In Greek mythology, the "River Styx" (Greek: Στύξ also meaning hate, detest) was a river which formed the boundary between Earth and the Underworld (Hades). It circles Hades nine times. The rivers Styx, Phlegethon, Acheron and Cocytus all converge at the center of Hades on a great marsh. The other important rivers of Hades are Lethe and EridanosFact|date=April 2008. Styx was guarded by Phlegyas, who passes the souls from one side to another of the river. In other versions, Phlegyas guarded Phlegethon, one of the other main rivers of Hades. Sometimes the ferryman was called Charon.

The gods respected the Styx and swore binding oaths by it. Zeus swore to give Semele whatever she wanted and was then obliged to follow through, resulting in her death. Helios similarly promised Phaëton whatever he desired, also resulting in his death. Gods that did not follow through on such an oath had to drink from the river, causing them to lose their voices for nine years. According to some versions, Styx had miraculous powers and could make someone immortal/invulnerable. Achilles may have been dipped in it in his childhood, acquiring invulnerability, with exception of his heel, which was held by his mother in order to submerge him. His exposed heel thus became known as Achilles' heel, a metaphor for a weak spot.

Styx was primarily a feature in the afterworld of Greek mythology, but has been described as a feature present in the hell of Christianity as well, notably in "The Divine Comedy" and also "Paradise Lost". The ferryman Charon is in modern times commonly believed to have transported the souls of the newly dead across this river into the underworld, though in the original Greek and Roman sources, as well as in Dante, it was the river Acheron that Charon plied. Dante put Phlegyas over the Styx and made it the fifth circle of Hell, where the wrathful and sullen are punished by being drowned in the muddy waters for eternity.

The adjective "Stygian" means "of or relating to the River Styx", and may also refer to anything that is dark and dismal.


Styx was also the name of the daughter of Oceanus and Tethys. With Pallas, she was the mother of Zelus, Nike, Cratos and Bia (and sometimes Eos). Styx supported Zeus in the Titanomachy where she was the first to rush to his aid. For this reason her name was given the honor of being a binding oath for the gods.


Styx was also the name of a naiad whose river was the most holy and sacred, and to swear on it was the most holy oath a god could make. Her name meant literally "Hateful". She and the goddess are often held to be the same figure.Fact|date=February 2008

ee also

*Sanzu River

External links

* [ Theoi Project - Potamos Styx]

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Игры ⚽ Поможем сделать НИР

Look at other dictionaries:

  • STYX — L’un des fleuves des Enfers dans la mythologie grecque. Le mot styx signifie littéralement «haïssable» et exprime l’horreur de la mort. Chez Homère, lorsque les dieux juraient par l’eau du Styx, ils s’engageaient d’une manière irrévocable; si un… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • STYX — fons Arcadiae, ex Pheoeo lacu, et ex Notacri monte manans ex saxo (cuius aqua ilico pota necat) et in fluvinm evadens. Ferrum ac aes erodit, solque mulae ungulâ aqua eius contineri potest, cetera vasa frigoris vehementiâ dirumpens. Hôc venenô… …   Hofmann J. Lexicon universale

  • Styx — (или протокол файловой системы Plan 9 или 9P)  сетевой протокол. Styx  протокол, используемый операционной системой Inferno Styx  группа стадионного рока 1970 х годов. См. также Стикс (значения) …   Википедия

  • Styx — STYX, gis, Gr. Στὺξ, γὸς, (⇒ Tab. I. ⇒ II.) 1 §. Namen. Nach einigen kömmt solcher von dem Griechischen στυγεῖν, hassen, her, weil solcher höllische Fluß allen verhaßt und fürchterlich sey. Voss. Theol. gentil l. II. c. 81. & Etymol. Stygius p.… …   Gründliches mythologisches Lexikon

  • Styx — Styx, n. [L., fr. Gr. ?.] (Class. Myth.) The principal river of the lower world, which had to be crossed in passing to the regions of the dead. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Styx — {{Styx}} Tochter des Okeanos* und der Tethys*, Göttin des eiskalten Unterweltflusses, bei dessen Wasser die Götter schwören; diese Ehre erwies Zeus der Styx, weil sie als erste zum Kampf mit den Titanen* kam. Gibt es Streit unter den Himmlischen …   Who's who in der antiken Mythologie

  • Styx — Styx, 1) Tochter des Okeanos u. der Tethys, die Nymphe des Flusses S. in der Unterwelt, welcher dieselbe umströmte, eiskaltes Wasser hatte u. bei welchem die Götter schwuren; schwur einer falsch, so wurde er ein Jahr aus der Götterversammlung… …   Pierer's Universal-Lexikon

  • Styx [1] — Styx, arkadischer Bach, s. Griechenland (Alt Griechenland), S. 289 …   Meyers Großes Konversations-Lexikon

  • Styx [2] — Styx, im griech. Mythus älteste Tochter des Okeanos und der Tethys, eilte zuerst von allen Göttern mit ihren und des Titanen Pallas Kindern Zelos (Eifer), Nike (Sieg), Kratos (Kraft) und Bia (Gewalt) dem Zeus gegen die Titanen zu Hilfe, der dafür …   Meyers Großes Konversations-Lexikon

  • Styx — Styx, Fluß oder See der Unterwelt, über den die Seelen der Toten durch Charon übergesetzt wurden; bei seinem Wasser schwuren die Götter die heiligsten Eide …   Kleines Konversations-Lexikon

  • Styx — Styx, in der griech. Mythologie Fluß in der Unterwelt, bei dem die Götter schwuren u. über welchen Charon die abgeschiedenen Seelen führte; vgl. Charon. – S., Fluß in Arkadien, jetzt Mauronero, bei den Alten als giftig verschrieen …   Herders Conversations-Lexikon

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”