Damon and Pythias

Damon and Pythias
   The story behind the tribulation of Pythias at the hands of the tyrant
   Dionysius the Elder is legendary. Also legendary is the essence of friendship— the comradeship that enables two people to breathe as one— which has been most poignantly depicted by the lives of Damon and Pythias, Pythagoreans of Syracuse in Sicily.
   When Pythias was condemned to death for conspiring against the tyrant, he sought the privilege of returning home to arrange his affairs. To assure Dionysius that Phythias would return, Damon pledged his life as a hostage, an arrangement that the despot accepted. Phythias went home, but his return was delayed. As Damon was being led to the executioner's block, his friend arrived just in time to save him. Dionysius was so deeply impressed by this depth of friendship that he pardoned Pythias and entreated the two to allow him to join their brotherhood.
   Damon and Pythias has become a classical reference meaning two inseparable friends. According to the Greek version, the names of these noble figures are Damon and Phintias. Correctly put, therefore, is the phrase Phintias and Damon. In a play written by Richard Edwards in 1564, the title was switched to Damon and Pythias, a title that has held through the centuries.

Dictionary of eponyms. . 2013.

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  • Damon and Pythias — [dā′mən ənd pith′ē əs] Class. Legend friends so devoted to each other that when Pythias, who has been condemned to death, wants time to arrange his affairs, Damon pledges his life that his friend will return: Pythias returns and both are pardoned …   English World dictionary

  • Damon and Pythias — For the 1962 film, see Damon and Pythias (film). For the Richard Edwards play, see Damon and Pythias (play). In Greek mythology, the legend of Damon and Pythias (or Phintias) symbolizes trust and loyalty in a true friendship. Contents 1 Greek… …   Wikipedia

  • Damon and Pythias (film) — Damon and Pythias Directed by Curtis Bernhardt Produced by Sam Jaffe (associate producer) …   Wikipedia

  • Damon and Pythias (play) — Damon and Pythias is the only surviving play by Richard Edwards. Written in 1564 but not published until 1571, the play chronicles the Greek friendship story of Damon and Pythias. On September 10, 1996, an all female cast gave a single… …   Wikipedia

  • Damon and Pythias (film, 1908) — Damon and Pythias est un film muet américain réalisé par Otis Turner et sorti en 1908. Fiche technique Réalisation : Otis Turner Scénario : Otis Turner, d après l histoire de Edward George Bulwer Lytton Production : William… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Damon and Pythias — noun (Greek mythology) according to a Greek legend: when Pythias was sentenced to be executed Damon took his place to allow Pythias to get his affairs in order; when Pythias returned in time to save Damon the king was so impressed that he let… …   Useful english dictionary

  • Damon and Pythias — Gk. Legend. two friends whose mutual loyalty was shown by Damon s offer of his life as pledge that Pythias would return from settling his affairs to be executed for rebelling against Dionysius: Pythias returned, and Dionysius relented and… …   Universalium

  • Damon and Pythias — Da′mon and Pyth′ias [[t]ˈdeɪ mən[/t]] n. myt two legendary Greeks of ancient Syracuse, whose mutual loyalty was shown by Damon s offer of his life as a pledge that Pythias, sentenced to death, would return from settling his affairs to face… …   From formal English to slang

  • Damon and Pythias — /ˈdeɪmən ən ˈpɪθiəs/ (say daymuhn uhn pitheeuhs) noun Classical Legend two friends, celebrated for their loyalty to each other. Damon offered himself as voluntary hostage for Pythias, sentenced to death for treason by Dionysius the Elder of… …  

  • DAMON AND PYTHIAS —    two Pythagoreans of Syracuse of the days of Dionysius I., celebrated for their friendship; upon the latter having been condemned to death, and having got leave to go home to arrange his affairs beforehand, the former pledged his life for his… …   The Nuttall Encyclopaedia

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