THE NYMPHAI (Nymphs) were nature spirits responsible for the care of plants and animals in the wild. Many metamorphosis myths describing the origin of plants feature nymphs. The most famous of these were Daphne, Apollon's beloved laurel, and the Heliades, the amber-weeping poplar trees of the sun. Curiously, in plant metamorphosis myths, maidens were usually transformed into trees while youths became flowers.
For a summary of plants in myth see Flora - the Plants of Ancient Greek Myth.
CLASSICAL LITERATURE QUOTES
DAPHNE THE LAUREL TREE
LOCALE: Vale of Tempe, Thessaly (Northern Greece) or Arcadia (Southern Greece)
Pausanias, Description of Greece 10. 7. 8 (trans. Jones) (Greek travelogue C2nd A.D.) :
"The reason why a crown of laurel is the prize for a Pythian victory is in my opinion simply and solely because the prevailing tradition has it that Apollon fell in love with the daughter of Ladon [i.e. Daphne]."
Philostratus, Life of Apollonius of Tyana 1. 16 (trans. Conybeare) (Greek biography C1st to 2nd A.D.) :
"[In Antiokhos (Antioch) in Asia Minor is] the temple of Apollon Daphnaios (Daphnaeus), to which the Assyrians attach the legend of Arkadia (Arcadia). For they say that Daphne, the daughter of Ladon, there underwent her metamorphosis, and they have a riving flowing there, the Ladon, and a laurel tree is worshipped by them which they say was substituted for the maiden."
Pseudo-Hyginus, Fabulae 203 (trans. Grant) (Roman mythographer C2nd A.D.) :
"When Apollo was pursuing the virgin Daphne, daughter of the river Peneus, she begged for protection from Terra (Earth) [Gaia], who received her, and changed her into a laurel tree. Apollo broke a branch from it and placed it on his head."
Ovid, Metamorphoses 1. 452 ff (trans. Melville) (Roman epic C1st B.C. to C1st A.D.) :
"Daphne Peneia (Daughter of Peneus) was the first love of great Phoebus [Apollon], a love not lit by chance unwitting, but by Cupido's (Love's) [Eros'] spiteful wrath. Delius [Apollon], proud in victory saw Cupido draw his bow's taut arc, and said : ‘Mischievous boy, what are a brave man's arms to you? That gear becomes my shoulders best. My aim is sure; I wound my enemies, I wound wild beasts; my countless arrows slew but now the bloated Python, whose vast coils across so many acres spread their blight. You and your loves! You have your torch to light them Let that content you; never claim my fame!’
And Venus' [Aphrodite's] son [Eros] replied : ‘Your bow, Phoebus, may vanquish all, but mine shall vanquish you. As every creature yields to power divine, so likewise shall your glory yield to mine.’
Then winging through the air his eager way he stood upon Parnasos' (Parnassus') shady peak, and from his quiver's laden armoury he drew two arrows of opposing power, one shaft that rouses love and one that routs it. The first gleams bright with piercing point of gold; the other, cull and blunt is tipped with lead. This one he lodged in Nympha Peneis' [Daphne's] heart; the first he shot to pierce Apollo to the marrow. At once he loves; she flies the name of love, delighting in the forest's depths, and trophies of the chase, a Nympha to vie with heaven's virgin huntress Phoebe [Artemis]; a careless ribbon held her straying hair.
Many would woo her; she, rejecting them all, manless, aloof, ranged the untrodden woods nor cared what love, what marriage rites might mean. Often her father [the river-god Peneus] said, ‘My dearest daughter, it is my due to have a son-in-law.’ Often her father said, ‘It is my due, child of my heart, to be given grandchildren.’ She hated like a crime the bond of wedlock and, bashful blushes tingeing her fair cheeks, with coaxing arms embraced him and replied : ‘My dear, dear father grant I may enjoy virginity for ever; this Diana [Artemis] was granted by her father.’ He, indeed, yielded, but Daphne--why, her, loveliness thwarts her desire, her grace denies her prayer.
Phoebus saw her, loved her, wanted her--her for his bride, and, wanting, hoped--deceived by his own oracles; and, as the stubble flames in the harvest fields or as a hedge catches alight when some late wayfarer chances his torch too close or, in the dawn, discards its smouldering embers, so love's fire consumed the god, his whole heart was aflame, and high the hopes that stoked his fruitless passion. He sees the loose disorder of her hair and thinks what if it were neat and elegant! He sees her eyes shining like stars, her lips--but looking's not enough!--her fingers, hands, her wrists, her half-bare arms--how exquisite! And sure her hidden charms are best!
