Palinuro - Palinouros - o Lobster ?
The name or term Palinuro has three main
The first meaning
is scientific and absent of myth or legend:
is the scientific name for the Lobster.
The second meaning
is linguistic terminilogy:
Palinouros is composed from the word 'palin'
from Greek which means 'new' but also 'contrary', or 'turn around'
and the word 'ouros'
which if we read Homer - means wind or storm.
Both words together give us Palinouros
which translated into the jargon of today would mean contrary
wind or a wind which turns around upon itself and hits from
A logical conclusion if we consider that Capo Palinuro is often
subject to strong winds - a cause of violent storms.
Possibly a name already give to this area
by the ancient Greek sailors.
The exact translation from greek would be to the italian term
(split wind or wind shield).
Being a Cape which sticks out into the sea and often struck
by strong winds, this conclusion seems more than plausible.
The third meaning is based on
myth and legend:
- Aeneas's helmsman.
From Virgil's Eneide - Palinuro
was Aeneas's helmsman (Founder of Rome - who was escaping after
the siege of Troy).
Palinuro fell in love with Kamaratan, beautiful but cold hearted
nymph who did not return the sentiment.
is said to have thrown himself overboard following Kamaratan's
image in the water.
She was then transformed by Venus into the rock upon which Camerota
A variation is that Palinuro was lulled to
sleep by the sirens and fell into the sea during a violent storm.
For three nights and days Palinuro survived by holding onto
the ship's helm (it's not quite clear if he pulled the helm
off with himself as he fell into the sea ... however...) and
when he did finally manage to reach the shore he was killed
by the local inhabitants.