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Three Millennia of Greek Literature

Orphica Bilingual Anthology : EVERYTHING WAS GENERATED BY LOVE

DK A 12, * Translated by Elpenor, * Greek Fonts


HAOS was and Night and dark Erebus in the beginning and the wide Tartarus. Neither the Earth nor the air, nor heaven existed. 

And in the limitless bosom of the Erebus, black-winged Night laid firstly a germless egg, out of which, after a long course of time sprouted cherished Love (Eros), shining with golden wings at his back, being like the whirlwinds of the wind.

And he mated with the winged dark Chaos in wide Tartarus and he hatched forth our generation and brought it first up to the light.

Before Love mixed together everything, the generation of the Immortals did not exist. By Love, mixing everything with each other, Heaven came to be, and Ocean and also the Earth and the immortal generation of all the blissful Gods.


Χάος ἦν καὶ Νὺξ Ἔρεβός τε μέλαν πρῶτον καὶ Τάρταρος εὐρύς͵ Γῆ δ΄ οὐδ΄ Ἀὴρ οὐδ΄ Οὐρανὸς ἦν· 

Ἐρέβους δ΄ ἐν ἀπείροσι κόλποις τίκτει πρώτιστον ὑπηνέμιον Νὺξ ἡ μελανόπτερος ὠιόν͵ ἐξ οὖ περιτελλομέναις ὥραις ἔβλαστεν Ἔρως ὁ ποθεινός στίλβων νῶτον πτερύγοιν χρυσαῖν͵ εἰκὼς ἀνεμώκεσι δίναις. 

οὗτος δὲ Χάει πτερόεντι μιγεὶς νυχίωι κατὰ Τάρταρον εὐρύν ἐνεόττευσεν γένος ἡμέτερον καὶ πρῶτον ἀνήγαγεν εἰς φῶς. 

πρότερον δ΄ οὐκ ἦν γένος ἀθανάτων͵ πρὶν Ἔρως ξυνέμειξεν ἅπαντα· ξυμμειγνυμένων δ΄ ἑτέρων ἑτέροις γένετ΄ Οὐρανὸς Ὠκεανός τε καὶ Γῆ πάντων τε θεῶν μακάρων γένος ἄφθιτον.  

Cf. ORPHICA : From man you became God ||| SAPPHO : Dearest Earth's offspring and Heaven's ||| PLATO : The Real World, The Creator, The world is a living being, A moving image of eternity, We are a heavenly flower ||| GREGORY OF NYSSA : The Mystery of the Cross, Everything shares in the Beautiful ||| DIONYSIUS THE AREOPAGITE : All-comprehending Smallness and Super-essential Identity ||| NICHOLAS CABASILAS : The old and the new Adam

Three Millennia of Greek Literature

Greek Literature - Ancient, Medieval, Modern

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