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Tiresias: The Ancient Mediterranean Religions Source Database

Herodotus, Histories, 1.105

nanFrom there they marched against Egypt : and when they were in the part of Syria called Palestine, Psammetichus king of Egypt met them and persuaded them with gifts and prayers to come no further. ,So they turned back, and when they came on their way to the city of Ascalon in Syria, most of the Scythians passed by and did no harm, but a few remained behind and plundered the temple of Heavenly Aphrodite. ,This temple, I discover from making inquiry, is the oldest of all the temples of the goddess, for the temple in Cyprus was founded from it, as the Cyprians themselves say; and the temple on Cythera was founded by Phoenicians from this same land of Syria . ,But the Scythians who pillaged the temple, and all their descendants after them, were afflicted by the goddess with the “female” sickness: and so the Scythians say that they are afflicted as a consequence of this and also that those who visit Scythian territory see among them the condition of those whom the Scythians call “Hermaphrodites”.

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1. Hebrew Bible, Jeremiah, 44.17 (8th cent. BCE - 5th cent. BCE)

44.17. כִּי עָשֹׂה נַעֲשֶׂה אֶת־כָּל־הַדָּבָר אֲשֶׁר־יָצָא מִפִּינוּ לְקַטֵּר לִמְלֶכֶת הַשָּׁמַיִם וְהַסֵּיךְ־לָהּ נְסָכִים כַּאֲשֶׁר עָשִׂינוּ אֲנַחְנוּ וַאֲבֹתֵינוּ מְלָכֵינוּ וְשָׂרֵינוּ בְּעָרֵי יְהוּדָה וּבְחֻצוֹת יְרוּשָׁלִָם וַנִּשְׂבַּע־לֶחֶם וַנִּהְיֶה טוֹבִים וְרָעָה לֹא רָאִינוּ׃ 44.17. But we will certainly perform every word that is gone forth out of our mouth, to offer unto the queen of heaven, and to pour out drink-offerings unto her, as we have done, we and our fathers, our kings and our princes, in the cities of Judah, and in the streets of Jerusalem; for then had we plenty of food, and were well, and saw no evil."
2. Hesiod, Theogony, 192, 195, 201, 205, 350, 78, 922, 191 (8th cent. BCE - 7th cent. BCE)

191. At what he said vast Earth was glad at heart
3. Homer, Iliad, 5.33, 5.331, 5.428-5.429, 11.270-11.271, 19.119 (8th cent. BCE - 7th cent. BCE)

5.33. /took furious Ares by the hand and spake to him, saying:Ares, Ares, thou bane of mortals, thou blood-stained stormer of walls, shall we not now leave the Trojans and Achaeans to fight, to whichsoever of the two it be that father Zeus shall vouchsafe glory? But for us twain, let us give place, and avoid the wrath of Zeus. 5.331. /He the while had gone in pursuit of Cypris with his pitiless bronze, discerning that she was a weakling goddess, and not one of those that lord it in the battle of warriors,—no Athene she, nor Enyo, sacker of cities. But when he had come upon her as he pursued her through the great throng 5.428. /she hath scratched upon her golden brooch her delicate hand. So spake she, but the father of men and gods smiled, and calling to him golden Aphrodite, said:Not unto thee, my child, are given works of war; nay, follow thou after the lovely works of marriage 5.429. /she hath scratched upon her golden brooch her delicate hand. So spake she, but the father of men and gods smiled, and calling to him golden Aphrodite, said:Not unto thee, my child, are given works of war; nay, follow thou after the lovely works of marriage 11.270. /the piercing dart that the Eilithyiae, the goddesses of childbirth, send—even the daughters of Hera that have in their keeping bitter pangs; even so sharp pains came upon the mighty son of Atreus. Then he leapt upon his chariot and bade his charioteer drive to the hollow ships, for he was sore pained at heart. 11.271. /the piercing dart that the Eilithyiae, the goddesses of childbirth, send—even the daughters of Hera that have in their keeping bitter pangs; even so sharp pains came upon the mighty son of Atreus. Then he leapt upon his chariot and bade his charioteer drive to the hollow ships, for he was sore pained at heart. 19.119. /and swiftly came to Achaean Argos, where she knew was the stately wife of Sthenelus, son of Perseus, that bare a son in her womb, and lo, the seventh month was come. This child Hera brought forth to the light even before the full tale of the months, but stayed Alcmene's bearing, and held back the Eileithyiae.
4. Homer, Odyssey, 3.159-3.161, 3.178-3.179 (8th cent. BCE - 7th cent. BCE)

5. Sappho, Fragments, 5 (7th cent. BCE - 6th cent. BCE)

6. Sappho, Fragments, 5 (7th cent. BCE - 6th cent. BCE)

7. Sappho, Fragments, 5 (7th cent. BCE - 6th cent. BCE)

8. Solon, Fragments, 19 (7th cent. BCE - 6th cent. BCE)

9. Pindar, Fragments, 122 (6th cent. BCE - 5th cent. BCE)

10. Euripides, Electra, 171 (5th cent. BCE - 5th cent. BCE)

171. ἀγγέλλει δ' ὅτι νῦν τριταί-
11. Euripides, Hippolytus, 59-60, 58 (5th cent. BCE - 5th cent. BCE)

58. Come follow, friends, singing to Artemis, daughter of Zeus, throned in the sky
12. Herodotus, Histories, 1.48, 1.56, 1.106, 1.131-1.132, 1.149, 1.164-1.167, 1.199, 2.5, 2.50, 2.112, 2.145, 2.178, 3.8, 3.33, 3.59, 3.149, 4.35, 4.59, 4.67, 4.108, 4.117, 6.56, 7.57 (5th cent. BCE - 5th cent. BCE)

