Areté In Greek Mythology

(2 minute read)

We’ve spoken a lot about our name wether it be at shows, to our guests or even in the ‘our story’ section of our website. And the word itself we know is closest translated to virtue or excellence.

However I want to give you an insight into the character of Areté in Greek mythology.

Areté was a Greek goddess however she played only a minor role in the story of ‘The Odyssey’ so very little is known about her. She was the Queen of Scheria and was married to King Alcinous. The island of Scheria that they ruled was the final destination for Odysseus after his 10 year journey. Here he prayed to Areté for protection and was granted refuge and treated hospitably.

Areté also appears in the Greek tragedy ‘Medea’. Medea, daughter of King Aeëtes of Colchi, was being pursued by the Colchians to be tried for murder so she fled to the island of Scheria. Areté took Medea and the Argonauts in and cared for them. Areté asked another mythological hero ‘Jason’ to marry Medea to save her life.

As the Goddess of virtue and knowledge she appeared in the story of Hercules. He came to a point in his life where Areté made him choose between doing the right thing (a hard life of fighting evil and eventual glory) or taking the easy path (a life of riches and no hard work). Hercules obviously chose Areté, the path of virtue. Therefore he was immortalised as a great warrior as opposed to being a forgotten man.

Overall we can see Areté clearly always did the right thing and was a true
Goddess of virtue and excellence. These qualities were then embodied into the word Areté which carries the same characteristics today. These are some of the reasons we chose to use this as our name. We’ll always try to do the right things, even if it’s the much harder choice. Never choose the path of least resistance as it usually leads to boredom and minimal growth.

Words by Matt Dryden