The Story of Pan and Syrinx

By: Alex Calcagno and Savannah Bauer

Words to know...

Nymph- a beautiful young woman.

Satyr- woodland gods. In Greek art they were represented as a man with a horse's ears and tail, but in Roman representations as a man with a goat's ears, tail, legs, and horns.

What Happened?

One day, the Greek satyr Pan of Aracdia, noticed the beautiful Syrinx in the woods on her way to go hunting. Pan wanted to talk to her, and he thought that she was the most beautiful girl he has ever seen. So he followed her around to try to get her attention. Syrinx did not want to talk to him because she didn't want to be loved. So she tried to avoid him the best she could. As she was running away, she came to a river and could not run anymore. She begged the river god to transform her, so she could not be seen. So the river god turned her into a reed.

How the Syrinx got its name

When Pan found the reeds in his hand and couldn't find Syrinx, he made a sigh and a large gust of wind blew. He noticed that when the air blew through the reeds they made melody and decided to blow through them to find her. When he saw that it didn't work, he decided to name the reeds Syrinx after her, so she would always be with him.
Claude Debussy Syrinx on wholetone panpipes