1.48. Having written down this inspired utterance of the Pythian priestess, the Lydians went back to Sardis . When the others as well who had been sent to various places came bringing their oracles, Croesus then unfolded and examined all the writings. Some of them in no way satisfied him. But when he read the Delphian message, he acknowledged it with worship and welcome, considering Delphi as the only true place of divination, because it had discovered what he himself had done. ,For after sending his envoys to the oracles, he had thought up something which no conjecture could discover, and carried it out on the appointed day: namely, he had cut up a tortoise and a lamb, and then boiled them in a cauldron of bronze covered with a lid of the same. 1.56. When he heard these verses, Croesus was pleased with them above all, for he thought that a mule would never be king of the Medes instead of a man, and therefore that he and his posterity would never lose his empire. Then he sought very carefully to discover who the mightiest of the Greeks were, whom he should make his friends. ,He found by inquiry that the chief peoples were the Lacedaemonians among those of Doric, and the Athenians among those of Ionic stock. These races, Ionian and Dorian, were the foremost in ancient time, the first a Pelasgian and the second a Hellenic people. The Pelasgian race has never yet left its home; the Hellenic has wandered often and far. ,For in the days of king Deucalion it inhabited the land of Phthia, then the country called Histiaean, under Ossa and Olympus, in the time of Dorus son of Hellen; driven from this Histiaean country by the Cadmeans, it settled about Pindus in the territory called Macedonian; from there again it migrated to Dryopia, and at last came from Dryopia into the Peloponnese, where it took the name of Dorian. 1.106. The Scythians, then, ruled Asia for twenty-eight years: and the whole land was ruined because of their violence and their pride, for, besides exacting from each the tribute which was assessed, they rode about the land carrying off everyone's possessions. ,Most of them were entertained and made drunk and then slain by Cyaxares and the Medes: so thus the Medes took back their empire and all that they had formerly possessed; and they took Ninus (how, I will describe in a later part of my history), and brought all Assyria except the province of Babylon under their rule. 1.131. As to the customs of the Persians, I know them to be these. It is not their custom to make and set up statues and temples and altars, but those who do such things they think foolish, because, I suppose, they have never believed the gods to be like men, as the Greeks do; ,but they call the whole circuit of heaven Zeus, and to him they sacrifice on the highest peaks of the mountains; they sacrifice also to the sun and moon and earth and fire and water and winds. ,From the beginning, these are the only gods to whom they have ever sacrificed; they learned later to sacrifice to the “heavenly” Aphrodite from the Assyrians and Arabians. She is called by the Assyrians Mylitta, by the Arabians Alilat, by the Persians Mitra. 1.132. And this is their method of sacrifice to the aforesaid gods: when about to sacrifice, they do not build altars or kindle fire, employ libations, or music, or fillets, or barley meal: when a man wishes to sacrifice to one of the gods, he leads a beast to an open space and then, wearing a wreath on his tiara, of myrtle usually, calls on the god. ,To pray for blessings for himself alone is not lawful for the sacrificer; rather, he prays that the king and all the Persians be well; for he reckons himself among them. He then cuts the victim limb from limb into portions, and, after boiling the flesh, spreads the softest grass, trefoil usually, and places all of it on this. ,When he has so arranged it, a Magus comes near and chants over it the song of the birth of the gods, as the Persian tradition relates it; for no sacrifice can be offered without a Magus. Then after a little while the sacrificer carries away the flesh and uses it as he pleases. 1.149. Those are the Ionian cities, and these are the Aeolian: Cyme (called “Phriconian”), Lerisae, Neon Teichos, Temnos, Cilla, Notion, Aegiroessa, Pitane, Aegaeae, Myrina, Gryneia. These are the ancient Aeolian cities, eleven in number; but one of them, Smyrna, was taken away by the Ionians; for these too were once twelve, on the mainland. ,These Aeolians had settled where the land was better than the Ionian territory, but the climate was not so good. 1.164. In such a manner the Phocaeans' wall was built. Harpagus marched against the city and besieged it, but he made overtures, and said that it would suffice him if the Phocaeans would demolish one rampart of the wall and dedicate one house. ,But the Phocaeans, very indigt at the thought of slavery, said they wanted to deliberate for a day, and then they would answer; but while they were deliberating, Harpagus must withdraw his army from the walls, they said. Harpagus said that he well knew what they intended to do, but that nevertheless he would allow them to deliberate. ,So when Harpagus withdrew his army from the walls, the Phocaeans launched their fifty-oared ships, embarked their children and women and all their movable goods, besides the statues from the temples and everything dedicated in them except bronze or stonework or painting, and then embarked themselves and set sail for Chios ; and the Persians took Phocaea, left thus uninhabited. 1.165. The Phocaeans would have bought the islands called Oenussae from the Chians; but the Chians would not sell them, because they feared that the islands would become a market and so their own island be cut off from trade: so the Phocaeans prepared to sail to Cyrnus, where at the command of an oracle they had built a city called Alalia twenty years before. ,Arganthonius was by this time dead. While getting ready for their voyage, they first sailed to Phocaea, where they destroyed the Persian guard to whom Harpagus had entrusted the defense of the city; and when this was done, they called down mighty curses on any one of them who should stay behind when the rest sailed. ,Not only this, but they sank a mass of iron in the sea, and swore never to return to Phocaea before the iron should appear again. But while they prepared to sail to Cyrnus, more than half of the citizens were overcome with longing and pitiful sorrow for the city and the life of their land, and they broke their oath and sailed back to Phocaea . Those of them who kept the oath put out to sea from the Oenussae. 1.166. And when they came to Cyrnus they lived there for five years as one community with those who had come first, and they founded temples there. But they harassed and plundered all their neighbors, as a result of which the Tyrrhenians and Carthaginians made common cause against them, and sailed to attack them with sixty ships each. ,The Phocaeans also manned their ships, sixty in number, and met the enemy in the sea called Sardonian. They engaged and the Phocaeans won, yet it was only a kind of Cadmean victory; for they lost forty of their ships, and the twenty that remained were useless, their rams twisted awry. ,Then sailing to Alalia they took their children and women and all of their possessions that their ships could hold on board, and leaving Cyrnus they sailed to Rhegium . 