The Ancient Library
 

Scanned text contains errors.

On this page: Pytheas – Pythen – Pythermon – Pythias – Pythionice – Pythis – Pythius

628

PYTHEAS.

wise much dispute as to what river we are to un­derstand by the Tanais. Without stating the various opinions which have been advanced, we may remark that the supposition of Ukert appears to us the most probable, namely, that the country which Pytheas describes as the one from which amber came may have been the Cimbrian peninsula (Denmark, &c.), and that when he reached the Elbe, he concluded that he had arrived at the Tanais, which separated Europe from Asia.

Pytheas cultivated science. He appears to have been the first person who determined the latitude of a place from the shadow of the sun ; and it is expressly stated that he determined the position of Massilia by observing the shadow of the sun by the gnomon (Strab. ii. pp. 71, 115). He also paid considerable attention to the phaenomena of the tides, and was well aware of the influence of the moon upon them. (Fuhr, De Pythea, p. 19.)

The voyages of Pytheas have been discussed by a large number of modern writers : we can only refer to the most important works on the subject: —Bou­gainville, Sur VOrigine et sur les Voyages de Py­theas, in Mem. de VAcad. des Inscr. vol. xix. pp. 146—165 ; D'Anville, Sur la Navigation de Py­theas a Tlmle, ibid. vol. xxxvii. pp. 436—442 ; Ukert, Bemerkungen ilber Pytheas, in his Geo-grapliie der Griechen und Romer, vol. i. part i. pp. 298—309 ; Arvedson, Pytheae Massiliensis Frag-menta^ Upsalae, 1824 ; Fuhr, De PytJiea Massili-ensi, Darmstadt, 1835 ; Straszewick, Pytheas de Marseille et la Geographie de son Temps, Paris, 1836, translated into German by Hoffmann, Leip­zig, 1838.

PYTHEAS, artists. 1. A silver-chaser, who flourished at Rome in the age immediately follow­ing that of Pompey, and whose productions com­manded a remarkably high price. (Plin. H. N. xxxv. 12. s. 55: Pliny states the precise value of every two ounces of silver plate engraved by him, but the number is differently given in the MSS. as 10,000 or 20,000 sesterces, see Sillig's edition.) A very celebrated work by him was a cup, on which Ulysses and Diomedes were repre­sented carrying off the Palladium, in that sort of chasing which was called emblema. According to the opinion of Thiersch, the greatest gem engravers of that and the succeeding age did not disdain to copy from the design of Pytheas, whose figure of Diomed is still to be seen on gems by Dioscurides, Gnaeus, Calpurnius Severus, and Solon: the grounds of this opinion, however, are not stated by the author. (Thiersch, Epochen, pp. 296— 299.)

The suggestion of Meyer appears more probable, that the designs of both the vase of Pytheas and the gems referred to were copied from some more ancient work of art. (Meyer, Geseh. d. bild. Kunst, vol. iii. pp. 172, 173 ; comp. Levezow, Ueber den Raub des Palladium.)

Pytheas also chased small drinking vessels with grotesque subjects, of the most elaborate and de­licate workmanship, which are thus described by Pliny : — Fecit idem et cocos magiriscia appellatos, parvulis potoriis, sed e quibus ne exemplaria qui-dem licet exprimere, tain opportuna injuriae subtilitas erat.

2. A painter, of Bura in Achaia, whose paint­ ing on a wall at Pergamus, representing an ele­ phant, is mentioned by Stephanus Byzantinus (*. n Bonpa). [P. S.]

PYTIIIUS.

PYTHEN (TLuQriv\ a Corinthian general, who commanded the detachment of ships sent with Gylippus for the relief of Syracuse. His name occurs now and then in the account of the opera­ tions which followed. {Thuc. vi. 104, vii. 1, 70.) [C.P.M.]

PYTHERMON and PYTHERMUS are two rather obscure names in the history of Greek music. Pythermus of Miletus is a person to whom some ancient writers ascribed the invention of the Ionian mode (Heraclid. ap. Ath. xiv. p. 625, c. d.; Bockh, de Metr. Pind. p. 235) ; and Pythermon is mentioned as the author of a scolion. (Paroemiogr. Fat iii. 15). [P. S.J PYTHES. [pytheas and pythius.] PYTHEUS, architect. [phileus.] PYTHIAS (Hvdids). 1. The sister or adopted daughter of Hermias, became the wife of Aristotle.

[ARISTOTELES, p. 318.]

2. Daughter of Aristotle and Pythias. She was married three times: her first husband being Ni-canor of Stagira, a relative of Aristotle; her second Procles, a descendant of Demaratus, king of Sparta; and her third Metrodorus, the physician (Sext. Emp. adv. Math. i. 12, p. 657, ed. Bekker).

3. A slave of Octavia Augusta, the wife of Nero. She became noted for the constancy with which she endured the tortures to which she was put by Tigelliims, without informing against her mistress (Dion Cass. Ixii. 13). [C. P. M.]

PYTHIAS is mentioned by Pliny (H. N. xxxiv. 8. s. 19), according to the common reading, as one of the statuaries who flourished about the time of the revival of the art. The MSS. vary much as to the form of the name ; and, taking also into account the very loose way in which some of these names are inserted by Pliny (comp. polycles), it is by no means impossible that he may be one and the same person with the silver- chaser pytheas. (See Sillig, edition of Pliny, ad loc.) [P. S.]

PYTHIONICE. [harpalus, No. 1.]

PYTHIS, a sculptor, who made the marble quadriga, by which the celebrated Mausoleum was surmounted. (Plin. H. N. xxxvi. 5. s. 4. § 9). Considering the close resemblance of this sculptor's name, in Pliny, to some of the readings of the name of the architect of the Mausoleum, in Vitruvius, it seems not improbable that they may have been the same person. [phileus.] [P. S.]

PYTHIUS (IIi?0««),the Pythian, from Pytho, the ancient name of Delphi, often occurs as a sur­name of Apollo, whose oracle was at Delphi. (Horn. Hymn. inApoll. 373 ; Aeschyl. Agam. 521 ; Horat. Carm. i. 16. 6; Tac. Hist. iv. 83.) [L. S.]

PYTHIUS (Tiveios: called nrffys by Plu­tarch, vol. ii. p. 262, d., and some others), a Lydian, the son of Atys, who lived in the time of the Per­sian invasion of Greece. He was a man of enor­mous wealth, which he derived from his gold mines in the neighbourhood of Celaenae in Phrygia, of which place he seems to have made himself go­vernor. So eagerly did he prosecute his search for gold, that his subjects were almost all with­drawn from agriculture. Plutarch (/. c.) tells an amusing story of the device adopted by his wife to point out to him the absurdity of the course he was pursuing. She had a quantity of gold wrought into representations of various kinds of food, and set nothing but these before him one day for din­ner. When Xerxes arrived at Celaenae, Pythius

Pages
About | First

626

627

628
letter/word  
volume
page #  
Search this site
Google


ancientlibrary.com
WWW
All non-public domain material, including introductions, markup, and OCR © 2005 Tim Spalding.
Ancient Library was developed and hosted by Tim Spalding of Isidore-of-Seville.com.