October 10, 2022

Calliope / noun / cal·​li·​ope

Calliope is the “Muse of Epic Poetry” and one of the most popular figures in Greek mythology. Many theories exist about Calliope's origins, but the most commonly accepted story is that she was born from Zeus' thunderbolt and the daughter of either Mnemosyne or Leto (depending on the source).

We also use the word calliope in English to describe a musical instrument that combines the features of a keyboard, whistles, and compressed air. A calliope makes a distinctive sound that attracts the attention of passersby, which is why it is used as a lure or marketing tool to announce exciting events at carnivals, on showboats, at circuses and in other similar locations.

In a Sentence

Calliope is associated with epic poetry and song, considered among the highest forms of art. She also plays a major role in several tragedies, including Aeschylus' Oresteia (The Tragedy of Orestes) and Eur ides' Iphigenia at Aulis (The Tragedy of Iphigenia).

Calliope is said to have been extraordinarily beautiful and skillful in poetry.

Calliopes are instrumental marketing tools that subtly attract the attention of passersby.


Calliope derives from the Ancient Greek word kalliopē, meaning "beautiful singer." It refers to the daughter of Zeus in Ancient Greek mythology. Mythology states that Calliope was born from a thunderbolt and could lure or lull bystanders with her beautiful music. We derived the word calliope from Latin and Greek words describing instruments, and English speakers have used the word calliope to describe a unique musical instrument since the 14th century.


Greek Muse, Steam Organ

1 Comment

  1. Mary

    I love learning new words and I love your daily quiz.


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