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Listed 2 sub titles with search on: Ancients' feasts, games and rituals for destination: "VRAVRON Ancient city ATTICA, EAST".


Ancients' feasts, games and rituals (2)

Festivals for gods and gods' deeds

Brauronia

Brauronia. An Attic festival held every fifth year in the little town of Brauron, in honour of Artemis Brauronia. At Brauron, Orestes and Iphigenia on their return from Tauris were supposed to have landed and to have left the statue of the Tauric goddess. The festival was under the superintendence of ten hieropoioi; and the chief solemnity consisted in the circumstance that Attic girls between the ages of five and ten years, dressed in crocus-coloured garments, went in solemn procession to the sanctuary, where they were consecrated to the goddess. During this act, the hieropoioi sacrificed a goat, and the girls-performed a propitiatory rite in which they imitated bears. This rite may have simply arisen from the fact that the bear was sacred to Artemis, especially in Arcadia; but a tradition preserved in Suidas relates its origin as follows: In the Attic town of Phanidae a bear was kept, which was so tame that it was allowed to go about quite freely, and received its food from and among men. One day a girl ventured to play with it, and, on treating the animal rather harshly, it turned round and tore her to pieces. Her brothers, enraged at this, went out and killed the bear. The Athenians thereupon were visited by a plague; and when they consulted the oracle, the answer was given that they would rid themselves of the evil which had befallen them if they would compel some of their citizens to make their daughters propitiate Artemis by a rite called arkteuein, for the crime committed against the animal sacred to the goddess. The command was more than obeyed; for the Athenians decreed that from thenceforth all women, before they could marry, should have once taken part in this festival, and have been consecrated to the goddess. Hence the girls themselves were called arktoi, the consecration arkteia, the act of consecrating arkteuein, and to celebrate the festival arkteuesthai.
    There was also a quinquennial festival called Brauronia, which was celebrated by men and dissolute women, at Brauron, in honour of Dionysus.

This text is from: Harry Thurston Peck, Harpers Dictionary of Classical Antiquities. Cited Dec 2002 from The Perseus Project URL below, which contains interesting hyperlinks


Brauronia, a festival celebrated in honour of Artemis Brauronia, in the Attic town of Brauron (Herod. vi. 138), where, according to Pausanias (i. 23, 9; 33, 1; iii. 16, 6; viii. 46, 2), Orestes and Iphigeneia, on their return from Tauris, were supposed by the Athenians to have landed, and left the statue of the Taurian goddess. It was held every fifth year, under the superintendence of ten hieropoioi (Pollux, viii. 9, 31) ; and the chief solemnity consisted in the circumstance that the Attic girls between the ages of five and ten years, dressed in crocus-coloured garments, went in solemn procession to the sanctuary (Suidas, s. v. Arktos; Schol. on Aristoph. Lysistr. 646), where they were consecrated to the goddess. During this act the hieropoioi sacrificed a goat, and the girls performed a propitiatory rite in which they imitated bears. This rite may have arisen simply from the circumstance that the bear was sacred to Artemis, especially in Arcadia; but a tradition preserved in Suidas (s. v. Arktos) relates its origin as follows : In the Attic town of Phauidae a bear was kept, which was so tame that it was allowed to go about quite freely, and received its food from and among men. One day a girl ventured to play with it, and, on treating the animal rather harshly, it turned round and tore her to pieces. Her brothers, enraged at this, went out and killed the bear. The Athenians now were visited by a plague; and when they consulted the oracle, the answer was given that they would get rid of the evil which had befallen them if they would compel some of their citizens to make their daughters propitiate Artemis by a rite called arkteuein, for the crime committed against the animal sacred to the goddess. The command was more than obeyed; for the Athenians decreed that from thenceforth all women, before they could marry, should have taken part once in this festival, and have been consecrated to the goddess. Hence the girls themselves were called arktoi, the consecration arkteia, the act of consecrating arkteuein, and to celebrate the festival arkteuesthai. (Hesych. and Harpocrat. s. v.; Schol. on Aristoph. l. c.) But as the girls when they celebrated this festival were nearly ten years old, the verb dekateuein was sometimes used instead of arkteuein.
 There was also a quinquennial festival called Brauronia, which was celebrated by men and dissolute women, at Brauron, in honour of Dionysus (Aristoph. Pax, 870, with the note of the Scholiast; and Suidas, s. v. Brauron). Whether its celebration took place at the same time as that of Artemis Brauronia, must remain uncertain, although the very different characters of the two festivals incline us rather to believe that they were not celebrated at the same time. According to Hesychius, whose statement however is not supported by any ancient authority, the Iliad was recited at the Brauronian festival of Dionysus by rhapsodists.

This text is from: A Dictionary of Greek and Roman Antiquities (1890) (eds. William Smith, LLD, William Wayte, G. E. Marindin). Cited Aug 2005 from The Perseus Project URL below, which contains interesting hyperlinks


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