An Archaeology of Ancestors: Tomb Cult and Hero Cult in Early Greece

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Rowman & Littlefield, 1995 - History - 295 pages
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In this fresh consideration of the origins of the ancient Greeks' ideas and practices concerning their own past, the author demonstrates that hero cult and ancestor cult persisted throughout the Iron Age, long before epic poetry's heroic narratives were widely disseminated. Although it was not until the dissolution of Iron Age societies that epic poetry and organised hero cult developed to aid claims to legitimacy, practices such as visiting tombs to make offerings were common, and contradict the usual picture of Iron Age religious conservatism.
  

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Contents

Introduction
1
A Regional Survey of Tomb Cults
11
Cults of Epic and Mythical Heroes
145
The Cult of the Dead
199
An Archaeology of Ancestors
245
Bibliography
269
Index
293
About the Author
297
Copyright

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About the author (1995)

\Carla M. Antonaccio is assistant professor of classics at Wesleyan University in Middletown, Connecticut.

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