Magika Hiera: Ancient Greek Magic and Religion
Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub
This collection challenges the tendency among scholars of ancient Greece to see magical and religious ritual as mutually exclusive and to ignore "magical" practices in Greek religion. The contributors survey specific bodies of archaeological, epigraphical, and papyrological evidence for magical practices in the Greek world, and, in each case, determine whether the traditional dichotomy between magic and religion helps in any way to conceptualize the objective features of the evidence examined. Contributors include Christopher A. Faraone, J.H.M. Strubbe, H.S. Versnel, Roy Kotansky, John Scarborough, Samuel Eitrem, Fritz Graf, John J. Winkler, Hans Dieter Betz, and C.R. Phillips.
in n. 24 above. 52. See, e.g., Clifford Geertz, "Curing, Sorcery, and Magic in a Javanese Town" in Culture, Disease, and Healing, ed. David Landy (New York, 1977), 146-54. 53. E.g., Melford E. Spiro, "The Exorcist," in Burmese Supernaturalism (Englewood Cliffs, N.J., 1967), 230-45. 54. //. IV. 189-219; V.401-2, 889-90; XI.828-47; Od. XIX.457. 55. Wesley D. Smith, "So-Called Possession in Pre-Christian Greece," TAPA 96 (1965): 403-26. 56. Onians, Origins (see n. 10), 489-90. 57. Among many
156-58. 67. Musaeus frag. 19 DK. 68. R. Merkelbach andM. L. West, eds., Fragmenta Hesiodea (Oxford, 1967), p. 173, frag. 349 in "Fragmenta dubia." 69. Dioscorides IV.132 (Wellmann [see n. 24], 11:277) not surprisingly retains some of the folklore about TpnroKiov, writing that "it is written that the flower changes its color three times a day." Dioscorides recommends its white root, mixed in two drachmas of wine, as a diuretic and that the root is "cut into antidotes." In southern European folk
envisage themselves striving against unfairly superior opponents. Jevons saw that it was impossible to distinguish a defixio employing a prayer formula from a traditional Greek prayer, and he attempted, instead, to distinguish "magical" defixiones from "religious" ones by noting whether or not they invoked deities to perform the curse. In drawing this distinction he applied Nilsson's dictum that a miracle performed without the help of the gods is a "magical" act and one performed with their aid
forbade incantation for harmful purposes (followed by many laws in the imperial period that outlawed magic). We have evidence that similar attitudes existed in more or less private circles; the terror and disapproval that followed the fortuitous find in the nineteen sixties of a magical curse in a grave in modern Greece and the official execration of its author by the village priest12 have a splendid parallel in an event narrated by a Latin inscription from Tuder (Corpus Inscriptionum Latinarum
seen on the excellent photo published alongside; the putative is rather an unsuccessful start of the of the that follows it.74 My rejection of ere is supported by the fact that an addressed object is totally without parallel in such texts and by the syntactically impossible position between and . Therefore I propose as translation, I consecrate to the mother of the gods the gold pieces that I have lost, all of them, so that the goddess will track them down and bring everything to light75 and will