But she flies swifter than the lightfoot wind nor stops to hear him calling : ‘Stay, sweet Nympha Peneis! Oh, stay! I am no foe to fear. Lambs flee from wolves and hinds from lions, and the fluttering doves from eagles; every creature flees its foes. But love spurs my pursuit. Oh, you will fall and briars graze your legs--for shame!--and I, alas, the cause of your distress! The ground you race across is rough. You run too fast! Check your swift flight, and I'll not chase so fast. Yet ask who loves you. No rough forester am I, no unkempt shepherd guarding his flocks an herds. You do not know--you fly, you madcap girl, because you do not know. I am the lord of Delphi; Tenedos and Patara and Claros are my realms. I am the son of Juppiter [Zeus]. By me things future, past and present are revealed; I shape the harmony of songs and strings. Sure are my arrows, but one surer still has struck me to the heart, my carefree heart. The art of medicine I gave the world and all men call me "Healer"; I possess the power of every herb. Alas! That love no herb can cure, that skills which help afford to all mankind fail now to help their lord!’
More he had tried to say, but she in fear fled on and left him and his words unfinished. Enchanting still she looked--her slender limbs bare in the breeze, her fluttering dress blown back, her hair behind her streaming as she ran; and flight enhanced her grace. But the young god, could bear no more to waste his blandishments. And (love was driving him) pressed his pursuit. And as a beagle sees across the stubble a hare and runs to kill and she for life--he almost has her; now, yes now, he's sure she's his; his straining muzzle scrapes her heels; and she half thinks she's caught and, as he bites, snatches away; his teeth touch--but she's gone. So ran the god and girl, he sped by hope and she by fear. But he, borne on the wings of love, ran faster, gave her no respite, hot on her flying heels and breathing close upon her shoulders and her tumbling hair.
Her strength was gone; the travail of her flight vanquished her, and her face was deathly pale. And then she was at the river, swift Peneus, and called; ‘Help, father, help! If mystic power dwells in your waters, change me and destroy my baleful beauty that has pleased too well.’
Scarce had she made her prayer when through her limbs a dragging languor spread, her tender bosom was wrapped in thin smooth bark, her slender arms were changed to branches and her hair to leaves; her feet but now so swift were anchored fast in numb stiff roots, her face and had became the crown of a green tree; all that remained of Daphne was her shining loveliness. And still Phoebus loved her; on the trunk he placed his hand and felt beneath the bark her heart still beating, held in his embrace her branches, pressed his kisses on the wood; yet from his kisses the wood recoiled. ‘My bride,’ he said, ‘since you can never be, at least, sweet laurel, you shall be my tree. My lure, my locks, my quiver you shall wreathe.’ . . . Thus spoke the god; the laurel in assent inclined her new-made branches and bent down, or seemed to bend, her head, her leafy crown."
Nonnus, Dionysiaca 33. 210 ff (trans. Rouse) (Greek epic C5th A.D.) :
"She told how the knees of that unwedded Nymphe [Daphne] fled swift on the breeze, how she ran once from Phoibos (Phoebus) [Apollon] quick as the north wind, how she planted her maiden foot by the flood of a longwinding river, by the quick stream of Orontes, when Gaia (the Earth) opened beside the wide mouth of a marsh and received the hunted girl into her compassionate bosom . . . the god never caught Daphne when she was pursued, Apollon never ravished her . . . and [he] always blamed Gaia (the Earth) for swallowing the girl before she knew marriage."
Nonnus, Dionysiaca 42. 386 ff :
"How the daughter [Daphne] of Ladon, that celebrated river, hated the works of marriage and the Nymphe became a tree with inspired whispers, she escaped the bed of Phoibos (Phoebus) [Apollon] but she crowned his hair with prophetic clusters."
For MORE information on this Nymph see DAPHNE
PHILYRA THE LINDEN TREE
LOCALE: Mount Pelion, Magnesia (Northern Greece)
Pseudo-Hyginus, Fabulae 138 (trans. Grant) (Roman mythographer C2nd A.D.) :
"When Saturn [Kronos (Cronus)] was hunting Jove [Zeus] throughout the earth, assuming the form of a steed he lay with Philyra, daughter of Oceanus. By him she bore Chiron the Centaur, who is said to have been the first to invent the art of healing. After Philyra saw that she had borne a strange species, she asked Jove [Zeus] to change her into another form, and she was transformed into the tree which is called the linden."
