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Sacrifices humains

 | 
Pierre Bonnechere
, 
Renaud Gagné

Human Sacrifice in Euripides’ Iphigenia in Tauris: Greek and Barbarian

Jan N. Bremmer

Texte intégral

1Students of representations of human sacrifice in ancient Greece are in the rather unique situation that we not only have the description of Iphigeneia’s sacrifice in Aulis by Euripides in his Iphigeneia in Aulis, but also reflections on this sacrifice by Iphigeneia herself in his Iphigeneia in Tauris (hereafter cited as IA and IT). In addition, we have descriptions of her role in the impending sacrifice of Orestes and allusions to the sacrifices already performed by the Taurians. In my contribution I intend to look at all three sacrifices. Given that Orestes was going to be sacrificed by a foreign people, the Taurians, an important question will be whether Euripides pictured his fate in different colours from that of Iphigeneia in the same play.

  • 1 My translations are taken from D. Kovacs’ translation in the Loeb (1999), although regularly adapte (...)
  • 2 For sacred groves see D.E. Birge, Sacred groves in the ancient Greek world, Diss. Berkeley, 1982; F (...)
  • 3 S.G. Cole, Landscapes, Gender, and Ritual Space, Berkeley et al., 2004, p. 191-194.

2Let us start with Iphigeneia herself. The play begins with Iphigeneia’s genealogy, which in itself is full of names that bode no good: Tantalus, Pelops (1), Atreus (3), Agamemnon (4), Clytaemnestra (5): in other words, cannibalism, fratricide, homicide, matricide. It is hardly surprising, then, that immediately after these names we hear of the sacrifice of Iphigeneia: ‘whom, near the eddies which the Euripus with its frequent breezes sets rolling, churning up the dark-blue sea, my father slaughtered (esphaxen) for Helen’s sake, so he believes, to Artemis in the famous clefts of Aulis’ (8-9).1 Apparently, the grove of Artemis’ sanctuary was situated close to the sea,2 as we also hear in IA (185-302) and elsewhere in IT (213). The mention of the sea and the beach is not by chance, as both will come back repeatedly in the play. At the same time, they tell us something about the nature of Artemis’ sanctuaries, which were often situated near water.3

  • 4 A. Henrichs, “Drama and Dromena: Bloodshed, Violence, and Sacrificial Metaphor in Euripides,” HSCPh(...)

3 yet the word that makes us shiver is ‘slaughtered’. In Greek sacrificial terminology thyein, ‘to sacrifice’, is the unmarked term that epitomizes the sacrificial process as a whole, whereas sphazein, ‘to cut the throat’, refers more specifically to the act of slaughtering the animal in a specific manner. As the marked term, sphazein carries ‘associations of violence and bloodshed that the tragedians exploit’.4 To evoke the brutal nature of her sacrifice Iphigenia does not shrink back from using the term ‘slaughtering’, as she does when letting Calchas announce her fateful sacrifice (20), even though he otherwise uses the terminology of thyein (21, 24). Thus she also closes her second big speech with the words ‘I lie in luckless slaughter (sphachteisa)’ (177), and these verses are only the beginning of Iphigeneia’s recurrent usage of the term ‘slaughter’ for her sacrifice (339, 360, 563, 770, 919): the audience is left in no doubt about the gruesomeness of that particular deed.

  • 5 Aristotle, fr. 101 Rose & Gigon; Plutarchus, Moralia, 437b; Lucian, De Sacrificiis, 12; Pausanias 1 (...)
  • 6 J.N. Bremmer, Greek Religion and Culture, the Bible and the Ancient Near East, Leiden, 2008, p. 181
  • 7 Note that Kovacs in his translation takes exhaireton as qualifying Agamemnon (‘you alone’) but that (...)
  • 8 Cf. Platnauer, o.c. (n. 1): moon goddess; similarly C.P. Trieschnigg, “Iphigenia’s Dream in Euripid (...)
  • 9 F. Graf, Nordionische Kulte, Rome, 1985, p. 228-236.

4However, Iphigeneia goes further than just mentioning her sacrifice. In Greek sacrifice the victim had to be perfect and undamaged, and in the myths of human sacrifice the victim is always special.5 In Euripides’ Hecuba, Polyxena died, ‘of captives the choicest and most beautiful maiden’ (267-68), as her mother Hecuba called her or, as she said herself, ‘amidst the maidens conspicuous, like the gods in all but my mortality’ (355-56). This is also the rule in human scapegoat sacrifices where the beauty of the victim is often stressed.6 And indeed, when talking to Agamemnon, Clytaemnestra calls Iphigeneia an exhaireton, ‘chosen, unique’, sphageion in IA (1199-1200).7 It is not surprising, then, that in the prologue Iphigeneia relates how Agamemnon promised the ‘fairest thing the year would bring forth’ to the ‘light-bearing goddess’ 19-21), and how Calchas interpreted her as being that ‘fairest thing’ (23). Commentators variously explain the epithet of Artemis, ‘light-bearing’, as a reference to her being the moon-goddess, to her carrying torches when hunting at night or to her identification with Hecate,8 but these interpretations misjudge the irony of the situation. Artemis Phosphoros was the goddess of salvation in difficult situations for the community.9 As such, Agamemnon evidently needed her, not knowing what his real sacrifice would be.

  • 10 R. Buxton, “Iphigénie au bord de la mer,” Pallas 38 (1992), p. 209-215 at 210.
  • 11 See the bibliography in Henrichs, l.c. (n. 4), p. 187 n. 61; add F. Graf, “Apollon Delphinios,” MH  (...)
  • 12 Aeschylus, Agamemnon, 227-235, to be read with the observations by P. Maas, Kleine Schriften, Munic (...)
  • 13 N. Sevinç, “A New Sarcophagus of Polyxena,” Studia Troica 6 (1996), p. 251-264; J.-L. Durand, F. Li (...)

5Finally, she also informs us about the way she was sacrificed: ‘held aloft above the sacrificial hearth I was being killed with a sword’ (26-27). Richard Buxton comments: ‘hanging in the air: between marriage and death’.10 This is of course true, but we should also note that Iphigeneia refers here to the normal sacrificial procedure of lifting up a victim ‘in the way of the Greeks’ (Eur. Helen 1562).11 That is how she was sacrificed in Aeschylus’ Agamemnon, where the chorus tells us: ‘Her supplications, her cries of ‘Father’ and her virgin life, the commanders in their eagerness for battle reckoned as naught. Her father, after a prayer, directed his servants to lift the maiden like a she-goat wrapped in her clothes with her face downwards’.12 This is also how we see Polyxena at the beginning of the sixth century, on at least one archaic Attic vase, with Neoptolemos actually cutting her throat with his sword, and her blood visibly flowing (Pl. V).13

  • 14 Both perhaps depended on Stesichorus’ Oresteia, cf. Aeschylus, Agamemnon, 2, 141 (ed. E. Fraenkel, (...)
  • 15 The passage seems to have been overlooked by F.S. Naiden, Ancient Supplication, Oxford, 2006, p. 47 (...)
  • 16 Thus, rightly, Kyriakou, o.c. (n. 1).

