Miserta

Smyrna Cinyrae Assyriorum regis et Cenchreidis filia, cuius mater Cenchreis superbius locuta quod filiae suae formam Veneri anteposuerat. Venus matris poenas exsequens Smyrnae infandum amorem obiecit, adeo ut patrem suum amaret. quae ne suspendio se necaret nutrix intervenit et patre nesciente per nutricem cum eo concubuit, ex quo concepit, idque ne palam fieret, pudore stimulata in silvis se abdidit. cui Venus postea miserta est et in speciem arboris eam commutavit unde myrrha fluit, ex qua natus est Adonis, qui matris poenas a Venere est insecutus.
(Hyginus, Fabulae 58.1-3)

Smyrna was the daughter of Cinyras, King of the Assyrians, and Cenchreis. Her mother Cenchreis boasted proudly that her daughter excelled Venus in beauty. Venus [Aphrodite], to punish the mother, sent forbidden love to Smyrna so that she loved her own father. The nurse prevented her from hanging herself, and without knowledge of her father, helped her lie with him. She conceived, and goaded by shame, in order not to reveal her fault, hid in the woods. Venus later pitied her, and changed her into a kind of tree from which myrrh flows; Adonis, born from it, exacted punishment for his mother’s sake from Venus.
(tr. Mary Grant)

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