Open main menu

Wiktionary β

See also: μύθος


Ancient GreekEdit


According to Frisk of onomatopoeic origin, from μῡ (). According to Beekes there are no plausible comparanda and the word is Pre-Greek. Others compare it to Proto-Slavic *myslь (idea, thought), as if via Proto-Indo-European *muHdʰ-. Ernštedt (1953: 55-57) argue that it derived from Egyptian mdt (word, speech, affair). If so, a cognate to Coptic ⲙⲟⲩⲧⲉ (moute).


  • (5th BCE Attic) IPA(key): /mŷː.tʰos/
  • (1st CE Egyptian) IPA(key): /ˈmy.tʰos/
  • (4th CE Koine) IPA(key): /ˈmy.θos/
  • (10th CE Byzantine) IPA(key): /ˈmy.θos/
  • (15th CE Constantinopolitan) IPA(key): /ˈmi.θos/
  • NounEdit

    μῦθος (mûthosm (genitive μῡ́θου); second declension

    1. something said: word, speech, conversation
      • 800 BCE – 600 BCE, Homer, Odyssey 11.561
        ἀλλ' ἄγε δεῦρο, ἄναξ, ἵν' ἔπος καὶ μῦθον ἀκούσῃς
        all' áge deûro, ánax, hín' épos kaì mûthon akoúsēis
      • 800 BCE – 600 BCE, Homer, Odyssey 4.777
        μῦθον, ὃ δὴ καὶ πᾶσιν ἐνὶ φρεσὶν ἤραρεν ἥμιν.
        mûthon, hò dḕ kaì pâsin enì phresìn ḗraren hḗmin.
      1. public speech
      2. (mostly in plural) talk, conversation
      3. advice, counsel, command, order, promise
        • 800 BCE – 600 BCE, Homer, Iliad 5.493
          Ὣς φάτο Σαρπηδών, δάκε δὲ φρένας Ἕκτορι μῦθος·
          Hṑs pháto Sarpēdṓn, dáke dè phrénas Héktori mûthos;
        • 800 BCE – 600 BCE, Homer, Iliad 7.358
          οἶσθα καὶ ἄλλον μῦθον ἀμείνονα τοῦδε νοῆσαι.
          oîstha kaì állon mûthon ameínona toûde noêsai.
      4. the subject of a speech or talk
      5. a resolve, purpose, design, plan
      6. saying, proverb
      7. the talk of men, rumor, report, message
    2. tale, story, narrative,
      1. tale, legend, myth
        1. (in Attic prose) a legend of the early Greek times, before the dawn of history
      2. a professed work of fiction, fable, such as those of Aesop
      3. the plot of a tragedy

    Usage notesEdit

    The scholia on the Odyssey 21.71 says that μῦθος (mûthos) is Aeolic for μόθος (móthos), but compare μυθιήτης (muthiḗtēs). It is used there in the significance of "resolve, purpose."


    Derived termsEdit

    Related termsEdit