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Archaeology of Religion 6.docx

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Mount Allison University
CLAS 2531
Illaria Battiloro

Pan-Hellenic Sanctuaries and "National" Identity  they are often characterized as centres of communication and competition, drawing together numerous states from Italy to the Black Sea to share in a common framework of ritual activity  used by people living all over the Greek world  they acted as focal points at which formal relations between communities were established and maintained via treaties and federal meetings  they were also important to the reinforcement of ideas and values central to the organization of the cities  at an archaeological level o this role is reflected materially in the creation of monuments to the wealth and achievements of individual states or leagues- treasuries and trophies- which were meant to impress o this role is also reflected in the development of formally regulated athletic and artistic contests, in which rivalries between representatives of different states could be exercised o each votive offering represented the wealth of the city state by which it was donated  Olympia o Olympic festival dedicated to Zeus; prize was a wild olive branch, took place every 4 years, founded in 776 BCE o one of the most ancient of the pan-Hellenic sanctuaries, according to written sources o 8th century- Greek world starts developing as a country, Olympia served as a political gathering place o center focus of the sanctuary was the Temple of Zeus featuring a colossal statue of Zeus at the back of the cella- meant to impress visitors  statue includes a small statuette of Victory- a female figure with open arms/wings o together with Delphi, the most important sanctuary of the Greek world o no remnants of the altar of Zeus, but a very detailed description:  "The altar has been made from the ash of the thighs of the victims sacrificed to Zeus. The first level of the Altar has a circumference of 38.1 meters; the circumference of the second level is 9.7 meters. The total height of the Altar is 6.7 meters. They sacrifice the victims on the lower level, but they carry the thigh pieces up to the highest level and burn them
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