Reference > Brewer’s Dictionary > Pæan.

E. Cobham Brewer 1810–1897. Dictionary of Phrase and Fable. 1898.
A hymn to Apollo, and applied to the god himself. We are told in Dr. Smith’s Classical Dictionary, that this word is from Pæan, the physician of the Olympian gods; but surely it could be no honour to the Sun-god to be called by the name of his own vassal. Hermsterhuis suggests pauo, to make to cease, meaning to make diseases to cease; but why supply diseases rather than any other noun? The more likely derivation, me judice, is the Greek verb paio, to dart; Apollo being called the “fardarter.” The hymn began with “Io Pœan.” Homer applies it to a triumphal song in general.   1



Shakespeare · Bible · Strunk · Anatomy · Nonfiction · Quotations · Reference · Fiction · Poetry
© 1993–2015 · [Top 150] · Subjects · Titles · Authors · World Lit.