For those readers of this blogg who are interested in the modern day worship of the "Olympic Gods" (for whatever reason) I post below some information about the ancient Greek month of BOEDROMION and the Gods which were honoured in ancient times. Boedromion started (this year 2010) at sundown on Thursday 9th September.

(Note for modern day followers: This information may be of interest to both those people who prefer a more traditional approach to their worship - and those who prefer a more contemporary approach. Knowing what the ancients did allows us to make more informed decisions about what we choose to do today - mainly in our own households - and occassionally in communial gatherrings.)



I thank Bob Clarke for providing the information below:

Boedromion
2nd Year of the 697th Olympiad

At sundown on Thursday the 9th of September 2010, the Noumenia in honor of Selene, Apollon Noumenios, and the household Gods begins the month of Boedromion which is the third month of the second year of the 697th Olympiad.

The Noumenia begins the new month and the following day beginning at sundown on Friday 10th of September is the Noumenia kata Selene in honor of Selene, Apollon Noumenios, and the household Gods - the first crescent moon which marks the beginning of Boedromion which is the third month of the second year of the 697th Olympiad. Each Olympiad lasts four years. For every month, on the second day (the day the Agathos Daimon (spirit of abundant goodness, usually Zeus as the bringer of abundant goodness) is honored. On the third day, for this month, Athene is honored, and on the forth day, Aphrodite, Herakles, Hermes, and Eros are honored. On the sixth day, Artemis is honored and, on the seventh day, Apollon is honored. On the eighth day, Poseidon and Theseus are honored.

Noumenia kata Selene, Agathos Daimon

On the second day of Boedromion, the day of the first crescent moon, beginning at sundown on Friday the 10nd of August, the Noumenia kata Selene is celebrated in honor of Selene, Apollon Noumenios, and the household Gods. For every month, on the second day the Agathos Daimon (spirit of abundant goodness, usually Zeus as the bringer of abundant goodness) is honored.

On the third day, Athena is honored, and on the fourth day, Aphrodite, Herakles, Hermes, and Eros are honored and for this month Basile (Queen - a divinity worshipped with Neleus and Kodros at Athens) is also honored. On the sixth day, Artemis is honored and, on the seventh day, Apollon is honored. On the eighth day, Poseidon and Theseus are honored.

The Niketeria

On the second day of Boedromion (beginning at sundown on the 10th of September) the Niketeria commemorating Athena's victory over Poseidon to become mistress of the city and mistress over the land was celebrated.

Epops and the Genesia

On the fifth day of Boedromion (beginning at sundown on the 13th of September) the ancestral hero Epops was honored and the Genesia celebrated in honor of deceased parents where sacrifice was likely made to Earth holder of the departed and libations (wine or milk and honey) poured to the deceased.

The Democratia

In ancient Attica, on the twelfth of Boedromion (beginning at sundown on the 20th of September), the Demokratia (democracy) was celebrated.

The Greater Eleusinia

Beginning on the fifteenth of Boedromion (sundown on 23rd September), the greater Eleusinia was celebrated for nine days. It was a major part of the Eleusinian Mysteries. The greater Eleusinia offered hope of immortality through initiation:

Initiation: myein, mysteria and teleia.

Ritual celebration: orgia.

Achieve a state of enthousiasmos (en theos).

Eleusinian Mysteries center around the Demeter and Persephone. Women, slaves, and foreigners, as well as citizen males were accepted.

The nine-day festival was held every year in September.

Days 1-4: arrival, purification, sacrifice and feasting in Athens.

Day 5: Procession to the Telesterion at Eleusis.

Days 6-7: Initiation at Eleusis.

--- dromena (things done).

--- legomena (things spoken).

--- deiknymena (things shown).

Day 8: Rites to the Dead.

Day 9: Return to Athens.

Despoina

Carl Kerényi in his book Eleusis writes beginning on page 31: . . . . In Arcadia she [Demeter] was also a second goddess in the Mysteries of her daughter, the unnamable, who was invoked only as Despoina, the "Mistress." But in the mysteries of Lykosoura, as in those of Eleusis, the greater of the two was surely the daughter. Was the Arcadian Persephone really different from her mother, who had also suffered the fate of the Kore?

In these figures one may ask, was the universal fate of women merely raised to a purely divine plane - what the mothers have suffered, the daughters also must suffer? Or were mother and daughter two only for the profane? For a great goddess could do just that: in a single figure which was at once Mother and Daughter, she could represent the motifs that recur in all mothers and daughters, and she could combine the feminine attributes of the earth with the inconsistency of the wondering moon. As mistress of all living creatures on land and sea she could reach up from the underworld to heaven. The mystery goddess of Lykosoura wore a cosmic mantle adorned with representations of the inhabitants of earth and sea, and she also held in her lap the cista mystica, the closed basket holding the instruments of the secret rites. Her mother sat beside her on the same throne. At Thelpousa, however, Demeter alone possessed two statues in the same temple, one of angry countenance, which bore the Mystery basket.

Sanctuary of Despoina at Lykosoura: Reconstruction of interior of Sanctuary of Despoina: from left to right Artemis, Demeter, Despoina, and Anytos.

Drawing by Candace Smith, from Andrew Stewart, One Hundred Greek Sculptors: Their Careers and Extant Works, 1990, fig. 788.

In the Homeric Hymn, Demeter says:

"For I am Demeter the honored one, who is the greatest boon and joy to immortals and mortals. Now, let the whole people build me a great temple with an altar below it, under the citadel's sheer wall, above Kallichoron, where the hill juts out. As to the rites, I myself will instruct you on how in future you can propitiate me with holy performance. "

The abduction of Kore and grief of Demeter is a poignant reminder of the death of a girl who would never become a mother. Yet, from Kore's abduction comes the ever renewal of crops and bountiful harvests. Ploutos, another name for Hades, means wealth, and Ploutos is the wealth of Earth. Kore brings that wealth to the living. She represents life, death, and the ever renewal of life. Demeter is the culmination of the renewal of life in the harvest.

The Epidauria

On the seventeenth of Boedromion (beginning at sundown on the 25th of September), the Epidauria (a festival of Asklepios) was held with sacrifices to Asklepios.

The Nymphs, Akhelous, Alokhos, Hermes, Gaia, and Athene

On the twenty-seventh of Boedromion, (beginning at sundown on the 5th of October), sacrifice was made to the Nymphs, <>Akhelous, Alokhos, Hermes, Gaia, and Athene.

Hekate's Deipnon

The next Hekate's Deipnon will be celebrated on the 29th of Boedromion beginning at sundown on the 7th of October.

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