1.167. As for the crews of the disabled ships, the Carthaginians and Tyrrhenians drew lots for them, and of the Tyrrhenians the Agyllaioi were allotted by far the majority and these they led out and stoned to death. But afterwards, everything from Agylla that passed the place where the stoned Phocaeans lay, whether sheep or beasts of burden or men, became distorted and crippled and palsied. ,The Agyllaeans sent to Delphi, wanting to mend their offense; and the Pythian priestess told them to do what the people of Agylla do to this day: for they pay great honors to the Phocaeans, with religious rites and games and horse-races. ,Such was the end of this part of the Phocaeans. Those of them who fled to Rhegium set out from there and gained possession of that city in the Oenotrian country which is now called Hyele ; ,they founded this because they learned from a man of Posidonia that the Cyrnus whose establishment the Pythian priestess ordained was the hero, and not the island. 1.199. The foulest Babylonian custom is that which compels every woman of the land to sit in the temple of Aphrodite and have intercourse with some stranger once in her life. Many women who are rich and proud and disdain to mingle with the rest, drive to the temple in covered carriages drawn by teams, and stand there with a great retinue of attendants. ,But most sit down in the sacred plot of Aphrodite, with crowns of cord on their heads; there is a great multitude of women coming and going; passages marked by line run every way through the crowd, by which the men pass and make their choice. ,Once a woman has taken her place there, she does not go away to her home before some stranger has cast money into her lap, and had intercourse with her outside the temple; but while he casts the money, he must say, “I invite you in the name of Mylitta” (that is the Assyrian name for Aphrodite). ,It does not matter what sum the money is; the woman will never refuse, for that would be a sin, the money being by this act made sacred. So she follows the first man who casts it and rejects no one. After their intercourse, having discharged her sacred duty to the goddess, she goes away to her home; and thereafter there is no bribe however great that will get her. ,So then the women that are fair and tall are soon free to depart, but the uncomely have long to wait because they cannot fulfill the law; for some of them remain for three years, or four. There is a custom like this in some parts of Cyprus . 2.5. And I think that their account of the country was true. For even if a man has not heard it before, he can readily see, if he has sense, that that Egypt to which the Greeks sail is land deposited for the Egyptians, the river's gift—not only the lower country, but even the land as far as three days' voyage above the lake, which is of the same nature as the other, although the priests did not say this, too. ,For this is the nature of the land of Egypt : in the first place, when you approach it from the sea and are still a day's sail from land, if you let down a sounding line you will bring up mud from a depth of eleven fathoms. This shows that the deposit from the land reaches this far. 2.50. In fact, the names of nearly all the gods came to Hellas from Egypt . For I am convinced by inquiry that they have come from foreign parts, and I believe that they came chiefly from Egypt . ,Except the names of Poseidon and the Dioscuri, as I have already said, and Hera, and Hestia, and Themis, and the Graces, and the Nereids, the names of all the gods have always existed in Egypt . I only say what the Egyptians themselves say. The gods whose names they say they do not know were, as I think, named by the Pelasgians, except Poseidon, the knowledge of whom they learned from the Libyans. ,Alone of all nations the Libyans have had among them the name of Poseidon from the beginning, and they have always honored this god. The Egyptians, however, are not accustomed to pay any honors to heroes. 2.112. Pheros was succeeded (they said) by a man of Memphis, whose name in the Greek tongue was Proteus. This Proteus has a very attractive and well-appointed temple precinct at Memphis, south of the temple of Hephaestus. ,Around the precinct live Phoenicians of Tyre, and the whole place is called the Camp of the Tyrians. There is in the precinct of Proteus a temple called the temple of the Stranger Aphrodite; I guess this is a temple of Helen, daughter of Tyndarus, partly because I have heard the story of Helen's abiding with Proteus, and partly because it bears the name of the Foreign Aphrodite: for no other of Aphrodite's temples is called by that name. 2.145. Among the Greeks, Heracles, Dionysus, and Pan are held to be the youngest of the gods. But in Egypt, Pan is the most ancient of these and is one of the eight gods who are said to be the earliest of all; Heracles belongs to the second dynasty (that of the so-called twelve gods); and Dionysus to the third, which came after the twelve. ,How many years there were between Heracles and the reign of Amasis, I have already shown; Pan is said to be earlier still; the years between Dionysus and Amasis are the fewest, and they are reckoned by the Egyptians at fifteen thousand. ,The Egyptians claim to be sure of all this, since they have reckoned the years and chronicled them in writing. ,Now the Dionysus who was called the son of Semele, daughter of Cadmus, was about sixteen hundred years before my time, and Heracles son of Alcmene about nine hundred years; and Pan the son of Penelope (for according to the Greeks Penelope and Hermes were the parents of Pan) was about eight hundred years before me, and thus of a later date than the Trojan war. 2.178. Amasis became a philhellene, and besides other services which he did for some of the Greeks, he gave those who came to Egypt the city of Naucratis to live in; and to those who travelled to the country without wanting to settle there, he gave lands where they might set up altars and make holy places for their gods. ,of these the greatest and most famous and most visited precinct is that which is called the Hellenion, founded jointly by the Ionian cities of Chios, Teos, Phocaea, and Clazomenae, the Dorian cities of Rhodes, Cnidus, Halicarnassus, and Phaselis, and one Aeolian city, Mytilene . ,It is to these that the precinct belongs, and these are the cities that furnish overseers of the trading port; if any other cities advance claims, they claim what does not belong to them. The Aeginetans made a precinct of their own, sacred to Zeus; and so did the Samians for Hera and the Milesians for Apollo. 3.8. There are no men who respect pledges more than the Arabians. This is how they give them: a man stands between the two pledging parties, and with a sharp stone cuts the palms of their hands, near the thumb; then he takes a piece of wood from the cloak of each and smears with their blood seven stones that lie between them, meanwhile calling on Dionysus and the Heavenly Aphrodite; ,after this is done, the one who has given his pledge commends the stranger (or his countryman if the other be one) to his friends, and his friends hold themselves bound to honor the pledge. ,They believe in no other gods except Dionysus and the Heavenly Aphrodite; and they say that they wear their hair as Dionysus does his, cutting it round the head and shaving the temples. They call Dionysus, Orotalt; and Aphrodite, Alilat. 3.33. Such were Cambyses' mad acts to his own household, whether they were done because of Apis or grew from some of the many troubles that are wont to beset men; for indeed he is said to have been afflicted from his birth with that grievous disease which some call “sacred.” It is not unlikely then that when his body was grievously afflicted his mind too should be diseased. 3.59. Then the Samians took from the men of Hermione, instead of money, the island Hydrea which is near to the Peloponnesus, and gave it to men of Troezen for safekeeping; they themselves settled at Cydonia in Crete, though their voyage had been made with no such intent, but rather to drive Zacynthians out of the island. ,Here they stayed and prospered for five years; indeed, the temples now at Cydonia and the shrine of Dictyna are the Samians' work; ,but in the sixth year Aeginetans and Cretans came and defeated them in a sea-fight and made slaves of them; moreover they cut off the ships' prows, that were shaped like boars' heads, and dedicated them in the temple of Athena in Aegina . ,The Aeginetans did this out of a grudge against the Samians; for previously the Samians, in the days when Amphicrates was king of Samos, sailing in force against Aegina, had hurt the Aeginetans and been hurt by them. This was the cause. 3.149. As for Samos, the Persians swept it clear and turned it over uninhabited to Syloson. But afterwards Otanes, the Persian general, helped to settle the land, prompted by a dream and a disease that he contracted in his genitals. 4.35. In this way, then, these maidens are honored by the inhabitants of Delos. These same Delians relate that two virgins, Arge and Opis, came from the Hyperboreans by way of the aforesaid peoples to Delos earlier than Hyperoche and Laodice; ,these latter came to bring to Eileithyia the tribute which they had agreed to pay for easing child-bearing; but Arge and Opis, they say, came with the gods themselves, and received honors of their own from the Delians. ,For the women collected gifts for them, calling upon their names in the hymn made for them by Olen of Lycia; it was from Delos that the islanders and Ionians learned to sing hymns to Opis and Arge, calling upon their names and collecting gifts (this Olen, after coming from Lycia, also made the other and ancient hymns that are sung at Delos). ,Furthermore, they say that when the thighbones are burnt in sacrifice on the altar, the ashes are all cast on the burial-place of Opis and Arge, behind the temple of Artemis, looking east, nearest the refectory of the people of Ceos. 4.59. The most important things are thus provided them. It remains now to show the customs which are established among them. The only gods whom they propitiate are these: Hestia in particular, and secondly Zeus and Earth, whom they believe to be the wife of Zeus; after these, Apollo, and the Heavenly Aphrodite, and Heracles, and Ares. All the Scythians worship these as gods; the Scythians called Royal sacrifice to Poseidon also. ,In the Scythian tongue, Hestia is called Tabiti; Zeus (in my judgment most correctly so called) Papaeus; Earth is Apia; Apollo Goetosyrus; the Heavenly Aphrodite Argimpasa; Poseidon Thagimasadas. It is their practice to make images and altars and shrines for Ares, but for no other god. 4.67. There are many diviners among the Scythians, who divine by means of many willow wands as I will show. They bring great bundles of wands, which they lay on the ground and unfasten, and utter their divinations as they lay the rods down one by one; and while still speaking, they gather up the rods once more and place them together again; ,this manner of divination is hereditary among them. The Enarees, who are hermaphrodites, say that Aphrodite gave them the art of divination, which they practise by means of lime-tree bark. They cut this bark into three portions, and prophesy while they braid and unbraid these in their fingers. 4.108. The Budini are a great and populous nation; the eyes of them all are very bright, and they are ruddy. They have a city built of wood, called Gelonus. The wall of it is three and three quarters miles in length on each side of the city; this wall is high and all of wood; and their houses are wooden, and their temples; ,for there are temples of Greek gods among them, furnished in Greek style with images and altars and shrines of wood; and they honor Dionysus every two years with festivals and revelry. For the Geloni are by their origin Greeks, who left their trading ports to settle among the Budini; and they speak a language half Greek and half Scythian. But the Budini do not speak the same language as the Geloni, nor is their manner of life the same. 4.117. The language of the Sauromatae is Scythian, but not spoken in its ancient purity, since the Amazons never learned it correctly. In regard to marriage, it is the custom that no maiden weds until she has killed a man of the enemy; and some of them grow old and die unmarried, because they cannot fulfill the law. 6.56. These privileges the Spartans have given to their kings: two priesthoods, of Zeus called Lacedaemon and of Zeus of Heaven; they wage war against whatever land they wish, and no Spartan can hinder them in this on peril of being put under a curse; when the armies go forth the kings go out first and return last; one hundred chosen men guard them in their campaigns; they sacrifice as many sheep and goats as they wish at the start of their expeditions, and take the hides and backs of all sacrificed beasts. 7.57. When all had passed over and were ready for the road, a great portent appeared among them. Xerxes took no account of it, although it was easy to interpret: a mare gave birth to a hare. The meaning of it was easy to guess: Xerxes was to march his army to Hellas with great pomp and pride, but to come back to the same place fleeing for his life. ,There was another portent that was shown to him at Sardis: a mule gave birth to a mule that had double genitals, both male and female, the male above the other. But he took no account of either sign and journeyed onward; the land army was with him.
13. Diodorus Siculus, Historical Library, 1.28-1.29 (1st cent. BCE - 1st cent. BCE)

