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Woodcut of Phyllis and Demophon from Heroides, Venice, early 16th century

Phyllis (Greek: Φυλλίς) is a character in Greek mythology. Daughter of Lycurgus, King of Thrace, she married Demophon, King of Athens and son of Theseus, while he stopped in Thrace on his journey home from the Trojan war.

Demophon, duty bound to Greece, returns home to help his father, leaving Phyllis behind. She sends him away with a coffin with the sacrament of Rhea, asking him to open it only when he has given up hope of returning to her. From here, the story diverges. In one version, Phyllis commits suicide by hanging herself from a tree. Where she is buried, an almond tree grows, which blossoms when Demophon returns to her. In a second version of the story, Demophon opens the caskets and accidentally falls on his own sword.

This story most notably appears in the second poem of Ovid's Heroides, a book of epistolary poems from mythological women to their respective men, and it also appears in the work of Callimachus.

The Nine Ways is derived from the story of Phyllis, who is said to have returned nine times to the shores to wait for Demophon's return.


Fulkerson, Laurel. "Reading dangerously: Phyllis, Dido, Ariadne, and Medea". The Ovidian Heroine as Author. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2005.

Source material

Up to date as of January 22, 2010

From Wikisource

This is a disambiguation page, which lists works which share the same title. If an article link referred you here, please consider editing it to point directly to the intended page.

Phyllis may refer to:


Up to date as of January 15, 2010

Definition from Wiktionary, a free dictionary




From Ancient Greek Φυλλίς (Phullis), foliage).

Proper noun




  1. (Greek mythology) A girl who killed herself for love, and was turned into an almond tree.
  2. A female given name derived from the mythological character.



Up to date as of January 23, 2010

From Wikispecies


Classification System: APG II (down to family level)

Main Page
Cladus: Eukaryota
Regnum: Plantae
Cladus: Angiospermae
Cladus: Eudicots
Cladus: core eudicots
Cladus: Asterids
Cladus: Euasterids I
Ordo: Gentianales
Familia: Rubiaceae
Subfamilia: Rubioideae
Tribus: Anthospermeae
Genera: Phyllis Species: P.nobla P.viscosa



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