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genealogies as throwing any light on the secret of Eleusis.
Whatever stories were in vogue concerning the babe lacchos
and his nurture at Demeters breast*, we must not lightly
suppose that these emanated from the centre of the mysteries
themselves, or that lacchos and hisjj legend had much to do
with the hpa}xa \xv(mK6v. All that we know of him in respect
of the mysteries is that as the youthful Dionysos he was
escorted in the sacred procession* to Eleusis once a year, and
was in some sense regarded as the leader of the mystae, and
that his home was Athens ^ He was a popular, not a specially
* mystic,' still less an * Orphic ' figure °, and fortunately for
him the later manufacturers of Orphic poetry did not trouble
much about n from any,
for he is dealing solely with the remote origins of Eleusinian

the foreign applicants at the Delphic the representative of the ancient king

oracle needed a Delphian) : this would (R. 182. 184, 190), and at Ephesos of

be a survival of the ancient feeling. the descendants of Androclot who were

• Vide Athena, R. i7»». still caUed kings »>•. But it is ob-

•> Muller, i:iiin$ Schrift 2, p. 257, viously possible that the Ephesians

goes so far as to maintain that Athens borrowed their 'EXcvcrirta Xtp6i at a later

had won Eleusis and the mysteries before date, and merely followed Uie Athenian

the Ionic migration to Asia Minor : example in this detail of the administra-

for at Athens the chief management tion.
was in the hands of the a^x^*" ^ainAcu;,

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things. And if we believe that the admission of alien Greeks
to the mysteries was a comparatively early event, we can
better understand the migration of Eleusinian mystic cult
into other localities of Hellas and the antiquity that was
claimed for many of these affiliated shrines of Demeter
'EXcvcrtria. But it will be more convenient to discuss at the
end of this investigation what was the real relation between
these and the Attic town.

The abolition of the gentile privilege, carried out by Athens
before the sixth century and foreshadowing her later policy
of wise toleration of aliens, was a momentous event in the
history of ancient religion. It is true that af the dawn of
history in Hellas the barriers of the ancient 'sacra' are
already breaking down : Amphictyonies are being formed
and many of the high gods are common to the great tribes,
and oracles are speaking to the whole people. But here for .
the first time was a religion that invited the whole Hellenic
world to communion ; and while Delphi was growing to
exercise a certain political and sacerdotal influence in matters
external, Eleusis might hope to become the shrine of the
spiritual life of the nation. And this Eleusinian communion
was not a convention into which an individual found himself
bom, as he was born into a certain circle of household and
civic 'sacra,' but was a free act of the individual's choice.
\^- Nor were women excluded, nor even slaves. As regards the
former there is no question^'": but as to the admission ot
the latter there is difference of opinion. There is no reason
at all for pronouncing it a priori improbable. There were
many cults to which slaves had free access, and some were
their special prerogative : the very occurrence in certain ritual
inscriptions of the prohibition — lov\i^ oi Oifus — shows that
this rule was not universal. And that there was no such
prohibition at Eleusis is almost proved by the fragment of
the comic poet Theophilos ^"* : the slave remembers with
gratitude the kindnesses of his master towards him, 'who
taught me my letters, and who got me initiated into the
sacred mysteries".' It is difficult to suggest who at Athens

* Mcinekc, ibid., suggests that possibly p. 19, takes the natural interpretation
n freedman is speaking. Lobeck, op. cit. but does not insist on it.

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the 0€oi to whom he was initiated could be except the famous
TO) 0€(i. But more positive evidence is provided by the in-
scription found some years ago at Eleusis containing the
accounts of the Eleusinian officials during the administration
of Lycurgus, B. C. 329-328 ; one of the items of expenses is
fxvi](n9 tQv Stj/xoo-io)!/ ^*-, and from this we are bound to con-
clude that, at least under special conditions, slaves could be
admitted to initiation; nor in the scrutiny of candidates'^^
does any question seem to have keen raised concerning free
or unfree status.

