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Homeric world (2)

Mythical monsters


Typhon (Tuphaon) or Typhoeus (Tuphoeus). A monster of the primitive world, who is described sometimes as a destructive hurricane, and sometimes as a fire-breathing giant. According to Homer, he was concealed in the earth in the country of the Arimi, which was lashed by Zeus with flashes of lightning. In Hesiod, Typhaon and Typhoeus are two distinct beings. Typhaon is represented as a son of Typhoeus, and a fearful hurricane, and as having become by Echidna the father of the dog Orthus, Cerberus, the Lernaean hydra, Chimaera, and the Sphinx. Typhoeus, on the other hand, is called the youngest son of Tartarus and Gaea, or of Here alone, because she was indignant at Zeus having given birth to Athene. He is described as a monster with 100 heads, fearful eyes, and terrible voices, who wanted to acquire the sovereignty of gods and men, but, after a fearful struggle, was subdued by Zeus with a thunderbolt. He begot the winds, whence he is also called the father of the Harpies; but the beneficent winds Notus, Boreas, Argestes, and Zephyrus were not his sons. He was buried in Tartarus, under Mount Aetna, the workshop of Hephaestus, whence it is called by the poets Typhois Aetna. Typhus was identified by the Greeks with the Egyptian god Set, who typified the power of darkness, and who slew Osiris.

This text is from: Harry Thurston Peck, Harpers Dictionary of Classical Antiquities. Cited Dec 2005 from The Perseus Project URL below, which contains interesting hyperlinks

Typhon : Perseus Project index

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