Philonica et Neotestamentica

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Monthly Archives: October 2009

Visiting Elevsis

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If you go to Greece, studying their ancient religious traditions, Elevsis (Elefsina), ca. 30 km outside Athens, is surely a place you ought to see.
Being one of the most famous sites of the ancient mystery cults, it has a history going back to ca 700 BCE. But to have a good understanding of the site, you need to know the story behind it, that is, the story of Demeter and Kore. You can read about the legend here:

Entrance

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The view when you enter the Site of Eleusis. The many stones laying around gives you a small but strong impression that the entrance must have been marvelous.

Entrance gate detail

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This detail from the entrance gate at Eleusis made me almost hear the sound of the doors getting opened and then being closed. I surely would not have been taken inside….

Hades

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The place were according to the story Hades came up from the underworld and captured Kore.

A bouquet to Demeter?

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It was somewhat strange to see that at the innermost of the Hades cave, someone had placed a bouquet of some flowers and some ears of corn. Still someone worshipping Demeter?

Elevsis overview

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An overview of ancient Eleusis; compare it to the model below.

A model of ancient Eleuvsis

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This model of ancient Eleuvsis is located in the Eleuvsis museum, on site.