• Girls Playing Persephone (in Marriage and Death)

    Author(s):
    Ellie Mackin (see profile)
    Date:
    2017
    Group(s):
    Ancient Greece & Rome
    Subject(s):
    Classical archaeology, Classical Greek culture, Classical Greek literature
    Item Type:
    Article
    Tag(s):
    ancient Greek religion, classics, Hades, Persephone, rites of passage
    Permanent URL:
    http://dx.doi.org/10.17613/M6TD47
    Abstract:
    Arguably, the most famous myth told about Persephone is her abduction and marriage to Hades. The story clearly articulates the strong connection between marriage and death, and this episode became significant in both literature and religious practice in the wider classical Greek world. Reference to the story of Persephone’s abduction came to be used as a shorthand for evoking this connection, particularly in myth. This paper discusses two particular ways that Persephone’s narrative was used in marriage and death. I examine the pre-marriage offerings to Persephone at Lokroi, in southern Italy, and the tradition of Athenian girls who died unmarried being buried as brides. These cultic instances frame a discussion of Brides of Hades, particularly in tragedy. Overall, I conclude that these girls do not attempt to replace Persephone, but rather to imitate her: the ‘play the role’ of Persephone at various stages of her own abduction and marriage story.
    Metadata:
    Published as:
    Journal article    
    Status:
    Published
    Last Updated:
    2 years ago
    License:
    All Rights Reserved
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