previous next

οἰκήτωρ ἐν Γέλῃ, ‘he who became a settler at Gela,’ in apposition to πρόγονος. This ancestor of Gelo was probably named Deinomenes, who is said to have joined Antiphemus in founding the colony (Etym. M. Γέλα, Schol. ap. Pind. Pyth. ii. 27), since the name is borne by Gelo's father (ch. 145. 2) and by his nephew, the son of Hiero (Pind. Pyth. i. 58, 79).

Τῆλος: half-way between Cnidus and Rhodes, now Dilos or Episkopi. Τριοπίῳ: cf. i. 144. 1 n.

κτιζομένης Γέλης. Cf. Thuc. vi. 4Γέλαν δὲ Ἀντίφημος ἐκ Ῥόδου καὶ Ἔντιμος ἐκ Κρήτης ἐποίκους ἀγαγόντες κοινῇ ἔκτισαν, ἔτει πέμπτῳ καὶ τεσσαρακοστῷ μετὰ Συρακουσῶν οἴκισιν” (i. e. 690 B. C.). καὶ τῇ μὲν πόλει ἀπὸ τοῦ Γέλα ποταμοῦ τοὔνομα ἐγένετο, τὸ δὲ χωρίον οὗ νῦν πόλις ἐστὶ καὶ πρῶτον ἐτειχίσθη Λίνδιοι καλεῖται, and for a commentary on it, Freeman, Sicily, i. 400 f.

τῶν χθονίων θεῶν: Demeter and Persephone (cf. vi. 134. 1). In their worship at Eleusis the Hierophant conducted the ceremonies and showed the sacred objects to the initiated (cf. ii. 171 n.).

αὐτὸς ἐκτήσατο: or possessed himself of the sacred symbols without help from others, i. e. by direct inspiration or by his own inventive powers, cf. ii. 49. 2. According to the scholiast on Pindar, Pyth. ii. 27, Deinomenes (cf. sup.) brought the rites from the Carian Triopium.

It would seem that the position of Hierophant must of necessity belong to the holder of the ἱρά and his descendants; probably what had been a mere family worship was raised to the rank of a mystery recognized by the state, the priesthood remaining hereditary in the family of Telines (cf. iii. 142. 4; iv. 161. 3), as at Eleusis it was confined to the Eumolpidae. The priestly office was held by Gelo and Hiero (Pind. Ol. vi. 95 with schol.), the former building from the spoils of his victory over Carthage two temples in one precinct to the goddesses in Syracuse (Diod. xi. 26; xiv. 63). There was a great oath by the goddess described by Plutarch, Dion. c. 56; cf. Diod. xix. 5.

καὶ τοῦτο. The second cause for wonder is that a man of so weak a character should have accomplished so great a deed (cf. viii. 37. 2); the first, apparently that any one should have produced a great political result by the mere display of sacred emblems; cf. H.'s remarks on the restoration of Pisistratus by sacred means (i. 60).

πρός goes with τῶν οἰκητόρων. The Greek settlers in Sicily are meant. Not only this story of the rise of Gelo (cc. 153-6) but those of Cadmus (c. 163 f.) and of the battle of Himera (165-7) are clearly drawn from local Siceliot sources, probably while H. was at Thurii. The traditions followed are not favourable to the great house of Deinomenes, and need not be Syracusan. They are of the greatest importance, since our only full and connected version of Sicilian history is the late and stupid compilation of Diodorus, who apparently made most use of the fantastic and arbitrary Timaeus.

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.

hide References (4 total)
  • Commentary references from this page (4):
    • Pindar, Pythian, 1
    • Pindar, Pythian, 2
    • Pindar, Olympian, 6
    • Thucydides, Histories, 6.4
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: