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DEMETER 100.00%
Daughter of Cronus and Rhea. Her name signifies Mother Earth, the meaning being that she was goddess of agriculture and the civilization based upon it. Her children are, by Iasion, a son Plutus, the god of riches, and by her brother Zeus, a daughter Persephone. Round Demeter and this daughter centre her worship and the fables respecting her. Hfid6s carries off Persephone, and Demeter wanders nine days over the earth seeking her, till on the tenth day she learns the trutb from the all-seeing sun. She is wrath with Zeus for permitting the act of violence, and she visits Olympus and wanders about among men in the form of an old woman under the name of Deo or the Seeker, till at length, at Elensis, in Attica, she is kindly received at the house of king Celeus, and finds comfort in tend ing his newly born son Demophoon. Surprised by his mother in the act of trying to make the child immortal by putting it in the fire, she reveals her deity, and causes a temple to he built to her, in which she gives herself up to her grief. In her wrath she makes the earth barren, so that man kind are threatened with destruction by famine, as she does not allow the fruit of the earth to spring up again until her daughter is allowed to spend two-thirds of the year with her. On her return to Olympus she leaves the gift of corn, of agriculture, and of her holy mysteries with her host, as a token of grateful recollection. She sends Triptolemus the Eleusinian round the world on her chariot, drawn by serpents, to diffuse the knowledge of agriculture and other blessings accompanying it, the settlement of fixed places of abode, civil order, and wedlock. Thus Demeter was worshipped as the goddess of agriculture and foundress of law, order, and especially of marriage, in all places where Greeks dwelt, her daughter being usually associated with her. (See THESMOPHORIA.) The most ancient seat of her worship was Athens and Eleusis, where the Rharian plain was solemnly ploughed every year in memory of the first sowing of wheat. She was also much worshipped in Sicily, which from its fertility was accounted one of her favourite places of abode (see ELEUSINIA). As the goddess of fertility, Demeter was in many regions associated with Poseidon, the god of fertilizing water. This was particularly the case in Arcadia, where Poseidon was regarded as the father of Persephone. She was also joined with Dionysus, the god of wine, and, as mother of Persephone and goddess of the earth, to which not only the seed, but the dead are committed, she is connected with the lower world under the name of Chthonia. In later times she was often confused with Gaia and Rhea, or Cybele. Besides fruit and honeycombs, the cow and the sow were offered to her, both as emblems of productivity. Her attributes are poppies and ears of corn (also a symbol of fruitfulness), a basket of fruit and a little pig. Other emblems had a mystic significance, as the torch and the serpent, as living in the earth, and as symbolizing a renewal of life by shedding its skin. The Romans identified her with their own Ceres.
CHTHONIA 100.00%
An epithet of Demeter (q.v.).
Son of Celeus of Eleusis and Metanira. He was tended in infancy by Demeter, when, in her search for Persephone, she came to Eleusis in the form of an old woman. Demeter found comfort in the care of the child, and wished to confer immortality on him by anointing him with ambrosia and holding him at night over the fire. The interference of the mother, however, prevented the fulfilment of her design (see DEMETER). Triptolemus in some versions takes the place of Demophoon (see TRIPTOLEMUS).
CELEUS 55.62%
A king of Eleusis, in whose home Demeter, while seeking for her daughter, received an affectionate welcome and comfort while tending her newly-born son Demophoon. (See DEMETER and DEMOPHOON.)
Son of Eleusis (or of Celeus, see DEMOPHOON) a favourite of Demeter, who sent him about the world on a car drawn by serpents to extend the cultivation of grain, and with it agriculture. On his return to Attica, Celeus of Eleusis made an attempt upon his life, but, at the bidding of Demeter, was obliged to give up the country to him. He founded the town of Eleusis, and, as first priest of Demeter, instituted the services there held in her honour, as well as the Thesmophoria (q.v.). In various parts of Greece, as well as in Italy and Sicily, he was honoured as the founder and promoter of husbandry, but especially in Eleusis, where, as the local hero, he had a temple dedicated to him, and a spot called the threshing-floor of Trip-tolemus on the Rharian plain. The Argive legend connected him with its local genealogies, and told how, while seeking Io in Tarsus and Antioch, he founded Greek settlements and instituted the cultivation of corn. In the Attic legend of Eleusis, he is also represented as a judge of the dead. (See DEMETER, fig. 1, and VASES, fig. 12.)
The deities who rule under the earth or who are connected with the lower world, as Hades, Pluto, Persephone, Demeter, Dionysus, Hecate, and Hermes.
IASION 41.15%
A favourite of Demeter, who in Crete became by him the mother of Plutus. Zeus accordingly killed Iasion with a flash of lightning.
A festival to Demeter, as the foundress of agriculture and of the civic rite of marriage, celebrated in many parts of Greece, but especially at Athens. It was held at Athens from the 9th to 13th of Pyanepsion, the beginning of November, and only by married women of genuine Attic birth and of blameless reputation. Two of the wealthiest and most distinguished women were chosen out of every district to preside over the festivals; their duty was to perform the sacred functions in the name of the others, and to prepare the festal meal for the women of their own district. Even the priestess who had the chief conduct of the whole festival had to be a married woman. On the first day of the feast the women went in procession, amid wanton jests and gibes, to the deme of Halimus, on the promontory of Colias, where nightly celebrations were held in the temple of Demeter and her daughter Core. After their return in the early morning of the third day, a festival lasting for three days was held in Athens. No sacrifices were offered on the last day but one, which was spent amid fasting and mourning. On the last day, on which Demeter was invoked under the name of Kalligeneia (or goddess of fair children), a feast was held amid mimic dances and games, which probably referred to the mythical stories of the goddess and her daughter.
PLUTUS 26.89%
The Greek personification of riches; born in Crete as the son of Demeter and her beloved Iasion or Iasius, whom Zeus out of jealousy killed with lightning. He was supposed to have been blinded by Zeus, because he distributes his gifts without choice. In Thebes and Athens he was represented as a child on the arm of Tyche and of Eirene (q.v., with cut).
A hero of Eleusis; he received from Demeter the fig tree, as a reward for hospitable entertainment (Pausanias, i 37, section 2]. His descendants, the Phytalidoe, by ancient custom, performed the purification for blood-shedding in Attica, according to the legend, because they had absolved Theseus under similar circumstances [Plutarch, Thes. 12, 22]. (See THESEUS.)
CERES 24.76%
An old Italian goddess of agriculture. The Ceres who was worshipped at Rome is, however, the same as the Greek Demeter. Her cultus was introduced under the Italian name at the same time as that of Dionysus and Persephone, who in the same way received the Italian names of Liber and Libera. It was in 496 B.C., on the occasion of a drought, that the Sibylline books ordered the introduction of the worship of the three deities. This worship was so decidedly Greek that the temple dedicated on a spur of the Aventine in 490 B.C., over the entrance to the Circus, was built in Greek style and by Greek artists; and the service of the goddess, founded on the Greek fable of Demeter and Persephone, was performed in the Greek tongue by Italian women of Greek extraction. The worshippers of the goddess were almost exclusively plebeian. Her temple was placed under the care of the plebeian aediles, who (as overseers of the corn market) had their official residence in or near it. The fines which they imposed went to the shrine of Ceres, so did the property of persons who had offended against them, or against the tribunes of the plebs. Just as the Patricians entertained each other with mutual hospitalities at the Megalesian games(April 4-10), so did the Plebeians at the Cerealia, or games introduced at the founding of the temple of Ceres. Those held in later times were given by the aediles from the l2th-19th April, and another festival to Ceres, held in August, was established before the Second Punic War. This was celebrated by women in honour of the reunion of Ceres and Proserpina. After fasting for nine days, the women clothed in white, and adorned with crowns of ripe ears of corn, offered to the goddess the firstfruits of the harvest. After 191 B.C. a fast (ieiunium Cereris) was introduced by command of the Sibylline books. This was originally observed every four years, but in later times was kept annually on the 4th of October. The native Italian worship of Ceres was probably maintained in its purest form in the country. Here the country offered Ceres a sow (porca praecidanea) before the beginning of the harvest, and dedicated to her the first cuttings of the corn (praemetium). (See DEMETER.)
The two mystic festivals of Demeter and her daughter Persephone (Core) celebrated in Attica. They took their name from the city of Eleusis, twelve miles distant from Athens. This was, from time immemorial, a seat of the worship Of Demeter, instituted, it was said, by the goddess herself after the disappearance of her daughter. (See DEMETER.) The worship of Dionysus was early associated with that of the two goddesses of the earth, for Dionysus was himself a god of fertility, worshipped here under the name of Iakchos, as son of Zeus and Demeter or Persephone. The ritual of the Eleusinian service was supposed to have been ordained by Eumolpus (see EUMOLPUS). The conquest of Eleusis, which took place, according to the story, under king Erechtheus, gave Athens a right to take part in the solemnity, and the lesser of the two festivals was actually celebrated in Athens. Eleusis, however, continued to be the chief seat of the worship, and the highest priesthoods were hereditary in the Eleusinian families of the Eumolpidae and Kerykes. The sanctity which shrouded the Eleusinian mysteries occasioned the foundation of Eleusinia on their model in other Greek cities. But the initiations at Eleusis were always accounted the most sacred and the most efficacious. The events celebrated in the mysteries were the descent of Persephone into the world below, and her return to light and to her mother. The former was celebrated at the greater Eleusinia between autumn and seed-time; the latter in spring at the lesser Eleusinia. The symbolical representation of both events had the same object. This was to excite and strengthen in the minds of the initiated, by means of the story of Persephone, the faith in the continuance of life, and a system of rewards and punishments after death. The right of initiation into the Eleusinian mysteries was in all probability restricted originally to inhabitants of Attica, but it was not long before it was extended to all Greeks. In later times, after their closer connexion with the Greeks, the Romans were also admitted. Barbarians were excluded, and so were all who had been guilty of murder, or any other serious offence. The neophyte was proposed for initiation by an Athenian citizen who had himself been initiated. He was admitted first to the lesser mysteries at the lesser Eleusinia. At this stage the candidates were termed Mystoe, and were allowed to take a limited part in the greater Eleusinia the next autumn. They were not initiated, however, into the greater mysteries, until the greater Eleusinia succeeding these ; and after their initiation were called epoptoe, or seers. The external arrangement of the festival was in the hands of the second archon, or Archon Basileus, who exercised a general superintendence over the whole of the public worship. He was assisted by four overseers (epimeletoe), two of whom were elected from the whole body of citizens, and two from the Eleusinian families of the Eumolpidae and Kerykes.[1] The high-priestly officials, who carried out the liturgical functions at the celebration, were also chosen from these two families. The Hierophantes, or chief priest, belonged to the house of Eumolpus. It was his duty to exhibit to the initiated the mysterious shrines, and probably to lead the performance of the hymns handed down from his ancestors. The Keryx, or herald, was of the house of the Kerykes. He summoned the initiated, in the traditional form of words, to worship, pronouncing for them the form of prayer. The Daduchos or torch-bearer, and the superintendent of the sacrifice, were also important officials. The lesser Eleusinia were celebrated in the month Anthesterion, which corresponded roughly to February. The service was performed at Agrae, a suburb of Athens on the Ilissus. in the temple of Demeter and Core, and accompanied by mystical rites, the nature of which is unknown. It was said to have been founded at the wish of Heracles, who, being a stranger, was excluded by usage from the greater Eleusinia. The great Eleusinia were celebrated in the middle of Boedromion (roughly = September), for a space probably of nine days. The first days were devoted to the preparation for the main festival, bathing in the sea, sacrifices of purification, and the like. On the sixth day, the 20th Boedromion, the immense multitude of mystae, in festal attire and crowned with myrtle, marched in procession along the sacred way to Eleusis, preceded by the image of Iokchos, who gave his name to the celebration. Much time was spent, partly in the performance of acts of devotion at the numerous holy places on the road, partly in merriment and banter; so that it was late in the evening before they arrived at the Telesterion, or house of initiation, at Eleusis. This was a magnificent temple erected by Pericles in place of the ancient temple of Demeter, which had been burnt down in the Persian War. During the following nights various celebrations took place at those spots in Eleusis and its neighbourhood which were hallowed in the story of the goddess. In these were represented the sorrowful searching of the goddess for her lost daughter, and the mother's joy at finding her. The transition from sorrow and fasting to joy and festivity was symbolized by the potion mixed of water, meal, and penny-royal, supposed to have been the first food tasted by Demeter after her reception in Eleusis. It was probably while, these celebrations were going on that the Epoptae, and the Mystae who were called totheir final initiation, took part in the mysteries proper. Mysterious rites were first, it would seem, performed in darkness, which threw the celebrants into a state of painful suspense and expectation. Then, in a dazzling light, and amid great splendour, the Hierophantes showed them certain shrines of the goddess and Iakchos, explaining their meaning; holy songs being meantime performed, partly by himself, partly by choirs with instrumental accompaniment. The climax of the whole was the sacred drama, a representation of the story of the three goddesses in the worlds above and below. The festival was brought to a close by a libation of water from two vessels in the shape of a top (plemochoe). The water was poured in the direction of east and west with mystical formulae. The ancients speak of the revelations made in the mysteries as having a beneficial influence on morality, pointing as they did to reward and punishment after death. They represent them farther as giving comfort in the trials and sufferings of life, and as opening brighter hopes after death. It is certain that there were few citizens of Athens who were not initiated; many who neglected the rite early in life were initiated in old age. For in the popular belief the initiation conferred a claim to the joys promised in the mysteries to the good after death. The Eleusinian mysteries maintained their position for a long time. Among the Romans, men of the highest rank, as, for instance, Hadrian and Marcus Aurelius, deigned to receive the initiation. When the Christian emperor Valentinian put an end to all religious celebrations by night, he excepted the Eleusinia, which continued in existence till they were abolished by Theodosius towards the end of the 4th century A.D.
Son of Triopas in Thessaly. For desecrating the sacred enclosure of Demeter, and felling an oak consecrated to the goddess, be was punished with insatiable hunger. Having consumed all that he had, he was supported by his daughter Mestra, to whom her lover Poseidon had given the power of transferring herself into any shape that she liked. In various forms she continually got herself sold, and then returned to her father with the proceeds. At last Erysichthon was reduced to devouring his own limbs.
Daughter of Zeus and Demeter. As the wife of Hades, she is the dread queen of the world below. Her special name in Attic cult is Core (lit. "the Maiden"). As a maiden while plucking flowers (near Enna in Sicily, according to the story common in later times), she was carried off into the lower world by Hades on his car, with the consent of her father. To appease her mother's wrath, Zeus sent Hermes to bring her back; but, since she had eaten part of a pomegranate given her by Hades (i.e. had already become his wife), she could only spend two-thirds of the year in the upper world with her mother. At the end of that time she had always to return to her husband, and rule as the dark goddess of death; whereas, while with her mother, she was regarded as the virgin daughter, and the helper of the goddess who presides over the fertility of the earth. Hence Persephone is emblematic of vegetable life, that comes and goes with the changing seasons. In spring, when the seeds sprout up from the ground, she rises to her mother; when the harvest is over, and the vegetation dies, and the seed is laid again in the dark grave of earth, she returns to her subterraneous kingdom. From this notion of the seed buried in the dark earth and again rising to light was developed that conception of the myth as an image of immortality which lies at the base of the Eleusinian mysteries. To express her rising and descending, her festivals were celebrated in spring and after the harvest. In spring she was worshipped at the lesser Eleusinia in Attica, and at her flower-festival of the anthesphoria, in the Peloponnesus, but more especially in Sicily. In autumn, there was held in Attica the great Eleusinia; i.e. the wedding-feast on her marriage with the god of the lower world. She was generally worshipped together with her mother; hence they were spoken of as "the two goddesses." In the Eleusinian mysteries she was also connected with Dionysus, who, under the mystic name Iacchus, was regarded as her son, brother, or bridegroom. In later times she was confused with other divinities, especially Hecate, as the goddess of night and of the world of spirits. She was represented either as the young and beautiful daughter of Demeter, with cornucopia, ears of corn, and a cock, the emblem of her rising in spring, or as the grim spouse of Hades, with rich adornments and the symbolic pomegranate. (See cut, and cp.DEMETER, fig.1) The Roman name Proserpina is regarded by some as an altered form of the Greek Persephone; by others as a native name only accidentally similar to the Greek, denoting a goddess who assisted in the germination (proserpere) of the seed, and, owing to the similarity of the two goddesses, transferred to Persephone after the introduction of her cult as the divinity of the lower world. (See HADES; see also LIBITINA.)
PELOPS 16.06%
Son of the Lydian or Phrygian king Tantalus and Dione, daughter of Atlas. When he was a child, his father slew him, cut him to pieces and seethed him, and set him as food before the gods. The gods did not touch the horrible meal; only Demeter, absorbed in grief for her stolen daughter, ate one shoulder. By the command of Zeus, Hermes replaced the pieces in the caldron, and Clotho drew the boy from it in renewed beauty, while Demeter replaced the missing shoulder by one made of ivory. Hence it was that his descendants, the Pelopidae, bore on one shoulder a mark of dazzling whiteness. Pelops, when grown to manhood, went to Pisa in Elis as a wooer of Hippodamia, daughter of king (Enomaus. He won the victory, the bride, and the kingdom, by the help of the winged steeds given him by Poseidon, and by the treachery of Myrtilus, the chariot driver of (Enomaus. When Myrtilus (or Myrsilus), a son of Hermes, claimed the promised reward, half the kingdom, Pelops hurled him from his chariot into the sea. Through his curse and the anger of Hermes, the baneful spell was once more cast upon the house of Pelops. He returned to Pisa, and, after he had made himself master of Olympia, he is said to have restored the games with great splendour, a service for which his memory was afterwards honoured above that of all other heroes. By another act of violence he obtained possession of Arcadia, and extended his power so widely over the peninsula that it was called after his name the Peloponnesus, or "island of Pelops." By Hippodamia he had six sons (cp. ALCATHOUS, ATREUS, PITTHEUS, THYESTES), and two daughters; and by then Nymph Axioche, a son Chrysippus. The latter, his father's favourite, was killed by Atreus and Thyestes, at the instigation of Hippodamia, and his dead body was cast into a well. Peleus discovered the crime, and banished the murderers from the country. Hippodamia thereupon took refuge with her sons at Midea in Argolis. On her death, Peleus buried her bones in the soil of Olympia.
ONATAS 13.61%
A Greek artist, the chief representative of the 'ginetan school of sculpture in bronze, about 460 B.C. Besides statues of the gods, such as an Apollo at Pergamon, admired for its size and execution [Pausanias, viii 42 § 7), we hear of groups of his, rich in figures, drawn either from the heroic epoch, as for example the ten Greek heroes casting lots as to who should undertake the battle with Hector [ib. v 25 § 8]; or from contemporary history, such as the votive offering of the Tarentines, containing equestrian and pedestrian combatants, and consecrated at Delphi for their victory over the barbarian Peucetians [ib. x 13 § 10]. He also executed a group representing Hiero of Syracuse with the chariot in which he had been victorious at Olympia [ib. viii 42 § 8]. [His most remarkable work was the bronze figure of the black Demeter, in a cavern thirty stadia from Phigaleia in the south-east corner of Elis (ib. viii 42).]
sometimes Dionysus (Greek). The god of luxuriant fertility, especially as displayed by the vine; and therefore the god of wine. His native place, according to the usual tradition, was Thebes, where he was born to Zeus by Semele, the daughter of Cadmus. Semele was destroyed by the lightning of her lover, and the child was born after six months. Zeus accordingly sewed it up in his thigh till ripe for birth and then gave it over to Ino, the daughter of Semele. (See ATHAMAS.) After her death Hermes took the boy to the nymphs of Mount Nysa, or according to another version, to the Hyades of Dodona, who brought him up, and hid him in a cave away from the anger of Hera. It cannot be ascertained where Mount Nysa was originally supposed to be. In later times the name was transferred to many places where the vine was cultivated, not only in Greece, but in Asia, India, and Africa. When grown up, Dionysus is represented as planting the vine, and wandering through the wide world to spread his worship among men, with his wine-flushed train (thiasos), his nurses and other nymphs, Satyrs, Sileni, and similar woodland deities. Whoever welcomes him kindly, like Icarius in Attica, and CEneus in Aetolia, receives the gift of wine; but those who resist him are terribly punished. For with all his appearance of youth and softness, he is a mighty and irresistible god, strong to work wonders. A whole series of fables is apparently based upon the tradition that in many places, where a serious religious ritual existed, the dissolute worship of Dionysus met with a vigorous resistance. (See LYCURGUS, MINYADAe, PENTHEUS, PRCETUS.) This worship soon passed from the continent of Greece to the wine-growing islands, and flourished pre-eminently at Naxos. Here it was, according to the story, that the god wedded Ariadne. In the islands a fable was current that he fell in with some Tyrrhenian pirates who took him to their ship and put him in chains. But his fetters fell off, the sails and the mast were wreathed in vine and ivy, the god was changed into a lion, while the seamen throw themselves madly into the sea and were turned into dolphins. In forms akin to this the worship of Dionysus passed into Egypt and far into Asia. Hence arose a fable founded on the story of Alexander's campaigns, that the god passed victoriously through Egypt, Syria, and India as far as the Ganges, with his army of Sileni, Satyrs, and inspired women, the Maenades or Bacchantes, carrying their wands (thyrsi) crowned with vines and ivy. Having thus constrained all the world to the recognition of his deity, and having, with Heracles, assisted the gods, in the form of a lion, to victory in their war with the Giants, he was taken to Olympus, where, in Homer, he does not appear. From Olympus be descends to the lower world, whence he brings his mother, who is worshipped with him under the name of Thyone (the wild one), as Leto was with Apollo and Artemis. From his mother he is called Thyoneus, a name which, with others of similar meaning, such as Bacchus, Bromios, Evios, and Iacchos, points to a worship founded upon a different conception of his nature. In the myth with which we have been hitherto concerned, the god appears mainly in the character and surroundings of joy and triumph. But, as the god of the earth, Dionysus belongs, like Persophone, to the world below as well as to the world above. The death of vegetation in winter was represented as the flight of the god into hiding from the sentence of his enemies, or even as his extinction, but he returned again from obscurity, or rose from the dead, to new life and activity. In this conexion he was called Zagreus ("Torn in pieces") and represented as a son of Zeus and his daughter Persephone, or sometimes of Zeus and Demeter. In his childhood he was torn to pieces by the Titans, at the command of the jealous Hera. But every third year, after spending the interval in the lower world, he is born anew. According to the Orphic story, Athene brought her son's heart to Zeus, who gave it to Semele, or swallowed it himself, whereupon the Theban or younger Dionysus was born. The grave of Dionysus was shown at Delphi in the inmost shrine of the temple of Apollo. Secret offerings were brought thither, while the women who were celebrating the feast woke up Licnites; in other words, invoked the new-born god cradled in a winnowing fan, on the neighbouring mountain of Parnassus. Festivals of this kind, in celebration of the extinction and resurrection of the deity, were held by women and girls only, amid the mountains at night, every third year, about the time of the shortest day. The rites, intended to express the excess of grief and joy at the death and reappearance of the god, were wild even to savagery, and the women who performed them were hence known by the expressive names of Bacchae, Maenads, and Thyiades. They wandered through woods and mountains, their flying locks crowned with ivy or snakes, brandishing wands and torches, to the hollow sounds of the drum, and the shrill notes of the flute, with wild dances, and insane cries and jubilation. The victims of the sacrifice, oxen, goats, even fawns and roes from the forest, were killed, torn in pieces and eaten raw, in imitation of the treatment of Zagreus by the Titans. Thrace, and Macedonia, and Asiatic Greece were the scene of the wildest orgies; indeed Thrace seems to be the country of their birth. In Asiatic Greece, it should be added, the worship of Dionysus-Zagreus came to be associated with the equally wild rites of Rhea (Cybele), and Atys, and Sabus or Sabazius. (See SABAZIUS.) In Greece Proper the chief seats of these were Parnassus, with Delphi and its neighbourhood, Baeotia, Argos, and Laconia, and in Baeotia and Laconia especially the mountains Chitaeron and Taygetus. They were also known in Naxos, Crete, and other islands. They seem to have been unknown in Attica, though Dionysus was worshipped at the Eleusinian mysteries with Persephone and Demeter, under the name of Iacchos, as brother or bridegroom of Persephone. But the Attic cycle of national festivals in honour of Dionysus represents the idea of the ancient and simple Hellenic worship, with its merry usages. Here Dionysus is the god who gives increase and luxuriance to vineyard and tree. For he is a kindly and gentle power, terrible only to his enemies, and born for joy and blessing to mankind. His gifts bring strength and healing to the body, gladness and forgetfulness of care to the mind, whence he was called Lyaeos, or the loosener of care, They are ennobling in their effects, for they require tending, and thus keep men employed in diligent labour; they bring them together in merry meetings, and inspire them to music and poetry. Thus it is to the worship of Dionysus that the dithyramb and the drama owe their origin and development. In this way Dionysus is closely related, not only to Demeter, Aphrodite, Eros, the Graces and the Muses, but to Apollo, because he inspires men to prophesy. The most ancient representation of Dionysus consists of wooden images with the phallus, as the symbol of generative power. In works of art he is sometimes represented as the ancient Indian Dionysus, the conqueror of the East. In this character he appears, as in the Vatican statue called Sardanapalus, of high stature, with a luxuriant wealth of hair on head and chin (comp. fig. 1). Sometimes again, as in numerous statues which have survived, he is a youth of soft and feminine shape, with a dreamy expression, his long, clustering hair confined by a fillet or crown of vine or ivy, generally naked, or with a fawn or panther skin thrown lightly over him. He is either reposing or leaning idly back with the Thyrsos, grapes, or a cup in his hand (fig. 2). Often, too, he is surrounded by the fauns of his retinue, Maenads, Satyrs, Sileni, Centaurs, etc., or by Nymphs, Muses, Cupids, indeed in the greatest possible number and variety of situations. (See the engravings.) Besides the vine, ivy, and rose, the panther, lion, lynx, ox, goat, and dolphin were sacred to him. His usual sacrifices were the ox and the goat. In Italy the indigenous god Liber, with a feminine Libera at his side, corresponded to the Greek god of wine. Just as the Italian Ceres was identified with Demeter, so these two deities were identified with Dionysus, or Iakchos, and Persephone, with whom they were worshipped under their native name, but with Greek rites, in a temple on the Aventine. (See CERES.) Liber or Bacchus, like Dionysus, had a country and an urban festival. The country festivities were held, with unrestrained merriment, at the time of grape-gathering and straining off the wine. The urban festival held in Rome on the 17th March, was called Liberalla. Old women, crowned with ivy, sold cheap cakes (liba) of meal, honey, and oil, and burnt them on little pans for the purchasers. The boys took their toga virilis or toga libera on this day, and offered sacrifice on the Capitol. Side by side with this public celebration, a secret worship, the Bacchanalia, found its way to Rome and into the whole of Italy. The Bacchanatia were celebrated by men and women, in Italy outside the cities, in Rome in the sacred enclosure of Stimula or Semele. They were accompanied with such shameless excesses that in 186 B.C. they were put down, with unsparing severity, by a decree of the senate.
HESTIA 12.36%
The goddess of the hearth, which is the emblem of the settled home. She is deemed the founder and maintainer of the family and the state, of civic concord and of public reverence for the gods. She is the daughter of Cronus (Kronos) and of Rhea; sister of Zeus, Poseidon, Hades, Hera, and Demeter; one of the twelve Olympian deities, from whom she is distinguished by the fact that, as the abiding goddess of the household, she never leaves Olympus. In Homer the sanctity of the hearth is indeed recognised, but as yet we find no mention of the goddess. It is a matter of discussion whether this was by accident, or because in that period the personification of the worship of the hearth had not attained its full perfection. Having been wooed by Apollo and Poseidon, she took an oath of perpetual virginity; so Zeus granted her the honour of being worshipped, as a tutelary goddess, at every hearth, in human habitations as well as in the temples of the gods, and of being called to mind amid libations at the beginning and end of every sacrifice and every festal entertainment. Hence it was that every sacrifice began and ended with a libation to Hestia, so that she had a share in all festivities; and in every prayer, as well as in all the public forms of solemn oaths, her name was recited before the name of any other god. Just as in the home her consecrated hearth formed the central point of family life, at which family festivals were celebrated and where both strangers and fugitives found a hospitable asylum, so also in the Prytaneion, or townhall, whore the sacred fire was ever burning, her hearth was the centre of the life of the city, indeed of the whole state, and of the colonies which had gone forth from it. Here, as representative of the state, the highest officials sacrificed to her, just as in every private house the father or mother of the family provided for her worship. Here also were held the public deliberations, and the public banquet given to deserving citizens and to foreign ambassadors. Hither repaired all who besought the protection of the state. Hence also did the colonists, bound for distant shores, take the fire for the public hearth of their new community. In some respects, the centre of the religious life of Greece was the fire on the hearth of Hestia in the Delphic temple, where was the sacred omphalos (or navel), which the Greeks considered to be the central point of the inhabited earth. Hestia stands in close connexion with Zeus as the guardian of the law of hospitality and of the oath. She was also much associated with Hermes and often invoked in conjunction with him; Hestia, as the goddess of gentle domesticity, and Hermes, as the restless god of trade on the public streets and roads, representing between them the two principal varieties of human life. According to a view that afterwards became current, under the influence of philosophers and mystics, she was regarded as personifying the earth, as the fixed centre of the world, and was identified with Demeter and Cybele. The corresponding deity among the Romans was Vesta (q.v.). The statues placed in the Prytaneia represented her, in accordance with her nature, as a being with grave and yet gentle expression, sitting or standing in an attitude of rest, wiih a sceptre as her attribute. The most celebrated of her existing statues is known as the Giustiniani Vesta (see cut); a form robed in simple drapery, with hair unadorned and wearing a veil; her right hand rests on her hip, and her left hand, which is pointing upwards, once held a long staff as her sceptre.
TELLUS 11.42%
The Italian deity of mother-earth, often called tellus mater. She was invoked during earthquakes (her temple in Rome having been dedicated in 268 B.C. in consequence of an earthquake in the time of war). She was also invoked in solemn oaths as the common grave of all things, together with the Manes and with Jupiter, the god of heaven. Like the Greek Demeter, she was also the goddess of marriage, but was most revered in conjunction with Ceres as goddess of fruitfulness. Thus in her honour were held the festival of the sowing (ferioe sementivoe), celebrated in January at the end of the winter seed time, fixed by the pontifex to be held on two consecutive market days. The paganalia were celebrated at the same time in the country, when a pregnant sow was sacrificed to Tellus and Ceres. Besides these, there was the feast of fordicidia or hordicidia, at which cows in calf (fordoe) were sacrificed to her. This was held on the 15th of April to insure plenty during the year, and was celebrated under the management of the pontifices and the Vestal Virgins, partly on the Capitol in the thirty curioe, and partly outside the town. The ashes of the unborn calves were kept by the Vestal Virgins till the feast of the Parilia (see PALES), when they were used for the purpose of purification. Besides the female deity, a god Tellumo was also worshipped.
Iambic poetry, like the elegiac poetry which was also nearly contemporaneous with it and was similarly cultivated by the Ionians of Asia Minor, forms a connecting link between epic and lyric poetry. While elegy however is directly connected, both in metrical form and expression, with epic poetry, iambic poetry is in direct contrast to it, both as regards subject-matter, diction and metre. The difference between the subject-matter of the two is as marked as the distinction was between tragedy and comedy in later times. While the aim of epic poetry is to awake admiration for its heroes, iambic poetry strains all the resources of art and irony, sarcasm and satire, to bold up the faults and weaknesses of human nature to mockery and contempt. This form of poetry, in keeping with its subject, confined itself to the simple, unadorned language of everyday life, and made use of the pliant iambic metre, which lent itself readily to such language, and had long been popularly employed to clothe in a poetic garb the raillery which formed part, of the rustic feasts of Demeter. This custom, as well as the application of the word iambus to verses of this kind, was traced to the Thracian maiden Iambe (also called the daughter of Pan and Echo). When the goddess Demeter was plunged in grief for the loss of her daughter Persephone, on entering the house of Celeus at Eleusis, it was the jests of Iambe that forced her to smile and restored her appetite. Iambic poetry was brought to artistic perfection by Archilochus of Paros (about 700 B.C.). He did not remain satisfied with the simple repetition of the same iambic verse, but invented the most varied forms, linking the longer iambic measures with the shorter, as well as with dactylic metres, and thus forming epodes. Instead of the iambus ( -), he also made use of its inverted form, the trochee (- ). Further representatives of this class were his younger contemporary Simonides of Amorgus, and Hipponax of Ephesus (about 540 B.C.), the inventor of the metre called the choliambus or scazon iambus, the "lame" or " limping iambus," in which the last iambic foot is replaced by a trochee, which as it were limps at the end of the verse and gives it a comic effect. Solon employed the iambic form in justifying his political aims in the face of his opponents. Of the later iambic writers may be mentioned Herlides or Herondas, whose extant poems (editio prinreps, 1891), may be assigned to the 3rd century B.C. He was the composer of mimes in iambic metre, a kind of imitative pourtrayal of manners in choliambic verses, similar to those of the Roman Gnaeus Matius in the let century B.C. From the middle of this century onwards lampoons in iambic verse became common among the Romans. Its earliest representatives included Furius Bibaculus, Catullus, and also Horace, who in his epodes imitated the metres of Archilochus. Under the Empire, a few poems by Martial and Ausonius belong to this class.
Type: Standard
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