epic women

Dedicated to anything and everything about the mortal (and not quite mortal) women involved in the Trojan War/Epic Cycle.

Submit things you'd like to see here. Don't submit things from the movie Troy. Just don't.

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herzogtum-sachsen-weissenfels:

Giorgio de Chirico (Italian, born Greece 1888-1978), Hector and Andromache, 1917. Oil on canvas, 90 x 60 cm.
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herzogtum-sachsen-weissenfels:

Giorgio de Chirico (Italian, born Greece 1888-1978), Hector and Andromache, 1917. Oil on canvas, 90 x 60 cm.

frarkylicious:

Circe, the Enchantress  by Edmund Dulac (1915)
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frarkylicious:

Circe, the Enchantress  by Edmund Dulac (1915)
almualimbeatbox sent: Your post about Helen was one of the realist, sickest, things I have ever read in my life.

elucipher:

oh, i didn’t even begin

because helen of troy doesn’t have one face; she has a thousand. to the men of troy her face is a divine epiphany, αἰνῶς ἀθανάτῃσι θεῇς εἰς ὦπα ἔοικεν. helen, who is dreamed up again and again—all these fair shapes where desire and fear and love and womanhood and godhood meet. whatever form helen takes—even when she is reviled—she is powerful.

there’s helen, daughter of nemesis, the goddess of vengeance who was raped by zeus and gave birth to a clutch of fatal children. on a spartan riverbank they hatch wet and blinking from their eggs. clytaemnestra will be famed in blood: the queen who slaughters her husband agamemnon after he returns, polluted and pride-swollen, from troy. but helen’s ambition is unbounded. she is divine wrath: old-eyed, implacable, scourging men for their unfettered desire and hubris. this is a helen who chooses to love paris and run away with him—helen, the fair and harrowing arm of fate. according to pausanias, nemesis’ bloodline belongs to the sea; and from ilium’s tall towers helen watches the red waves of men’s bodies breaking upon a shore of swords in glinting rank-and-file. greece, as one, bends its neck on her altar of war. helen lifts the knife.  

and there’s helen, the radiance of women, the half-goddess who contains vestiges of a more ancient nature deity, worshipped all over ancient greece. she is a divinity of erotic love and life in its trembling fullness, earth and flesh and fruit; often flanked by her brothers, twin stars, the dioscuri: castor & pollux. her abduction by paris becomes summer’s abduction by winter. this helen is honoured in shrines and rites; she is present when young spartan girls are left alone together on the banks of the river eurotas, to dance and sing and feast through the suspiring night-hours, ready to become women with the dawn.  

and there’s helen, princess and queen of sparta. the late bronze age is a violent era, when the earth thunders and seizes and ruptures; cities are buried in lava like hot sudden blood, staved in by tidal-waves. lives are short; power belongs to the young. in this country of clans and great walled citadels, perhaps there is a helen: a queen of such uncanny power and beauty that rumour and lyre-song made her mythic. she treads the palace floors in skirts of linen and wild-silk, layer over layer, saffron and red and tyrian purple, sewn all over with gold sequins. her clothes and skin are rubbed with olive oil to make them gleam; she coils her hair and paints her face white and her lips dark fruit-red and limns her eyes with kohl pestled from soot and burnt almond-shells and frankincense. in this time women are at the heart of religion—holy places are full of woman-icons, particularly goddesses—and if she is a mycenaean queen, perhaps she is also a high priestess, a bridge between mortality and divinity. you can think of her pouring out libations in a spartan temple open to the sky: helen who is beautiful and powerful, reaching out arms to her gods. 

chrestomatheia:

Jérôme-Martin Langlois, Cassandra begging Minerva for vengeance on Ajax, 1810.
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chrestomatheia:

Jérôme-Martin Langlois, Cassandra begging Minerva for vengeance on Ajax, 1810.

medievalpoc:

Liberale da Verona

Dido’s Suicide

Italy (c. 1510)

Oil on Poplar, 42.5 x 123.2 cm

The National Gallery, London.

Dido, having been abandoned by Aeneas, commits suicide on a pyre composed of his armour and his gifts to her, in her palace in Carthage. The details in this painting do not follow exactly the story as told in Virgil’s ‘Aeneid’ (IV: 504ff). Some figures come from a Dürer print (‘Five Lansquenets and an Oriental on Horseback’) which probably dates from the mid-1490s, and the influence of Mantegna is also evident. This painting was probably a panel from a ‘cassone’. This is usually accepted as a work by Liberale da Verona.

[x]

3 days ago | 94 notes
Source: medievalpoc
Tagged: #dido 

For her face glowed in beauty glorious and t e r r i b l e — glory and gore. 

For her face glowed in beauty glorious and t e r r i b l e — glory and gore. 

phthias:

Faces of the Trojan War:

Βρισηΐς│Briseis

Briseis lost family, country and freedom when Achilles sacked Lyrnessus where she lived; yet she found her captivity sweet, until the feud between Achilles and Agamemnon, which costed so many lives, made her captive of the latter. Briseis was married to King Mynes  of Lyrnessus. When Achilles sacked Lyrnessus, he slew Briseis’ husband and her three brothers, and brought her to the Achaean camp as her prize and concubine. In retaliation to Achilles’ effort to cease fighting, Agamemnon claimed Briseis from him. She became a major bargaining chip between the two feuding Greeks.

5 days ago | 16 notes
Source: phthias
Tagged: #briseis 
kixiqu:

Cirse - Erte

kixiqu:

Cirse - Erte

6 days ago | 9 notes
Source: kixiqu
Tagged: #circe 

Penélope Cruz as Cassandra. 

The princess who was loved by Apollo, who was cursed with prophecies that would never be believed, who had forseen the fall of Troy.

"Oh, my sweet girl," Apollo hisses. "You have no idea what you’ve just brought on yourself." At night she dreams of torches set alight, of screaming children and infants falling from the walls, of Greeks tearing into her city with the rage of the gods behind them, of her father speared before her very eyes. Listen to me, she screams, and the court is hushed before her. Listen, listen! In the plaza outside she blinks, and she sees the shadow of a great wooden horse, a hundred feet tall, she sees men falling out of its belly like maggots from a corpse, she screams to her mother - they are coming. They are coming. Poor mad girl, the court whispers. Doesn’t she know that Apollo is on our side in our just cause? Doesn’t she know we bear the love of the sun god? They lock her in her room, and she beats at the door until her hands come away bloody and bruised. The gods are fickle, she whispers. No one hears until it is too late.

wrinkledorgan:

The installation artist Tatiana Blass addresses the myth of Homer's Odyssey. Penelope was the wife of Odysseus and waited twenty years at the beach on her husband while he enjoyed his adventures. In order not to be distracted by annoying admirers of waiting, she looked for meaningful work. She wove a shroud for three years for her stepfather. Penelope promised to select a candidate when she had done, because no one believed in the return of her husband. But secretly she bound parts of the shirt on again at night choose to have no other and to remain faithful to their adventurers.

The installation is located in the chapel of São Paulo Morumbin. Blass lives and works in Brazil. The loom is located where the altar was supposed to be. On one side is a long red carpet spread out throughout the threads that lead into the loom are completely confused on the back. The red yarn is fed through holes in the wall outside, where it covers the whole garden. One wonders, similar to Penelope's story, whether the piece is being woven or untied.