Get Coryphaeus essential facts below. View Videos or join the Coryphaeus discussion. Add Coryphaeus to your topic list for future reference or share this resource on social media.

In Attic drama, the coryphaeus, corypheus, or koryphaios (Greek koryphaîos, from koryph, the top of the head) was the leader of the chorus. Hence the term (sometimes in an Anglicized form "coryphe") is used for the chief or leader of any company or movement. The coryphaeus spoke for all the rest, whenever the chorus took part in the action, in quality of a person of the drama, during the course of the acts.

The term is sometimes used for the chief or principal of any company, corporation, sect, opinion, etc. Thus, Eustathius of Antioch is called the coryphaeus of the First Council of Nicaea, and Cicero calls Zeno the coryphaeus of the Stoics.

Paul the Apostle is often entitled Coryphaeus in Christian iconography.[]

In 1856 at the University of Oxford, the office of Coryphaeus or Praecentor was founded, whose duty it was to lead the musical performances directed by the Choragus. The office ceased to exist in 1899.

In Solzhenitsyn's First Circle, Stalin is often referred to as Coryphaeus, meaning that he speaks for all in the Soviet Union.

See also


  •  This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domainChisholm, Hugh, ed. (1911). "Coryphaeus". Encyclopædia Britannica. 7 (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press. p. 212.
  •  This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domainChambers, Ephraim, ed. (1728). "Coryphæus". Cyclopædia, or an Universal Dictionary of Arts and Sciences (first ed.). James and John Knapton, et al.

  This article uses material from the Wikipedia page available here. It is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.



Music Scenes