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Sacrifices humains

 | 
Pierre Bonnechere
, 
Renaud Gagné

Substitution in Greek Sacrifice

Robert Parker

Texte intégral

  • 1 Quod gaudium est innoxiorum animalium mactatione laetari? Arnobius, Adversus Nationes 7.4; cf. alre (...)
  • 2 E.E. Evans-Pritchard, Nuer Religion, Oxford, 1956, p. 280-281; G. Lienhardt, Divinity and Experienc (...)
  • 3 W. Burkert, Homo Necans (trans. P. Bing), Berkeley, 1983.

1For the historian of religion, blood sacrifice has always been a problem. Self-evident to its practitioners, it is immediately a puzzle once one seeks an explicit rationale for it. The difficulty was already powerfully exploited by the Christian apologists: ‘what kind of enjoyment is it to take delight in the slaughter of innocent animals?’, asks Arnobius, and goes on with his usual eloquence to depict all that is pathetic and disgusting about the rite.1 One possible solution that has long haunted studies of sacrifice is the idea of substitution, the animal dying in lieu of a human. ‘Christ died for us’, we are told: the possibility that in pre-Christian religion the animal died for them has been a way for modern interpreters of solving the enigma of the power ascribed to an animal’s death. In his classic study of Nuer religion, Evans-Pritchard concluded that the animal sacrificed by a Nuer stood in for the man who sacrificed it; his own life was owing to deity, and he paid his debt with the animal’s instead. In his formulation, ‘what one sacrifices is always oneself.’2 Lienhardt working in the Evans-Pritchard tradition on the nearby Dinka was less explicit, but still wrote ‘every sacrificial rite… anticipates the death… which the Dinka expect and fear, and by doing so demonstrates their own power of survival’. Another distinguished Africanist, de Heusch, disputed Evans-Pritchard’s particular interpretation of the Nuer data but still wrote ‘one constant practice pervades the sacrificial field: the possibility of substituting an animal for a man’. Similar quotations could be added from many others, going back to Hubert and Mauss’ famous Essai sur la nature et la fonction du sacrifice; a body of weighty anthropological opinion clearly tends this way. Within Greek studies, the possibility of animal-human equivalence is a pervasive theme in Burkert’s Homo Necans.3 There are indeed some Greek myths in which the idea of an animal being substituted for a human victim becomes explicit. The issue is whether that idea of substitution is incidental and occasional or fundamental. Was a typical Greek sacrifice perceived at any level as a mitigated human sacrifice?

  • 4 Homer, Il. 3.103-104. On the sex of sacrifical victims see P. Stengel, Die griechischen Kultusalter (...)
  • 5 See P. Brulé, R. Touzé, “Le hiereion: physis et psuchè d’un medium,” in V. Mehl, P. Brulé (eds.), L (...)

2A first question that needs to be made explicit is ‘if a substitute, a substitute for whom?’ For Evans-Pritchard, ‘what one sacrifices is always oneself.’ The animal sacrificed by a Nuer stood in for the man who sacrificed it; though his own life was owing to deity, he paid his debt with the animal’s instead, and Evans-Pritchard tried to show how the sacrificer identified himself with the animal by ritual gestures. In Greece by contrast one might say that what one sacrificed was never oneself, though it might be one’s daughter. At Aulis, Agamemnon was about to sacrifice Iphigeneia when a deer was substituted for her; he was not about to sacrifice himself. That is myth, but there is also a powerful argument from the symbolic choice of animal victims in everyday sacrificial practice. There was a tendency though not a strict rule to give male victims to gods, female to goddesses. Sometimes a closer correspondence was sought between victim and recipient: in the oath sacrifice in Iliad 3, for instance, both sun and earth receive lambs, but the sun’s is white and male, earth’s black and female;4 goddesses associated with growth might receive pregnant victims, and so on. Symbolic equation of the victim with the sacrificer, on the other hand, is a thing unheard of. If a sacrificial animal, like a priest, must be ‘whole’ and ‘perfect’,5 that is not because the animal figures the priest but because both must imitate as best they can the perfection of the gods.

  • 6 It was said that Agesilaus likewise, instructed by a dream to repeat Agamemnon’s sacrifice at Aulis (...)
  • 7 Plutarch, Pelopidas, 20.4-22.4.

