"Introduction" in Guidubaldo Bonarelli, Phyllis of Scyros
. Edited and Translated by Nicolas J.
To avoid his fate, he is disguised as a girl named Pyrrha and sent off to the island of Scyros
, where he is raised with the daughters of Lycomedes, king of that island nation.
In her discussion of Sophocles' Philoctetes, Belfiore highlights provocatively the ambiguity surrounding Neoptolemus, but in my opinion she overemphasizes the dishonesty of Achilles during his stay on Scyros
. In her discussion of Euripides' Andromache, she acknowledges that "harm to philoi at first appears to be less central than in most other plays" (81).
The future soldier-poet was already moving toward the coming nightmare, "for the world was now wound to the utmost tightness in spite of the last detente." His anticipatory mood reached a climax in the surreal, jangling "Scyros
," which was also influenced by seventeenth-century diction, its stanza based on that of Milton's "Nativity Ode." It is a poem Shapiro included in all his self-anthologies, though it is untypical--Auden at his most unconscionably jaunty--and not easy to make sense of, even when we know that Scyros
is where Rupert Brooke died and that the odd epigraph "snuffle and sniff and handkerchief" is from a poem by him.
Before the Greeks came for him, she entrusted Achilles to King Lycomedes on the island of Scyros
, where Achilles was disguised as one of Lycomedes' daughters.
Eschewing strict chronology, Cook dances across the years to relate, for example, the hero's upbringing by the centaur Chiron, his youth in girl's disguise on the isle of Scyros
and his crucial contribution to the war against Troy - the quarrel with mighty Agamemnon, grief at the death of his beloved Patroclus and implacable revenge killing of the Trojan champion, Hector.
He lies not in 'some corner of a foreign field', but on the crest of the Aegean island of Scyros
Martial may be thinking of Achilles' spell at the court of Lycomedes on Scyros
, where he impersonated a (long-haired) woman (compare Mart.
The later mythographers related that Peleus, having received an oracle that his son would die fighting at Troy, sent Achilles to the court of Lycomedes on Scyros
, where he was dressed as a girl and kept among the king's daughters (one of whom, Deidamia, bore his son Neoptolemus).
In his old age, he became unpopular with his people and was foully murdered by Lycomedes in Scyros
, where he had taken refuge.
Its extant 1200 lines narrate how the goddess Thetis, anxious that her son should not fulfill his fate to die at Troy, whisks the adolescent away from his foster home with the centaur Chiron and secretes him on the island of Scyros
among the maidens of King Lycomedes' court, disguised as a girl.
Perhaps a highlight of Professor Perella's Introduction is the conciseness with which he takes us out of the labyrinth: "The story of the play revolves around Phyllis and Tirsi, children abducted from Scyros
, betrothed to each other, separated, renamed and finally returued to their homeland, where they are unrecognized by all and each other.