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Title: Nereids  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
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Subject: Andromeda (mythology), Charybdis, Nymph, Proteus, Aeneid, Chiron, Bacchylides, Amphitrite, Aeëtes, Leucothea
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"Sea nymph" and "Sea nymphs" redirect here. For other uses, see Sea nymph (disambiguation).
For other uses, see Nereid (disambiguation).

In Greek mythology, the Nereids (/ˈnɪəriɪdz/ ; Ancient Greek: Νηρηΐδες, sg. Νηρηΐς) are sea nymphs (female spirits of sea waters), the fifty daughters of Nereus and Doris, sisters to Nerites. They were distinct from the mermaid-like Sirens. They often accompany Poseidon and can be friendly and helpful to sailors fighting perilous storms.


Nereids are particularly associated with the Aegean Sea, where they dwelt with their father in the depths within a silvery cave. The most notable of them are Thetis, wife of Peleus and mother of Achilles; Amphitrite, wife of Poseidon; and Galatea, love of the Cyclops Polyphemus. In Iliad XVIII, when Thetis cries out in sympathy for the grief of Achilles for the slain Patroclus, her sisters appear.

The nymph Opis is mentioned in Virgil's Aeneid. She is called on by the goddess Diana to avenge the death of the Amazon-like female warrior Camilla. Diana gives Opis magical weapons with which to take revenge on Camilla's killer, the Etruscan Arruns. Opis sees and laments Camilla's death and shoots Arruns in revenge as directed by Diana.[1]

Modern Use

In modern Greek folklore, the term "nereid" (νεράϊδα, neráïda) has come to be used of all nymphs, or fairies, or mermaids, not merely nymphs of the sea.

The Nereids are the namesake of one of the moons of the planet Neptune.


This list is correlated from four sources: Homer's Iliad,[2] Hesiod's Theogony,[3] the Bibliotheca, and Hyginus. Because of this the total number of names goes beyond fifty.[4]

  • Actaea (Ἀκταίη)[2][3]
  • Agaue (Ἀγαυὴ)[2][3]
  • Amatheia (Ἀμάθεια)[2]
  • Amphinome (Ἀμφινόμη)[2]
  • Amphithoe (Ἀμφιθόη)[2]
  • Amphitrite (Ἀμφιτρίτη)[3]
  • Apseudes (Ἀψευδὴς)[2]
  • Arethusa
  • Asia
  • Autonoe (Αὐτονόη)[3]
  • Beroe
  • Callianassa (Καλλιάνασσα)[2]
  • Callianeira (Καλλιάνειρα)[2]
  • Calypso
  • Ceto
  • Clio
  • Clymene (Κλυμένη)[2]
  • Cranto
  • Creneis
  • Cydippe
  • Cymo (Κυμώ)[3]
  • Cymatolege (Κυματολήγη)[3]
  • Cymodoce (Κυμοδόκη)[2][3]
  • Cymothoe (Κυμοθόη)[2][3]
  • Deiopea
  • Dero
  • Dexamene (Δεξαμένη)[2]
  • Dione[5]
  • Doris (Δωρὶς)[2][3]
  • Doto (Δωτώ)[2][3]
  • Drymo
  • Dynamene (Δυναμένη)[2][3]
  • Eione (Ἠιόνη)[3]
  • Ephyra
  • Erato (Ἐρατώ)[3]
  • Euagore (Εὐαγόρη)[3]
  • Euarne (Εὐάρνη)[3]
  • Eucrante (Εὐκράντη)[3]
  • Eudore (Εὐδώρη)[3]
  • Eulimene (Εὐλιμένη)[3]
  • Eumolpe
  • Eunice (Εὐνίκη)[3]
  • Eupompe (Εὐπόμπη)[3]
  • Eurydice
  • Galene (Γαλήνη)[3]
  • Galatea (Γαλάτεια)[2][3]
  • Glauce (Γλαύκη)[2][3]
  • Glauconome (Γλαυκονόμη)[3]
  • Halie (Ἁλίη)[2][3]
  • Halimede (Ἁλιμήδη)[3]
  • Hipponoe (Ἱππονόη)[3]
  • Hippothoe (Ἱπποθόη)[3]
  • Iaera (Ἴαιρα)[2]
  • Ianassa (Ἰάνασσα)[2]
  • Ianeira (Ἰάνειρά)[2]
  • Ione
  • Iphianassa
  • Laomedeia (Λαομέδεια)[3]
  • Leiagore (Ληαγόρη)[3]
  • Leucothoe
  • Ligea
  • Limnoreia (Λιμνώρεια)[2]
  • Lycorias
  • Lysianassa (Λυσιάνασσα)[3]
  • Maera (Μαῖρα)[2]
  • Melite (Μελίτη)[2][3]
  • Menippe (Μενίππη)[3]
  • Nausithoe
  • Neaera
  • Nemertes (Νημερτής)[2][3]
  • Neomeris
  • Nesaea (Νησαίη)[2][3]
  • Neso (Νησώ)[3]
  • Opis
  • Oreithyia (Ὠρείθυια)[2]
  • Panopea (Πανόπεια)[3]
  • Panope (Πανόπη)[2]
  • Pasithea (Πασιθέη)[3]
  • Pherusa (Φέρουσά)[2][3]
  • Phyllodoce
  • Plexaure
  • Ploto (Πλωτώ)[3]
  • Polynome
  • Pontomedusa
  • Pontoporeia (Ποντοπόρεια)[3]
  • Poulunoe (Πουλυνόη)[3]
  • Pronoe (Προνόη)[3]
  • Proto (Πρωτώ)[2][3]
  • Protomedeia (Πρωτομέδεια)[3]
  • Psamathe (Ψαμάθη)[3]
  • Sao (Σαώ)[3]
  • Speio (Σπειώ)[2][3]
  • Thaleia (Θάλειά)[2]
  • Themisto (Θεμιστώ)[3]
  • Thetis (Θέτις)[2][3]
  • Thoe (Θόη)[2][3]
  • Xantho


External links

Greek deities
Primordial deities
Titans and Olympians
Chthonic deities
Personified concepts
Other deities
Aquatic deities
  • Nereids in classical literature and art
  • Nereid and Triton Mosaic from Ephesus Terrace Home -2
  • 3D stereoview of Nereid and Triton relief from Temple of Apollo in Didim
  • Warburg Institute Iconographic Database (ca 600 images of Nereids and other sea deities)
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