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On this page: Olympus – Olynthius – Olynthus – Omadius – Omias


sition that he composed music without words. Without entering into this difficult and exten­ sive question, it is enough to observe that, what­ ever words may have been originally connected with his music, they were superseded by the com­ positions of later poets. Of the lyric poets who adapted their compositions to the nomes of Olym­ pus, the chief was stesichorus of Himera. (Plu­ tarch de Mus. passim ; Muller, Ulrici, Bode, and a very elaborate article by Kitschl, in Ersch and Gruber's EncyMop'ddie.} [P. S.]

OLYMPUS ('OAi^uTros), a statuary, whose country is unknown, and respecting whose date it can only be said that he lived later than the 80th Olympiad, b. c. 460 [oebotas]. He made the statue at Olympia of the pancratiast Xenophon, the son of Menephylus, of Aegium of Achaea, (Paus. vi. 3. § 5. s. 14.) [P. S.]

OLYNTHIUS, an architect, who is said to have assisted Cleomenes in the building of Alex­andria. (Jul. Valer. de JR. G. Aleae. i. 21, 23 ; Muller, Arcl'dol. d. Kunst, § 149, n. 2.) [P. S.]

OLYNTHUS fOAw/flos), a son of Heracles and Bolbe, from whom the Thracian town of Olyn- thus, and the river Olynthus near the Chalcidian town of Apollonia, were believed to have received their name. (Steph. Byz.s. v.; A then. viii. p. 334; Conon, Narrat. 4, where another person of the same name is mentioned.) [L. S.J

OMADIUS ('jfyiaSios), that is, the flesh-eater, a surname of Dionysus, to whom human sacrifices were offered in Chios and Tenedos. (Orph. Hymn. 51. 7 ; Porphyr. de Abstin. ii. 55.) [L. S.]

OMIAS ('fl^u/as), a Lacedaemonian, was the chief of the ten commissioners who were sent to Philip V., king of Macedon, then at Tegea (b. c. 220), to give assurances of fidelity, and to repre-explanation of which see Diet of Ant. s.v. Music* I sent the recent tumult at Sparta, in which the


of whom the first is mythical, and the last histori­cal : the second probably owes his existence only to some mistake of Suidas, or the writer whom he copied, since Plutarch who is a much ^better autho­rity only recognizes two musicians of the name ; both of whom are connected with the auletic music, which had its origin in Phrygia. (Plut. de Mus. p. 1133, d. e.)

1. The elder Olympus belongs to the mythical genealogy of Mysian and Phrygian flute-players —Hyagnis, Marsyas, Olympus—to each of whom the invention of the flute was ascribed, and under whose names we have the mythical repre­sentation of the contest between the Phrygian auletic and the Greek citharoedic music: some writers made him the father (instead of son, or disciple, and favourite of Marsyas), but the genea­logy given above was that more generally received. Olympus was said to have been a native of Mysia, and to have lived before the Trojan war. The com­positions ascribed to him were voy-oi eh rods freota, that is, old melodies appropriated to the worship of particular gods, the origin of which was so ancient as to be unknown, like those which were attri­buted to Olen and Philammon. Olympus not un-frequently appears on works of art, as a boy, some­times instructed by Marsyas, and sometimes as witnessing and lamenting his fate. (Suid. s. v.; Plut. de Mus. pp. 1132, e., 1133, e.; Apollod. i. 4. § 2 ; Hygin. Fab. 165, 273 ; Ovid, Metam. vi. 393, Eleg. iii. 3 ; marsyas.) It may fairly be assumed that this elder and mythical Olympus

was invented through some mistake respecting the younger and really historical Olympus. (Respect­ing this confusion, see Muller, History of Greek Literature,, p. 156.)

2. The true Olympus was a Phrygian, and per­haps belonged to a family of native musicians, since he was said to be descended from the first Olympus. Muller supposes that there was an hereditary race of flute-players at the festivals of the Phrygian Mother of the Gods, who claimed a descent from the mythical Olympus. He is placed by Plutarch at the head of auletic music, as Ter-p;mder stood at the head of the citharoedic: and on account of his inventions in the art, Plutarch even assigns to him, rather than to Terpander, the honour of being the father of Greek music, dpxn-*>os tvs 'E\\r)i>t,iwis Kal Ka\ijs jitoixrtKrJs (De Mus. pp. 1133, e., 1135, c.). With respect to his age, Suidas places him under a king Midas, son of Gordius ; but this tells us nothing, for these were alternately the names of all the Phrygian kings to the time of Croesus. Muller places him, for satis­factory reasons, after Terpander and before Thale-tas, that is, between the 30th and 40th Olympiads, B. c. 660—620. Though a Phrygian by origin, Olympus must be reckoned among the Greek musi­cians ; for all the accounts make Greece the scene of his artistic activity, and his subjects Greek ; and he had Greek disciples, such as Crates and Hierax. (Plut. de Mus. pp. 1133, e., 1140, d.; Poll, iv.79.) He may, in fact, be considered as having natural­ized in Greece the music of the flute, which had previously been almost peculiar to Phrygia. This species of music admitted of much greater varia­tions than that of the lyre ; and, accordingly, several new inventions are 'ascribed to Olympus. The greatest of his inventions was that of the third system, or genus, of music, the Enharmonic, for an


Of the particular tunes (v6fMt) "ascribed to the most important was the 'Appdrios v6pos, a mournful and passionate strain, of the rhythm of which we are .enabled to form an idea from a pas­sage in the Orestes of Euripides, which was set to it, as the passage itself tells us. A dirge, also, in honour of the slain Python, was said to have been played by Olympus, at Delphi, on the flute, and in the Lydian style. Aristophanes mentions a mournful strain, set to more flutes than one

av\la)9 as well known at Athens under the name of Olympus. (Equit. 9 ; comp. SchoL and Brunek's note). But it can hardly be supposed that his music was all mournful ; the nome in honour of Athena, at least, must have been of a different character. Some ancient writers ascribe to him the Nomos Orthios, which Herodotus attributes to Arion.

Olympus was a great inventor in rhythm as well as in music. To the two existing species of rhythm, the foov, in which the arsis and thesis are equal (as in the Dactyl and Anapaest), and the dnrhdo-iov, in which the arsis is twice the length of the thesis (as in the Iambus and Trochee), he added a third, the r

^ in which the length of the arsis is equal to two short syllables, and that of the thesis to three, as, in the Cretic foot (L v _), the Paeons

y v v*, &c.), and the Bacchic foot (w L -), though there is some doubt whether the last form was used by Olympus.

There is no mention of any poems composed by Olympus. It is argued by some writers that the inseparable connection between the earliest com­positions in music and poetry forbids the suppo-

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