6Platnauer, Cropp and Kyriakou (ad loc.) all try to do justice to the imperfect sense of ekainomên (27) by translating with ‘they started to kill me’, ‘ready for the knife’ or ‘tried to kill me’, respectively. And indeed, although myth could also suggest a real death of Iphigeneia, as did Pindar in his Pythian Ode 11 (22-23) and Aeschylus in his Agamemnon,14 in our play Iphigeneia regularly talks in language of appearing to have been killed, but actually was not. This starts already at the very beginning, when she states that her father was in the process of slaughtering her, ‘as it seems’ (8; note also 176, 831). Somewhat later in the play she adds that she supplicated her father by touching his chin (362),15 but to no avail, as the Greeks ‘manhandled me like a calf and were going to slit my throat, and the priest was the father who begot me’ (359-60). Iphigeneia compares herself here to a calf, a more expensive and stately victim than the cheap she-goat of Aeschylus’ Agamemnon (232).16 Also in the next lines she stresses that her father was in the process of killing her (366: katakteinontos; the same verb in 565) and that she was perishing by his hands (368). That is also why she can say in the letter she wants to give to Pylades that ‘here are the words of her who was slain in Aulis, Iphigeneia, who is alive, though to them there (the Greeks) no longer alive’ (771), and Orestes can ask if she has come back from the grave (772). That is also why Iphigeneia says that Agamemnon sacrificed the doe, ‘thinking that it was into me that he had plunged his sharp sword’ (785), but although her father had already ‘put the sword to my throat’ (853-854), Artemis ‘saved me from the terrible murderous hand of my father’ (1083).

  • 17 R. Parker, Polytheism and Athenian Society, Oxford, 2005, p. 241 translates with ‘knife’.
  • 18 Durand – Lissarrague, l.c. (n. 13), p. 91, 105.

7 Kovacs translates the Greek phasganon in line 785 with ‘knife’, but this misjudges the ritual. Iphigeneia herself has mentioned several times that she was killed with a sword (27, 785, 853-4). Orestes also presupposes that he himself will be killed with a sword, (621), as do Iphigeneia (880) and King Thoas (1190). And when Athena instructs Orestes about the new festival in Halai, she says; ‘when the people holds festival, in compensation for your slaying, let them hold a sword to a man’s neck’ (1458-1460).17 And indeed, as we can see from a number of vases, Iphigeneia and Polyxena are not killed by priests, who would have used a sacrificial knife, machaira, but in a military context by warriors, who use a sword, xiphos (Pl. IIb, IIIa-b, V, VIa-b).18

  • 19 For the various versions of the myth of Iphigeneia see J.N. Bremmer, “Sacrificing a Child in Ancien (...)
  • 20 A.G. Mantis, Problemata tes eikonographias ton iereion kai ton iereon sten archaia Ellenike techne, (...)
  • 21 R. Von den Hoff, “Images of Cult Personnel in Athens between the Sixth and First Centuries BC,” in (...)
  • 22 For the purity of the priestess see R. Parker, Miasma, Oxford, 1983, p. 175-176.

8Artemis put a deer in Iphigeneia’s place (28, 784), as is the traditional version,19 and brought her through the air to ‘the land of the Taurians (28-30). The tone for this place is immediately set by her adding: ‘where Thoas rules, a barbarian over barbarians’ (31-32). Here Artemis made her into her priestess (34, 1399), but now the chorus calls itself ‘servant of the holy key-bearer’ (131; note also 1463). Keys were the sign of the office of priestess in ancient Greece,20 but Athenian priestesses became pictured with keys only in the later fifth century,21 and the term ‘key-holder’ here is perhaps one more indication of the rising visual importance of the key. As a priestess Iphigeneia had to be pure and could not be touched by a murderer,22 and she therefore rejected Orestes’ attempt to embrace her after he had recognised her (798-799).

  • 23 As many editors and commentators have seen, lines 40-41 should be deleted; see most recently W.S. B(...)
  • 24 Cf. Odyssey 3.445; Euripides, Iphigenia Aulidensis, 955; P. Stengel, Opferbräuche der Griechen, Lei (...)

9Although Iphigeneia is a priestess, her task is limited: ‘I start the sacrifice (katarchomai) of any Greek man who comes to this land, but the cutting of the throat is the concern of others’ (39-40).23 The ‘start’ of a sacrifice especially consisted of sprinkling the victim with water, but also of throwing barley-groats on it.24 This also appears from the fact that when telling her dream next, she mentions sprinkling a pillar of her ancestral home, which assumed the shape of a human head and started to speak, ‘to consign it to death’, as ‘she practices religiously this office I have of killing foreigners’ (52-54, note also 58). Similarly, when the herdsman announces the capture of Pylades and Orestes to Iphigeneia, he adds that they are ‘a sacrifice and offering dear to the goddess Artemis. It is high time to prepare the lustral water and the barley groats’ (243-245). King Thoas, too, takes one look at the two friends and then orders them ‘to be speedily sprinkled and slaughtered’ (334), haste that he displays several times in the play (1080-1081, 1153- 1154, 1190), unlike Iphigeneia who explicitly is depicted as having pity with the fated foreigners (344-345). And when Orestes discusses his sacrifice with Iphigeneia, she tells him that she will not kill him, but start the procedure by sprinkling him with water (622; note also 644-645). It is only natural, then, that she remembers with horror her own sprinkling in Aulis (861).

  • 25 For priestesses and sacrifice see now U. Kron, “Frauenfeste in Demeterheiligtümern: das Thesmophori (...)

10It is understandable that Euripides does not want to make Iphigeneia responsible for the murder of Greeks, although Greek priestesses could sacrifice: sacrificial knives have been found in the graves of female cult personnel.25 yet the chorus could imagine Helen dying by their ‘lady’s throat-cutting hand’ (445), and Iphigeneia herself mentions a tablet written by a prisoner, ‘who did not think that mine was the murderous hand’ (585-586). Moreover, she clearly wishes that the winds would bring Helen and Menelaus, who she sees as the main causes of her ‘death’ (356) so that she can take vengeance on them (356-360). In fact, she gives Orestes the impression that she would kill him (617) and only denies giving the fatal blow when properly asked (621-622). And when she had recognized Orestes, she said: ‘barely did you escape the unholy fate of slaughter at my hands’ (872-873), and later: ‘by rescuing you I would keep my hand from shedding your blood’ (994- 995). In short, technically Iphigeneia may perhaps not have killed prisoners, she clearly came very close.

