Penelope: Princess of Lakonia (eBook)

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  • 44,522 Words

How would an ancient princess, one of our greatest heroines of Western literature, have told her own story? With her husband, the legendary Odysseus, still long away, his war ended, yet his absence stretching into what seems like an epoch without end, she consoles herself by reciting the story of her youth to her son. She tells of her childhood in Lakonia from her third year of age, when she almost loses her life to a drowning in the Eurotas River, until nearly her tenth year—a time when the region is at peace, without even a glimmer of war on the horizon. She tells how, in gratitude for her salvation, her father, Ikarios, casts off her grant name at birth and renames her Penelope. She also tells about her older sister, Iphthime, and her foster cousins Polydeukes (Pollux) and his twin sister, Helen, who in Penelope’s story isn’t the future queen of Sparta or of Troy, but instead is seen in her earliest beginnings as the underage Queen Holy of the Wilderness Wilds, the sacral matriarch of Highlanders by both mainland divisions of the ancient Greek Peninsula. There is also her uncle Tyndareos and the only woman whom she reveres as her virtual mother—Leda, the Queen of the Lakonians by Aetolia, to whom the twins Helen and Polydeukes were vouchsafed by their natural mother, Nemesis. Finally, there are the other great heroines besides Penelope who are nurtured by the royal House of Oebalos: There’s the ill-fated, ambitious, and righteous Klytemnestra, her twin brother, Kastor, and their youngest sister, least known of all, the stunning Timandra, the far future Regent Queen over the Highlanders. By the book’s end, Penelope and her cousins have they’ve left their childhoods, the lads among them off to find loves to impassion their brief lives, the girls to earn bridals to illustrious men of an imperial age.

How would an ancient princess, one of our greatest heroines of Western literature, have told her own story? With her husband, the legendary Odysseus, still long away, his war ended, yet his absence stretching into what seems like an epoch without end, she consoles herself by reciting the story of her youth to her son. She tells of her childhood in Lakonia from her third year of age, when she almost loses her life to a drowning in the Eurotas River, until nearly her tenth year—a time when the region is at peace, without even a glimmer of war on the horizon. She tells how, in gratitude for her salvation, her father, Ikarios, casts off her grant name at birth and renames her Penelope. She also tells about her older sister, Iphthime, and her foster cousins Polydeukes (Pollux) and his twin sister, Helen, who in Penelope’s story isn’t the future queen of Sparta or of Troy, but instead is seen in her earliest beginnings as the underage Queen Holy of the Wilderness Wilds, the sacral matriarch of Highlanders by both mainland divisions of the ancient Greek Peninsula. There is also her uncle Tyndareos and the only woman whom she reveres as her virtual mother—Leda, the Queen of the Lakonians by Aetolia, to whom the twins Helen and Polydeukes were vouchsafed by their natural mother, Nemesis. Finally, there are the other great heroines besides Penelope who are nurtured by the royal House of Oebalos: There’s the ill-fated, ambitious, and righteous Klytemnestra, her twin brother, Kastor, and their youngest sister, least known of all, the stunning Timandra, the far future Regent Queen over the Highlanders. By the book’s end, Penelope and her cousins have they’ve left their childhoods, the lads among them off to find loves to impassion their brief lives, the girls to earn bridals to illustrious men of an imperial age.


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by S W Bardot

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