For MORE information on this Nymph see PHILYRE
PITYS THE CORSICAN PINE
LOCALE: perhaps Mount Lycaeus (Lykaios), Arcadia (Southern Greece)
Nonnus, Dionysiaca 42. 257 ff (trans. Rouse) (Greek epic C5th A.D.) :
"Sing also of Pitys who hated marriage, who fled fast as the wind over the mountains to escape the unlawful wooing of Pan, and her fate--how she disappeared into the soil herself; put the blame of Ge (the Earth)!"
For MORE information on this Nymph see PITYS
SYRINX THE RIVER REED
LOCALE: Mount Nonacris (Nonakris), Arcadia (Southern Greece)
Ovid, Metamorphoses 1. 689 ff (trans. Melville) (Roman epic C1st B.C. to C1st A.D.) :
"Once there lived on the cold mountainsides of Arcadia a Naias (Naiad), who among the Hamadryades Nonacrinae (Hamadryads of Nonacris) was the most renowned. Syrinx the Nymphae (Nymphs) called her. Many a time she foiled the chasing Satyri and those gods who haunt the shady copses and the coverts of the lush countryside. In her pursuits--and in her chastity--Syrinx revered Ortygia [Artemis]; girt like her she well might seem, so easy to mistake, Diana's [Artemis'] self, were not her bow of horn, Latonia's [Artemis'] gold. Indeed she was mistaken. Pan returning from Mount Lycaeus, crowned with his wreath of pine, saw Syrinx once and said--but what he said remained to tell, and how the scornful Nympha fled through the wilderness and came at last to Ladon's peaceful sandy stream, and there, her flight barred by the river, begged her Watery Sisters (sorores liquidae) to change her; and, when Pan thought he had captured her, he held instead only the tall marsh reeds, and, while he sighed, the soft wind stirring in the reeds sent forth a thin and plaintive sound; and he, entranced by this new music and its witching tones, cried ‘You and I shall stay in unison!’ And waxed together reeds of different lengths and made the pipes that keep his darling's name."
Nonnus, Dionysiaca 16. 332 ff (trans. Rouse) (Greek epic C5th A.D.) :
"Pan cried out : ‘. . . I alone, Kythereia (Cytherea) [Aphrodite], must suffer. Alas for love! Syrinx [transformed into a reed] escaped from Pan's marriage and left him without a bride, and now she [i.e. the pipes made from her plant] cries Euoi to the newly-made marriage of Dionysos with melodies unasked; while Syrinx gives voice, and to crown all, Ekho (Echo) chimes in with her familiar note.’"
Nonnus, Dionysiaca 42. 363 ff :
"You know how Syrinx disregarded fiery Kythera (Cythera) [Aphrodite], and what price she paid for her too-great pride and love for virginity; how she turned into a plant with reedy growth substituted for her own, when she had fled from Pan's love, and how she still sings Pan's desire!"
For MORE information on this Nymph see SYRINX
LOTIS THE LOTUS TREE
LOCALE: Mount Othrys, Malis (Northern Greece)
Ovid, Metamorphoses 9. 334 ff (trans. Melville) (Roman epic C1st B.C. to C1st A.D.) :
"There is a lake [in Oikhalia (Oechalia)] whose shelving sides had shaped a sloping shore, and myrtles crowned the ridge . . . Near the lakeside was a lotus flowered, its crimson blooms like Tyrian dye, fair hope of fruit to come. Dryope picked a posy of these flowers to please her boy . . . [and she] saw drops of blood drip from the blossoms of the boughs shiver in horror. For this shrub, you see (too late the peasants told us), was the Nymphe Lotis who fled Priapus's lechery and found changed features there but kept her name. Nothing of this my sister knew. She'd said prayers to the Nymphae (Nymphs) and now in terror tried to turn away and leave, but found her feet rooted [and was herself transformed into a tree]."
For MORE information on this Nymph see LOTIS
Ovid, Metamorphoses 4. 256 ff (trans. Melville) (Roman epic C1st B.C. to C1st A.D.) :
"Clytie loved Sol (the Sun) [Helios] beyond all measure . . . [but] the Lord of Light no longer visited; his dalliance was done. She pined and languished, as love and longing stole her wits away. Shunning the Nymphae (Nymphs), beneath the open sky, on the bare ground bare-headed day and night, she sat dishevelled, and for nine long days, with never taste of food or drink, she fed her hunger on her tears and on the dew. There on the ground she stayed; she only gazed upon her god's bright face as he rode by, and turned her head to watch him cross the sky. Her limbs, they say, stuck fast there in the soil; a greenish pallor spread, as part of her changed to a bloodless plant, another part was ruby red, and where her face had been a flower like a violet [i.e. a heliotrope] was seen. Though rooted fast, towards the sun she turns; her shape is changed, but still her passion burns."
