Chapter

City Dionysia, Bakchiadai, Euneidai, and Other <i>Genē</i>

Christiane Sourvinou-Inwood

in Athenian Myths and Festivals

Published in print January 2011 | ISBN: 9780199592074
Published online May 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780191595592 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199592074.003.0006
City Dionysia, Bakchiadai, Euneidai, and Other Genē

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This chapter argues that there was no traditional gentilicial connection between the genos Bakchiadai and the City Dionysia, and more generally the cult of Dionysos Eleuthereus. We cannot hope to know, without new evidence, whether the Bakchiadai were an old genos or, more likely, a new one, created in the context of the genē revival in the 2nd century bc. But there is a very strong case against the hypothesis that this genos had an ancestral association with the cult of Dionysos Eleuthereus and the City Dionysia comparable to the relationship between other genē and other cults. Nor did the genos of the Euneidai have a significant association with the City Dionysia; if the Euneidai always performed certain ritual duties such as kithara playing or providing a herald for the processions they would also have performed those at the City Dionysia, but this would not constitute a specific gentilicial connection with this particular festival and cult. There are also good reasons for thinking that no genos had a special connection with the City Dionysia and that the priesthood of Dionysos Eleuthereus was non-gentilicial and may have been the first major priesthood to have been open to all Athenians.

Keywords: genos Bakchiadai; City Dionysia; cults; Dionysos Eleuthereus

Chapter.  11175 words. 

Subjects: Religion in the Ancient World

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