Pausanias, Description of Greece (English) (XML Header) [genre: prose] [word count] [Paus.].
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9.37.4

So going to Delphi he inquired of the oracle about children, and the Pythian priestess gave this reply:— Erginus, son of Clymenus Presboniades,
Late thou camest seeking offspring, but even now
To the old plough-tree put a new tip.
Obeying the oracle he took to himself a young wife, and had children, Trophonius and Agamedes.

9.37.5

Trophonius is said to have been a son of Apollo, not of Erginus. This I am inclined to believe, as does everyone who has gone to Trophonius to inquire of his oracle. They say that these, when they grew up, proved clever at building sanctuaries for the gods and palaces for men. For they built the temple for Apollo at Delphi and the treasury for Hyrieus. One of the stones in it they made so that they could take it away from the outside. So they kept on removing something from the store. Hyrieus was dumbfounded when he saw keys and seals untampered with, while the treasure kept on getting less.

9.37.6

So he set over the vessels, in which were his silver and gold, snares or other contrivance, to arrest any who should enter and lay hands on the treasure. Agamedes entered and was kept fast in the trap, but Trophonius cut off his head, lest when day came his brother should be tortured, and he himself be informed of as being concerned in the crime.

9.37.7

The earth opened and swallowed up Trophonius at the point in the grove at Lebadeia where is what is called the pit of Agamedes, with a slab beside it. The kingdom of Orchomenus was taken by Ascalaphus and Ialmenus, said to be sons of Ares, while their mother was Astyoche, daughter of Actor, son of Azeus, son of Clymenus. Under the leadership of these the Minyans marched against Troy.

9.37.8

Orchomenians also joined with the sons of Codrus in the expedition to Ionia. When expelled from their city by the Thebans they were restored again to Orchomenus by Philip the son of Amyntas. But Providence was to drag them ever lower and lower into decay.

ch. 38 9.38.1

At Orchomenus is a sanctuary of Dionysus, but the oldest is one of the Graces. They worship the stones most, and say that they fell for Eteocles out of heaven. The artistic images were dedicated in my time, and they too are of stone.

9.38.2

They have also a fountain worth seeing, and go down to it to fetch water. The treasury of Minyas, a wonder second to none either in Greece itself or elsewhere, has been built in the following way. It is made of stone; its shape is round, rising to a rather blunt apex; they say that the highest stone is the keystone of the whole building.

9.38.3

There are graves of Minyas and Hesiod. They say that they thus recovered the bones of Hesiod. A pestilence fell on men and beasts, so that they sent envoys to the god. To these, it is said, the Pythian priestess made answer that to bring the bones of Hesiod from the land of Naupactus to the land of Orchomenus was their one and only remedy. Whereupon the envoys asked a further question, where in the land of Naupactus they would find the bones; to which the Pythian priestess answered again that a crow would indicate to them the place.

9.38.4

So when the envoys landed, they saw, it is said, a rock not far from the road, with the bird upon the rock; the bones of Hesiod they found in a cleft of the rock. Elegiac verses are inscribed on the tomb:— Ascra rich in corn was his native land, but when Hesiod died,
The land of the horse-striking Minyans holds his bones,
Whose fame will rise very high in Greece
When men are judged by the touchstone of artistry.

9.38.5

About Actaeon the Orchomenians had the following story. A ghost, they say, carrying a rock [Note] was ravaging the land. When they inquired at Delphi, the god bade them discover the remains of Actaeon and bury them in the earth. He also bade them make a bronze likeness of the ghost and fasten it to a rock with iron. I have myself seen this image thus fastened. They also sacrifice every year to Actaeon as to a hero.

9.38.6

Seven stades from Orchomenus is a temple of Heracles with a small image. Here is the source of the river Melas (black), one of the streams running into the Cephisian Lake. The lake at all times covers the greater part of the Orchomenian territory, but in the winter season, after the south-west wind has generally prevailed, the water spreads over a yet greater extent of the territory.



Pausanias, Description of Greece (English) (XML Header) [genre: prose] [word count] [Paus.].
<<Paus. 9.36.7 Paus. 9.37.8 (Greek) >>Paus. 9.38.10

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