Posted by Mikko on August 03, 2005
In Reply to: Re: "Write the present day meaning of the expression and explain its origins" posted by Smokey Stover on August 03, 2005
: : : : I really need help with these sayings. thank you so much.
: : : : "Write the present day meaning of the expression and explain its origins"
: : : : 1. A chimerical Scheme
: : : : 2. An apple of discord
: : : : 3. In the arms of Morpheus
: : : : 4. Beware of Greeks bearing gifts
: : : : 5. Hydra-headed evils
: : : : 6. As wise as Nestor
: : : : 7. Difficult as the judgment of Paris
: : : : 8. Between Scylla and Charybdis
: : : : 9. Sinon
: : : : 10. An Icarian Adventure
: : : : 11. A task of Sisyphus
: : : : 12. Janus-faced facts
: : : : 13. an Augean Task
: : : : 14. A Cassandra Utterance
: : : :
: : : : 15. Bellerophonic letters
: : : : 16. the thread of Ariadne
: : : : 17. To be unable to bend Ulysses' bow
: : : : 18. The face that launched a thousand ships
: : : : THANK YOU SO MUCH!
: : : If you like Greek mythology so much, you really should get a book, buy one or take one out of the library. There are dozens that will tell you all you need to know. It's generally pretty easy to figure out figurative uses, once you know the mythological meanings. Some of the phrases you use seem a bit unusual. I would expect, for instance, THE apple of discord, a Cassandra-like utterance, a Sisyphean task. I would not expect to see an Augean task, but rather a Herculean task, like cleaning out the Augean stables. Bellerophonic letter? Maybe Bellerophontic, but what would they be? Bellerophon, besides being a much misunderstood character, was the fellow who tamed Pegasus and drove him around. Someone may tell you what Bellerophontic letters are, but not me. If you don't want to read a book on mythology, just look up the relevant articles in an encyclopedia. SS
: : Most of te greek myths can be found also from the English wikipedia (en.wikipedia.org). Just search with the name of the mythical person/creature. They usually explain, how they are used as modern-day metaphors.
: : Most of these phrases explain themselves, when you check out the story behind them.
: : For example: Proteus was the son-in-law of Iobates, King of Lycia, and sent Bellerophon to him with a sealed message that asked to kill Bellerophon. This is the origin of the expression a "bellerophonic letter".
: : Mikko
: Thanks for the explanation. I'd forgotten the bit with Iobates, and was too lazy to look it up. It still seems to me that it ought to be a "Bellerophontic letter." I was, however, thinking about the Greeks sending each other letters, even if they are called "sealed messages." Papyrus? SS
The word should really be "bellerofontic". Perhaps people have dropped the "t" since the ending "phonic" implies "sounding like" (as in "euphonic", "stereophonic"...)
Well, I'm just making up theories here!