The logo of the Melammu Project

The Melammu Project

The Heritage of Mesopotamia and the Ancient Near East

  The Melammu Project
   General description
   Search string
   Browse by topic
   Search keyword
   Submit entry
   Open search
   Thematic search
   Digital Library
   Submit item
   Ancient texts
   Submit link
  Contact us

  The Newsletter
  To Project Information >


The ghost Gello (1)

Printable view
Topics (move over topic to see place in topic list)

02 Religious and ideological symbols and iconographic motifs

6th century BCE
2nd century CE
Greek poets
Helleno-Roman philosophers and scholars

The Mesopotamian Gallû demon was borrowed into Greek as Gello.

Zenobius, Centuries of Proverbs 1.58:
[Quoting Sappho:] “More fond of children than Gello”;
a saying used of those who die young, or of those who are lovers of children but spoil them; for Gello was a girl who died young, and of whom the Lesbians say that her ghost haunts little children, ascribing to her the death of such as die before they are grown up. It occurs in Sappho.

Sources (list of abbreviations) (source links will open in a new browser window)
Sappho 178A
Zenobius, Centuries of Proverbs 1.58


Burkert 1992, 82Burkert, Walter. The Orientalizing Revolution. Near Eastern Influence on Greek Culture in the Early Archaic Period. Cambridge MA: Harvard University Press 1992.
West 1991, 362West, David R. “Gello and Lamia, Two Hellenic Daemons of Semitic Origin.” Ugarit-Forschungen 23 (1991) 361-368.

Links (external links will open in a new browser window)
Sappho on Gello
Cf. The ghost Gello (2)
Cf. The ghost Gello (3)
Cf. The Mesopotamian Gallû demon (1)

Amar Annus

URL for this entry:

No pictures