CLAS104 Lecture Notes - Lecture 12: Homeric Hymns, Eleusinian Mysteries, Kykeon

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Demeter (Ceres) Class and Txb
Attributes: Staff and Grain
oName: De means “earth” or barley or “tamer”, meter means “mother”
Mother of Persephone: “two goddesses”, “Kore”
oDemeter is goddess of the ripe grain, the Persephone is the deity of the
budding tender shoots  invoked together as the two goddesses
oKore – another name for Persophone meaing girl
Persephone parentage: Zeus and Demeter
Cf. Duttur and Damu
Story (Homeric Hymn)
Rape of Persephone
Persephone was picking flowers along meadow when saw a narcissus that was
beautiful sight to even gods (that was produced as a snare by Hades to catch
her), then Hades came in a chariot and carried her away
all in Zeus’ will, gave her to Hades as wife to please his brother
Demeter’s Search (Hecate and Helius)
no gods would tell her where her daughter was so for nine days Demeter
roamed the earth – and in her grief she didn’t do anything (eat nor nathe)
she asks Helius (sun god) whether he saw her daughter and he tells her Hades
has her in the underworld
she was very angry at Zeus so she didn’t go to gatherings of god at Olympus and
for a long time kept among mortals disguising her beautiful form
Demeter at Eleusis (Demophoon)
she was so broken with grief
she went to home of wise Celeus who was the ruler of Eleusis – was sitting very
sad near the well when the daughters of Celeus saw her and didn’t know who
she was so asked and Demeter made up story about pirates capturing and
escaping her masters and came here after her wanderings and said she could
care for kids  Celeus’ household agreed to take her in
she goes in house  and sits down and just cries/mourns, they offer to let her
nurse boy
Demeter nurses and brings up the household’s little baby boy Demophoon  the
child was nursed like a god, had godly ambrosia for food, he grew so fast b/c she
was secretly like hid him in fire etc. and she would’ve made him immortal if his
mother hadn’t been spying and was scared for her child
the mother called Demeter and stranger and accused her for bringing her grief
and pain for putting child in fire so she angrily threw the child on ground –
accusing mortals as ignorant so her punishment is that her son will not get that
immortality she was gonna grant him
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