  • 26 Blood: Aeschylus, Septem contra Thebas, 275; Bacchylides, Epinicia 11.110-112; Lycophron, Alexandra(...)
  • 27 Sommerstein on Aristophanes, Thesmophoria, 58. This fits a date of around 414-412, as suggested by (...)
  • 28 Odyssey 7.87, 17.267; Euripides, Electra, 1151; Ion, 156, 1321; Helen, 430; Orestes, 1569, cf. J. J(...)

11More information about the human sacrifice we receive from the first dialogue between Orestes and Pylades. They immediately make clear that human sacrifice is still practised in Tauris, as Pylades informs Orestes that the top of the altar is bloodstained (73). Stains of blood are prominently present on altars in a number of vase-paintings as the lasting proof of the otherwise perishable gifts to the gods.26 Moreover, as if this is not enough, Orestes asks: ‘and right under the top, thrinkois, do you see trophies hanging?’ (74). Platnauer, Kovacs, Cropp and Kyriakou all suppose that he is referring to the copings of the altar, but the Greek word thrinkos, which is curiously popular in Euripides in the period 417-412,27 is always used of walls of houses and palaces,28 never of altars.

  • 29 For the imaginary character of the temple see J. Roux, “A propos du décor dans les tragédies d’Euri (...)
  • 30 Although a literary tradition cannot be excluded, Ammianus may well have drawn on an iconographical (...)

12Orestes probably pointed to the nearby temple. In the course of the play we also hear of its high walls (96-7), bronze doors (99) and ‘lovely pillars and gilded cornice (thrinkous)’ (128-129: see above); it fits this description that we later also hear of its colonnade (405). There can be no doubt that the impression is given of an imposing and wonderful temple, which makes the purpose for which it is used the more appalling.29 The trophies, as Pylades explains, are the ‘akrothinia, the ‘best parts’ (cf. 459), of the foreigners who have been killed’ (75). The language is somewhat vague, but the reference must have been clear to the audience through the scenery. And indeed, as Ammianus Marcellinus tells us, the Taurians sacrificed strangers to Artemis and ‘fixed the heads of the slaughtered to the walls of the temple’ (22.8.34).30

  • 31 R. Schmitt, Selected Onomastic Writings, New york, 20002 [1996], p. 158-163 ( “Considerations on th (...)

13The inhospitability of the place is also stressed by the frequent mention of the Black Sea as the Pontos Axeinos, the ‘Inhospitable Sea’ (125, 218, 253, 341, 1388). As has long been realised, axeinos is the Greek rendering of Iranian *axšaina-, ‘dark coloured’. Following an archaic system in which the four cardinal points are designated in a symbolic manner by colour names, the Achaemenid Empire called its northern sea the ‘Black Sea’ and its southern sea the ‘Red Sea ‘, a system that still survives to the modern day not only in the names for these seas, but also in the qualification of, for instance, Western Russia as ‘White Russia’ and, perhaps, Albion, as the island to the west of Europe’s mainland.31

14When the herdsman reports how they captured Orestes and Pylades, he tells Iphigeneia: ‘Pray, girl, that you receive such foreign victims. If you kill, analiskêis, foreigners like these, Greece will be punished for your murder, paying the penalty for your slaughter at Aulis’ (336-339). The language of the herdsman rises to the occasion, as the verb he uses for the act of killing, analiskô, indicates the complete annihilation of the subject (Kyriakou ad loc.). Revenge, in his thoughts, is total. Moreover, once again we hear of strangers as the victims of the human sacrifice. In other words, the implicit suggestion clearly is that the Taurians do not sacrifice their own folk but only Greeks (39, 72, 346-347, 459, 584-587).

15After Orestes and Pylades had arrived at the temple, Iphigeneia orders them to be untied, as they now are hieroi, ‘holy’ (469), that is, property of the goddess, and chains have no place in the presence of divinity. In the following dialogue Iphigeneia tries to find out the name of Orestes, but he avoids straight answers to her questions. He does remain polite, though, as he first continues to use the terminology of thysia (491) and thyein (504), whereas Iphigeneia speaks of herself being ‘slaughtered’ (563). However, when she offers to save him and to sacrifice Pylades, he becomes more emotional and uses ‘slaughter’ (598), but he soon recovers himself and continues with thyein (617).

  • 32 Note also kathôsiôsato in 1320, cf. Parker, o.c. (n. 22), p. 328-329; Sophocles, fr. 116 Radt; Euri (...)
  • 33 Cannibalism is suggested only by Nonnos, Dionysiaca 13.116-119. See P. Bonnechere in this volume.

16Naturally, Orestes is interested in the disposal of his body. However, Iphigeneia is not quite explicit here, and we may perhaps think that Euripides did not find it necessary to imagine this part of the sacrifice in minute detail. One would have expected something about beheading, but that is not even touched upon, and neither is the altar mentioned. Iphigeneia just tells him that there will be a ‘sacred fire inside the temple’ (626; see also 726), and then a disposal in a cleft in one of the cliffs (626). Pylades apparently expects the same fate. He does not mince words and insists ‘to be slaughtered with Orestes and be cremated with him’ (685). That is also why Orestes can say: ‘Proclaim to all that I perished at the hand of an Argive woman, hagnistheis, ‘consecrated’, by murder’ (704-705). The Greek term usually refers to a complete removal from the human sphere,32 as indeed will be the effect of his cremation and the disposal of his body. It is clear that Euripides could not imagine Orestes being eaten after his being sacrificed.33 That is why he is represented as being burned like a holocaust.

  • 34 Stone: Alcestis, 836; Hercules furens, 782; The Trojan Women, 46; Helen, 986; Orestes, 1387; Phoeni (...)
  • 35 T. Scheer, Die Gottheit und ihr Bild, Munich, 2000, p. 24-33.
  • 36 A. Donohue, Xoana and the Origins of Greek Sculpture, Atlanta, 1986, p. 29; see also Scheer, ibid., (...)

17The theme of human sacrifice, the salvation of Orestes and the recovery of Iphigeneia is somewhat complicated by the fact that Orestes also mentions that they have been charged by Apollo to bring back to Athens (see also 1013) the statue of the goddess, ‘which they say fell from the sky into this temple here’ (87- 88, 977-978, 986, 1384). It was ‘polished’ (111: xeston), which, in Euripidean linguistic usage,34 often suggests something of stone but can also be said of something wooden, and it stood on a stone pedestal (997, 1157, 1201). As Iphigeneia carries it in her arms (1158), it is more likely to have been represented in wood than in stone. In the play it is usually called agalma (14 times) or bretas (12 times). The latter term occurs primarily in poetry and suggests an archaic image,35 whereas the unique xoanon (1359) evokes an exotic statue in fifth-century drama,36 both of which qualities fit the heavenly origin of Artemis’statue.

