Saturday, July 19, 2008

Adonia, Graeco-Roman (Jul 19 - 20)

Today according to Australian Eastern Standard Time when this item was posted

A holy enactment of the wedding of Adonis and Aphrodite took place today, in Greece, and this festival also commemorated the zenith of Adonis's six-month presence in the world. In other words, it represented the peak of vegetative growth. The Adonia is closely related to the ancient Egyptian Opet festival for the siblings/lovers Isis and Osiris, held at this time.

In 5th-Century BCE Athens the Adonia were held in April, in Ptolemaic Egypt perhaps in September, while under the Roman Empire, the accepted date was today.

The Adonia was celebrated only by women, who brought statues of Adonis into the streets, laid them out as though they were at a funeral, and beat themselves and wailed. On day two they were joyful and celebratory, for they had helped Adonis, representing vegetative growth, to return to life and spend half the year with his lover Aphrodite (known to the Romans as Venus).

Images of Adonis and Aphrodite were laid on a silver couch and on the second day cast into the sea ...

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