1.28. 1.  Now the Egyptians say that also after these events a great number of colonies were spread from Egypt over all the inhabited world. To Babylon, for instance, colonists were led by Belus, who was held to be the son of Poseidon and Libya; and after establishing himself on the Euphrates river he appointed priests, called Chaldaeans by the Babylonians, who were exempt from taxation and free from every kind of service to the state, as are the priests of Egypt; and they also make observations of the stars, following the example of the Egyptian priests, physicists, and astrologers.,2.  They say also that those who set forth with Danaus, likewise from Egypt, settled what is practically the oldest city in Greece, Argos, and that the nation of the Colchi in Pontus and that of the Jews, which lies between Arabia and Syria, were founded as colonies by certain emigrants from their country;,3.  and this is the reason why it is a long-established institution among these two peoples to circumcise their male children, the custom having been brought over from Egypt.,4.  Even the Athenians, they say, are colonists from Saïs in Egypt, and they undertake to offer proofs of such a relationship; for the Athenians are the only Greeks who call their city "Asty," a name brought over from the city Asty in Egypt. Furthermore, their body politic had the same classification and division of the people as found in Egypt, where the citizens have been divided into three orders:,5.  the first Athenian class consisted of the "eupatrids," as they were called, being those who were such as had received the best education and were held worthy of the highest honour, as is the case with the priests of Egypt; the second was that of the "geomoroi," who were expected to possess arms and to serve in defence of the state, like those in Egypt who are known as husbandmen and supply the warriors; and the last class was reckoned to be that of the "demiurgoi," who practise the mechanical arts and render only the most menial services to the state, this class among the Egyptians having a similar function.,6.  Moreover, certain of the rulers of Athens were originally Egyptians, they say. Petes, for instance, the father of that Menestheus who took part in the expedition against Troy, having clearly been an Egyptian, later obtained citizenship at Athens and the kingship. . . .,7.  He was of double form, and yet the Athenians are unable from their own point of view to give the true explanation of this nature of his, although it is patent to all that it was because of his double citizenship, Greek and barbarian, that he was held to be of double form, that is, part animal and part man. 1.29. 1.  In the same way, they continue, Erechtheus also, who was by birth an Egyptian, became king of Athens, and in proof of this they offer the following considerations. Once when there was a great drought, as is generally agreed, which extended over practically all the inhabited earth except Egypt because of the peculiar character of that country, and there followed a destruction both of crops and of men in great numbers, Erechtheus, through his racial connection with Egypt, brought from there to Athens a great supply of grain, and in return those who had enjoyed this aid made their benefactor king.,2.  After he had secured the throne he instituted the initiatory rites of Demeter in Eleusis and established the mysteries, transferring their ritual from Egypt. And the tradition that an advent of the goddess into Attica also took place at that time is reasonable, since it was then that the fruits which are named after her were brought to Athens, and this is why it was thought that the discovery of the seed had been made again, as though Demeter had bestowed the gift.,3.  And the Athenians on their part agree that it was in the reign of Erechtheus, when a lack of rain had wiped out the crops, that Demeter came to them with the gift of grain. Furthermore, the initiatory rites and mysteries of this goddess were instituted at Eleusis at that time.,4.  And their sacrifices as well as their ancient ceremonies are observed by the Athenians in the same way as by the Egyptians; for the Eumolpidae were derived from the priests of Egypt and the Ceryces from the pastophoroi. They are also the only Greeks who swear by Isis, and they closely resemble the Egyptians in both their appearance and manners.,5.  By many other statements like these, spoken more out of a love for glory than with regard for the truth, as I see the matter, they claim Athens as a colony of theirs because of the fame of that city. In general, the Egyptians say that their ancestors sent forth numerous colonies to many parts of the inhabited world, the pre-eminence of their former kings and their excessive population;,6.  but since they offer no precise proof whatsoever for these statements, and since no historian worthy of credence testifies in their support, we have not thought that their accounts merited recording. So far as the ideas of the Egyptians about the gods are concerned, let what we have said suffice, since we are aiming at due proportion in our account, but with regard to the land, the Nile, and everything else worth hearing about we shall endeavour, in each case, to give the several facts in summary.
14. Plutarch, On The Delays of Divine Vengeance, None (1st cent. CE - 2nd cent. CE)