  • 37 J.N. Bremmer, “The Old Women of Ancient Greece,” in J. Blok, P. Mason (eds.), Sexual Asymmetry, Stu (...)
  • 38 Cf. Caesar, Commentarii de Bello Civili 3.105.3; Tacitus, Histories 1.86; Cassius Dio 46.33.
  • 39 Parker, o.c. (n. 22), p. 226-227 with n. 108.

18To save Orestes and steal the statue, Iphigeneia has to take recourse to a subterfuge. She proposes that she will tell King Thoas that it is not lawful to sacrifice (of course thyein) Orestes to the goddess, as he is unclean as a matricide (1033-1037). He and Pylades (1047) need to be purified with seawater (1039), as is the case with the statue, which had been touched by Orestes (1041). When the king arrives on stage, he is pictured as a rather gruff person by letting him ask: ‘where is that Greek porter (pylôros) of this temple?’ (1153). To be a porter usually was the function of old women,37 and the question shows his disdain of Iphigeneia, even though she is the priestess. However, when the latter enters the stage, she is carrying the goddess’ statue in her arms and pulls out all stops in pretending that the strangers have disturbed the holiness of the temple (1168-9), which has to be restored. She spits (1161) and tells the king that the statue of the goddess had turned away from where it stood (1165, 1179) and even closed its eyes (1167).38 Therefore, the statue and the strangers have to be purified with water from the sea (1039, 1192-1193), which was the most prized cathartic water in Greece.39

  • 40 Parker, o.c. (n. 22), p. 316-317 (sun), 371 (veiling).
  • 41 Parker, o.c. (n. 22), p. 227-228.
  • 42 Parker, o.c. (n. 22), p. 371-373; add now Euripides, fr. 71 Kannicht.
  • 43 For the term see J. Diggle, Euripidea, Oxford, 1994, p. 478-479.
  • 44 L. Deubner, Kleine Schriften zur klassischen Altertumskunde, Königstein/Ts, 1982, p. 607-634 [1941] (...)
  • 45 Parker, o.c. (n. 22), p. 271-273.
  • 46 F.T. van Straten, Hierà Kalá. Images of Animal Sacrifice in Archaic and Classical Greece, Leiden, 1 (...)
  • 47 Bremmer, o.c. (n. 6), p. 246.
  • 48 Kyriakou, o.c. (n. 1) on 1422-30 compares allusions to Aeschylus’ Persians, 1379-1380, 1385b-1391a, (...)
  • 49 E. Hall, Inventing the Barbarian, Oxford, 1989, p. 158-159; R. Rollinger, “Herodotus, Human Violenc (...)

19 Moreover, the strangers have to be shackled again (1204-1205) and covered with clothes so that they do not see the sun (1207). We seem to have here a combination of the custom to veil a polluted person to isolate him and the idea that polluted persons should not even be in this world.40 That is why also Thoas has to veil himself to avoid all possible contacts with the matricides (1218; note also 1198, 1342), and even temple guardians or people to be married and pregnant women have to be out of the way (1227-1228). Iphigeneia will purify the temple with a torch (1216, 1224), which was a powerful means of purification,41 but, in the typical Greek way, the bloodshed could be purified only with other blood, in this case that of newborn lambs (1222).42 This purificatory show is continued at the beach, where Iphigeneia apparently raises the stakes by claiming to use ‘a secret sacrificial flame and a secret purification’ (1331-1332). Here ‘she shouted ololygê and intoned chants in the style of barbarians, acting like a magus, as if she were cleansing blood guilt’ (1337-1338). Normally, the high, piercing cry ololyge, which Aeschylus in the Seven against Thebes (269) calls the ‘Greek custom of the sacrifice cry’ (ololygmos),43 was raised by women when the victim was killed.44 Here it suggests the moment of killing the lambs for acquiring the blood to cleanse Orestes and Pylades. The mention of lambs is rather striking, as normally pigs are used,45 even though we have only representations of mythological sacrifices in this manner.46 Perhaps Euripides wanted to introduce a slightly different element in order to show up the strangeness of the country. As the Persian magi whispered their chants in a very low voice,47 this custom may well be alluded to here in order to conjure up a strange ritual. In any case, it is rather striking that the last part of the play contains a number of references to Aeschylus’ Persians,48 just as Thoas’ threat of impaling Orestes and Pylades when they are caught (1430) suggests a Persian custom.49

  • 50 J.N. Bremmer, “Oorsprong, functie en verval van de pentekonter,” Utrechtse Historische Cahiers 11 ( (...)
  • 51 J. Mikalson, “The Heorte of Heortology,” GRBS 23 (1982), p. 213-221.

20 Having realised that they are deceived, King Thoas mobilises a pursuit of Orestes’ penteconter (1347), a size probably chosen by Euripides in imitation of the Argo, the only other ship that had managed to sail through the Symplegades.50 At this critical moment the Goddess Athena appears and stops the posse. There is something strange about her appearance, as we would have expected Artemis to make some sort of intervention. But the whole business of human sacrifice is dropped, and Athena rather abruptly now explains the purpose of the theft of the statue. Orestes has to build a new temple for the statue at Halai, ‘a place near the borders of Attica’, where the people will worship Artemis Tauropolos (1450-1457). When the people celebrate a heortê, a ‘festival’, a term that suggests a happy ritual,51 ‘to atone for your (i.e. that of Orestes) sacrifice (sphagê) let them hold a sword to the neck of a man and draw blood so that piety will be satisfied and the goddess receives honours’ (1458-1461).

  • 52 For images of Artemis connected with Orestes see the authoritative study of F. Graf, “Das Götterbil (...)
  • 53 J. Travlos, “Treis naoi tes Artemidos Aulidas tauropolou kai Vrauronias,” in U. Jantzen (ed.), Neue (...)
  • 54 Graf, o.c. (n. 2), p. 413-417.
  • 55 J.N. Bremmer, Greek Religion, Oxford, 19992 [1994], p. 62.
  • 56 For the connection see Graf, o.c. (n. 2), p. 414; Bonnechere, o.c. (n. 14), p. 48-52; Parker, o.c. (...)

