"Beautiful-voice." The oldest of the nine Muses. Calliope is the Muse of epic poetry. According to Apollodorus, Calliope bore to Oeagrus or, nominally, to Apollo, a son Linus, whom Heracles slew; and another son, Orpheus.

Calliope's attributes are a writing tablet and a pencil. Her name comes from καλὸς, "beautiful," and ὂψ, "voice."


Calliope is portrayed playing the flute on the François vase by the potter Ergotimos (ca. 570 BCE; at the Archaeological Museum, Florance). A Hellenistic statue at the Vatican Museum shows her seated with a writing tablet and a pencil (second century CE).



  • Aken, Dr. A.R.A. van. (1961). Elseviers Mythologische Encyclopedie. Amsterdam: Elsevier.
  • Bartelink, Dr. G.J.M. (1988). Prisma van de mythologie. Utrecht: Het Spectrum.
  • Pseudo-Apollodorus. The Library i, 3.1.