We may now consider certain points of interest in the
state-organization of the mysteries and in the personndlc of
the administration. From the sixth century no distinct record
has come down to us, unless we assign an exact and literal
accuracy to a statement of Andocides, who quotes a law of
Solon bidding the fiovikf] hold a meeting in the Athenian
Eleusinion on the day after the mysteries, no doubt to debate
on matters connected with them ^■*. But the orators use
Solon's name so vaguely that the statement loses its chrono-
logical value. The excavations at Eleusis appear to show
that the period of Pisistratus was one of great architectural
I activity there, as the rapidly increasing prestige and popularity
1 of the mysteries demanded a new laying-out of the site. But
\the construction of the /nuort/cos <n;ico?, which existed at least
\till the time of Strabo, was one of the great achievements
^f the Periclean administration ^"""^"^ And from the fifth
century two inscriptions have come down to us giving
important illustration of the Panhellenic character which
attached to the rites, and which the Athenian state desired
to intensify: one that may be dated earlier than 450 B.C.
contains the decree proclaiming a holy truce of three months
for the mystae, epoptai and their attendants both at the
greater and lesser mysteries, so as to allow ample time both
for the journey out and the return to their homes"*; the
other, a generation later, is the famous inscription concerning
the airapxatj which has already been discussed ^^^ : the subject-
states are commanded, the other Hellenic communities are
courteously invited, to send thank-offerings of corn in ac-

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cordance with the oracle, and divine blessings are invoked
upon them if they comply. The invitation was to be pro-
claimed at the mysteries, the sacrifices offered from the tithes
or from the money the tithes realized were consecrated to the
divinities of the inner and outer circle of the mysteries, as the
state and the Eumolpidae prescribed. Grounds have been
given above * for the opinion that these offerings were intended
for the Eleusinia as part of the preliminary ritual, not for the
Haloa as Mommsen has maintained. We may read in these
records the far-sighted policy of Athens, the determination to
find if possible a religious support for her hegemony. Even
when the latter had passed away, Oimpoi still flocked to the
great celebration from all parts of Greece. And in an in-
scription of the fourth century the prayer of the Milesian
representatives is preserved, who pray *for the health and
safety of the people of Athens, their children and wives'^*'.

It vc^s in the fifth ccntuiy also that the ministration of the
rites received the organization that lasted throughout the later
period : the early Attic inscription mentioned above contains
some of the official titles that are found in the lists compiled
by later antiquarians ^'^.

We can consider here the relative position of Eleusis and
the capital city. The tradition preserved by Pausanias ^^^ is
founded to some extent on actual fact : that by the terms
of submission whereby Eleusis was merged in the larger state
she still was allowed to retain the performance of the mysteries
in her own hands. But the literary evidence from the fifth
century onwards shows how complete was the control of the
Athenian state, to whom every one of the numerous officials
was responsible 2^^. The head of the general management!
was the king-archon, who with his irapcSpoy and the four!
epimeletae, two of whom were appointed by the ecclesia,j
formed a general committee of supervision, and matters of j
importance connected with the ritual were decided by the!
Boule and Ecclesia. Here, as in Greek religion generally/
the state was supreme over the church. Nevertheless, the
legend about the treaty corresponded to a great extent witl

* Vitle pp. 43-44, 46 note a.

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the facts. For the function of the Athenian state— apart from
the questionable family of the Kerykes— was really confined
to externals and to the exercise of control. The claim of
Eleusis as the metropolis of the mysteries was not ignored
or slighted. For of the two priestly families in whose hands
lay the mystic celebration itself and the formal privilege of
admission, the Eumolpidae and the Kerykes, the first were
undoubtedly Eleusinian. They were recognized by the author
of the hymn as a leading local fjimily, to whose ancestor
Demeter had revealed her opyi^a^ and in origin they belonged
at least to the period of their city's independence. The
story of their * Thracian ' or North Greek provenance docs not
concern us here, but will be discussed in the chapter on
Poseidon ; for if there is foundation for it, the legend concerns
his cult, not Demctcr's, and ought not to be quoted in support
of a theory concerning the influence of early Thrako-Phrygian
religion upon the Eleusinian mystery : had there been any, it
would have worked through Dionysiac or Cybele-cult, with
which the Eumolpidae have nothing to do*. For the present
purpose then they may rank as representing in Athenian
religious history the claim of the old Eleusis and the principle
of apostolic succession, long cherished though frequently
through stress of circumstances abandoned in Greek ritual.
The chief official of their family who represented them to the
state and the religious head of the whole celebration was
the Hierophantes. His name discloses his solemn function:
it was he who was said to * reveal the orgies,' <l>aCv€iv ra opyta,
to * show the things of the mystery,' b^iKwivai, ra Upd ^^\ He
alone could penetrate into the innermost shrine, the fiiyapov or
the aviKTopoVi in the hall of the mysteries^®*", whence, at the
most solemn moment of the whole mystic celebration, his

