Greek Animal Sacrifice in the Period 100 <span class="smallCaps">bc</span>–<span class="smallCaps">ad</span> 200

Maria‐Zoe Petropoulou

in Animal Sacrifice in Ancient Greek Religion, Judaism, and Christianity, 100 BC to AD 200

Published in print March 2008 | ISBN: 9780199218547
Published online May 2008 | e-ISBN: 9780191711503 | DOI:

Series: Oxford Classical Monographs

Greek Animal Sacrifice in the Period 100 bc–ad 200

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This chapter is framed by two aims: to refute Nilsson's view about the decline of animal sacrifice in the period under study; and to demonstrate the sometimes obligatory character of animal sacrifice in Greek communities in the same period. The first section smoothes the chronological gaps in the evidence, and argues that the practice of animal sacrifice was continuously present in Greek communities, even if its presence in the sources is intermittent. The next section discusses the vigorous character of animal sacrificial practice, treating the evidence from Pausanias as a proof of continuity in sacrificial worship and not as fantasies of an archaist (as Pausanias is usually considered by scholars). The third section presents more analytically the interaction of sacrificial honours between city and individual. Finally, examples are given wherein a sacrificial offering might have constituted a psychological or customary obligation emphasize the importance of objection to sacrifice.

Keywords: animal sacrifice; archaism; continuity; Greek; individual; Nilsson; Pausanias; obligation; objection

Chapter.  34278 words. 

Subjects: Classical History

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