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ELPENOR - Home of the Greek Word

Three Millennia of Greek Literature

Orphica Bilingual Anthology : FROM MAN YOU BECAME GOD

DK B 17 & 20, * Translated by Elpenor, * Greek Fonts


ND you will find in Hades' halls at the left a fountain / and beside this a white standing cypress; / near that spring do not approach at all. / You will find from another, from Memory's lake, / cold water coming forth; but there exist guardians at the front. / To say*: "earth's child am I and starry heaven's; / however my origin is heavenly; this you know yourselves; / I'm under great thirst and perishing; but give quickly / cold water from Memory's lake." / And they will give you to drink from the divine fountain / and then you will reside with the other heroes.

From man, you became God.


* Elpenor's note: "to say" (
εἰπεῖν) may mean: "you need to say", or "they (the quardians) expect from you to say", or "what you must say is", or "it must be said", etc.

Θεὸς ἐγένου ἐξ ἀνθρώπου

Εὑρήσεις δ' Ἀίδαο δόμων ἐπ' ἀριστερὰ κρήνην, / παρ' δ' αὐτῇ λευκὴν ἑστηκυῖαν κυπάρισσον· / ταύτης τῆς κρήνης μηδὲ σχεδὸν ἐμπελάσειας. / Εὑρήσεις δ' ἑτέρας τῆς Μνημοσύνης ἀπὸ λίμνης / ψυχρὸν ὕδωρ προρέον· φύλακες δ' ἐπίπροσθεν ἔασιν. / Εἰπεῖν· γῆς παῖς εἰμι καὶ οὐρανοῦ ἀστερόεντος, / αὐτὰρ ἐμοὶ γένος οὐράνιον· τόδε δ΄ ἴστε καὶ αὐτοί· / δίψ δ΄ εἰμ(ὶ) αὔη καὶ ἀπόλλυμαι· ἀλλὰ δότ΄ αἶψα / ψυχρὸν ὕδωρ προρέον τῆς Μνημοσύνης ἀπὸ λίμνης. / καὐτοί σοι δώσουσι πιεῖν θείης ἀπὸ κρήνης / καὶ τότ΄ ἔπειτ΄ ἄλλοισι μεθ΄ ἡρώεσσι ἀνάξεις.  

Θεὸς ἐγένου ἐξ ἀνθρώπου.

Cf. ORPHICA : Everything was generated by Love ||| SAPPHO : Dearest Earth's offspring and Heaven's ||| SOPHOCLES : Oedipus' ascension ||| PLATO : Ways to Hades, We are a heavenly flower, Becoming like God ||| GREGORY THE THEOLOGIAN : God with Gods is being united ||| GREGORY OF NYSSA : Christ is always born in our soul, Everything that is free will be united with virtue ||| MAXIMUS CONFESSOR : He divided wisely the ages ||| SYMEON THE NEW THEOLOGIAN : Becoming invisible and suddenly appearing, Don't put yourself in despair


Three Millennia of Greek Literature

Greek Literature - Ancient, Medieval, Modern

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