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antra Sibyllae, a cave behind a temple of Apollo on the eastern side of the cliff on which stood the citadel of Cumae. It is mentioned by Aristotle, Mir. Ausc. 95, and is famous historically in connection with the siege of Cumae by Narses (553 A.D. ), who destroyed the cave by mining through it. The Cumaean Sibyl, identified by some with the Erythraean and generally said to have come from the east, was the most famous of the ten or twelve prophetic women known by the name. It was she who brought the Sibylline books for sale to Tarquinius Superbus, and the renown of her prophecies became yet greater from their association with Christianity. ‘In mediaeval hymnology the Sibyl, often with the title the Cumaean Sibyl, figures as the one prophetic personage in the heathen world whose utterances were deserving of universal attention. To this day in the religious processions during Holy Week at Seville, the Sibyls form prominent figures, and in the old mystery plays they were frequently introduced.’ Besides three series of paintings representing the Sibyls at Cheyney Court, Herefordshire, at Augsburg, and at Munich, the Cumaean Sibyl is represented in a fresco at Amiens Cathedral, holding a scroll on which are written lines 5-7 of Virgil's IVth Eclogue, with an inseription below recording her prediction in the eighteenth year of Tarquinius Priscus ‘‘Que Ihs-Crist seroit nay de Marie Et que partout y auroit paix (unie?).’’I have taken these particulars from the late Dr. Husenbeth's Emblems of Saints, Norwich 1882 (Appendix I. Iconography of the Sibyls, by W. Marsh). The most famous representations of the Sibyls are those at Rome by Michelangelo in the Sistine Chapel, and by Raffaelle in the Church of Maria S. della pace.
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