Homer Hesiod Hymns Tragedy Remythologizing Tools Blackboard Info
In Epirus. The ancient seat of the oracle of Zeus and Dione, who was worshipped here as his wife instead of Hera. The oldest sanctuary of the god was an oak tree, with a spring at its foot, sacred to Zeus, and probably mephitic. The will of Zeus was ascertained from the rustling of the oak leaves by the priests, whom Homer calls Selloi, and their grey- headed priestesses called Peleiades. In later times oracles were taken at Dodona from lots, and from the ringing of an iron basin. In front of this basin there stood an iron statue of a boy, with a whip formed of three chains, from which hung some buttons which touched the basin. If the whip moved in the breeze, the buttons sounded against the basin. The oracle of Dodona had in early times the greatest name of all; but in later times, though it never lost its reputation, it was eclipsed by that of Delphi. It was still consulted, mainly indeed by the neighbouring populations, but sometimes also by the states of Athens and Sparta. It was in existence in the 2nd century A.D., and does not seem to have disappeared before the 4th.
Type: Standard
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