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Athenian Popular Religion
Author: Jon D. Mikalson

ISBN: 9780807841945
Format: Paperback
Number Of Pages: 172
Published: 9 August 1987
Country of Publication: US
Dimensions (cm): 23.5 x 15.6 x 1.4
Description:
Most modern studies of Athenian religion have focused on festivals, cult practices, and individual deities. Jon Mikalson turns instead to the religious beliefs citizens of Athens spoke of and acted upon in everyday life. He uses evidence only from reliable, mostly contemporary sources such as the orators Lysias and Demosthenes, the historian Xenophon, and state decrees, sacred laws, religious dedications, and epitaphs.

"This is in no sense a general history of Athenian religion," Mikalson writes, "even within the narrow historical boundaries set. It is rather an investigation of what might be termed the consensus of popular religious belief, a consensus consisting of those beliefs which an Athenian citizen thought he could express publicly and for which he expected fo find general acceptance among his peers."

What emerges in Mikalson's study is a remarkable homogeneity of religious beliefs at the popular level. The topics discussed at length in "Athenian Popular Religion" include the areas of divine intervention in human life, the gods and human justice, gods and oaths, divination, death and the afterlife, the nature of th...

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