Mentor - this is how a mentor is called with a fair amount of irony and even hostility, and more often - the one who is inclined to teach others, without having any rights to do so. Arrogant intonation with a touch of suggestion, teachings are called "mentor tone."
Expressions "mentor", "mentor tone" exist in Russian not so long ago. They appeared in the 18th century - after the reform of Peter I. This ruler set the goal of introducing the Russian aristocracy to Western values. Educational institutions were created where they studied the Greek language and Latin, got acquainted with the masterpieces of ancient literature. It was then that the Russians first became closely acquainted with the heroes of ancient Greek literature, including a character named Mentor.
Mentor is the hero of Homer's poem
Homer's poems The Iliad and The Odyssey are rightly considered the pinnacle of ancient Greek literature. In the 18-19 centuries. every educated person should have known them, so the images of Homer's poems were understandable and close to any nobleman or scientist. Suffice it to recall how many times Apollo or Melpomene is mentioned in A. Pushkin's verses. This use of the names of the ancient Greek gods in an allegorical sense was a natural phenomenon not only in poetry, but also in the everyday speech of high society. However, it was not only about the gods.
Homer's poem "The Odyssey" tells how the king of Ithaca, Odysseus, leaving his possessions, entrusted the care of his home and family to his old friend Mentor, the son of Alcimus. How much Odysseus trusted this man is evidenced by the fact that Athena, being a hero, often assumed the appearance of a Mentor - apparently, the goddess had reason to believe that Odysseus would definitely believe Mentor.
During the 20-year absence of Odysseus, Mentor had a lot of worries. He managed the household, protected Queen Penelope from annoying applicants for hand and heart, and also raised the young Telemachus, the son of Odysseus, who, due to circumstances, grew up without a father. This last duty was remembered by the reading public best of all, and the name of Mentor turned into a designation for a mentor, a teacher - at first respectful, then ironic.
The name of the hero of the ancient Greek poem, having become a household name for a mentor, teacher, acquired other meanings associated with this semantic connotation.
The well-known Russian biologist and breeder I. Michurin developed a method for the directed development of hybrid plants: a young hybrid seedling is grafted with a stalk of one of the parent trees, or vice versa - the seedling is temporarily grafted onto a tree, the qualities of which the hybrid should acquire (for example, frost resistance). At the same time, the plant acts as a "mentor", transferring to the hybrid what is in itself, therefore the scientist called this technique "the mentor's method."
In entrepreneurship, a mentor is a person who helps a budding businessman start his own business.