Monday, May 30, 2005

Incredible(s) Epigraphy

BOY that movie was fun. Had a little bit of a slow start, but then it just ended up being eye-popping, creative, fresh, and really sweet. The music was great; the characters were great; all the ideas they came up with for the island. Just magnificent.

Did anybody notice, though, that at Edith Head's — uh, I mean Edna "E" Mode's pad, there was a white wall with carved reliefs and clearly the word ΓΛΥϞΟΣ (right-to-left) in archaic Greek characters? Nice touch, for the Classically- or Linguistically-inclined, but wha..? Still scratching my head over that one. The most likely scenario is that the filmmakers are simply reproducing part of a real relief, and that word (a caption, perhaps describing a character depicted in the relief — maybe Glaucus?) happened to be there. But, who knows: maybe someone involved in the film actually knew how to read the word and put it there on purpose.

Update May 30, 2:03pm: the plot thickens, as it were. The commentary on the DVD did mention the "frieze" in E's house, and identified the artist as "Paul Topolos", (picture). Perhaps this is a sly hommage to his Greek heritage?

Update 9:43pm: a closeup of the word in question from the film:

The full image is here.

So, as I mentioned above, one possibility is that Topolos simply adapted this image from an existing piece of ancient Greek artwork without necessarily caring what it said. But another interesting point is that the plot of the movie makes use of the word "Kronos" (notice the spelling — not Cronus). Maybe there's some sort of inside joke going on here.

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At Sat Oct 13, 04:55:00 PM EDT, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sorry for the late reply but, for the interest of people who search for this: as you correctly perceived, that piece of text means Glaucus, from left to right and with very archaic spelling, including the use of the letter koppa; and it truly came from a real existing relief.

The relief:


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