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cruelly killed by Odysseus. (Horn. Od. xvii. 212, &c., xxi. 176, xxii. 474, &c.) [L. S.]
MELANTHIUS (Me\dvBtos), an Athenian tragic poet, who seems to have been of some distinction in his day, but of whom little is now known beyond the attacks made on him by the comic poets. Eupolis, Aristophanes, Pherecrates, Leucon, and Plato, satirized him unmercifully ; and it is remarkable that he was attacked in all the three comedies which gained the first three places in the dramatic contest of b.c. 419, namely, the K6\a.K€S of Eupolis, the Etptfvri of Aristophanes, and the Qpdropts of Leucon (Athen. viii. p. 343 ; Schol. ad Aristopli. Pac. 804). He is again attacked by Aristophanes in the "OpviQss, b. c. 414. In addition to these indications of his date, we are informed of a remark made by him upon the tragedies of Diogenes Oenomaus, who flourished about B. c. 400 (Pint, de And. p. 41, c.). The story of his living at the court of Alexander of Pherae, who began to reign b. c. 369, is not very probable, considering the notoriety which he had acquired fifty years earlier, and yet the allusion made to his position and conduct there is quite in keeping with all that we know of his character (Plut. de A.dul. et Amic. p. 50, e.).
The most important passage respecting Melanthius is that in the Peace of Aristophanes (796, &c.), which we subjoin in the form in which Welcker gives it :
, orav ripivd jjlcv Qwvrj
e MeAavflios, o£ 5?) TriKpordrrjv otto,
Yvpyoves 6$o<pdyoi, jStmSotTKOTroi, apirviai, i, fuapol, rpayopdcrxaXoi, i
It has been much doubted whether the fifth line means that Melanthius and Morsimus were brothers, or whether we should understand the word aSeA-<f)6s to refer to some brother of Melanthius, whose name is not mentioned. The two ancient scholiasts held opposite opinions on the point (comp. Suid. s. v.) ; while among modern scholars, the former view is held by Ulrici, Meineke, Welcker, and Kayser, and the latter by Elmsley,. Bockh, Miiller and Clinton (comp. Elms, ad Eurip. Med. 96, with Welcker, die Griecli. Tragod. p. 1029). The character given of Melanthius in the above extract, his worthlessness as a poet, his voracious gluttony, his profligacy, and his personal offensiveness, is confirmed by several other passages of the comic poets and other writers (Aristoph. Pax, 999, Av. 152, and Schol.; Archippus, ap. Athen. viii. p. 343 ; Athen. i. p. 6, c.). He was celebrated for his wit, of which several specimens are preserved (Plut. de And. Pott. p. 20, c., de And. p. 41, c., de Adul. et Amic. p. 50, d., Gonjug. Praec. p. 144, b., Sympos. p. 631, d., p. 633, d.). Aristophanes has preserved the title and two lines, somewhat parodied, of one .of his dramas, the Medea, for it is absurd to suppose the Medea of Euripides is meant (Pax, 999) ; and Plutarch has more than once (De coTiib. Ira, p. 453, f., de sera Num. Vindict^. SSl,^.) quoted a line, in which Melanthius says that o
Td Seiva irpdrrci r&s typevas
Athenaeus informs us that Melanthius also wrote elegies (viii. p. 343, d.), and Plutarch (Cim. 4) refers to the epigrammatic elegies of Melanthius on Cimon and Polygnotus, of which he quotes one distich. But if the Melanthius quoted by Plutarch lived and wrote in the time of Cimon, as he seems clearly to mean, he could not have been, as Athe naeus supposed, the same person as the tragic poet« (Fabric. BibLGraec. vol. ii. p. 310 ; Ulrici, Hellen. Dichtkunst, vol. ii. p. 572 ; Welcker, Die Griech. Trag. pp. 1030—1032 ; Kayser, Hist. Grit. Trag. Graec. pp. 59—65.) [P. S.]
MELANTHIUS or MELANTHUS (MeAceV 0toy, MeAapflos), an eminent Greek painter of the Sicyonian school, was contemporary with Apelles (b.c. 332), with whom he studied under Pam-philus, and whom he was considered even to excel in one respect, namely, in composition or grouping (dispositio}. Quinctilian praises his ratio, by which perhaps he means the same thing. (Plin. xxxv.
10. s. 36. §§ 8, 10, adopting in the latter passage the reading of the Bamberg MS., which Brotier had previously suggested, MelantMo for Ampliioni; Quinctil. xii. 10.)
He was one of the best colourists of all the Greek painters : Pliny mentions him as one of the four great painters who made " immortal works " with only four colours. (H. N. xxxv. 7. s. 32; comp. Diet, of Ant. s. v. Colores.) The only one of his pictures mentioned is the portrait of Aristratus, tyrant of Sicyon, riding in a triumphal chariot, which was painted by Melanthius and his pupils, and some parts of which were said to have been touched by the hand of Apelles; and respecting the fate of which a curious story is quoted from Polemon by Plutarch (Arat. 13) ; from whom also we learn the high esteem in which the pictures of Melanthius were held. (Ibid. 12 ; comp. Plin, H. N. xxxv. 7. s. 32.) Melanthius wrote a work upon his art (irepl £<uypa<ptKrjs), from which a passage is quoted by Diogenes (iv. 18), and which Pliny cites among the authorities for the 35th book of his Natural History. [P. S.] ,. MELANTHO (MeAa^ei). 1. A daughter of Dolius, and sister of Melanthius ; she was a slave in the house of Odysseus ; and having sided, like her brother, with the suitors, she was hanged by Odysseus. (Horn. Od. xviii. 321 ; Paus. x. 25.
2. A daughter of Deucalion, became the mother
MELANTHUS (Me'Aa*/00s). 1. One of the Tyrrhenian pirates, who wanted to carry off young Bacchus, but were metamorphosed into dolphins. (Ov. Met. iii. 671, &c.)
2. One of the sons of Laocoon. (Serv. ad Aen.
MELANTHUS or MELA'NTHIUS (M<&ai>-0os, MeAaj/foos), one of the Neleidae, and king of Messenia, whence he was driven out by the Hera-cleidae on their conquest of the Peloponnesus, and, following the instructions of the Delphic oracle, took refuge in Attica. In a war between the Athenians and Boeotians, Xanthus, the Boeotian king, challenged Thymoetes, king of Athens and the last of the Theseidae, to single combat. Thymoetes declined the challenge on the ground of age and infirmity. So ran the story, which strove