Worshipping Virtues

Worshipping Virtues

by Emma Stafford
     
 

ISBN-10: 071563044X

ISBN-13: 9780715630440

Pub. Date: 12/28/2000

Publisher: Classical Press of Wales, The

The Greeks, in Dr. Johnson's phrase, 'shock the mind by ascribing effects to non-entity'. The culture of ancient Greece was thronged with personifications. In poetry and the visual arts, personified figures of what might seem abstractions claim our attention. This study examines the logic, the psychology and the practice of Greeks who worshipped these

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Overview

The Greeks, in Dr. Johnson's phrase, 'shock the mind by ascribing effects to non-entity'. The culture of ancient Greece was thronged with personifications. In poetry and the visual arts, personified figures of what might seem abstractions claim our attention. This study examines the logic, the psychology and the practice of Greeks who worshipped these personifications with temples and sacrifices, and addressed them with hymns and prayers. Emma Stafford conducts case-studies of deified 'abstractions', such as Peitho (Persuasion), Eirene (Peace) and Hygieia (Health). She also considers general questions of Greek psychology, such as why so many of these figures were female. Modern scholars have asked, Did the Greeks believe their own myths? This study contributes importantly to the debate, by exploring widespread and creative popular theology in the historical period.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780715630440
Publisher:
Classical Press of Wales, The
Publication date:
12/28/2000
Pages:
274
Product dimensions:
6.34(w) x 9.58(h) x 0.75(d)

Table of Contents

List of illustrations Acknowledgements Abbreviations and conventions 1. Personification, allegory and belief 2. Themis: archaic personification and the epithet theory 3. Nemesis: 'myth into logos?' 4. Peitho: the seductive power of rhetoric 5. Hygieia: 'not a goddess but a gift of God'? 6. Eirene: propaganda and allegory 7. Eleos: the Athenian 'altar of Pity' and its god 8. Conclusion Appendix: bibliographic note Bibliography Index

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