* Miss Harrison in her theories con- myth that it was he who invented the

ceming the position of Enmolpos and culture of the vine and other trees ; but

Dionysos at Eleusis does not take snf- this is only found in a foolish compila-

ficient account of this fact (/^vZtr^//inMr, tion of Pliny's concerning mythic in-

p. 561) : in the manifold genealogical ventors {A'af. Ilist, 7, § 199). The

and other legends concerning Eumolpos connexion between Eumolpos and Mu-

there is not a single Dionysiac trait saeos is a transparent Orphic fiction,
except possibly the vague and doubtful

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form suddenly appeared transfigured in light before the rapt
gaze of the initiated "•*» I Whether he was then enacting
a divine part is a question we may postpone for the present.
To him alone belonged the power of^ivrjtns in the highest and
strictest sense of the word *®*, for he alone could show the
mystic objects the sight of which completed the initiation.
And it seems that he could refuse those applicants whom he
judged unfit for the communion "*. He was an impressive
figure, holding office for life, wearing a peculiar and stately
dress *^-', and so sacred in person and habit of life that no one
dared to address him by his personal name*; according to
Pausanias he might never marry, and was vowed to continual
chastity ^-^'*»^ ; but this was probably a rule introduced under
the Roman Empire ^ for it appears that the sacerdotal sanctity
of the hierophantes continued to increase throughout the later
ages, until both the office and the associations attaching to it
were absorbed by Christianity*^. By the side of the hiero-
phantes we find two hierophantides, female attendants on the
elder and younger goddess ^^'»^^^»-^^ Their special duty was
perhaps to introduce and initiate the female aspirants; but
they were present throughout the whole ceremony, and played
some part also in the initiation of the men ; for an epitaph on
a hierophantis mentions to her glory that she had set the
crown, the seal of the mystic communion, on the heads of
the illustrious mystae Marcus Aurelius and Commodus ^^* **.
In another epigram, of a late period from Eleusis, a certain
Kallisto speaks of herself as * one who stands near the doors

* Thb rule that Ludtn attests *"« ArcA, 1883, p. 79). The Uboo on the

may only refer to casual or flippant personal names of sacrosanct people is

mention of the name in pnblic. The world-wide : it survives in certain usages

inscriptions are not so reticent : a decree of modem society,

of the Kerykes and Eumolpidae (fourth * Vide Foucart, Crattds MysHres

century B.C.) names a hierophantChaire- (TJ^UusU^ p. 28: he quotes an earlier

tios {fipk. Arch, 1883, p. 83), and inscription from Eleusis mentioning the

another— quite as late as the time of wife of the hierophantes.

Lodan — names Glaukos***: but a * Vide Goblet d'Alviella, ^/^hjx/mVt,

hierophant, writing his own eulogy, pp. 145-146, and his quotation from

asks the mystae not to inquire about Theodoretus, which however seems

his personal name, for he lost it on from the context to refer to the mysteries

entering the sacred office — ' the mystic of Priapos at Lampsacos (Theodor. Dc

law wafted it away into the sea * {^Eph, Fide, t. 4, p. 482).

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of Demeter and Kore/ and as cherishing the recollection of
' those nights lit by a fairer light than the day ' ^^* *. Kallisto
is thinking of the torch-lit hall, and she must have been the
hierophantis or perhaps * the priestess.' For we hear of * the
priestess' of Demeter and Kore^**-, and her residence at
Eleusis ^^- ; it appears that she held office for life, and certain
Eleusinian inscriptions have been found that are dated by her
name*^-; like the hierophantides she was probably of the
Eumolpid family*. We hear alscj of the ITaray^y, 'the All-
holy One,' among the female ministrants of the mysteries : and
we should suppose that so solemn a title could only attach to
the high-priestess of the temple or to the hierophantides, and
only to them in so far as they were regarded as the human
embodiments of the divinities themselves. But a late inscrip-
tion teaches us that the * Panages ' was neither one nor the other
of these high functionaries, and she remains a mysterious
incog ui to '^^^*^'^^. Besides these ministers, one of the com-
mittee of management called the ^mfi^kriTaC, who sat with the
Basileus, was appointed from the Eumolpidae ; as was also an
'EfryyTynJy ^ a person who served as religious adviser to the
state in the interpretation of ritual-law ^*'» ^'^ -^K

The Eumolpidae survived as a hieratic caste down to the
last period of Athenian history : and Plutarch was able to
say^^* that even in his own day it was still Eumolpos who
initiated the Hellenes*^. As a corporation they exercised

