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Headword: *litue/rshs
Adler number: lambda,626
Translated headword: Lityerses, reaping song
Vetting Status: high
A kind of song. Menander in Chalkedonians [writes]: "singing a Lityerses all the while since breakfast".[1] But some [say that it is] a kind of piping. Lityerses was a bastard son of Minos, who lived in Kelainai; he took in passers-by and compelled them to reap with him; then he would cut off their heads and conceal the rest of their bodies in the sheaves. He was killed by Heracles; but in honour of Midas a reaper's song to him was inaugurated.
Greek Original:
*litue/rshs: ei)=dos w)|dh=s. *me/nandros *xalkhdoni/wn: a)/|donta *litue/rshn a)p' a)ri/stou te/ws. oi( de\ au)lh/sews ge/nos. *mi/dou de\ h)=n o( *litue/rshs no/qos ui(o/s, katoikw=n de\ e)n *kelainai=s tou\s pario/ntas u(podexo/menos h)na/gkaze met' au)tou= qeri/zein: ei)=ta a)poko/ptwn ta\s kefala\s to\ a)/llo sw=ma sunei/lei e)n toi=s dra/gmasin. a)pe/qane de\ u(po\ *(hrakle/ous: ei)s timh\n de\ tou= *mi/dou qeristiko\s u(/mnos e)p' au)tw=| suneqe/th.
Same entry in Photius lambda363 Theodoridis; see also lambda362 s.v. *Litue/rsan (sic).
"There was a traditional reapers' song called the Lityerses, referred to by Menander and others. Theocritus [Idylls 10.16 & 41] gives what purports to be a version of it" (West, below).
[1] Menander fr. 264 Kock, actually from The Carthaginian (fr.3 Sandbach).
Robert Graves, The Greek Myths (1955) 2.136e
M.L. West, Ancient Greek Music (1992) 28
Keywords: aetiology; agriculture; comedy; definition; food; meter and music; mythology; poetry
Translated by: David Whitehead on 2 August 2006@06:33:28.
Vetted by:
Catharine Roth (cosmeticule, status) on 2 August 2006@21:45:22.
David Whitehead (augmented note and keywords) on 3 August 2006@03:36:47.
David Whitehead on 21 April 2013@07:09:14.
Catharine Roth (coding) on 28 April 2015@23:34:09.
David Whitehead on 17 May 2016@03:49:48.


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