21The last scene clearly refers to a local ritual that perhaps no longer was understood and in this way may have received a new interpretation. The connection with Tauris strongly suggests that the local image also looked like an archaic or exotic image of Artemis, just like the other images that were connected with the myth of Orestes.52 In fact, we know that the temple in Halai contained an adyton, a kind of ‘holy of holiest’, which served to shield the dangerous image of the goddess from the worshippers. This was typical for temples of Artemis, and archaeology thus confirms the threatening nature of her images.53 The connection with Artemis Tauropolos fits the human sacrifice equally well. She was the goddess of the Macedonian army, and her name must mean ‘bull-herd’. As Ionian youths in the service of Poseidon were called ‘bulls’ and Cypriot bull-masked priests are attested in a cult of Zeus Xenios, to whom strangers were sacrificed, Fritz Graf has persuasively suggested that we are looking here at a background of initiation that went back to Mycenaean times;54 the myth of Theseus’ fight against the Minotaur, ‘bull of Minos’ somehow also belongs to this archaic tradition.55 And just as Theseus’ fight against the Minotaur meant the end of his adolescence, so Orestes’ visit to Tauris was the necessary prelude for his return to ordered society. After this aetiology Athena concludes with the institution of the cult of Iphigeneia in Brauron. As this cult is clearly connected with the rites of maturation of girls, both cults, which were only 6 kilometres away from one another, were already associated in antiquity and probably related in their attention to the growing up of boys and girls.56

  • 57 For a full discussion of the connections of Iphigeneia with the Black Sea area, see A.I. Ivantchik, (...)
  • 58 Parthenos: D. Asheri et al., A Commentary on Herodotus Books I-IV, Oxford, 2007, p. 654-655. D. Bra (...)

22With these aetiologies we have arrived at the end of the play. Let us conclude with looking now once again at the problem of human sacrifice in the play. It is clear that the myth of Orestes and Iphigeneia in Tauris is relatively young and presupposes Greek colonisation.57 Herodotus (IV, 103) mentions that it was the custom of the Taurians to sacrifice shipwrecked sailors and captured Greeks to a goddess called Parthenos. After the initial ritual (katarxamenoi: see above) they clubbed the heads of their prisoners and pushed their bodies over the edge of the cliff on which their temple stood, although others said that they were buried. The heads were fixed on stakes. The Taurians, thus still Herodotus, identified their Parthenos with Iphigeneia. Strabo (VII, 4, 2) adds that the temple contains a xoanon. The historical reality behind this report is of course hard to establish, but the Parthenos was worshipped there in later times, and the practice of headhunting is well established for the Scythians.58

23It is not difficult to see that Euripides closely used this passage, as all elements in some way return in his play. Artemis was a parthenos, ‘virgin’, and on Paros even worshipped as Artemis Parthenos (SEG 39.863). The pushing over the cliff is mentioned as a threat by Thoas (1430), and the heads on stakes return in the play as trophies on the temple (above). Iphigeneia is not the goddess but still the priestess of the goddess Artemis, whose statue is also called a xoanon in the play (1359). Even the mention of the initial ceremonies is used by Euripides, who often refers to them as we have seen. However, he evidently did not want to represent the disposal of Orestes in an all too dishonouring manner and therefore mentioned cremation as the mode of funeral.

24On the other hand, Euripides did not receive any support from Herodotus for a representation or interpretation of Artemis. That makes his contribution the more interesting. The epithet Tauropolos of Artemis must have made it easy to connect her cult in Halai with that in Tauris. Thus we hardly find anything really strange or barbaric in Artemis in Tauris. Athena calls Artemis her sister (1489), Orestes refers to the goddess as ‘Apollo’s sister’ (86), and Iphigeneia calls her ‘daughter of Leto’ (386, 1398). As in Greece, she has altars (94), and her temple receives typically Greek names of anaktora ( [41], 66, 636), dômata (724, 1153, 1222) and melathra (69, 1216, 1257, 1287). It is only the custom of beheading, which does not belong to her Greek cult.

25But what about the human sacrifice? Was it seen positive or negative? There clearly is a difference in the play between Iphigeneia’s own sacrifice and that of Orestes. Although not described in so many respects as in IA, it seems clear that Iphigeneia is represented as being slaughtered like an animal. The only difference between her’s and a normative Greek sacrifice is that she is killed with a sword and of course not eaten. But otherwise there is not even a hint that this is a strange or uncommon sacrifice. It is different with Orestes. Although the initial ceremonies resemble those of animal sacrifice, the last part of the sacrifice is rather different. We do not hear of many details, but the killing by people who are not clearly described, the burning in the temple and the hanging up of the skull on the cornices of the temple hardly fit a normal Greek sacrifice and suggest a barbaric ritual. Yet Thoas is an interesting mix of an oriental despot with cruel penalties and a pious Greek who obediently listens to the goddess Athena. Euripides clearly refrains from creating all too simplistic characters and rituals in this play.

26When reflecting on her own fate, as we have seen, Iphigeneia is extremely bitter. At first, in the prologue, Iphigeneia is rather reticent in her criticism. She mentions that Artemis takes delight in the Taurian customs (35), but adds that she will not comment on the unpleasant aspects of the festival ‘for fear of the goddess’ (37). The herdsman announcing the capture of Orestes and Pylades has no such qualms and calls them ‘a welcome sacrifice and offering to the goddess Artemis’ (243-244). But after hearing of the capture, Iphigeneia is reminded again of her own sacrifice and this makes her much more outspoken: ‘I do not approve of the cleverness of the goddess. Any mortal who has had contact with blood or childbirth or a corpse she keeps from the altars, deeming him unclean. Yet she herself takes pleasure in human sacrifice!’ (380-4); the last line is echoed in one of the last lines of the (probably) original end of the Iphigeneia in Aulis where the goddess is invoked as ‘o lady, lady, who delights in human sacrifices’ (1524-1525). But it looks as if she shrinks back from her own boldness in criticizing the goddess and therefore adds: ‘Now just as I find it incredible that the gods at Tantalus’ feast enjoyed the flesh of his son, so I believe that people here, themselves murderous, ascribe their own fault to the goddess. None of the gods, I think, is wicked’ (386- 391).

27Yet immediately afterwards, as if in response to Iphigeneia’s outburst, the chorus sings of ‘the unwelcome land where for the maiden goddess the altars and colonnaded temples are drenched in human blood’ (405-406). However, the chorus leader concludes the first stasimon with announcing the arrival of ‘a new sacrifice (prosphagma) for the goddess’ (458) existing in the ‘finest offering from the Greeks’ (459), and comments: ‘O Lady, if what the city does pleases you, receive the sacrifices (thysias) which the law in our country declares to be unholy’ (463-466). But when Iphigeneia comes with a plan to save at least one of the two friends, she mentions a Greek who thought of his sacrifice ‘that he died because of the law, thinking these rites of the goddess being legitimate’ (586-587). Finally, Athena seems to recognise the right of her sister on human victims, as she says that the people in Halai have to enact a pseudo human sacrifice in recompense (apoina) for the slaughter of Orestes that had not taken place (1459).

  • 59 C. Sourvinou-Inwood, Tragedy and Athenian Religion, Lanham-…, 2003, p. 35.
  • 60 See also the excellent observations of Cropp, o.c. (n. 1), p. 39-41.
  • 61 I am most grateful to audiences in Montreal (2008), New York (2009) and Cologne (2011) as well as t (...)

