ORPHIC FRAGMENT 110 - OTTO KERN

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For links to many more fragments: The Orphic Fragments of Otto Kern.

SUMMARY: This fragment discusses the application of the names of the Gods by the Orphic theologians.

110. (93) σχόλιον Πρόκλου επὶ Παρμενίδου Πλάτωνος 647, 9 Cous.:

ἡ δὲ τῶν Ὀρφικῶν (sc. ἐφερμήνευσις) τῆς Ἑλληνικῆς οὖσα θεολογίας ἰδία Κρόνον καὶ Δία (κ. Δ. an delendum?) καὶ Οὐρανὸν καὶ Νύκτα καὶ Κύκλωπας (fr. 109) καὶ Ἑκατόγχειρας (ibidem) ἐπιφημίζουσα (εὐφημίζουσα Β) ταῖς ἀκροτάταις τῶν πάντων ἀρχαῖς.

“But of the Orphic view, being an interpretation from Hellenic theology, they will apply the names Krónos (Κρόνος), Zefs (Ζεύς), Ouranós (Οὐρανός), Nyx, the Kýklôpæs (Κύκλωπες), and the Ækatónkeiræs (Ἑκατόγχειρες) to the highest of all in the heavenly powers.” (trans. by the author)

σχόλιον Ἑρμείου επὶ Φαίδρου Πλάτωνος 247 c p. 150, 2 Couvr.:

διὰ δὲ τοῦ ἀναφὴς (ἀναφοῦς codd.; corr. Couvr.) ὅτι καὶ ὑπὲρ τοὺς Ἑκατόγχειράς ἐστι δηλοῖ· οὗτοι γὰρ πρῶτοι οἷον ἐφάπτονται τῆς πάσης δημιουργίας· διὸ καὶ Ἑκατόγχειρας αὐτοὺς ἡ θεολογία προσαγορεύει· διὰ γὰρ τῶν χειρῶν πάντων ἡμεῖς ἐφαπτόμεθα καὶ ποιοῦμεν καὶ διακρίνομεν· ἔτι καὶ ἡ ἁφὴ διὰ παντὸς πεφοίτηκε (cf. Couvr. p. 271 n. 9) τοῦ σώματος. συμβολικῶς οὖν Ἑκατόγχειρας ὠνόμασε τούτους ἡ θεολογία ὡς πάσης ἐφαπτομένους τῆς δημιουργίας καὶ αἰτίους αὐτῆς ὄντας. ἔστι δὲ ἡ τριὰς τῶν Ἑκατογχείρων φρουρητική.

“Through the intangible he is visible even over the Ækatónkeiræs (Ἑκατόγχειρες). For first they bind themselves from all creation, on which account the theology calls them by name the ‘Hundred-handers.’ For through all the hands we bind ourselves and create and separate one (thing) from another, and yet through them all, touch roams wildly about through the body. It is certainly symbolic that the theology called them Ækatónkeiræs by name from all the binding on themselves and from being the creative and culpable. But three of the Ækatónkeiræs is a suitable (number) to guard.” (trans. by the author)


The story of the birth of the Gods: Orphic Rhapsodic Theogony.We know the various qualities and characteristics of the Gods based on metaphorical stories: Mythology. Dictionary of terms related to ancient Greek mythology: Glossary of Hellenic Mythology.Introduction to the Thæí (the Gods): The Nature of the Gods.How do we know there are Gods? Experiencing Gods.

The logo is the principal symbol of this website. It is called the CESS logo, i.e. the Children of the Earth and the Starry Sky. The Pætilía (Petelia, Πετηλία) and other golden tablets having this phrase are the inspiration for the symbol. The image represents this idea: Earth (divisible substance) and the Sky (continuous substance) are the two kozmogonic substances. The twelve stars represent the Natural Laws, the dominions of the Olympian Gods. In front of these symbols is the seven-stringed kithára (cithara, κιθάρα), the the lyre of Apóllôn (Apollo, Ἀπόλλων). It (here) represents the bond between Gods and mortals and is representative that we are the children of Orphéfs (Orpheus, Ὀρφεύς).

PLEASE NOTE: Throughout the pages of this website, you will find fascinating stories about our Gods. These narratives are known as mythology, the traditional stories of the Gods and Heroes. While these tales are great mystical vehicles containing transcendent truth, they are symbolic and should not be taken literally. A literal reading will frequently yield an erroneous result. The meaning of the myths is concealed in code. To understand them requires a key. For instance, when a God kills someone, this usually means a transformation of the soul to a higher level. Similarly, sexual union with a God is a transformation.

We know the various qualities and characteristics of the Gods based on metaphorical stories: Mythology.

Dictionary of terms related to ancient Greek mythology: Glossary of Hellenic Mythology.

SPELLING: HellenicGods.org uses the Reuchlinian method of pronouncing ancient Greek, the system preferred by scholars from Greece itself. An approach was developed to enable the student to easily approximate the Greek words. Consequently, the way we spell words is unique, as this method of transliteration is exclusive to this website. For more information, visit these three pages:

Pronunciation of Ancient Greek

Transliteration of Ancient Greek

Pronouncing the Names of the Gods in Hellenismos

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