15. Aelian, Varia Historia, 3.43 (2nd cent. CE - 3rd cent. CE)

16. Pausanias, Description of Greece, 1.14.7, 1.18.5, 1.22.3, 2.5.1, 3.15.10, 3.23.1, 6.25.1 (2nd cent. CE - 2nd cent. CE)

1.14.7. Hard by is a sanctuary of the Heavenly Aphrodite; the first men to establish her cult were the Assyrians, after the Assyrians the Paphians of Cyprus and the Phoenicians who live at Ascalon in Palestine ; the Phoenicians taught her worship to the people of Cythera . Among the Athenians the cult was established by Aegeus, who thought that he was childless (he had, in fact, no children at the time) and that his sisters had suffered their misfortune because of the wrath of Heavenly Aphrodite. The statue still extant is of Parian marble and is the work of Pheidias. One of the Athenian parishes is that of the Athmoneis, who say that Porphyrion, an earlier king than Actaeus, founded their sanctuary of the Heavenly One. But the traditions current among the Parishes often differ altogether from those of the city. 1.18.5. Hard by is built a temple of Eileithyia, who they say came from the Hyperboreans to Delos and helped Leto in her labour; and from Delos the name spread to other peoples. The Delians sacrifice to Eileithyia and sing a hymn of Olen . But the Cretans suppose that Eileithyia was born at Auunisus in the Cnossian territory, and that Hera was her mother. Only among the Athenians are the wooden figures of Eileithyia draped to the feet. The women told me that two are Cretan, being offerings of Phaedra, and that the third, which is the oldest, Erysichthon brought from Delos . 1.22.3. When Theseus had united into one state the many Athenian parishes, he established the cults of Aphrodite Pandemos (Common) and of Persuasion. The old statues no longer existed in my time, but those I saw were the work of no inferior artists. There is also a sanctuary of Earth, Nurse of Youth, and of Demeter Chloe (Green). You can learn all about their names by conversing with the priests. 2.5.1. On the summit of the Acrocorinthus is a temple of Aphrodite. The images are Aphrodite armed, Helius, and Eros with a bow. The spring, which is behind the temple, they say was the gift of Asopus to Sisyphus. The latter knew, so runs the legend, that Zeus had ravished Aegina, the daughter of Asopus, but refused to give information to the seeker before he had a spring given him on the Acrocorinthus. When Asopus granted this request Sisyphus turned informer, and on this account he receives—if anyone believes the story—punishment in Hades. I have heard people say that this spring and Peirene are the same, the water in the city flowing hence under-ground. 3.15.10. Not far from the theater is a sanctuary of Poseidon God of Kin, and there are hero-shrines of Cleodaeus, son of Hyllus, and of Oebalus. The most famous of their sanctuaries of Asclepius has been built near Booneta, and on the left is the hero-shrine of Teleclus. I shall mention him again later in my history of Messenia . See Paus. 4.4.2, and Paus. 4.31.3 . A little farther on is a small hill, on which is an ancient temple with a wooden image of Aphrodite armed. This is the only temple I know that has an upper storey built upon it. 3.23.1. Cythera lies opposite Boeae ; to the promontory of Platanistus, the point where the island lies nearest to the mainland, it is a voyage of forty stades from a promontory on the mainland called Onugnathus. In Cythera is a port Scandeia on the coast, but the town Cythera is about ten stades inland from Scandeia. The sanctuary of Aphrodite Urania (the Heavenly) is most holy, and it is the most ancient of all the sanctuaries of Aphrodite among the Greeks. The goddess herself is represented by an armed image of wood. 6.25.1. Behind the portico built from the spoils of Corcyra is a temple of Aphrodite, the precinct being in the open, not far from the temple. The goddess in the temple they call Heavenly; she is of ivory and gold, the work of Pheidias, and she stands with one foot upon a tortoise. The precinct of the other Aphrodite is surrounded by a wall, and within the precinct has been made a basement, upon which sits a bronze image of Aphrodite upon a bronze he-goat. It is a work of Scopas, and the Aphrodite is named Common. The meaning of the tortoise and of the he-goat I leave to those who care to guess.
17. Papyri, Papyri Graecae Magicae, 4.29, 4.291-4.294, 4.2891-4.2899, 4.2901-4.2909, 4.2911-4.2919, 4.2921-4.2929, 4.2931-4.2939, 4.2941-4.2942 (3rd cent. CE - 4th cent. CE)

18. Epigraphy, Ig Iv ,1, 121

19. Epigraphy, Ngsl, 20

20. Papyri, Derveni Papyrus, 13.9, 15.6-15.7, 16.1, 21.5, 21.7-21.10, 22.12

Subjects of this text:

subject book bibliographic info
achaeans Naiden (2013) 162
acrocorinth,cult statue of aphrodite of Simon (2021) 256
acropolis,athens,votive plaque of aphrodite with eros and himeros Simon (2021) 255
aegina Naiden (2013) 162
aeginetans Mikalson (2003) 191
agamemnon Naiden (2013) 162
air Álvarez (2019) 120
ajax Naiden (2013) 162
ajax the lesser Naiden (2013) 162
al-‛uzzā Bernabe et al (2013) 264
alexander of aphrodisias Taylor (2012) 146
alilat,goddess of arabia Mikalson (2003) 190
alilat Bernabe et al (2013) 264
allāt Bernabe et al (2013) 264
alyattes Naiden (2013) 162
anaxagoras Álvarez (2019) 120
antiochus,n. Bickerman and Tropper (2007) 513
aphrodite,aphrodite urania Bernabe et al (2013) 264
aphrodite,ares and Simon (2021) 256
aphrodite,athena and Simon (2021) 256
aphrodite,birth scenes and stories Simon (2021) 255
aphrodite,images and iconography Simon (2021) 255, 256
aphrodite,in homer and hesiod Simon (2021) 255
aphrodite,kythereia Bortolani et al (2019) 252
aphrodite,of didyma Mikalson (2003) 191
aphrodite,origins and development Simon (2021) 255, 256
aphrodite,ourania Bortolani et al (2019) 252
aphrodite,ourania of arabia,ascalon,assyria,cyprus,cythera,persia,scythia Mikalson (2003) 190, 191
aphrodite,sanctuaries and temples Simon (2021) 255, 256
aphrodite,xeinia of egypt Mikalson (2003) 190
aphrodite,zeus and Simon (2021) 255, 256
aphrodite Bernabe et al (2013) 264; Bortolani et al (2019) 252; Bosak-Schroeder (2020) 59; Mikalson (2003) 190, 191; Pachoumi (2017) 157; Simon (2021) 255, 256; Álvarez (2019) 120, 145
aphrodite apostrophia Álvarez (2019) 145
aphrodite pandemos Álvarez (2019) 145
aphrodite urania Simon (2021) 255, 256; Álvarez (2019) 145
aphrodites birth by the ejaculation of zeus Álvarez (2019) 120
aphrodites births Álvarez (2019) 120, 145
apion Bickerman and Tropper (2007) 513
apollo Gagné (2020) 119
arabia,arab,arabic Bernabe et al (2013) 264
arabians Mikalson (2003) 190
archelaus (king of cappadocia),and dream interpretation Taylor (2012) 146
archilochus Naiden (2013) 162
ares,aphrodite and Simon (2021) 256
artemis Gagné (2020) 119; Naiden (2013) 162; Pachoumi (2017) 157; Álvarez (2019) 145
as phallus (that of uranus) Álvarez (2019) 145
ascalon (syria),temple of urania Simon (2021) 255, 256
asclepius Naiden (2013) 162
assimilation Bortolani et al (2019) 252; Pachoumi (2017) 157
assyria Bortolani et al (2019) 252
assyrians Mikalson (2003) 190
astarte Bortolani et al (2019) 252
athena,aphrodite and Simon (2021) 256
athena,pronoia Gagné (2020) 119
athena Bosak-Schroeder (2020) 59; Gagné (2020) 119
aulis Naiden (2013) 162
babylonian Bernabe et al (2013) 264
birth scenes and stories,aphrodite Simon (2021) 255
cadmus and cadmeians Simon (2021) 256
cecrops Bosak-Schroeder (2020) 67
chians Mikalson (2003) 191
cnidians Mikalson (2003) 191
cosmos Álvarez (2019) 120, 145
cronus,etymologized as κρούων νοῦς Álvarez (2019) 120, 145
cult,cultic acts for specific cults, the corresponding god or place Bernabe et al (2013) 264
cyprus Bortolani et al (2019) 252
dead sea and area,dead water term,usage of Taylor (2012) 146
dead sea and the essenes Taylor (2012) 146
dead sea scrolls,name of Taylor (2012) 146
delphi Naiden (2013) 162
demeter Naiden (2013) 162; Álvarez (2019) 120
derveni author Álvarez (2019) 120, 145
dictyna,goddess of cydonia Mikalson (2003) 191
dio chrysostom,dio chrysostoms essenes Taylor (2012) 146
dio chrysostom Taylor (2012) 146
diocletian Taylor (2012) 146
diodorus siculus,,sex/gender variance in Bosak-Schroeder (2020) 59
diomedes Bortolani et al (2019) 252
dione Álvarez (2019) 145
dionysos Bernabe et al (2013) 264
divine epithets Bortolani et al (2019) 252
dusares,dushara Bernabe et al (2013) 264
east,eastern,near east,near-eastern Bernabe et al (2013) 264
east,eastern,pantheon Bernabe et al (2013) 264
egypt/egyptians,aphrodite/urania and Simon (2021) 255
egypt and egyptians Mikalson (2003) 190, 191
eileithyaia Gagné (2020) 119
eros Simon (2021) 255; Álvarez (2019) 145
erotic magic Bortolani et al (2019) 252
ethnicity,and animality Bosak-Schroeder (2020) 67
euripides Álvarez (2019) 145
fertility Bernabe et al (2013) 264
gaia Álvarez (2019) 120, 145
genesis Taylor (2012) 146
gods as elements,names of the gods Álvarez (2019) 120, 145
great Pachoumi (2017) 157
great goddess Bernabe et al (2013) 264
greek literature Bortolani et al (2019) 252
greek magic,ritual and religion Bortolani et al (2019) 252
hadrian Taylor (2012) 146
halicarnassians Mikalson (2003) 191
harmonia Álvarez (2019) 120, 145
hathor Bortolani et al (2019) 252
heaven,heavenly Bernabe et al (2013) 264
hekate-selene-artemis Pachoumi (2017) 157
hekate Bortolani et al (2019) 252; Pachoumi (2017) 157
hellenic Bernabe et al (2013) 264
hellenion of naucratis Mikalson (2003) 191
hellenistic Bernabe et al (2013) 264
hera,of samos Mikalson (2003) 191
hera Álvarez (2019) 120, 145
hera urania Álvarez (2019) 145
herodotus,,sex/gender variance in Bosak-Schroeder (2020) 59
herodotus Naiden (2013) 162
hesiod,on aphrodite Simon (2021) 255, 256
