Now after Zeus had driven the Titans

out of heaven,

gigantic Gaia, in love with Tartaros,

by means of golden

Aphrodite, bore the youngest of her children,


...and up from his shoulders (line 824)

there grow a hundred snake heads,...

and inside each one of these horrible heads (line 829)

there were voices

that threw out every sort of horrible sound,

for sometimes

it was speech such as the gods

could understand, but at other

times, the sound of a bellowing bull,

proud-eyed and furious

beyond holding, or again like a lion

shameless in cruelty,

or again it was like the barking of dogs,

a wonder to listen to,

or again he would whistle

so the tall mountains re-echoed to it.

And now that day there would have been done

a thing past mending,

and he, Typhoeus, would have been master

of gods and of mortals,

had not the father of gods and men

been sharp to perceive it

and gave a hard, heavy clap of thunder,

so that the earth

gave grisly reverberation,

and the wide heaven above, and

the sea, and the streams of Ocean,

and the underground chambers.

Hesiod,Theogony, lines 820-822, 824-825, 829-841, trans., Richard Lattimore, Ann Arbor, 1968, p.172-174.

PLACE: Boiotia, Greece

TIME: ca. 8th Century B.C.

CIRCUMSTANCE: Hesiod,tells how Typhoeus, the god of the winds, fought with Zeus, lost and was banished to Tartaros, in the bowels of the earth. From the "hundred horrible heads" of Typhoeus come sounds such as one might hear in a heavy wind. The description is unusual in that it describes the aural illusions one often hears in gusts of wind or water.