Abstract

This paper examines descriptions of remote places in archaic Greek epic. I argue that Homeric cosmic geography consists of two complementary models, one in which the sun rises and sets at a single locus—the axis mundi—as in the Theogony, and another in which sunrise and sunset take place on the eastern and western horizons respectively. Conflation of these models in the Odyssey results in the gemination of peoples and places associated in myth with the sun. This not only explains some recurrent patterns in Homeric geography and their thematic importance to Odysseus' travels, but also resolves some traditional interpretive difficulties with descriptions of the edges of the earth in archaic epic.

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Additional Information

ISSN
2575-7199
Print ISSN
2575-7180
Pages
pp. 215-233
Launched on MUSE
2004-11-02
Open Access
No
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