hesiod Gagné (2020) 119; Álvarez (2019) 120, 145
hestia Álvarez (2019) 120
himeros Simon (2021) 255
histories (herodotus),,mixing of species in Bosak-Schroeder (2020) 67
history,historian Faure (2022) 149
homer,on aphrodite Simon (2021) 256
homer Gagné (2020) 119
hymns,- magical Bortolani et al (2019) 252
identification,- between different deities Bortolani et al (2019) 252
identified with zeus Álvarez (2019) 120, 145
inanna Bortolani et al (2019) 252
incense Simon (2021) 255
ishtar Bernabe et al (2013) 264
isis Bortolani et al (2019) 252
ištar Bortolani et al (2019) 252
judaea,region of Taylor (2012) 146
kronos Gagné (2020) 119
kumarbi Simon (2021) 256
kythera,sanctuary of urania on Simon (2021) 256
legrand,philippe Gagné (2020) 119
leto Gagné (2020) 119
libyans Mikalson (2003) 190
magic Pachoumi (2017) 157
milesians Mikalson (2003) 191
mithra,goddess of persia Mikalson (2003) 190
mixing (of elements) Álvarez (2019) 120
moira Álvarez (2019) 145
moirai Álvarez (2019) 145
muses Simon (2021) 255
mylitta of assyria Mikalson (2003) 190
mystery cults Álvarez (2019) 120
myth,mythical Bernabe et al (2013) 264
nabataeans Bernabe et al (2013) 264
name Pachoumi (2017) 157
nanno Bosak-Schroeder (2020) 59
nero Naiden (2013) 162
night (goddess) Álvarez (2019) 145
nilsson,martin,on aphrodite Simon (2021) 255
odysseus Naiden (2013) 162
offerings (including sacrifice) Bortolani et al (2019) 252
opis and arge Gagné (2020) 119
orient,oriental Bernabe et al (2013) 264
origine Faure (2022) 149
orpheus Álvarez (2019) 120
orphic poems Álvarez (2019) 120
osiris Pachoumi (2017) 157
ouranos Bortolani et al (2019) 252
palaestina,use of term Taylor (2012) 146
pantheon,eastern Bernabe et al (2013) 264
particles (in cosmogony) Álvarez (2019) 120
past Faure (2022) 149
peitho (persuasion) Álvarez (2019) 120, 145
persephone/kore Bortolani et al (2019) 252
phaethousa Bosak-Schroeder (2020) 59
phaselians Mikalson (2003) 191
phocaeans Mikalson (2003) 191
phoenecians Mikalson (2003) 190, 191
phoenicia,phoenician Bernabe et al (2013) 264
phoenicians Simon (2021) 256
plato Álvarez (2019) 145
polemics Bickerman and Tropper (2007) 513
polycrates of samos Mikalson (2003) 191
poseidon,of libya Mikalson (2003) 190
poseidon Mikalson (2003) 190
possession,possessed Bernabe et al (2013) 264
professionals,of the sacred Álvarez (2019) 120
protogonos (orphic god) Álvarez (2019) 120
ptolemies Bickerman and Tropper (2007) 513
resurrection Pachoumi (2017) 157
rhapsodies (orphic poem) Álvarez (2019) 145
rhea Álvarez (2019) 120
rhodians Mikalson (2003) 191
rite,ritual Bernabe et al (2013) 264
ritual Gagné (2020) 119
ritual experts/magicians Bortolani et al (2019) 252
sacrilegium Bickerman and Tropper (2007) 513
salmoneus Simon (2021) 256
samians Mikalson (2003) 191
sanctuaries and temples,of aphrodite Simon (2021) 255, 256
scythians Mikalson (2003) 190
selene' Pachoumi (2017) 157
semites,semitic Bernabe et al (2013) 264
sex,sexuality Bernabe et al (2013) 264
shechemites Bickerman and Tropper (2007) 513
simon (essene),archelaus dream and Taylor (2012) 146
sophocles Naiden (2013) 162
souls Álvarez (2019) 145
sparta,cult statue of aphrodite of Simon (2021) 256
sparta Naiden (2013) 162
statue of goddess from,zeus uranius in Simon (2021) 255
sun Álvarez (2019) 145
swallowing,zeus swallowing of the phallus of uranus Álvarez (2019) 120
syncretism Bortolani et al (2019) 252
synesius of crete,language of Taylor (2012) 146
synesius of crete,presentation of dios essenes Taylor (2012) 146
syrien Hellholm et al. (2010) 1115
syrisches christentum Hellholm et al. (2010) 1115
talthybius Naiden (2013) 162
teians Mikalson (2003) 191
thebes,aphrodite in Simon (2021) 256
underworld,greek Bortolani et al (2019) 252
urania Álvarez (2019) 145
urania (muse) Simon (2021) 255
uranus Simon (2021) 255; Álvarez (2019) 120, 145
uranus phallus Álvarez (2019) 120
vegetal material Bortolani et al (2019) 252
venus planet Bernabe et al (2013) 264
voces magicae Bortolani et al (2019) 252
von wilamowitz-möllendorff,ulrich Gagné (2020) 119
votives,plaque of aphrodite with eros and himeros,acropolis,athens Simon (2021) 255
weddings and marriages,ares and aphrodite Simon (2021) 256
xenia Mikalson (2003) 190
xerxes,,doomed invasion of greece Bosak-Schroeder (2020) 67
zabinas Bickerman and Tropper (2007) 513
zeus,aphrodite and Simon (2021) 255, 256
zeus,as ἀήρ and νοῦς Álvarez (2019) 120, 145
zeus,of naucratis Mikalson (2003) 191
zeus Bortolani et al (2019) 252; Álvarez (2019) 120, 145
zeus incest with his mother Álvarez (2019) 120
zeus new creation of the world Álvarez (2019) 120, 145
zeus uranius Simon (2021) 255
θόρνηι Álvarez (2019) 120
κρούων νous (etymology of cronus) Álvarez (2019) 120, 145
νοῦς-ἀήρ Álvarez (2019) 120
νοῦς (allegory of zeus) Álvarez (2019) 120, 145
νῦν ἐόντα,τὰ (the things-that-are-now) Álvarez (2019) 120
πνεῦμα Álvarez (2019) 145
φρόνησις Álvarez (2019) 145
ἀφροδισιάζειν Álvarez (2019) 145
ἀήρ Álvarez (2019) 145
ἐόντα,τὰ (the things-that-are) Álvarez (2019) 120