Orpheus and Greek Religion

Orpheus and Greek Religion : A Study of the Orphic Movement


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The tales told of Orpheus are legion. He is said to have been an Argonaut--and to have saved Jason's life. Rivers are reported to have stopped their flow to listen to the sounds of his lyre and his voice. Plato cites his poetry and Herodotus refers to "practices that are called Orphic." Did Orpheus, in fact, exist? His influence on Greek thought is undeniable, but his disciples left little of substance behind them. Indeed, their Orphic precepts have been lost to time. W.K.C. Guthrie attempts to uncover and define Orphism by following its circuitous path through ancient history. He tackles this daunting task with the determination of a detective and the analytical rigor of a classical scholar. He ferries his readers with him on a singular voyage of discovery.

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  • Paperback | 352 pages
  • 137.16 x 213.36 x 22.86mm | 340.19g
  • Princeton University Press
  • New JerseyUnited States
  • English
  • With a New Introduction by Lar ed.
  • 0691024995
  • 9780691024998
  • 430,775

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[T]he books ascribed to Hermes ... fall into two divisions, the technical and the philosophical, which Fowden treats separately... [His] scholarly survery makes an excellent foundation for further study of points of detail and of paganism in general. Shadow

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"Absolutely indispensable. . . . written for both scholars and general readers. It is admirably lucid and well-organized, and is fully accessible--indeed, fascinating--for anyone interested in the ancient world."--David Ulansey, Boston University

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