Nectar And Ambrosia
NECTAR AND AMBROSIA are the nourishment of the gods in Homer and in Greek literature generally. The gods resemble men in all respects except that they have different food and drink. Usage varies much as to the exact meaning of the two terms. Probably they were not originally distinguished; but usually both in Homer and in later writers nectar is the drink and ambrosia the food. On the other hand in Alcman nectar is the food, and in Sappho and Anaxandrides•ambrosia the drink. Each is used in Homer as an unguent (nectar, II. xix. 30 ; ambrosia, II. xiv. 170). Both are fragrant, and may be used as perfume. The derivation of the word nectar is uncertain ; probably inntcireos is a kindred word. Ambrosia is derived from a'p.f3poros, immortal.