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(This is our first view of Homeros’ wife.)

The wife of Homeros was born in the Aeolian settlement of Mytilene on the island of Lesbos, a day’s sail north of Chios (provided the wind was at your back, which it usually wasn’t).  The bard met her there twenty years ago as he made the rounds of the lords’ Big Houses.  Within a month they wed, and Homeros brought her back to Ionian Chios.  She retained her Aeolian dialect to this day.

Eriphyle was approaching forty but had aged well, as slight women tend to do.  Though four finger-widths taller than the minute Calliope, she was no taller than an eleven-year-old boy.  Like her younger daughter, she was slender, but it was the healthy slimness of someone born that way, not the frailty of so many spindly Chios islanders who lacked sufficient bread.  After nearly four decades of struggling against hostile elements, a bland diet, and constant toil, her cheeks remained as rosy-hued as her daughters’.

Eriphyle’s eyes were mid-green in color, like kelp waving to and fro when the sun is directly overhead.  Her skin was fair, her hair wavy and walnut-colored, and she had passed on both traits to her daughter Alekto.  But unlike Alekto’s rounded features that resembled her father’s, Eriphyle’s had been sculpted with patience and grace by Lady Eileithyia, Goddess of Childbirth.  Her prominent cheekbones made her seem bred among the lords.  Her mouth and nose were long and slender, and her teeth white.  Homeros adored her.