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CLA204H1 (64)
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Chapter 10

Notes for Chapter 10

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James Lynd

Chapter 10 Myths of fertility Dionysus - Dionysus is God of wine and instinictive part of personality - Was admitted to olympus later than the others and according to some sources dis- placed Hestia to become one of the twelve - Dionysus important as wine was an everday drink - Also called Bacchus - Also a god of fertility - > Thick lucious ivy was a sign of his presence - He wore a leopard skin and panthers pulled his chariot - The phallus and horns of a bull were his emblems. - Followers caled by homer Bacchantes - Also called Thyiades “frenzied ones” - Or Maenads “the raging women” - Male followers were Satyrs with erect penis sometimes enormous and the tails and ears of horses - > later acquired goat like legs - Silliness is either a general term for any old satyr or an ugly, drunken, extremely fat one that lied a lot - Shown in art with thick lips and a pug nose riding on a donkey so drunk he can barely balance - Dionysus swept as far east as India - Stopped in Phrygian where he rewarded the local king son of Gourds and Cybele for his generous hospitality by granting a single wish - > The king asked that everything he touch be turned to gold - > hasty promise - Midas wanted to tak the wish back and Dionysus told him to bathe in the headwaters of the pachoulis river - > the river carried away the cursed gift - The gold settled in the sand of the land (Lydia) and it became one of the richest king- doms in the ancient world - > aetiological tale - Dionysus married Ariadne, daughter of king Minos - He found her on island of Nixon where Theseus, a hero of athens, had abandoned her. Chapter 10 Myths of fertility Dionysus Resistant to the God - Many of the myths about Dionysus tel of the resistance he met when returned from his travels in the east, bringing his new religion - The oldest surviving is Homers ILLIAD - > DIONYSUS AND GOLLOWERS CROSS HE HELLESPONT INTO THRACE WHERE LYCURGUS, KING OF A TRIBE IN THRACE, persecutes them - > The king attacked the god and Dionysus hid with Thetis - > Zeus made the king blind - Another source says that Lycurgus went mad and attempted to rape his own mother nd that with a double-bitted x he pruned off the legs of his son, thinking he was ivy, sacred to Dionysus - This made the land sterile and an oracle announced that the king must die - The thracians carried Lycurgus to Mount Pangaeum (al bloody) and staked him to the ground. Wild horses at him alive - Dionysus also encounter resistance in Orchomenus - The three daughters of King Minyas refused to join the new ecstatic religion - Instead like proper women they sat in their chambers working their looms and spoke critically of those who had gone to the mountains to rage as Bacchae - Dionysus appeared to them in the shape of a young girl by the daughters (Minyads) re- fused his warning - > enraged he took of form of lion, bull and a panther - > the room filled with the sound of instruments and scent of myrh - > threads of loom turned into vines - Room became dark - Suddenly hungering for flesh the Minyads cast lots over their own children - Dionysus turned them into bats for they love darkness - In the Peloponnesus the God met resistance of three daughters of king Protease of Ar- gos - They were inflcted with iching on their heads - > soon spread everywhere else on them - They went insane, thought they were cows and wandered into mountains of Arcadia Chapter 10 Myths of fertility Dionysus - Disease spread to other women who left their houses, killed their children and wan- dered into the wild - At last a seer named Melampus was able to cure them in return for two thirds of the kingdom of Argos Dionysus and the Pirates - Story told in Homeric hym to Dionysus from the Th. Century bc: - God was standing on promontory beside the sea or pehapds a small island of Icaria when a ship of Etruscan pirates passed below him - Dionysus appeared as a teen and the pirates stole him thinking he was some lords son - But the ropes were useless and fell off - Helmsman understood that he was a god - Skipper didn’t listen and kept him thinking of a good ransom - Dionysus first caused wine to gurgle through the ship - And then vines to grow - He turned into Lion - Turned the pirates into dolphins except the helmsman - > ‘courage my friend, y spirit’s geatest joy and delight. I am thundering Bacchus, born of Seemly, fathered by Zeus’ Dionysus in Thebes - Best known resistance takes place in Thebes, city of his birth - Dionysus says in Euripeded play the Bacchae that he returned not only to spread his cult but to take vengeance on his mothers sisters, agave, autonoe and Ino - > 3 sisters denied that his mum slept with zeus and said that she lost it to a mortal which caused her to be destroyed for
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