3The only alternative to the animal-god equation comes in myths of averted human sacrifice such as that of Iphigeneia, where the animal stands or may stand for the human victim who is spared. The deer substituted for Iphigeneia is a plausible equivalent for her, given the familiar comparison of girls to timid young animals, though it is also a fit offering for the huntress Artemis (Pl. IIIa-b).6 A clearer case is the myth set in historical times which told how Pelopidas, instructed by a dream before the battle of Leuctra to sacrifice two yellow-haired virgins, sacrificed instead two yellow-haired fillies who providentially passed by.7 Girls were often spoken of as fillies, and the identification between the yellow hair of the girls and the horses is explicit. These arguments make it very unlikely that the animal in sacrifice substitutes for the sacrificer, with whom it is never identified. But the tendency to associate the animal with the god works against the idea that substitution of any kind (whether in lieu of the sacrificer or of a third party) occurs in normal sacrifice. The animal is a gift to the god and is assimilated to the god. In the Odyssey (3.438) a beautifully-adorned heifer offered to Athena is actually spoken of as an agalma, a ‘delight’, a word usually used of cult images. Nothing about the ordinary ceremony suggests identification between the animal and any human.

  • 8 For details on matters touched on only briefly here see P. Bonnechere, Le Sacrifice humain en Grèce (...)
  • 9 Embaros: Pausanias Atticista e 35 Erbse = ap. Eustathius in Iliad 2.732, p. 331, 25, with the conti (...)
  • 10 Pausanias 10.8.1-2. Two cases gathered by Porphyry (De abstinentia 2.54.3; 56.4) from the margins o (...)
  • 11 Aelian, De natura animalium 12.34, and Euelpis of Carystus ap. Porphyry, De abstinentia 2.55.3. The (...)

4If so, what then is to be said about the myths of human sacrifice? Three types are particularly relevant to our theme. The first is that of myths which tell of a human sacrifice averted by the substitution of an animal at the last moment.8 It is very familiar, because of the myth of Iphigeneia, but is not in fact very common. Just three stories of this type can be quoted, apart from that of Iphigeneia: the myth-historical incident relating to the yellow-haired virgins just mentioned; the aition for the sacrifice of a goat to Artemis in the cult for young girls at Mounichia, telling how the proverbially tricksy Embaros substituted a goat for the girl whom the goddess required; and a myth of unreliable antiquity concerning the young Helen.9 The second type, again not very common, is that of cults where it was said that the god originally demanded a human victim but at a certain point relented and accepted an ordinary animal sacrifice. The clearest and most central is Pausanias’ account of the cult of Dionysus Aigobolos at Potnia near Thebes. The Potnians when drunk killed a priest of Dionysus; they were required in expiation to sacrifice a handsome young man, but at a certain point Dionysus accepted a goat instead.10 The strange sacrifice made to Dionysus Man-Tearer on Tenedos, of a new-born calf dressed up as a baby, probably also belongs here: it was doubtless understood as a replacement sacrifice of some kind, and should be brought together with the report in a different source that human victims used to be sacrificed to ‘Raw’ (ὠμάδιος) Dionysus on the island.11 Finally there are myths of human sacrifice that, though not explicitly brought into relation with animal sacrifices, yet seem to parallel them: the obvious case is the resemblance between the myths telling of pre-battle human sacrifices and the actual pre-battle sacrifices of historical times. The many myths of humans torn apart in the cult of Dionysus are likewise based on the actual treatment of animals.

  • 12 Hesiod, Theogony, 535-561.
  • 13 Theophrastus ap. Porphyry, De abstinentia 2.27: animal sacrifice is an ὑπάλλαγμα of human.
    The othe (...)
  • 14 Pausanias 3.16.9-10; Euripides, Iphigeneia in Tauris, 1449-1461; Pausanias 7.19.4-9 with 20.1-2.

5It is important to note the form of all these myths. They are not myths of the origin of sacrifice, and do not present animal sacrifice in general as a secondary development from a more savage original. They seem commonly to postulate, even for the distant time in which they are set, a norm of animal sacrifice to which, in the particular case, the need for a human victim is a terrible exception. Where an animal sacrifice in the present is explained as a mitigation of an earlier human sacrifice, it is still only a single cult that is at issue. The one ‘origin of sacrifice’ myth that we know, that telling of the deception of Zeus by Prometheus in Hesiod, says nothing about substitution.12 The picture offered by these myths is different from the account of sacrificial pre-history created later by the vegetarian Theophrastus: Theophrastus does indeed at one point13 hypothesize a stage in prehistory during which all sacrifices had been of men, but that is an improvisation by him for his own polemical purposes, not the main mythological tradition. So, though the myths in question postulate the interchangeability of human and animal victims, they do not postulate it as a general rule: they provide no support for the idea that, in Greek consciousness, there lurked the spectre of a human victim behind every sacrifice. Nor do they treat animal sacrifice as the only form into which human sacrifice might mutate. It could mutate into a rite of whipping leading to bloodshed, like the one at the altar of Artemis Orthia in Sparta; it could become a rite in which a token cut was made in a human’s throat, as in the cult of Artemis Tauropolos at Halai Araphenides in Attica; it could just leave behind the crowns on the heads of the erstwhile victims, as in the rites of Artemis Triklaria at Patrai.14 Even cases of mitigated human sacrifice were not thought to issue automatically in animal sacrifice. No necessary progression was seen from the one form to the other.

