A Dionysia, Part 5

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A Dionysia, Part 5 is a music video for Frédéric Chopin’s Nocturne No. 7, with hymns to Athena and Artemis from The Homeric Hymns translated by Apostolos N. Athanassakis.


Music:

Chopin, Frédéric. “Nocturne No. 7 in C sharp minor, Op. 27 No. 1.” Chopin: The Nocturnes. Performed by Maria João Pires. Deutsche Grammophon, 1996. CD.


Paintings:

painting by William-Adolphe Bouguereau: Branche de Laurier (1900)
William-Adolphe Bouguereau. Branche de Laurier. 1900.
<https://www.wikiart.org/en/william-adolphe-bouguereau/branche-de-laurier-1900>.

painting by Konstantin Makovsky: Boyaryshnya (c.1880)
Konstantin Makovsky. Boyaryshnya. c.1880.
<https://www.wikiart.org/en/konstantin-makovsky/boyaryshnya-7>.


Literature:

Athanassakis, Apostolos N., trans.. “To Athena.” The Homeric Hymns. p. 59. © 1976, 2004 Johns Hopkins University Press.  Reprinted with permission of Johns Hopkins University Press.

I begin to sing of Pallas Athena, the glorious goddess,
gray-eyed, resourceful, of implacable heart.
This bashful maiden is a mighty defender of cities,
the Tritogeneia, whom Zeus the counselor himself
bore from his noble head, clad with golden and resplendent
warlike armor, as awe lay hold of all the immortal
onlookers. And before Zeus the aegis-holder
she sprang swiftly from his immortal head,
brandishing a sharp-pointed spear. Great Olympos quaked
dreadfully under the might of the gray-eyed goddess, as the earth
all about resounded awesomely, and the sea moved
and heaved with purple waves. The briny swell calmed down
when the splendid son of Hyperion stopped
his fleet-footed horses long enough for maidenly
Pallas Athena to take the divine weapons
off her shoulders. And Zeus the counselor exulted.
And so hail to you, O child of aegis-holding Zeus!
I shall remember you and another song, too.


Paintings:

painting by William-Adolphe Bouguereau: Young Shepherdess Standing
William-Adolphe Bouguereau. Young Shepherdess Standing.
<https://www.wikiart.org/en/william-adolphe-bouguereau/young-shepherdess-standing>.

painting by Raphael Kirchner: Greek Virgins (1900)
Raphael Kirchner. Greek Virgins. 1900.
<https://www.wikiart.org/en/raphael-kirchner/greek-virgins-1900>.

 


Literature:

Athanassakis, Apostolos N., trans.. “To Artemis.” The Homeric Hymns. pp. 58-59. © 1976, 2004 Johns Hopkins University Press.  Reprinted with permission of Johns Hopkins University Press.

I sing of Artemis of the golden shafts, the modest maiden
who loves the din of the hunt and shoots volleys of arrows at stags.
She is the twin sister of Apollon of the golden sword,
and through shady mountains and windy peaks
she delights in the chase as she stretches her golden bow
to shoot the bitter arrows. The crests of tall mountains
tremble, and the thick-shaded forest resounds
dreadfully with the cries of beasts, while the earth
and the deep teeming with fish shudder. Hers is a mighty heart,
and she roams all over destroying the brood of wild beasts.
But when the arrow-pouring goddess who spots the wild beasts
has taken her pleasure and delighted her mind, after slacking
the well-taut bow, she comes to the great house of her dear brother,
Phoibos Apollon, to the rich district of Delphi,
to set up a beautiful dance of the Muses and the Graces.
There she hangs her resilient bow and her arrows
and, wearing her graceful jewelry, she is their leader
in the dance. Divine is the sound they utter
as they sing of how fair-ankled Leto gave birth to children,
who among the gods are by far the best in deed and counsel.
Hail, O children of Zeus and lovely-haired Leto!
I shall remember you and another song, too.