In ancient Greek religion and mythology, Euphrosyne (/jˈfrɒzɪn/; Ancient Greek: Εὐφροσύνη), was a deity, one of the Charites, known in ancient Rome as the Gratiae (Graces). She was sometimes called Euthymia (Εὐθυμία) or Eutychia (Εὐτυχία).[2]

Goddess of good cheer, joy and mirth
Member of The Charites
Euphrosyne statue - Achilleion.jpg
A statue of Euphrosyne in Achilleion palace, Corfu.
Major cult centreBoeotia
AbodeMount Olympus
Personal information
ParentsZeus and Eurynome
Nyx and Erebus[1]
by Zeus and Eurynome


According to Hesiod, Euphrosyne and her sisters Thalia and Aglaea were daughters of Zeus and the Oceanid Eurynome.[3] Alternative parentage may be Zeus and Eurydome, Eurymedousa, or Euanthe;[4] Dionysus and Kronois;[5] or Helios and the Naiad Aegle.[6]

In some accounts, Euphrosyne was a daughter of the primordial gods, Erebus (Darkness) and Nyx (Night).[7]

"From Nox/ Nyx (Night) and Erebus [were born]: Fatum/ Moros (Fate), Senectus/ Geras (Old Age), Mors/ Thanatos (Death), Letum (Dissolution), Continentia (Moderation), Somnus/ Hypnos (Sleep), Somnia/ Oneiroi (Dreams), Amor (Love)--that is Lysimeles, Epiphron (Prudence), Porphyrion, Epaphus, Discordia/ Eris (Discord), Miseria/ Oizys (Misery), Petulantia/ Hybris (Wantonness), Nemesis (Envy), Euphrosyne (Good Cheer), Amicitia/ Philotes (Friendship), Misericordia/ Eleos (Compassion), Styx (Hatred); the three Parcae/ Moirai (Fates), namely Clotho, Lachesis and Atropos; the Hesperides."[8]


Euphrosyne is a goddess of good cheer, joy and mirth.[9] Her name is the female version of the word euphrosynos, "merriment". Pindar wrote that these goddesses were created to fill the world with pleasant moments and good will.[10] The Charites attended the goddess of beauty Aphrodite.[11]

In art, Euphrosyne is usually depicted with her sisters dancing.[9]

Euphrosyne (left) depicted with her sisters on The Three Graces sculpture at the Hermitage, Saint Petersburg, Russia


Euphrosyne and her sisters' main cult was located in Athens, Sparta, or Boetia.[9][12]


In art and literatureEdit

Mrs Mary Hale as Euphrosyne, painted by Joshua Reynolds

In scienceEdit


  1. ^ Hyginus, Fabulae Preface
  2. ^ Pindar, fr. 155
  3. ^ Hesiod, Theogony 907
  4. ^ Cornutus, Compendium of Greek Theology 15
  5. ^ Nonnus, Dionysiaca 15.87 & 48.530
  6. ^ Pausanias, 9.35.5
  7. ^ Hyginus, Fabulae Preface
  8. ^ Hyginus, Fabulae Preface
  9. ^ a b c Larson, Jennifer (2007). Ancient Greek Cults. New York, NY: Routledge. pp. 162–163. ISBN 978-0415491020.
  10. ^ Pindar, Olympian Ode 14.1-20
  11. ^ Homeric Hymn 5 to Aphrodite 58
  12. ^ "". Retrieved 2016-08-31.
  13. ^ The Three Graces. Victoria & Albert Museum, 2013. Retrieved 2 May 2013.
  14. ^ "Milton, L'Allegro and Il Penseroso"