noun Classical Mythology.
- the daughter of Tantalus and wife of Amphion of Thebes. She provoked Apollo and Artemis to vengeance by taunting their mother, Leto, with the number and beauty of her own children; Niobe’s children were slain and Zeus turned her into stone, in which state she continued to weep over her loss.
- Greek myth a daughter of Tantalus, whose children were slain after she boasted of them: although turned into stone, she continued to weep
in Greek mythology, a queen of Thebes, daughter of Tantalus, changed to a stone while weeping for her children (slain, after she boasted of them overmuch, by Artemis and Apollo); hence the name is used figuratively for bereavement and woe. The name is said to mean literally “snowy; snowy-bright.”