Sibyl of Cumae

Roman - An Italian prophetess. She was given the power of prophecy by Apollo who also granted her wish to live for as many years as the number of grains of sand she could hold in her hands. When she rejected his advances, he withheld the gift of youth so that she grew old and shrivelled and finally asked to be allowed to die. She offered Tarquinius Priscus, king of Rome, the Sibylline Books, nine books of prophecies written on palm leaves, in return for half his fortune. When he declined, she burnt three of the books, made the same offer, then burnt another three and finally sold him the remaining three for the original price. She advised Aeneas on his future when he arrived in Italy after the fall of Troy and guided him in the underworld to seek the advice of the ghost of his dead father. Also known as Sibyl of Cumae, Amalthea, Amalthea, Amphyrisian Prophetess, Amphyrisian Prophetess, Cumaean Sibyl, Cumaean Sibyl, Deiphobe, Deiphobe, Demophile, Demophile, Erythraean Sibyl, Erythraean Sibyl, Herophile, Herophile, Sibylline Books, Sibylline Books, Amphrysian Prophetess or Amphrysian Prophetess.

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