28There is a polyphony in these passages that can be difficult overheard and which is strengthened by the very figure of Iphigeneia, who herself has been sacrificed by the Greeks but now helps to abolish the Taurian practice of human sacrifice.59 Orestes, too, although nearly being sacrificed, transfers the image of Artemis from a barbaric cult and country to the ordered world of Athens (1448).60 In the end, Euripides leaves us with the clear impression that the Taurian sacrifice is unholy, but Artemis still a respectable goddess. It is a balancing act which is perhaps less persuasive for us than it was for the ancient Greeks.61

Notes

1 My translations are taken from D. Kovacs’ translation in the Loeb (1999), although regularly adapted or corrected. I only refer with the name of the author to the standard commentaries of M. Platnauer, Euripides, Iphigenia in Tauris, Oxford, 1938; M. Cropp, Euripides, Iphigeneia in Tauris, Warminster, 2000 and P. Kyriakou, A Commentary on Euripides’ Iphigenia in Tauris, Berlin, 2006. For the play see more recently also J.C.G. Strachan, “Iphigenia and Human Sacrifice in Euripides’ Iphigenia Taurica,” CPh 71 (1976), p. 131-140; C. Wolff, “Euripides’ Iphigenia among the Taurians: Aetiology, Ritual, and Myth,” ClAnt 11 (1992), p. 308-334; S. Stern-Gillett, “Exile, Displacement and Barbarity in Euripides’ Iphigenia among the Taurians,” Scholia 10 (2001), p. 4-21; M. Guzmán, “Ifigenia xenoktonos,” Faventia 30 (2008), p. 223-240; A. Taddei, “Inno e pratiche rituali in Euripide: il caso dell’ Ifigenia tra I Tauri,” Paideia 64 (2009), p. 235-252; E. Hall, “Iphigenia in Oxyrhynchus and India: Greek tragedy for everyone,” in G.M. Sifakis, S. Tsitsirides (eds.), Parachoregema, Heraklion, 2010, p. 225-250. For the visual evidence see L. Kahil et al., “Iphigeneia I, II,” in LIMC V.1 (1990), p. 706-729 at 713-718, 722-729; N. Icard-Gianolio, “Iphigeneia,” in LIMC, Suppl. 1, p. 296.

2 For sacred groves see D.E. Birge, Sacred groves in the ancient Greek world, Diss. Berkeley, 1982; F. Graf, Nordionische Kulte, Rome, 1985, p. 43; C. Jacob, “Paysage et bois sacré: ἄλσος dans la Périégèse de la Grèce de Pausanias,” in J. Scheid (ed.), Les Bois sacrés, Naples, 1993, p. 31-44; V.J. Matthews, Antimachus of Colophon, Leiden, 1996, p. 141-142; P. Bonnechere, “The Place of the Sacred Grove in the Mantic Rituals of Greece: The Example of the Oracle of Trophonios at Lebadeia (Boeotia),” in M. Conan (ed.), Sacred Gardens and Landscapes: Ritual and Agency, Washington DC, 2007, p. 17-41.

3 S.G. Cole, Landscapes, Gender, and Ritual Space, Berkeley et al., 2004, p. 191-194.

4 A. Henrichs, “Drama and Dromena: Bloodshed, Violence, and Sacrificial Metaphor in Euripides,” HSCPh 100 (2000), p. 173-188 at 180, referring to M. Jameson et al., A Lex Sacra from Selinous, Durham, 1993, p. 17: B 12-3; see also my “Myth and Ritual in Greek Human Sacrifice: Lykaon, Polyxena and the Case of the Rhodian Criminal,” in J.N. Bremmer (ed.), The Strange World of Human Sacrifice, Leuven, 2007, p. 55-79 at 60-61. For sphazô and related words see J. Casabona, Recherches sur le vocabulaire des sacrifices en grec, Paris, 1966, p. 155-196.

5 Aristotle, fr. 101 Rose & Gigon; Plutarchus, Moralia, 437b; Lucian, De Sacrificiis, 12; Pausanias 10.35.4; Pollux 1.29; Scholiast on Demosthenes 21.171. For more references, see P. Bonnechere in this volume.

6 J.N. Bremmer, Greek Religion and Culture, the Bible and the Ancient Near East, Leiden, 2008, p. 181.

7 Note that Kovacs in his translation takes exhaireton as qualifying Agamemnon (‘you alone’) but that is not the natural reading. Clytemnestra here contrasts the outcome of a lottery with that of a “chosen” victim.

8 Cf. Platnauer, o.c. (n. 1): moon goddess; similarly C.P. Trieschnigg, “Iphigenia’s Dream in Euripides’ Iphigenia Taurica,” CQ 58 (2008), p. 461-478 at 473, Kovacs, o.c. (n. 1): carrying torches, Cropp, o.c. (n. 1) and Kyriakou, o.c. (n. 1): Hecate on Iphigenia Taurica 21.

9 F. Graf, Nordionische Kulte, Rome, 1985, p. 228-236.

10 R. Buxton, “Iphigénie au bord de la mer,” Pallas 38 (1992), p. 209-215 at 210.

11 See the bibliography in Henrichs, l.c. (n. 4), p. 187 n. 61; add F. Graf, “Apollon Delphinios,” MH 36 (1979), p. 2-22 at 14-15; J. Gebauer, Pompe und Thysia. Attische Tieropferdarstellungen auf schwarz- und rotfigurigen Vasen, Münster, 2002, p. 179-181.

12 Aeschylus, Agamemnon, 227-235, to be read with the observations by P. Maas, Kleine Schriften, Munich, 1973, p. 42; S. Radt in A. Harder et al. (eds.), Noch einmal zu… Kleine Schriften von Stefan Radt zu seinen 75. Geburtstag, Leiden, 20022 [1973], p. 111 (19731); F. Delneri, “Cassandra e Ifigenia (Aesch. Ag. 1121-1124; 231-247),” Eikasmos 12 (2001), p. 55- 62; S. Timpanaro, Contributi di filologia greca e latina, Florence, 2005, p. 70-79; A. Henrichs, “Blutvergiessen am Altar: Zur Ritualisierung der Gewalt im griechischen Opferkult,” in B. Seidensticker, M. Vöhler (eds.), Gewalt und Ästhetik. Zur Gewalt und ihrer Darstellung in der griechischen Klassik, Berlin-New York, 2006, p. 59-87 at 67-74 (translated in this volume).