• The evidence is clearer in their case
(vide EpA. Arch, 1883, p. 142) than
hers; Philios, Bull, Corr. Hell, 1895,
p. z 18, assumes it to be true of her also.
Bat it is possible that the gloss in
Photios abont the Philleidae (R. 304)
refers to this priestess: Philios (op.
cit) and Foucart {^Rev. d'£t. Gr.
1893, p. 327) suppose that the mys-
teries to which the priestess of the
Philleidae initiated were the Haloa;
but the only TfXfr^ at the Haloa was
a TfXfTi} of women, and Photius speaks
of Tovj /4v<rrat. The vagueness of the
whole citation very much reduces its

^ Besides the '^17771^ 4£ Ev|MXin8£tfr
we hear of ^£777x0! rpni *••, who appear
from the inscription in Eph. Arch, 1900,
p. 79, to have had some concern with
the Elensinia; are these the same as
the three ez^etae mentioned by the
scholiast on Demosthenes (47, 68), and
described as nv^xPT^^^* ^^ /uKti

These appear to be the body whom
individnab might consult on qoestions
of conscience, for instance, concerning
homicide (Demosth. xar. Evtpy, p. 1 160 ;
Isaeus, p. 73).

* The last hierophant but one before
the Gothic sack was of the Eumol-

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certain functions outside the administration of the mysteries : /
we find them serving on a commission to decide concerning | >
questions of the boundaries of the sacred land at Eleusis and v/
elsewhere in Attica "* ; and legal actions concerning impiety
might be brought directly before them. Every individual
of the family enjoyed certain perquisites from the sacrifices
at the lesser as well as the greater mysteries "®. 'n

The other caste which enjoyed a like position and an \
aUnost equal prestige were the Kerykes, who with the Eu- \
molpidae formed the two Timj that took measures together
to preserve the sanctity of the mysteries "^ ; and recent finds
at Eleusis have brought to light inscriptions enregistering I
their joint decrees. The chief official of the Kerykes was the 1
bahovxos'^^y who like the hierophantes was appointed for life*, 1
and like him was distinguished by a stately, almost royal
robe — a dress which Aeschylus borrowed for his tragedy ;
and the religious sanctity surrounding him was almost as
great, the same rule of reticence concerning the personal
name applying to him also^^^ We find him associated
with the hierophantes in certain solemn and public func-
tions ^^'''^^*, such as in the Trpopprja-is, or opening address to
the mystae^^\ and in the public prayers for the welfare of
the state ^^ He also enjoyed the right of fjiiJ7;<ris"®, but not
in the highest sense of the revelation of the sacred objects**,
nor did he enter the * anaktoron,' the innermost part of the
shrine 2'^ •. Yet he must have been present throughout the
whole solemnity ***^ playing perhaps some part in a divine

pidae: the very la$t was a stranger
from Thespiae, Etinap. Vita Max, p. 5 a

* C /. Gr, 190-194 : among the lists
of 6,tiff%roi of their tribes the mdividual
Sfdovxof, Upoinjpv(, and 6 M /3w>ifp are

^ Besides the loose use of /<vciV in
Gre^— the ordinary dtixen may be
said to /ivciW another in the saise of
paying the money-expenses of the
ceremony (e.g. Demosth. 59. 21)—
there were different grades of the fivtjffit
proper: for instance, at least two dif-


ferent officials, one the Upwp&vniSy
another the Up^t d M fivfiov ^^, claimed
to have initiated Marcos Anrelins ^**,
vide BuU, Corr. HelL 1895, p. 123
(Philios) : and in the lower sense /ivcir
was equivalent to yaterarfort^iv and
referred to the preliminary preparation of
the candidate by the ^tmrrayvyoSf and
this privilege belonged to all members
of the Kerykes and Eumolpidae
clans'**: vide Dittenberger, Hermes^
20, p. 32 ; Foucart,Z«j Grands Mystir^s
d*£ietisiSf p. 93.


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drama ^', and 'holding the torch/ as his title implies.
We find the halov^^o^ officiating at Eleusis in the service of
purification in which Vthe fleece of God' was employed to
cleanse those to whom the stain of gfuilt — probably blood-
guiltiness — attached (Zeus, R. 138*). This purification may
have been resorted to by those who wished for initiation into
the Eleusinia and were disqualified by some ayoy.