For MORE information on this Nymph see KLYTIE
HELIADES THE POPLAR TREES
LOCALE: River Eridanus, Hyperborea (Mythical North) or River Po (Northern Italy)
Philoxenus of Cythera, Fragment 834 (from Pliny, Natural History) (trans. Campbell, Vol. Greek Lyric V) (C5th to 4th B.C.) :
"When Phaethon was struck by the thunderbolt, his sisters were changed into poplar trees in their grief and every year shed tears of amber by the banks of the river Eridanos (Eridanus), which we call the Padus (Po); the amber is known as electrum, since the Sun is called Elector (elektor, the shiner). Many poets have told this."
Apollonius Rhodius, Argonautica 4. 598 ff (trans. Rieu) (Greek epic C3rd B.C.) :
"The Argo sped on under sail, up the Eridanos (Eridanus) as far as ships can go. They reached the outfall of that deep lake where Phaethon, struck in the breast and half-consumed by a blazing thunderbolt . . . All around, the Heliades (Daughters of the Sun), encased in tall poplars, utter their sad and unavailing plaint. Shining drops of amber fall from their eyes onto the sands and are dried by the sun. But when the wailing wind stirs the dark waters of the lake to rise above the beach, all the tersr that have collected there are swept by the overflow into the river."
Apollonius Rhodius, Argonautica 4. 619 ff :
"At night they [the Argonauts] had to listen to the loud lament of the shrill-voiced Heliades (Daughters of Helios), whose tears were borne along on the stream like drops of oil [i.e. amber]."
Strabo, Geography 5. 1. 9 (trans. Jones) (Greek geographer C1st B.C. to C1st A.D.) :
"I must disregard most of the mythical or false stories [about the River Eridanos, now the Po, in Italy], as, for example, the stories of Phaethon, and of the Heliades that were changed into poplar-trees near the Eridanos--the Eridanos that exists nowhere on earth, although it is spoken of as near the Pados--, and of the Elektrides (Amber) Islands that lie off the Pados."
Pausanias, Description of Greece 1. 4. 1 (trans. Jones) (Greek travelogue C2nd A.D.) :
"Through their [the Gaul's] country flows the river Eridanos, on the bank of which the daughters of Helios are supposed to lament the fate that befell their brother Phaethon."
Diodorus Siculus, Library of History 5. 23. 2 (trans. Oldfather) (Greek historian C1st B.C.) :
"[Phaethon lost control of the chariot of the sun and set the earth ablaze :] Zeus smote Phaethon with a thunderbolt and brought back the sun to its accustomed course. And Phaethon fell to the earth at the mouths of the river which is now known as the Pados [river Po], but in ancient times was called the Eridanos, and his sisters [the Heliades] vied with each other in bewailing his death and by reason of their exceeding grief underwent a metamorphosis of their nature, becoming poplar trees. And these poplars, at the same season each year, drip tears (or sap), and these, when they harden, for what men call amber, which in brilliance excels all else of the same nature and is commonly used in connection with the mourning attending the death of young."
Philostratus the Elder, Imagines 1. 11 (trans. Fairbanks) (Greek rhetorician C3rd A.D.) :
"[Description of an ancient Greek painting :] Golden are the tears of the Heliades. The story is that they are shed for Phaethon; for in his passion for driving this son of Helios (the Sun) ventured to mount his father's chariot, but because he did not keep a firm rein he came to grief and fell into the Eridanos . . .
The women on the bank, not yet completely transformed into trees, men say that the Heliades on account of their brother's mishap changed their nature and became trees, and that they shed tears. The painting recognizes the story, for it puts roots at the extremities of their toes, while some, over here, are trees to the waist, and branches have supplanted the arms of others. Behold the hair, it is nothing but poplar leaves! Behold the tears, they are golden! While the welling tide of tears in their eyes gleams in the bright pupils and seems to attract rays of light, and the tears on the cheeks glisten amid the cheek's ruddy glow, yet the drops tricking down their breasts have already turned into gold."
