previous next


Ἶρις). Daughter of Thaumas (whence she is called Thaumantias) and of Electra, and sister of the Harpies. In the Iliad she appears as the messenger of the gods; but in the Odyssey, Hermes (Mercury) is the messenger of the gods, and Iris is never mentioned. Iris was originally the personification of the rainbow, which was regarded

Iris. (Parthenon frieze.)

as the swift messenger of the gods. In the earlier poets Iris appears as a virgin goddess; but in the later she is the wife of Zephyrus and the mother of Eros (Amor). Iris is represented in works of art, dressed in a long and wide tunic, over which hangs a light upper garment, with wings attached to her shoulders, carrying the herald's staff in her left hand, and sometimes also holding a vase. See Bergstedt, Studia Archaeologica (Upsala, 1881).

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