Euterpe, also Eutelpe, is one of the nine muses of Greek mythology. The Muses, handed over by the poet Hesiod, are the paternal gods of the arts, each of the Muses being assigned to an area and having an attribute describing it. Euterpe is the muse of lyric and flute play, and is generally described as a muse of music. Their attribute is a flute or aulos (a kind of double flute). Pindar, a Greek poet of antiquity, states that Euterpe, together with the river god Strymon, witnessed the Thracian king Rhesus, who was involved in the Trojan war, where he was killed by Diomedes.

The name of the muse of lyric poetry can be derived from ancient Greek (Ἐυτέρπη) and translated with the pleasurable or the pleasing. Consequently, the name of Euterpes refers to the fact that it is primarily for [musical] entertainment. On paintings and other representations, she is mostly depicted in a roving robe and a flute or double flute.

Various representations of the Euterpe

The above examples show different representations of the muse. Characteristic is in each picture the young female shape, the roving robe, and the attribute of the flute (middle) or double flute (left and right). It is evident in these representations that the muse is mainly connected with (flute) music, and only the image in the center points to its task as the guardian god of the lyric poetry, in that it is portrayed with written scrolls.

Overview: The nine muses


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *