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Greek Mythology >> Greek Gods >> Olympian Gods >> Charites >> Euphrosyne

EUPHROSYNE

Greek Name

Ευφροσυνη

Transliteration

Euphrosynê

Latin Spelling

Euphrosyne

Translation

Good Cheer, Mirth

Acratus & Euphrosyne | Greco-Roman mosaic from Zeugma | Gaziantep Museum
Acratus & Euphrosyne, Greco-Roman mosaic from Zeugma, Gaziantep Museum

EUPHROSYNE was one of the three Kharites (Charites) and the goddess of good cheer, mirth, merriment and joy. Her name is the feminine form of the Greek word euphrosynos meaning "merriment".

In the mosaic right she is paired with Akratos (Acratus), the celebratory spirit of unmixed wine. She was usually depicted dancing in a circle with her two sisters.


FAMILY OF EUPHROSYNE

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)


ALTERNATE NAMES

Greek Name

Ευθυμια

Transliteration

Euthymia

Latin Spelling

Euthymia

Translation

Good Cheer, Joy


CLASSICAL LITERATURE QUOTES

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 (Asopichus), 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 (Cronus), 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 equated with 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."

Thumbnail Euphrosyne & Acratus

Z21.3 Euphrosyne & Acratus

Greco-Roman Zeugma Mosaic C1st A.D.

Thumbnail Dancing Charites

F21.1 Dancing Charites

Greco-Roman Pompeii Fresco C1st A.D.

Thumbnail Dancing Charites

Z21.1 Dancing Charites

Greco-Roman Shahba Floor Mosaic A.D.

Thumbnail Dancing Charites

S21.1 Dancing Charites

Greco-Roman Marble Statue C2nd B.C.


SOURCES

GREEK

ROMAN

OTHER SOURCES

Other references not currently quoted here: Memnon 42.

BIBLIOGRAPHY

A complete bibliography of the translations quoted on this page.