, less frequently, Εὐηνός
), originally called LYCORMAS (Λυκόρμας
). an important river of Aetolia, rising in the highest summit of Mt. Oeta in the territory of the Bomienses, a subdivision of the Aetolian tribe of the Ophienses. (Strab. p. 451.) Dicaearchus (61) was mistaken in saying that the Evenus rises in Pindus: Ptolemy (3.16.6
) more correctly places its source in Callidromus, which is a part of Oeta. Strabo relates that the Evenus does not flow at first through the territory of the Curetes, which is the same as Pleuronia, but more to the E. by Chalcis and Calydon, that it afterwards turns to the W. towards the plains in which Old Pleuron was situated, and that it finally flows in a southerly direction into the sea, at the distance of 120 stadia from the promontory of Antirrhium. (Strab. pp. 451, 460; comp. Thuc. 2.83
; Mel. 2.3; Plin. Nat. 4.3
.) Its real direction however is first westerly, and afterwards south-west.
It receives numerous torrents from the mountains through which it flows, and in winter it becomes a considerable river, flowing with great rapidity, and difficult to cross on account of the great stones which are carried down by its stream. ( “Eveni rapidae undae,” Ov. Met. 9.104
; Ποταμὸν πολλῷ κυμαίνοντα καὶ ὑπὲρ τὰς ὄχθας αἰρόμενον,
Philostr. Jun. Imag.
16.) The Evenus is celebrated in mythology on account of the death of the centaur Nessus, who was slain by Hercules because he offered violence to Deïnaeira, as he carried her across this river. (Soph. Track.
This tale is, perhaps, only a figure of the impetuosity of the river, and of the danger to which unwarytravellers are exposed in crossing its channel from the rise of the waters when swollen by sudden showers. (Mure, Tour in Greece,
vol. i. p. 170.)
The river is said to have derived its name from Evenus, the son of Ares, and the father of Marpessa. When his daughter was carried off by Idas, the son of Aphareus, he pursued the ravisher; but being unable to overtake him he threw himself into the Lycormas, which was henceforward called after him. (Apollod. 1.7.8
; Ov, Ibis,
515; Prop. 1.2. 18
.) Its modern name of Fidharo
is derived from Φίδι,
the Romaic form of Ὄφις,
and is therefore supposed by Leake to be a vestige of Ὀφιεῖς,
the ancient people in whose territory the river rose. (Leake, Norsthern Greece,
vol. ii. p. 625; comp. p. 599.) From Evenus is formed the adjective Eveninus.
( “Matres Calydonides Eveninae,” Ov. Met. 8.527