previous next


With one ship he put in to the Aeaean isle. It was inhabited by Circe, a daughter of the Sun and of Perse, and a sister of Aeetes; skilled in all enchantments was she.1 Having divided his comrades, Ulysses himself abode by the ship, in accordance with the lot, but Eurylochus with two and twenty comrades repaired to Circe.

1 As to the adventures of Ulysses and his comrades with the enchantress Circe, see Hom. Od. 10.133-574; Hyginus, Fab. 125; Ov. Met. 14.246-440. The word (φάρμακα) here translated “enchantments” means primarily drugs; but in the early stages of medicine drugs were supposed to be endowed with magical potency, partly in virtue of the spells, that is, the form of words, with which the medical practitioner administered them to the patient. Hence druggist and enchanter were nearly synonymous terms. As Circe used her knowledge of drugs purely for magical purposes, without any regard to the medical side of the profession, it seems better to translate her φάρμακα by “enchantments” or “charms” rather than “drugs,” and to call her an enchantress instead of a druggist.

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.

load focus Greek (Sir James George Frazer)
hide Places (automatically extracted)

View a map of the most frequently mentioned places in this document.

Download Pleiades ancient places geospacial dataset for this text.

hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: