eklogai

polytheist extractions

Tag Archives: artemis

Prolegomena to Theokritos, Bucolicorum Graecorum 2.5

“Concerning the Thalusia: At one time there were troubles at Syracuse which it was deemed were caused by Artemis. So the farmers brought gifts and sang a joyful hymn to the goddess and later on this became a customary event. As the rustics sang they would carry loaves of bread with figures of wild beasts on them, purses full of every type of seed, and a goat-skin with wine; they poured out libations for all those they met, wore a garland and deer antlers, and carried a shepherd’s rabbit-prod in their hands. The winner of the competition receives the bread of the defeated. They also sing other songs of a playful, funny nature, first saying in reverent tones, Receive good fortune, receive good health, which we bring from the goddess, by which she gave her command.” – Prolegomena to Theokritos, Bucolicorum Graecorum 2.5

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CMRDM 1.44

“Great are Artemis Anaeitis and Men Tiamou! When Jucundus got into a manic state and it was being bruited about by all that poison was being given him by Tatias his mother-in-law, Tatias set up a scepter and placed oaths in the temple that she would get her satisfaction about her being talked about in such a blameworthy way. But the gods put her in a  punishment, which she did not escape. Likewise her son Socrates, as he was going through the entrance that leads to the grove, holding a grape-cutting sickle in his hand – it fell on his foot, and thus he was dispatched in same-day punishment. Great then are the gods in Axitta! And they instructed the scepter and oaths which had been made in the temple to be dissolved and for the families of those previously mentioned to be responsible for the dissolving and to propitiate the gods in whatever fashion they desire, and to write the power of the gods on a stele.” – CMRDM 1.44

Maximus of Turin, Sermon 107

“Some days ago I admonished your charity, brethren, that as holy and religious men, you should remove all pollution of idols from your properties and cast out the whole error of Paganism from your fields. For it is not right that you, who have Christ in your hearts, should have Antichrist in your houses; that your men should honor the devil in his shrines while you pray to god in church. And let no one think he is excused by saying, ‘I did not order this, I did not command it.’ Whoever knows that sacrilege takes place on his estate and does not forbid it, in a sense orders it. By keeping silence and not reproving the man who sacrifices, he lends his consent. For the blessed apostle states that not only those who do sinful acts are guilty, but also those who consent to the act. You, therefore, brother, when you observe your peasant sacrificing and do not forbid the offering, sin, because even if you did not assist the sacrifice yourself you gave permission for it. If your order was not behind the crime your will is still to blame. As long as you remain silent, what your peasant does pleases you: if he did not act in this way perhaps he would displease you. So the subject does not merely involve himself in sin when he sacrifices, he also involves his lord, who does not forbid him; if he had done so neither would have sinned. Idolatry is a great evil. It pollutes those who practice it. It pollutes the inhabitants of the region. It pollutes those who look on. It penetrates its ministers, it penetrates those who know of it and those who keep silent. The peasant’s offering defiles the lord of the land. He cannot not be polluted when he eats food gathered by sacrilegious hands, brought forth by earth stained with blood, stored in foul barns. For all things are defiled, all are abominable, where the devils dwell, whether houses, fields or peasants. There is nothing free from evil where everything is steeped in evil. If you entered a rustic shrine you would find there bleaching sods and dead coals – a worthy devil’s sacrifice when a dead god is worshiped with dead things. And if you went into the fields you would see wooden altars and stone images, suitable to a rite in which insensible gods are served at moldering altars. If you woke up earlier than you usually do you would see a rustic reeling with wine. You ought to know that he is what they call either a devotee of Diana, one who is epileptic or made mad by the moon, or a soothsayer. For a god who makes mad usually has a frantic priest. Such a priest prepares himself with wine for his goddess’ blows, so that, being drunk, the wretch may not feel his punishment. They do this not only out of intemperance but by design, so that, buoyed up by wine, they may feel less pain. The seer who thinks piety is intensified by cruelty is wholly useless. How merciful his god must be to others who is so cruel to his priests! To sketch briefly this seer’s dress. He has a shaggy head with long hair. His breast is bare, he has a cloth half round his loins, and like a gladiator prepared for combat, he brandishes a weapon in his hand. But he is worse than a gladiator, for he is forced to fight against another man, whereas this fellow has to fight against himself. The gladiator strikes at others’ guts, this man tears his own limbs to pieces, and if one can say this, as his trainer works on the gladiator, so his god urges this man on to self-flagellation. Wrapped in this dress, bloody with his self-slaughter, judge for yourselves whether he is a gladiator or a priest! As the public outrage of gladiators has been removed by the religious piety of our princes, these gladiators of insanity should be removed by Christians from their own dwellings.” – Maximus of Turin, Sermon 107

