Sirene nell'Ade. L'aulo, la lira e il lutto

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Abstract

Although music might seem to have nothing to do with death and the grief caused by it (to ban any music making from one’s house is a distinctive feature of mourning), yet dirges (threnoi) bestow upon the deceased both praise and the possibility to be remembered, and soothe the grief of his family and friends, and of the community as a whole. Thus the living accompany the soul of the dead in its descent to the Underworld by means of music, that seems to be the last connection with life. On a mythical-religious level, such an accompaniment is brought about by the Sirens, prayed by Helen so that they could join her in mourning the loss of the many warriors who have died because of her (Eur. Hel. 167-178). Helen performs a “lyre-less elegy” (185, ἄλυρος ἔλεγος), while the presence of the libyan aulos in previous verses (171) seems to suggest that the aulos is much more suited to mourning than any other musical instrument.A different idea of the Afterlife is linked to Orphism, according to which those who are initiated into the Mysteries live a blessed and happy life in the Underworld. Such beliefs stem from the myth of Orpheus, the lyre-player who defeats the Sirens in a competition of song in the Argonautic saga. The lyre assists the descent of the souls in the abode of Hades, introducing them into a new life.
Lingua originaleItalian
Titolo della pubblicazione ospiteTra lyra e aulos. Tradizioni musicali e generi poetici
Pagine103-118
Numero di pagine16
Stato di pubblicazionePublished - 2016

Serie di pubblicazioni

NomeQuaderni della "Rivista di Cultura Classica e Medievale"

Cita questo

Provenza, A. (2016). Sirene nell'Ade. L'aulo, la lira e il lutto. In Tra lyra e aulos. Tradizioni musicali e generi poetici (pagg. 103-118). (Quaderni della "Rivista di Cultura Classica e Medievale").