Νύμφαις ἁλίαισιν ἐπευξάμενοι. Ritter, who rejects vv. 1469—1471, argues that the nymphs had no power over the sea; that belonged to Poseidon and other gods. But this was not the old Greek conception. The sea-nymphs, properly so called, were the Nereids (for the “Ὠκεανῖναι” were rather the nymphs of rivers and fountains). The list of the Nereids given by Hesiod ( Th. 250 ff.) shows that they were imagined, not merely as representing, but as influencing, the various moods of the sea. Thus he says of the Nereid “Κυμοδόκη” that, with her sister “Κυματολήγη”, ‘she quickly calms waves on the gloomy deep, and the blasts of fierce winds.’ The good offices of the Nereids to mariners are expressed by such names as “Φέρουσα, Ηοντοπόρεια”, and “Εὐλιμένη”. A voyager, then, might well pay his vows to them.
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