Dryope

Gender: Female
Origin: Greek
Meaning: “tree face; tree voice.”
Eng (DRY-uh-PEE).
Δρυόπη

In Greek mythology the name is borne by the daughter of King Dryops. She was a shepherdess who had become a close companion of wood land nymphs.

According to one legend, while Dryope was dancing in the meadows among the nymphs, she caught the attention of Apollo, who transformed himself into a tortoise in order to get close to her. The nymphs found the animal and made it into a pet. They brought it to Dryope to play with. When Dryope had placed the tortoise on her lap, it changed into a serpent, scaring the nymphs away. Apollo then raped Dryope who became pregnant with Amphissus.

Amphissus later became a local king and built a temple in honor of Apollo, and Dryope was whisked away into the woods by the nymphs, where she herself became a nymph.

In her place, a poplar tree and a spring appeared. Amphissus dedicated a shrine to the nymphs and his mother, a place where women were forbidden to enter.

According to Ovid’s account, Dryope was craddling her newborn son Amphissus, by a lake, when she noticed a lotus tree. The lotus tree was the nymph Lotis, in disguise, who was trying to hide from the advances of Priapus.

Dryope picked a flower from the tree, but when she did, the tree started to tremble and bleed. The blood of the tree made Dryope glued to the spot, and she gradually started to turn into a poplar tree. Just as the as the bark was about to entwine her neck, she called out to her husband, Andraemon, to warn him to care for her son and to never pick flowers.

Other forms of the name include (NOTE: these forms exists but have not had a long history of usage):

  • Driope (Catalan/Italian)
  • Drüopé (Hungarian: phonetic spelling)
  • Dríope (Spanish/Portuguese: DREE-oh-pay)
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