetonius Titus 5. For other later sources on Kinyras cf. Pliny, Historia Naturalis 7.195, where a man from Cyprus named Kinyras is credited as the inventor of mining and metal-working, and 7.154, where Pliny citing the lyric poet Anacreon refers to a tradition about Kinyras’ extreme longevity.
[ back ] 23. We learn from [Apollodorus] (Bibliotheke 3.14.4) that there were two other candidates for Adonis’ father, Phoinix according to Hesiod (139 M-W) and Theias, the Assyrian king, according to Panyassis (27 (25K) Bernabè). In later sources Kinyras takes the place of Theias as the father who had an incestuous relationship with his own daughter Smyrna (by Aphrodite’s scheme) from which Adonis was born. This story (with Myrrha as Kinyras’ daughter and mother of Adonis and with the Furies as the avenging deities) featured in Ovid’s Metamorphoses 10.298-300, becoming ever since the most famous version of the myth (cf. Heroides 4.97 and Fasti 5.227). Cf. also Hyginus Fabulae 270 (Kinyras as king of Assyria). Cf. Scholia in Homeri Iliadem 11.20a, where Kinyras is mentioned as the son of Theias.
[ back ] 24. West 1997:57.
[ back ] 25. Franklin 2006:6n31-7.
[ back ] 26. See Franklin “Kinyras and the Musical Stratigraphy of Early Cyprus.”
[ back ] 27. See Franklin “Kinyras and the Musical Stratigraphy of Early Cyprus”; 2014:213-47; 2006:379-98.
[ back ] 28. Nagy 1996: 29-64; cf. 2001: 110-111.
[ back ] 29. Burgess 2001: 3.
[ back ] 30. According to Burgess 2002:238 n17 and 241n27 the arrival of the half-brothers to Cyprus would have more likely occurred after the war and if so, it would suggest that the poem provided a heroic genealogy for Cyprus. Legends concerning Greek heroes founding cities on the island after the Trojan War are numerous; two of the most famous heroes were Teucer who founded Salamis (Euripides Helen 148-149: ἐς γῆν ἐναλίαν Κύπρον, οὗ μ’ ἐθέσπισεν / οἰκεῖν Ἀπόλλων) and Agapenor who founded Paphos (Pausanias 8.5.2: Πάφου τε Ἀγαπήνωρ ἐγένετο οἰκιστὴς).
[ back ] 31. Based on its title which was mostly seen as a reference to the island (and by some to Aphrodite-Kypris) as well as on ancient testimonia about its authors (the Cypriote Stasinos and Hegesinos of Salamis) it has been suggested that the poem originated in the island. See Burgess 2001:163n116. Cf. 1996:95n67 and 2002:241n26 for a review of the various opinions on the matter of the title and origins. For the reputed authors see e.g. Suda s.v. Ὅμηρος; Athenaeus 334b. Cf. Athenaeus 15.682d-e (test. 8B = test. 12, fr. 4D; FGH 428 F1) according to whom Demodamas of Halikarnassos attributed the poem to a Kyprias of Halikarnassos. On this see Burgess 2002 who, in the light of the discovery of the Bodrum inscription which includes a reference to a Kyprias comproser of “Iliaka”, argues that the tradition attributed to the Halikarnassian poet is in fact a pan-Hellenic multiform of the Kypria, ‘an indication of the use of the Kypria outside Cyprus’ (244).
[ back ] 32. Marks 2002: 5.
[ back ] 33. West’s interpretation is largely based on his considering the Kypria as post-Homeric poetry, see 2003:13. For the phenomenon of ad hoc inventions in the Homeric poems see Burgess 2001:49-49 and 154-155.
[ back ] 34. 1997: 628-629.
[ back ] 35. Through his genealogical connections as well Kinyras seems closer to the Trojans. (See e.g. Tithonos and Eos; cf. Aphrodite’s connection to Anchises/Aeneas).
[ back ] 36. Franklin 2014.
[ back ] 37. See Nagy 1990:60.
[ back ] 38. The way the Cypriote king seems to avoid commitment to the Trojan expedition in the Iliad, that is, with his elaborate gift to Agamemnon in order to win his favor, bears some similarities with the marginal figure of Echepolus of Sicyon. According to the Iliadic narrative in 23.296-299, this man who was blessed by Zeus with great wealth, avoided military service at Troy by offering Agamemnon the mare Aethe as a gift; cf. Scholia in Homeri Iliadem 11.20b. Although an exception among his compatriots, since Sicyon is mentioned in the Catalogue of Ships as a place that contributed forces to the expedition under Agamemnon’s command (Iliad 2.572), Echepolus’ case shows how wealthy individuals could avoid enlistment through some kind of bribery. The examples of Odysseus and Achilles, who also attempted to avoid going to war, according to tradition, are relevant as well.
FGrHist 115 F 103 = Bibliotheke 176. 102a: τίνα τε τρόπον Ἕλληνες οἱ σὺν Ἀγαμέμνονι τὴν Κύπρον κατέσχον ἀπελάσαντες τοὺς μετὰ Κινύρου ὧν εἰσιν ὑπολιπεῖς Ἀμαθούσιοι. See Franklin 2014 and 2006:9. Cf. Reyes 1994:13-14. If we try to interpret the tension in the relationship between the two kings based on our vague idea of the historical circumstances of late Bronze Age Cyprus, we could perhaps see in the trickery myth the distant (negative) impression of Greek immigration (in the form of military intervention) on the native population of the Eteocypriotes, as it is suggested in Theopompos’ reference.
[ back ] 40. Marks 2010.
[ back ] 41. Marks 2010 n21. Here we might say that Kinyras’ breach of faith against Agamemnon in the Kyprian tradition seems to agree with the rather negative depiction of the Greek leader in the tradition. In the Iliad too his characterization could be seen as negative overall with his aristeia narrative as the only exception. As Burgess 2001:86-87 remarks, Agamemnon’s aristeia seems a bit odd in the context of the Iliad, given the unfavorable characterization of his leadership and the fact that his role as a worthy warrior is not stressed in the poem. It would seem though that by incorporating this episode in its narrative, the Iliadic tradition is consciously trying to present the Greek leader in a more favorable light and this would agree with the manipulation of the Kinyras-episode.
[ back ] 42. 2002:436. And as Davies 2010 has argued, it is characteristic of the Kypria to make extensive use of widespread folktale motifs. Cf. Tsagalis 2011:217-218 for the presentation of low human types and motives as one of the characteristic of the Proto-Panhellenic nature of the poems of the Epic Cycle.
[ back ] 43. 1994:32-33.
[ back ] 44. Although as to the former, Kinyras’ priestly attributes as well as his early entry and lasting presence in the island’s cultural scene together with the equally long-term practice of terracotta model manufacturing are strongly pointing towards an early date.
[ back ] 45. Nagy 1990:66.
[ back ] 46. See Franklin 2014 for an up-to-date discussion on the Cypriote sub-Mycenaean heroic poetry and its “sustained thematic contribution to the mainstream Aegean epic tradition”.
[ back ] 47. Burgess 2001:174.