Web Theoi
EUPHROSYNE
 
Greek Name Transliteration Latin Spelling Translation
Ευφροσυνη Euphrosynê Euphrosyne Good Cheer, Mirth,
Merriment
Acratus | Greco-Roman mosaic from Zeugma | Gaziantep Museum
Acratus & Euphrosyne, Greco-Roman mosaic
from Zeugma, Gaziantep Museum

EUPHROSYNE was the goddess of good cheer, joy, mirth and merriment. She was one of the three Kharites (Graces). Her name derives from the Greek word euphrosynos "merriment". In the mosaic right she is paired with Akratos, the celebratory spirit of unmixed wine. Usually, however, she appears dancing in a circle with her triplet sisters.

PARENTS
[1.1] ZEUS & EURYNOME (Hesiod Theogony 907, Apollodorus 1.13, Pausanias 9.35.1)
[1.2] ZEUS & EUNOMIA (Orphic Hymn 60)
[2.1] EREBOS & NYX (Hyginus Preface)

Hesiod, Theogony 907 ff (trans. Evelyn-White) (Greek epic C8th or C7th B.C.) :
"And Eurynome, the daughter of Okeanos (Oceanus), beautiful in form, bare him [Zeus] three fair-cheeked Kharites (Charites, Graces), Aglaia (Aglaea), and Euphrosyne, and lovely Thalie (Thalia), from whose eyes as they glanced flowed love that unnerves the limbs: and beautiful is their glance beneath their brows."

Homer's Epigrams 15 (trans. Evelyn-White) (Greek epic C8th B.C.) :
"Open of yourselves, you doors, for mightly Ploutos (Plutus, Wealth) will enter in, and with Ploutos comes jolly Euphrosyne (Mirth) and gentle Eirene (Irene, Peace)."

Pindar, Olympian Ode 14. 1 ff (trans. Conway) (Greek lyric C5th B.C.) :
"Whose haunts are by Kephissos' (Cephisus') river, you queens beloved of poets' song, ruling Orkhomenos (Orchomenus), that sunlit city and land of lovely steeds, watch and ward of the ancient Minyan race, hear now my prayer, you Kharites (Charites, Graces) three. For in your gift are all our mortal joys, and every sweet thing, be it wisdom, beauty, or glory, that makes rich the soul of man. Nor even can the immortal gods order at their behest the dance and festals, lacking the Kharites' aid; who are the steward of all rites of heaven, whose thrones are set at Pytho beside Apollon of the golden bow, and who with everlasting honour worship the Father, lord of great Olympos. Euphrosyne, lover of song, and Aglaia (Aglaea) revered, daughters of Zeus the all-highest, hearken, and with Thalia, darling of harmony, look on our songs of revel, on light feet stepping to grace this happy hour . . . I come to praise Asopikhos, whose Minyan house, Thalia, now of your favour wears the pride of the Olympian victor."

Pindar, Fragment 155 (trans. Sandys) :
"What shall I do to be dear unto thee, O loudly-thundering [Zeus] son of Kronos, and dear unto the Moisai (Muses), and to be cared for by Euthymia (Jollity)?"
[N.B. Euthymia is Euphrosyne.]

Pseudo-Apollodorus, Bibliotheca 1. 13 (trans. Aldrich) (Greek mythographer C2nd A.D.) :
"By Okeanos' (Oceanus') daughter Eurynome he [Zeus] had the Kharites (Charites, Graces), named Aglaia (Aglaea), Eurphrosyne, and Thaleia (Thalia)."

Pausanias, Description of Greece 9. 35. 1 (trans. Jones) (Greek travelogue C2nd A.D.) :
"Hesiod in the Theogony says that the Kharites (Charites, Graces) are daughters of Zeus and Eurynome, giving them the names of Euphrosyne, Aglaia (Aglaea) and Thalia."

Orphic Hymn 60 to the Charites (trans. Taylor) (Greek hymns C3rd B.C. to 2nd A.D.) :
"Illustrious Kharites (Charites, Graces), mighty named, from Zeus descended, and Eunomia (Good Order) famed [here identified with the Okeanis Eurynome], Thalia and Aglaia (Aglaea) fair and bright, and blest Euphrosyne, whom joys delight."

Pseudo-Hyginus, Preface (trans. Grant) (Roman mythographer C2nd A.D.) :
"From Nox (Night) and Erebus: Fatum (Fate), Senectus (Old Age), Mors (Death), Letum (Dissolution), Continentia (Moderation), Somnus (Sleep), Somnia (Dreams), Amor (Love) - that is Lysimeles, Epiphron (Prudence), Porphyrion, Epaphus, Discordia (Discord), Miseria (Misery), Petulantia (Wantonness), Nemesis (Envy), Euphrosyne (Good Cheer), Amicitia (Friendship), Misericordia (Compassion), Styx (Hatred); the three Parcae (Fates), namely Clotho, Lachesis and Atropos; the Hesperides."

Greek Name Transliteration Latin Spelling

Translation

Ευθυμια Euthymia Euthymia Good Cheer, Joy,
Contentment

The Three Graces | Roman fresco
F21.1 EUPHROSYNE,
AGLAIA, THALEIA
The Three Graces | Roman mosaic
Z21.1 EUPHROSYNE,
AGLAIA, THALEIA
Eurphrosyne & Acratus | Greco-Roman mosaic
Z21.3 EUPHROSYNE,
AKRATOS
The Three Graces | Greco-Roman statue
S21.1 EUPHROSYNE,
AGLAIA, THALEIA

Sources:

  • Hesiod, Theogony - Greek Epic C8th-7th B.C.
  • Homerica, Homer's Epigrams - Greek Epic C8th B.C.
  • Pindar, Odes - Greek Lyric C5th B.C.
  • Pindar, Fragments - Greek Lyric C5th B.C.
  • Apollodorus, The Library - Greek Mythography C2nd B.C.
  • The Orphic Hymns - Greek Hymns C3nd B.C. - C2nd A.D.
  • Pausanias, Description of Greece - Greek Travelogue C2nd A.D>
  • Hyginus, Fabulae - Latin Mythography C2nd A.D.

Other references not currently quoted here: Memnon 42