Pseudo-Hyginus, Fabulae 153 (trans. Grant) (Roman mythographer C2nd A.D.) :
"Phaethon, son of Sol (the Sun) [Helios] and Clymene, who had secretly mounted his father's car, and had been borne too high above the earth, from fear fell into the river Eridanus. When Jupiter [Zeus] struck him with a thunderbolt, everything started to burn . . . The sisters of Phaethon, because they had yoked the horses without the orders of their father, were changed into poplar trees."
Pseudo-Hyginus, Fabulae 154 :
"The sisters of Phaethon, too, in grieving for their brother, were changed into poplar trees. Their tears, as Hesiod tells, ‘hardened into amber' in spite of the change they are called Heliades."
Ovid, Metamorphoses 2. 319 ff (trans. Melville) (Roman epic C1st B.C. to C1st A.D.) :
"Phaethon, flames ravaging his auburn hair, falls headlong down [from the chariot of the sun] . . . Eridanus receives him, far from home, in his wide waters half a world away. And bathes his burning face. The Naides Hesperiae (Hesperian Naiads) bury his smouldering body in a tomb . . .
His sisters' too, the three Heliades, wept sad tears, their futile tribute to the dead, and long lay prostrate on their brother's tomb, bruising their breasts and calling day and night Phaethon who never more would hear their moans. Four times the waxing crescent of the moon had filled her orb, in their wonted way, wailing was now their wont, they made lament, when Phaethusa, eldest of the three, meaning to kneel upon the ground, complained her feet were rigid, When Lampetie, her lovely sister, tried to come to her, she found herself held fast by sudden roots; the third, reaching to tear her hair, instead plucked leaves. One, in dismay, felt wood encase her shins and one her arms become long boughs. And while they stood bewildered, bark embraced their loins and covered, inch by inch, their waists, breasts, shoulders, hands, till only lips were left, calling their mother. She, what can she do but dart distractedly now here, now there, and kiss them while she may. It's not enough. She tries to tear the bark away and breaks the tender boughs, but from them bloody drops ooze like a dripping wound. ‘Stop, mother, stop!’ each injured girl protests; ‘I beg you, stop, the tree you tear is me. And now, farewell!’ The bark lapped her last words. So their tears still flow on, and oozing from the new-made boughs, drip and are hardened in the sun to form amber and then the clear stream catches them and carries them for Roman brides to wear."
Valerius Flaccus, Argonautica 5. 428 ff (trans. Mozley) (Roman epic C1st A.D.) :
"His poplar sisters [the Heliades] were weeping for young Phaethon, while the charred lump fell into the terrified waters of Eridanus."
Statius, Thebaid 12. 412 ff (trans. Mozley) (Roman epic C1st A.D.) :
"His sisters [the Heliades] lave the smoking Phaethon, Hyperion's son, in the heated Padus [river Po]: scarce was he interred, when a weeping grove rose by the river-side."
Nonnus, Dionysiaca 2. 150 ff (trans. Rouse) (Greek epic C5th A.D.) :
"Let me be one of the Heliades beside the stream of mourning Eridanos: often will I drop amber from my eyelids; I will spread my leaves to entwine with the dirge-loving clusters of my neighbouring poplar, bewailing my maidenhood with abundant tears--for Phaethon."
Nonnus, Dionysiaca 38. 99 ff :
"The Olympian tale which the Celts of the west know well: how Phaethon tumbled over and over through the air, and why even the Heliades (Daughters of Helios) were changed into trees beside the moaning Eridanos, and from their leafy trees drop sparkling tears into the stream."
For MORE information on these Nymphs see the HELIADES
SPERCHEIDES THE POPLAR TREES
LOCALE: River Spercheus (Sperkheios), Malis (Northern Greece)
Antoninus Liberalis, Metamorphoses 22 (trans. Celoria) (Greek mythographer C2nd A.D.) :
"Poseidon, for lust of one of them [the nymphs of Mount Othrys and the River Sperkheios], Diopatre (Diopatra), had made her sisters put down roots and turned them into poplars until, satiated with his desires, he had returned them to their original shapes."
For MORE information on these Nymphs see the SPERKHEIDES
SIDE THE POMEGRANATE
LOCALE: (Greek Aegean)
Pseudo-Apollodorus, Bibliotheca 1. 25 (trans. Aldrich) (Greek mythographer C2nd A.D.) :
"His [the giant Orion's] first wife was Side, who for vying with Hera in shapeliness was thrown by her into Haides' realm."
