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A festival celebrated at Athens on the seventh day of Pyanepsion, the end of October, in honour of the departing god of summer, Apollo. The festival received its name from the cooked beans which were offered to the god as firstfruits of autumn. Another firstfruit offering of this festival was the Eiresione, a branch of olive or bay, bound with purple and white wool, and hung about with all sorts of autumn fruits, pastry, and small vessels full of honey, wine, and oil. This branch was borne by a boy whose parents were both alive; a song, which bore the same name Eiresione, was sung, while he was escorted by a procession to the temple of the god, where the wreath was deposited as a votive offering. Other branches were hung at the doors of the houses. In later times this festival was also kept as a mark of gratitude for the safe return of Theseus from Crete, which was supposed to have taken place on this day; and the cooking of the beans was regarded as commemorating the cooking of the scanty remains of the provisions of his ships. [In the ancient calendar of the Attic festivals built into the wall of the metropolitan church at Athens, the festival of the Pyanepsia is represented by a youth carrying the Eiresione. See cut in Miss Harrison's Mythology, etc., of Athens, p. 168; ib. cxxxv.] Besides Apollo, the Horoe were worshipped at the Pyanepsia with offerings and invocations, as the goddesses of the blessings of the year.
Type: Standard
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