As we hear of a hierophantls by the side of the hiero-
phantes, so we are told of a 6a5ovxcJ<ra, the female ministrant
natural in a mystery where women were admitted, and where
goddesses were the chief divinities 2®^. The two other func-
tionaries who were drawn from the family of the Keiykes
were the Upci? 6 izl /3(ofio> ^"^^ "^ and the UpoKxipv^^^^^ '^^.
All these, like the officers of the Eumolpidae, were appointed
for life, and their religious functions might extend beyond
the range of the Eleusinia*. But they had not such juris-
diction as the other family possessed in questions of religious
law, nor did they possess in the earlier period the important
function of exegesis ^s®, though later they seem to have ac-
quired it\

The historical question concerning the Kerykes has been
much debated by recent scholars: were they one of the
original Eleusinian * gentes ' or of Athenian origin ? The evi-
dence from the genealogies is contradictory and ineffectual®.
Pausanias, like Amobius^^^*, traces them back to Eumolpos,
but adds that they themselves claimed Hermes and Aglauros
for their progenitors "^. What is more to the point is that
though the family possessed an official house at Eleusis "® no

* The /fpoxijpv^ assisted the wife of the p. 436.

king-archoD in the Dionysiac serrice : ^ As a specimen see Preller-Robert,

Dittenberger does not regard him as a, p. 7S8, n. 4. In Xen. ffeil, 6. 3, 6

necessarily an Eleusinian fonctionaTy, the Aydovxor in his speech to the

and certainly the name occurs in con- Lacedaemonians speaks of Triptolemos

nexioD with other and non- Attic cults, as d i^/Urtpot vpSywot ; and this is

e.g. SyiL 155. 18 ; 1S6.6; 330. 19 : but usually quoted in support of the Eleu-

at Athens he was probably of the family sinian origin of the Kerykes: but the

of the K^pvMts, The i^ovxot assisted context shows that he is not referring

at the Lenaia. to himself or his own family but to the

* Vide Dittenberger, Utrmes, 20, whole Attic community, one of whose
p. la ; cf. Su//, Corr, HelL 1882, ancestors was Triptolemos.

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trace has as yet been found of any individual of it inhabiting
the Eleusinian district ; the ' gens ' appear to have been scat-
tered over most parts of Attica. Their ancestral deity was
Hermes, and they had special functions in the service of
Apollo Pythios and Delios*, a peculiarly Ionic cult^^. If
then they were a non-Eleusinian stock and belonged to
Athens, we must say that Athens wrested from Eleusis nearly
half the internal management of the mystery ; and Pausanias*
imaginary treaty was not ben trovato. There is much that is
perplexing in regard to this family.

Down to the fourth century we find them constantly coupled
with the Eumolpidae, as if they were a kindred stock ; in fact
one inscription of that period speaks of them as to yivos to
KrjpvKa)v Koi EvfxoX-iTihQv^. But no inscription has come down
to us from a later date than the fourth century — so far as
I am aware — that mentions them at all ; and we have fair
evidence that the b<^hovxCa came at last to pass into the hands
of the Lykomidae, a priestly family at Phlye*^: we cannot
say with accuracy when the change took place, and no writer
definitely mentions it. It is usually supposed that the K^pvKcj
died out : but the words of Pausanias ^^® imply that they were
existing in his time, and Lucian's impostor, Alexander,
named the ministrants of his sham mysteries Eumolpidae
and Kerykes ^". Were they for some reason merged in the
Lykomidae? The change might have been important, for
there is some reason for supposing that these latter were
strong devotees of Orphism *. Yet we cannot trace any Orphic
elements in the cult of Andania, which one of their stock

* Vide Foacftrt, Lis Grands Mysthrts give us instances of 3f8ovxoc of the

d'£leusis, p. 14. Lykomidae, Bull. Corr, HdL 1882,

^ Eph. Arch, 1883, p. 83 : this would p. 496 : <me of this family was iirjyrfrift

really settle the question of their local rwv fwcrripimp in the time of Marcos

origin, but unfortunately the same in- Aurellus.

scription goes on to speak of rd yimj, ^ Vide Lenormant in Daremberg et

distinguishing the family of the Kerykes Saglio, Dictiotmaire des Antiquitis^

from that ofthe Eumolpidae as Aeschines p. 550, who regards the Lykomidae as

■does**. responsible for the Orphism which he

^ It can be discovered by combin- believes transformed the Eleusinia in

ing Pans, 1. 37, I with Plut. Themist, the later times,
I. Inscriptions of the Roman period

M 2

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reorganized in the fourth century B. C. ^** ; nor must we lightly
assume that they were able to effect any fundamental change
in the religious tradition of the Eleusinian TcXeonfptor.

The only other name of some interest among those of the

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