13 N. Sevinç, “A New Sarcophagus of Polyxena,” Studia Troica 6 (1996), p. 251-264; J.-L. Durand, F. Lissarrague, “Mourir à l’autel,” ARG 1 (1999), p. 83-106 at 97-98; G. Schwarz, “Der Tod und das Mädchen: frühe Polyxena-Bilder,” MDAI (A) 116 (2001), p. 35-50; C. Reinsberg, “Wilde Mädchen, schöne Braut. Der Polyxena-Sarkophag in Çanakkale,” in R. Bol, D. Kreikenbom (eds.), Sepulkral- und Votivdenkmäler östlicher Mittelmeergebiete (7. Jh. V. Chr. – 1. Jh. N. Chr.), Möhnesee-Wamel, 2004, p. 199-217; Bremmer, o.c. (n. 6); P. Linant de Bellefonds, “Polyxene,” in LIMC, Suppl. I, p. 430-432, no. add. 5*.

14 Both perhaps depended on Stesichorus’ Oresteia, cf. Aeschylus, Agamemnon, 2, 141 (ed. E. Fraenkel, 3 vols, Oxford, 1951, n. 3); B. Gentili et al., Pindaro, Le Pitiche, Milano, 1995, p. 284; note also Sophocles, Electra, 530-532; Lucretius, De Rerum Natura 1.84-86; Seneca, Agamemnon, 162-164. P. Bonnechere, Le Sacrifice humain en Grèce ancienne, Athens-Liège, 1994, p. 42 suggests that these passages present the point of view of those who don’t know that Iphigeneia has been saved. This is not implausible, but the loss of much pre-Euripidean evidence makes me hesitant to reject the possibility that myth could envisage a real death.

15 The passage seems to have been overlooked by F.S. Naiden, Ancient Supplication, Oxford, 2006, p. 47-49, 316, just like it is absent from his enumeration of children supplicating parents (p. 35).

16 Thus, rightly, Kyriakou, o.c. (n. 1).

17 R. Parker, Polytheism and Athenian Society, Oxford, 2005, p. 241 translates with ‘knife’.

18 Durand – Lissarrague, l.c. (n. 13), p. 91, 105.

19 For the various versions of the myth of Iphigeneia see J.N. Bremmer, “Sacrificing a Child in Ancient Greece: the Case of Iphigeneia,” in E. Noort, E.J.C. Tigchelaar (eds.), The Sacrifice of Isaac, Leiden, 2001, p. 21-43; G. Ekroth, “Inventing Iphigeneia? On Euripides and the Cultic Construction of Brauron,” Kernos 16 (2003), p. 59-118; C. CHANDEZon, “Particularités du culte isiaque dans la basse vallée du Céphise (Béotie et Phocide),” in N. Badoud (ed.), Philologos Dionysios. Mélanges offerts au professeur Denis Knoepfler, Genève, 2011, p. 149-182.

20 A.G. Mantis, Problemata tes eikonographias ton iereion kai ton iereon sten archaia Ellenike techne, Athene, 1990, p. 28-65; S. Georgoudi, “Athanatous therapeuein. Réflexions sur des femmes au service des dieux,” in V. Dasen M. Piérart (eds.), Les Cadres “privés” et “publics” de la religion grecque antique, Liège, 2005 (Kernos, suppl. 15), p. 69-82 at 80-82; J.B. ConnelLy, Portrait of a Priestess, Princeton-London, 2007, p. 92-104.

21 R. Von den Hoff, “Images of Cult Personnel in Athens between the Sixth and First Centuries BC,” in B. Dignas, K. Trampedach (eds.), Practitioners of the Divine, Cambridge-London, 2008, p. 107-141 at 110-111, 117; for a representation of Iphigeneia in Tauris with the key, see Gebauer, o.c. (n. 11), p. 242-243.

22 For the purity of the priestess see R. Parker, Miasma, Oxford, 1983, p. 175-176.

23 As many editors and commentators have seen, lines 40-41 should be deleted; see most recently W.S. Barrett, Greek Lyric, Tragedy, and Textual Criticism. Collected Papers, M.L. West (ed.), Oxford, 2007, p. 474-479.

24 Cf. Odyssey 3.445; Euripides, Iphigenia Aulidensis, 955; P. Stengel, Opferbräuche der Griechen, Leipzig, Berlin, 1910, p. 40-47, overlooked by Kyriakou, o.c. (n. 1), p. 110.

25 For priestesses and sacrifice see now U. Kron, “Frauenfeste in Demeterheiligtümern: das Thesmophorion von Bitalemi,” AA (1992), p. 611-650 at 640-643, 650; R. Osborne, “Women and Sacrifice in Classical Greece,” in R. Buxton (ed.), Oxford Readings in Greek Religion, Oxford, 2000, p. 294-313; Connelly, o.c. (n. 20), p. 179-190.

26 Blood: Aeschylus, Septem contra Thebas, 275; Bacchylides, Epinicia 11.110-112; Lycophron, Alexandra, 991-992; Lucian, De Sacrificiis, 9.13; Pollux 1.27; Porphyry, De abstinentia 1.25. Vase-paintings: Gebauer, o.c. (n. 11), p. 204-205; G. Ekroth, “Blood on the Altars? On the Treatment of Blood at Greek Sacrifices and the Iconographical Evidence,” AK 48 (2005), p. 9-29.

27 Sommerstein on Aristophanes, Thesmophoria, 58. This fits a date of around 414-412, as suggested by Cropp and Kyriakou.

28 Odyssey 7.87, 17.267; Euripides, Electra, 1151; Ion, 156, 1321; Helen, 430; Orestes, 1569, cf. J. Jannoray, “Nouvelles inscriptions de Lébadée,” BCH 64-65 (1940-41), p. 38-40 at 39 n. 3.

29 For the imaginary character of the temple see J. Roux, “A propos du décor dans les tragédies d’Euripide,” REG 74 (1961), p. 25-60 at 52-60.

30 Although a literary tradition cannot be excluded, Ammianus may well have drawn on an iconographical tradition as heads are regularly shown suspended from the walls of the temple, cf. Kahil, l.c. (n. 1), no. 29 (Campanian ampora, 330-320 BC), nos. 75 and 79 (Antoninian sarcophagi); I. Krauskopf, “Iphigeneia (in Etruria),” in LIMC V.1 (1990) p. 729-734 at nos. 22- 23 (funerary urns, second century BC).

31 R. Schmitt, Selected Onomastic Writings, New york, 20002 [1996], p. 158-163 ( “Considerations on the Name of the Black Sea: What Can the Historian Learn from It?”). For the great antiquity of this, probably Central-Asiatic, system see L. De Saussure, “L’origine des noms Mer Rouge, Mer Blanche et Mer Noire,” Le Globe 63 (1924), p. 23-36.

32 Note also kathôsiôsato in 1320, cf. Parker, o.c. (n. 22), p. 328-329; Sophocles, fr. 116 Radt; Euripides, fr. 314 Kannicht.

