Pausanias, Description of Greece, 8.11.3

[3] [παραλαμβάνει τε δὴ τὸν Πελίαν κατακόψασα ἑψῆσαι, καὶ αὐτὸν ἐκομίσαντο αἱ θυγατέρες οὐδὲ ἐς ταφὴν ἔτι ἐπιτήδειον. τοῦτο ἠνάγκασε τὰς γυναῖκας ἐς Ἀρκαδίαν μετοικῆσαι, καὶ ἀποθανούσαις τὰ μνήματα ἐχώσθη σφίσιν αὐτοῦ:] ὀνόματα δὲ αὐταῖς ποιητὴς μὲν ἔθετο οὐδείς, ὅσα γε ἐπελεξάμεθα ἡμεῖς, Μίκων δὲ ὁ ζωγράφος Ἀστερόπειάν τε εἶναι καὶ Ἀντινόην ἐπὶ ταῖς εἰκόσιν αὐτῶν ἐπέγραψεν.

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[Alors elle attrapa Pelias et le découpa en morceaux puis le mis à bouillir, ce qu'il en resta n'était pas suffisant pour que ses filles l'enterrent. Ceci força les femmes à partir pour l'Arcadie et après leur mort des tertres leur furent élévés en guise de tombe]. Aucun poète que je sache, n'a mentionné le nom des Péliades; mais le peintre Mikon a placé auprès de leurs figures les noms d'Astéropeia et d'Antinoé.

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Commentary

  1. Pausanias, continuing his journey across Greece, visits Arcadia, as described in Book 8 (Central Greece, Peloponnese). On the road between Tegea to Mantinea, Pausanias saw the tombs of Pelias' daughters, near the shrine of Poseidon (Paus. 8, 11. 1-3). It seems that Mikon had given the names Asteropeia and Antinoe to Pelias' daughters, while only the names Alkesti and Pasidike are mentioned in ancient testimonies (Iliad and Ehoiai, see: Gantz 1993, p. 194). The Peliades certainly attended the funerary games of their father as spectators. In later sources, mostly iconographical ones (from ca 530 B.C), they were involved in the death of Pelias, persuaded by Medea to rejuvenate their father during a magical ritual. It was probably the subject of Euripides' lost play "Peliades" dated ca. 455 B.C. (LIMC VII s.v. Peliades, p. 270-273; Gantz 1993, p. 366-367).

  2. These remarks concerning the names of the Peliades may refer to the painting of the Argonauts at the Anakeion, in which the subject possibly was Pelias' funerary games (see text 118; LIMC VII s.v. Peliades 16 = Argonautai 25; Jost in Pausanias 1998, p. 182; LIMC VII s.v. Pelias, pp. 273-277, esp. 274-275 = Asterope II)

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Bibliography

Gantz, T., 1993. Early Greek Myth: a Guide to Literary and Artistic Sources, Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press.

Pausanias, 1992. Description de la Grèce, Paris: Les Belles Lettres.

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