Athenaios, Deipnosophistai 12.73

“And Ptolemy the seventh king of Egypt was a man of this sort, the same who caused himself to be styled Euergetes (‘Benefactor’) but who was called Kakergetes (‘Malefactor’) by the Alexandrians. Accordingly, Poseidonios the Stoic, who went with Scipio Africanus when he was sent to Alexandria, and who there saw this Ptolemy, writes thus, in the seventh book of his History (Fr. 6) ‘But owing to his luxury his whole body was eaten up with fat, and with the greatness of his belly, which was so large that no one could put his arms all round it; and he wore over it a tunic which reached down to his feet, having sleeves which reached to his wrists, and he never by any chance walked out except on this occasion of Scipio’s visit.’ And that this king was not averse to luxury he tells us when he speaks of himself, relating in the eighth book of his Commentaries how he was priest of Apollon at Kyrene, and how he gave a banquet to those who had been priests before him; writing thus: ‘The Artemitia is the great festival of Kyrene, on which occasion the priest of Apollon (and that office is one which lasts a year) gives a banquet to all those who have been his predecessors in the office; and he sets before each of them a separate dish. And this dish is an earthenware vessel, holding about twenty artabae, in which there are many kinds of game elaborately dressed, and many kinds of bread, and of tame birds, and of sea-fish, and also many species of foreign preserved meats and pickled-fish. And very often some people also furnish them with a handsome youth as an attendant. But we ourselves omitted all this, and instead we furnished them with cups of solid silver, each being of as much value as all the things which we have just enumerated put together; and also we presented each man with a horse properly harnessed, and a groom, and gilt trappings; and we invited each man to mount his horse and ride him home.’ And his son Alexander also became exceedingly fat,  the one, I mean, who put his mother to death who had been his partner in the kingdom. Accordingly Poseidonios, in the forty-seventh book of his History (Fr. 26), mentions him in the following terms: ‘But the king of Egypt being detested by the multitude, but flattered by the people whom he had about him, and living in great luxury, was not able even to walk, unless he went leaning on two friends; but for all that he would, at his banquets, leap off from a high couch, and dance barefoot with more vigour than even those who made dancing their profession.’ – Athenaios, Deipnosophistai 12.73

Horace, Odes 3.22

“Virgin who guards the mountains and the woods, who when thrice invoked give ear to young women in labour and rescue them from death, three-formed goddess, let the pine that overhangs my villa be yours, so that at the end of every year I may joyfully present it with the blood of a young boar practising its sidelong slash.” – Horace, Odes 3.22

Pausanias, Description of Greece 8.13.1

“It is the custom for the priests of Artemis Hymnia in Arkadia to live their whole lives in purity, not only sexual but in all respects, and they neither wash nor spend their lives as do ordinary people, nor do they enter the home of a private man. I know that the ‘entertainers’ of Artemis Ephesia live in a similar fashion, but for a year only.” – Pausanias, Description of Greece 8.13.1

Demosthenes, Against Meidias 51-54

Now if I had not been chorus-master, men of Athens, when I was thus maltreated by Meidias, it is only the personal insult that one would have condemned; but under the circumstances I think one would be justified in condemning also the impiety of the act. You surely realize that all your choruses and hymns to the god are sanctioned, not only by the regulations of the Dionysia, but also by the oracles, in all of which, whether given at Delphi or at Dodona, you will find a solemn injunction to the State to set up dances after the ancestral custom, to fill the streets with the savour of sacrifice, and to wear garlands.

