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Hymns of Orpheus, T. Taylor, tr. [1792] title page
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The Hymns of Orpheus

Translated by Thomas Taylor


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The Orphic Hymns are a set of pre-classical poetic compositions, attributed to the culture hero Orpheus, himself the subject of a renowned myth. In reality, these poems were probably composed by several different poets. Reminiscent of the Rig-Veda, the Orphic Hymns contain a rich set of clues about prehistoric European mythology.

This translation by Thomas Taylor, a British neo-Platonist classicist, is of additional interest for its introduction and extensive footnotes, which discuss in great detail Taylors' philosophy. Taylor, who was considered a bit outside the pale by contemporary scholars, was an influence on successive generations of occultists such as the Theosophists and the Golden Dawn, and in the 20th Century such writers as Manly P. Hall.

Production Notes: The original book printed 's' as 'f' extensively. These have been consistently changed to 's'; except in some doubtful words, which are left as printed in the original; these are marked in bold type. The Greek passages in this document have been converted to Unicode. Note that there are several archaic Greek letters in this text for which there is no Unicode equivalent currently, or which were so illegible in the original no certain transcription could be provided. These have been transcribed with # in place of the dubious glyph, and an image of the word is inserted after the transcription.

Title Page

A Dissertation on the Life and Theology of Orpheus

Section I
Section II
Section III

The Initiations of Orpheus

To Musæus
I. To the Goddess Prothyræa
II. To Night
III: To Heaven
IV: To Fire
V. To Protogonus, Or the First-Born
VI: To The Stars
VII: To The Sun
VIII: To The Moon
IX: To Nature
X: To Pan
XI: To Hercules
XII: To Saturn
XIII: To Rhea
XIV: To Jupiter
XV: To Juno
XVI: To Neptune
XVII: To Pluto
XVIII: To Thundring Jove
XIX: To Jove, as the Author of Lightning
XX: To the Clouds
XXI: To the Sea, or Tethys
XXII: To Nereus
XXIII: To the Nereids
XXIV: To Proteus
XXV: To the Earth
XXVI: To The Mother of the Gods
XXVII: To Mercury
XXVIII: To Proserpine
XXIX: To Bacchus
XXX: To the Curetes
XXXI. To Pallas
XXXII: To Victory
XXXIII: To Apollo
XXXIV: To Latona
XXXV: To Diana
XXXVI: To The Titans
XXXVII: To the Curetes
XXXVIII: To Corybas
XXXIX: To Ceres
XL. To The Ceralian Mother
XLI: To Mises
XLII: To the Seasons
XLIII: To Semele
XLIV: To Dionysius Bassareus Triennalis
XLV: To Liknitus Bacchus
XLVI: To Bacchus Pericionius
XVLII: To Sabasius
XLIX: To Lysius Lenæus
L: To the Nymphs
LI: To Trietericus
LII: To Amphietus Bacchus
LIII: To Silenus, Satyrus, and the Priestesses of Bacchus
LIV: To Venus
LV: To Adonis
LVI: To the Terrestrial Hermes
LVII: To Cupid, or Love
LVIII: To The Fates
LIX: To the Graces
LX: To Nemesis
LXI: To Justice
LXII: To Equity
LXIV: To Mars
LXV: To Vulcan
LXVI: To Esculapius
LXVII: To Health
LXVIII: To The Furies
LXIX: To The Furies
LXX: To Melinoe
LXXI. To Fortune
LXXII: To the Dæmon, or Genius
LXXIII: To Leucothea
LXXIV: To Palæmon
LXXV: To the Muses
LXXVI: To Mnemosyne, or the Goddess of Memory
LXXVII: To Aurora
LXXVIII: To Themis
LXXIX: To the North Wind
LXXX: To The West Wind
LXXXI: To the South Wind
LXXXII: To Ocean
LXXXIV: To Sleep
LXXXV: To the Divinity of Dreams
LXXXVI: To Death