33 Cannibalism is suggested only by Nonnos, Dionysiaca 13.116-119. See P. Bonnechere in this volume.

34 Stone: Alcestis, 836; Hercules furens, 782; The Trojan Women, 46; Helen, 986; Orestes, 1387; Phoenician Women, 1179; fr. 781.9 Kannicht. Wood: Cyclops, 394; The Trojan Women, 534.

35 T. Scheer, Die Gottheit und ihr Bild, Munich, 2000, p. 24-33.

36 A. Donohue, Xoana and the Origins of Greek Sculpture, Atlanta, 1986, p. 29; see also Scheer, ibid., p. 19-21.

37 J.N. Bremmer, “The Old Women of Ancient Greece,” in J. Blok, P. Mason (eds.), Sexual Asymmetry, Studies in Ancient Society, Amsterdam, 1987, p. 191-215 at 193; Euripides, The Trojan Women, 194-195, Helen, 435-482.

38 Cf. Caesar, Commentarii de Bello Civili 3.105.3; Tacitus, Histories 1.86; Cassius Dio 46.33.

39 Parker, o.c. (n. 22), p. 226-227 with n. 108.

40 Parker, o.c. (n. 22), p. 316-317 (sun), 371 (veiling).

41 Parker, o.c. (n. 22), p. 227-228.

42 Parker, o.c. (n. 22), p. 371-373; add now Euripides, fr. 71 Kannicht.

43 For the term see J. Diggle, Euripidea, Oxford, 1994, p. 478-479.

44 L. Deubner, Kleine Schriften zur klassischen Altertumskunde, Königstein/Ts, 1982, p. 607-634 [1941]; L. Gernet, Les Grecs sans miracle, Paris, 1983, p. 247-257 [1932]; J. Rudhardt, Notions fondamentales de la pensée religieuse et actes constitutifs du culte dans la Grèce classique, Paris, 19922 [Geneva, 1958], p. 178-180; E. Calderón, “A propósito de ὀλολυγών (Arato, Phaen. 948),” QUCC 67 (2001), p. 133-139.

45 Parker, o.c. (n. 22), p. 271-273.

46 F.T. van Straten, Hierà Kalá. Images of Animal Sacrifice in Archaic and Classical Greece, Leiden, 1995, p. 4-5.

47 Bremmer, o.c. (n. 6), p. 246.

48 Kyriakou, o.c. (n. 1) on 1422-30 compares allusions to Aeschylus’ Persians, 1379-1380, 1385b-1391a, 1395b-1397a, 1437.

49 E. Hall, Inventing the Barbarian, Oxford, 1989, p. 158-159; R. Rollinger, “Herodotus, Human Violence and the Ancient Near East,” in V. Karageorghis, I. Taifacos (eds.), The World of Herodotus, Nicosia, 2004, p. 121-150 and “Extreme Gewalt und Strafgericht. Ktesias und Herodot als Zeugnisse für den Achaimenidenhof,” in B. Jacobs, R. Rollinger (eds.), Der Achämenidenhof, Wiesbaden, 2010, p. 559-666.

50 J.N. Bremmer, “Oorsprong, functie en verval van de pentekonter,” Utrechtse Historische Cahiers 11 (1990), p. 1-11 [Origin, function and decline of the penteconter].

51 J. Mikalson, “The Heorte of Heortology,” GRBS 23 (1982), p. 213-221.

52 For images of Artemis connected with Orestes see the authoritative study of F. Graf, “Das Götterbild aus dem Taurerland,” AW 10.4 (1979), p. 33-41; W.K. Pritchett, Pausanias Periegetes, Amsterdam, 1998, p. 256-260; P.G. Bilde, “Wandering Images: From Taurian (and Chersonesean) Parthenos to (Artemis) Tauropolos and (Artemis) Persike,” in ead. et al. (eds.), The Cauldron of Ariantas, Aarhus, 2003, p. 164-183; B. Burrell, “Iphigeneia in Philadelphia,” ClAnt 24 (2005), p. 223-256.

53 J. Travlos, “Treis naoi tes Artemidos Aulidas tauropolou kai Vrauronias,” in U. Jantzen (ed.), Neue Forschungen in griechischen Heiligtümern, Tübingen, 1976, p. 197-205; Cole, o.c. (n. 3), p. 198-201 (with many examples); K. Kalogeropoulos, “Die Entwicklung des attischen Artemis- Kultes anhand der Funde des Heiligtums der Artemis Tauropolos in Halai Araphenides (Loutsa),” in H. Lohmann, T. Mattern (eds.), Attika – Archäologie einer zentralen Kulturlandschaft, Wiesbaden, 2010, p. 167-82.

54 Graf, o.c. (n. 2), p. 413-417.

55 J.N. Bremmer, Greek Religion, Oxford, 19992 [1994], p. 62.

56 For the connection see Graf, o.c. (n. 2), p. 414; Bonnechere, o.c. (n. 14), p. 48-52; Parker, o.c. (n. 17), 241-242.

57 For a full discussion of the connections of Iphigeneia with the Black Sea area, see A.I. Ivantchik, Am Vorabend der Kolonisation, Berlin-Moscow, 2005, p. 85-98.

58 Parthenos: D. Asheri et al., A Commentary on Herodotus Books I-IV, Oxford, 2007, p. 654-655. D. Braund, “Parthenos and the Nymphs at Crimean Chersonesos: Colonial Appropriation and Native Integration,” in A. Bresson et al. (eds.), Une Koinè pontique. Cités grecques, sociétés indigènes et empires mondiaux sur le littoral nord de la Mer Noire (viie s. a.C. – iiie s. p. C.), Bordeaux, 2007, p. 191-200; M. Dana, “Cultes locaux et identité grecque dans les cités du Pont-Euxin,” LEC 75 (2007), p. 171-186. Headhunting: P. Riedlberger, “Skalpieren bei den Skythen. Zu Herodot IV 64,” Klio 78 (1996), p. 53-60; Asheri, o.c. (above), p. 628-629 (on IV, 64).

59 C. Sourvinou-Inwood, Tragedy and Athenian Religion, Lanham-…, 2003, p. 35.

60 See also the excellent observations of Cropp, o.c. (n. 1), p. 39-41.

61 I am most grateful to audiences in Montreal (2008), New York (2009) and Cologne (2011) as well as to Pierre Bonnechere and Martin Cropp for their comments.

Auteur

Rijksuniversiteit te Groningen
Professor Emeritus of Religious Studies at the University of Groningen. His main specialities are Greek Religion, Early Christianity and Contemporary Religion as well as their historiographies. His most recent books are Greek Religion and Culture, the Bible and the Ancient Near East (2008) and The Rise of Christianity through the Eyes of Gibbon, Harnack and Rodney Stark (2010). He is the co-editor (with Andrew Erskine) of The Gods of Ancient Greece (2010) and (with Marco Formisano) of Perpetua’s Passions (2012).

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