  • 15 See e.g. Bonnechere, o.c. (n. 8), ch. 1, “Sacrifice humain et rites d’initiation à l’âge adulte,” a (...)

6What then are the myths that play on the interchangeability of human and animal sacrifice doing? Those of Iphigeneia and Embaros’ daughter relate to young girls and Artemis, and it has been widely argued that sacrifice is a mythical way of representing the symbolic death of young girls undergoing initiation.15 On that view these myths are not really about sacrifice at all, but about rites of passage. One might quibble about details of the formulation, but the central proposition is persuasive: what is at issue is Artemis’ claim over the life of young girls. The real life equivalent, so to speak, to Agamemon sacrificing his daughter to Artemis is the father who decides to ‘tithe’ his daughter to be a bear in her cult at Brauron: this is an act of consecration, something done by the father to the daughter, expressed by the transitive verb δεκατεύειν. The myths that associate Dionysus in various ways with the killing of humans are perhaps the exceptional case. Dionysiac cult explored violence, among other things, and the idea that the animal victim could have been a human may often have been in the mind of the Dionysiac worshipper. But that is a possibility specific to that very singular cult, not a general model of sacrifice. I pass over for the moment myths of my third type, where there is a parallel between the context of human and of animal sacrifice.

7The conclusion of the argument so far is that, at most Greek sacrifices, what one sacrifices is neither oneself nor anybody else; it is an animal, an item of valuable property. The very multiplicity of the contexts in which Greeks performed sacrifice also makes that conclusion more or less inescapable. One can see why a sacrifice intended to expiate a fault could operate with the idea of a life being due to the god and so of substitution. But why should a life be owing when a sacrifice was made to celebrate good news or to give thanks for fulfilment of a vow? And similarly with many further contexts. So on the main question the conclusion is firmly negative.

  • 16 Cf. H.S. Versnel, “Self-Sacrifice, Compensation and the Anonymous Gods,” in J. Rudhardt, O. Reverdi (...)

8There may none the less be specific contexts where an animal stands symbolically for a human, even if the relation is not exactly one of substitution. The sacrificial animal is an adaptable symbol, and an all-or-nothing approach is not required. It is indeed quite possible that individuals sometimes interpreted sacrifices in terms of substitution when not under pressure to do so. Votive reliefs showing a family group bringing a piglet or sheep to the altar of, as it may be, Artemis are a familiar and appealing image of Greek piety. In such a case, did some parents feel that at some level they were offering the animal so that one of the children who accompanied them should not die, or in gratitude that it had not, as Roman and Carthaginian parents apparently sometimes did?16 They never said so in accompanying inscriptions, but doubtless the thought may have entered the mind of some anxious and imaginative individuals. I turn, however, to cases where symbolism or language or context put such an interpretation closer to hand.

  • 17 See R. Parker, Miasma, Oxford, 1983, p. 370-374.

9The weakest case is the ritual of purification for a homicide.17 This was achieved by shedding the blood of a piglet over the killer’s hands; so one killing effaced another, and in references to the rite the homoeopathic element of ‘washing blood with blood’ is stressed. There is some temptation then to say that the pig shed its blood where the killer’s blood was what strict justice required. Against this it can be pointed out that Greeks performed purifications with pig’s blood in other situations too, as a way of purifying an assembly or sacred place for instance; also that a piglet costing three drachmai is a poor symbolic substitute for a man. At the most there is a passing hint of substitution in the formula of ‘blood with blood’.

  • 18 T. Gaisford, Paroemiographi Graeci, Oxford, 1836, p. 126 no. 57 (from Codex Coislinianus 177), also (...)
  • 19 C.A. Faraone, “Molten Wax, Spilt Wine, and Mutilated Animals,” JHS 113 (1993), p. 72-76; also the t (...)
  • 20 Wine: Homer, Iliad 3.300; wax figurines: ML 5.44-51.

