Due vasi sulla soglia di Zeus?


  • Maria Serena Mirto


Two urns on the threshold of Zeus?The image of the jars from which Zeus bestows evils and blessingsto mortals (Iliad 24. 527) has been distorted by a mistranslation, constantlyrepeated over time, which dates back at least to the first Latintranslation of the Iliad by Leonzio Pilato. According to this translation,the two pithoi stand on the threshold of Zeus (as if ἐν Διὸς οὐδῷ),rather than embedded into the floor of his palace, as the expressionκατακείαται ἐν Διὸς οὔδει clearly indicates. The essay reconstructs thelong history of this misunderstanding, which reaches to the present dayand obscures the interesting connections between the two pithoi – storagejars for cereals or liquids, one filled with good, the other with evilfates – and the complementary Homeric allegory of Zeus who is formen the dispenser (ταμίης) of battle.