Please take and read the actual oracles.

“Oracles You I address, Pandion’s townsmen and sons of Erechtheus,
who appoint your feasts by the ancient rites of your fathers.
See you forget not Bacchus, and joining all in the dances
Down your broad-spaced streets, in thanks for the gifts of the season,
Crown each head with a wreath, while incense reeks on the altars.
For health sacrifice and pray to Zeus Most High, to Heracles, and to Apollo the Protector; for good fortune to Apollo, god of the streets, to Leto, and to Artemis; and along the streets set wine-bowls and dances, and wear garlands after the manner of your fathers in honor of all gods and all goddesses of Olympus, raising right hands and left in supplication, and remember your gifts.”

“Oracles from Dodona
To the people of the Athenians the prophet of Zeus announces. Whereas ye have let pass the seasons of the sacrifice and of the sacred embassy, he bids you send nine chosen envoys, and that right soon. To Zeus of the Ship sacrifice three oxen and with each ox three sheep; to Dione one ox and a brazen table for the offering which the people of the Athenians have offered.

The prophet of Zeus in Dodona announces. To Dionysus pay public sacrifices and mix a bowl of wine and set up dances; to Apollo the Averter sacrifice an ox and wear garlands, both free men and slaves, and observe one day of rest; to Zeus, the giver of wealth, a white bull.”

Besides these oracles, men of Athens, there are many others addressed to our city, and excellent oracles they are. Now what conclusion ought you to draw from them? That while they prescribe the sacrifices to the gods indicated in each oracle, to every oracle that is published they add the injunction to set up dances and to wear garlands after the manner of our ancestors.

– Demosthenes, Against Midias 51-54

P.Mich.inv. 2458

“Aphrodite, Venus
Artemis, Diana
Charon, Orcus
Daimon, Genius
Demeter, Ceres
Eileithyia, Juno Lucina
Enypnion, Somnium
Ge Meter, Terra Mater
Hemitheoi, Indigetes
Hera Basilissa, Juno Regina
Hera, Juno
Heroes katoikidioi , Lares familiares
Hestia, Vesta
Hygieia, Salus
Isis
Leto, Latona
Meter Megale, Mater Magna
Nemesis, Ultrix
Paniskos
Phersephone, Proserpina
Sarapis, Serapis
Semele, Libera
Thanatos, Mors
Tyche, Fortuna” – P.Mich.inv. 2458

LSCG Suppl. 115

“If a bride comes to the dormitory, she must sacrifice as a penalty to Artemis. She must not share a roof with her husband and must not be polluted; she must purify the temple of Artemis and as a penalty sacrifice a full-grown victim, and then she should go to the dormitory. If she pollutes involuntarily, she must purify the temple.

“A bride must make a ceremonial visit to the bride-room at the temple of Artemis at the festival of Artemis, whenver she wishes, but the sooner the better. If she does not make her ceremonial visit, she must make the regular sacrifice to Artemis at the festival of Artemis as one who has made no visit, and she must purify the temple and sacrifice a victim as a penalty.

“A pregnant woman shall make a ceremonial visit before birth to the bride-room in the precinct of Artemis and give the Bear priestess feet and head and skin of the sacrifice. If she does not make a ceremonial visit before giving birth she must make visit afterwards with a full-grown victim. If she makes a ceremonial visit to the temple she must observe ritual purity on the seventh, eighth, and ninth day, and if she does not make a visit, she must perform the rites on these days. If she is polluted, she must purify herself and the temple and sacrifice a full-grown victim as penalty.

“If a woman miscarries, if the foetus is fully formed, they are polluted as if by a death; if it is not fully formed, the household is polluted as if from childbirth.” – LSCG Suppl. 115