N.B. Sidê is the ancient Greek word for pomegranate. Apollodorus' brief account implies she was metamorphosed into a pomegranate plant. "Thrown into Haides' realm" probably alludes to the pomegranate orchard of Haides whose seeds the goddess Persephone tasted.
LEUCE THE WHITE POPLAR
LOCALE: River Acheron (Akheron), Thesprotia (Northern Greece)
According to Servius--Scholia on Virgil's Eclogues 4.250--Leuke was a nymph carried abducted by Haides who was transformed into a white poplar tree after her death.
Pausanias, Description of Greece 5. 14. 2 (trans. Jones) (Greek travelogue C2nd A.D.) :
"Herakles found the white poplar (leukê) growing on the banks of the Akheron (Acheron), the river in Thesprotia, and for this reason Homer calls it Akherois."
For MORE information on this Nymph see LEUKE
MINTHE THE SPEAR MINT
LOCALE: Mount Mintha, Elis (Southern Greece)
Strabo, Geography 8. 3. 14 (trans. Jones) (Greek geographer C1st B.C. to C1st A.D.) :
"Near Pylos, towards the east, is a mountain named after Minthe, who, according to myth, became the concubine of Haides, was trampled under foot by Kore (Core) [Persephone], and was transformed into garden-mint, the plant which some call Hedyosmos. Furthermore, near the mountain is a precinct sacred to Haides."
Oppian, Halieutica 3. 485 ff (trans. Mair) (Greek poet C3rd A.D.) :
"Mint (Mintha), men say, was once a maid beneath the earth, a Nymphe of Kokytos (Cocytus), and she lay in the bed of Aidoneus [Haides]; but when he raped the maid Persephone from the Aitnaian hill [Mount Etna in Sicily], then she complained loudly with overweening words and raved foolishly for jealousy, and Demeter in anger trampled upon her with her feet and destroyed her. For she had said that she was nobler of form and more excellent in beauty than dark-eyed Persephone and she boasted that Aidoneus would return to her and banish the other from his halls : such infatuation leapt upon her tongue. And from the earth spray the weak herb that bears her name."
Ovid, Metamorphoses 10. 728 ff (trans. Melville) (Roman epic C1st B.C. to C1st A.D.) :
"Persephone of old was given grace to change a woman's [Mintha's] form to fragrant mint."
For MORE information on this Nymph see MINTHE
PSALACANTHA THE PLANY PLANT
LOCALE: Icaria (Ikaria) (Greek Aegean)
Ptolemy Hephaestion, New History Book 5 (summary from Photius, Myriobiblon 190) (trans. Pearse) (Greek mythographer C1st to C2nd A.D.) :
"As for the psalakanthos, it's an Egyptian plant which gains health and victory when used to decorate horses. It is said, on the other hand, that Psalakantha (Psalacantha) was a Nymphe of the isle of Ikaros (Icarus) who, captured by Dionysos, helped him to obtain Ariane (Ariadne) on the condition that he should also belong to her, and Dionysos refused; Psalakantha took herself to Ariane and the irritated god turned her into a plany; then, feeling remorse, he wanted to honour this plant by placing it in the crown of Ariadne, who took her place among the celestial constellations. As for the plant, some say it resembles the armoise, others the melilot."
- Greek Lyric V Philoxenus, Fragments - Greek Lyric C5th - 4th B.C.
- Apollodorus, The Library - Greek Mythography C2nd A.D.
- Apollonius Rhodius, The Argonautica - Greek Epic C3rd B.C.
- Diodorus Siculus, The Library of History - Greek History C1st B.C.
- Strabo, Geography - Greek Geography C1st B.C. - C1st A.D.
- Pausanias, Description of Greece - Greek Travelogue C2nd A.D.
- Antoninus Liberalis, Metamorphoses - Greek Mythography C2nd A.D.
- Philostratus the Elder, Imagines - Greek Rhetoric C3rd A.D.
- Philostratus, Life of Apollonius of Tyana - Greek Biography C2nd A.D.
- Ptolemy Hephaestion, New History - Greek Mythography C1st - 2nd A.D.
- Oppian, Halieutica - Greek Poetry C3rd A.D.
- Nonnus, Dionysiaca - Greek Epic C5th A.D.
- Hyginus, Fabulae - Latin Mythography C2nd A.D.
- Ovid, Metamorphoses - Latin Epic C1st B.C. - C1st A.D.
- Valerius Flaccus, The Argonautica - Latin Epic C1st A.D.
- Statius, Thebaid - Latin Epic C1st A.D.