Myth story[change | edit source]
In Phrygia (modern Turkey), there was a legendary prophesy about a unique knot which could only be loosened by the man who would rule all of Asia. It was called the "Gordian" knot because it was preserved in Gordium. It supposed to have been created by a man named Gordius.
In another version of the story, Alexander took away the wooden part which was at the center of the knot; and in this way, the knot was undone.
Meaning[change | edit source]
Today the phrase implies "make it happen" or "get things done".
"Cutting the Gordian knot" has come to mean resolving a difficult problem with one forceful action.
It may mean a problem that has no solution.
Related pages[change | edit source]
References[change | edit source]
- Guyot, Arnold. (1890). "Gordius," Johnson's (revised) universal cyclopaedia, Vol. 3, p. 542.
- Grote, George. (1853). History of Greece, Vol. 11, pp. 140-141.
- Zimmern, Alice. (1908). Greek history for young readers, p. 397.
- Kirkman, Marshall Monroe. (1913). History of Alexander the Great: his personality and deeds, pp. 155-156.
- Kirke, Lance B. "Cutting the Gordian Knot" in The Wisdom of Alexander The Great: Enduring Leadership Lessons From the Man Who Created An Empire, p. 123.
- Snicket, Lemony. (2000). The Wide Window, p. 200.
- Parkin, Margaret. (2004). Tales for Coaching: Using Stories and Metaphors With Individuals & Small Groups, p. 97.
- Rengel, Marian et al. (2010). "Gordian knot," Greek and Roman Mythology A to Z, p. 55.
- Mathematical Association of America (MMA), Untying the Gordian Knot; retrieved 2012-5-31.