10A much more persuasive case is that of oaths, though what it gives us is not the animal’s death substituting for that of the human; on the contrary, the animal’s death prefigures that of the human in the event of perjury. Lexicographers record the oath formula supposedly used by one Greek people, the Molossians.18 ‘When the Molossians swear an oath they provide oxen and bowls full of wine. They cut the oxen into small pieces and pray that those who transgress the oath be cut likewise. And emptying the bowls they pray that the blood of transgressers be poured out likewise.’ There we have an explicit parallel drawn between the oath breaker’s body and that of the animal; and it is very likely that, if we could listen to more oaths being sworn, we would hear more ‘so… thus’ formulas of that type being used. Faraone has pointed out that in descriptions of oaths in the Iliad there is considerable lingering over the fate of the animals: they are described as gasping for breath as they die, like a warrior; we are told how their bodies are hurled into the sea. The graphic details are appropriate, he suggests, because the hearer will have understood the fate of the animal as anticipating that of the perjurer.19 Note however that material other than the bodies of animals could be deployed to dramatize the curses accompanying oaths: wine could be poured to symbolise the pouring out of perjurers’ blood; wax figurines could be burnt to depict the melting of their bodies.20 Oaths were almost always accompanied by animal sacrifice, but the symbolic equation of animal and man was only of several expressive devices that could add further solemnity.

  • 21 Seen for instance in three plays of Euripides, Heraclidae, Phoenissae, and Erechtheus.
  • 22 Xenophon, Hellenica 2.4.18-19; cf. Bonnechere, o.c. (n. 8), p. 249-260.

11A final context where some identification between animal and human is hard to deny is that of pre-battle sacrifice. By the fifth century much the commonest mythological context for human sacrifices had come to be a forthcoming battle.21 The pattern became so familiar that, as Bonnechere has pointed out, it influenced the interpretation of history, with the death of Leonidas the Spartan at Thermopylae being explained as a saving self-sacrifice. The extraordinary story in Xenophon of a seer who rushed into battle in 403, seeking death as a favourable omen for his side, suggests that it may even have influenced historical behaviour.22 Every hearer of such myths and stories about humans killed or killing themselves before battle knew that, immediately before battle was joined, both sides made slaughter-sacrifices of animals, σφάγια.

  • 23 M.H. Jameson, “Sacrifice before Battle,” in V.D. Hanson (ed.), Hoplites. The Classical Greek Battle (...)
  • 24 Cf. J.-P. Vernant, “Artémis et le sacrifice préliminaire au combat,” REG 101 (1988), p. 238.

12The best study of this rite is by Jameson, who sums up its force epigrammatically as ‘We kill. May we kill’.23 That interpretation already appeals to the idea of interchangeability between animal and human, but it makes the animal stand for the enemy. It is hard, however, to dissociate the real pre-battle animal sacrifices from the mythological human sacrifices and self-sacrifices performed in just the same context.24 The myths of human sacrifice and the ritual of animal sacrifice relate to the same situation of extreme tension, and the one must shape the understanding of the other. If that is right, a double substitution is in operation: in myth one human dies on behalf of many, while in reality one animal replaces the human. Logically, however, that interpretation is incompatible with Jameson’s. For Jameson, the animal stands for the enemy: as we kill this animal, so may we kill many enemies. On the other view, the animal is one of us: ‘take this animal; spare the rest of us’.

  • 25 So M. Dillon, “Divination and the Sphagia before Ancient Greek Battles,” in Mehl – Brulé, o.c. (n. (...)

13It is tempting to say that such logical incompatibility is perfectly possible in religious thought, but the question must be posed of whether a pre-battle σφάγιον was accompanied by an invocation. If so, it must either have been on the lines of ‘we kill this animal, so may we kill many enemies’ or ‘take this animal; spare the rest of us’: it cannot have been both. So a choice probably needs to be made, though on either view we will have a further instance of animal representing man. And in candour a third view should be mentioned. The only explicitly attested function of the pre-battle sacrifice is divinatory, to take omens from (probably) the flow of the animal’s blood. The minimalist argument that the rite meant no more than that to those who performed it cannot be refuted.25

  • 26 Some oath-sacrifices were eaten (Pausanias 5.24.10-11), but doubtless not where the victim was muti (...)
  • 27 P. Veyne, “Inviter les dieux, sacrifier, banqueter,” Annales (2000), p. 3-42 at 21-22.

14Even if all the cases here discussed are accepted as symbolically identifying animal and man, all three—homicide purifications, oath-sacrifices, pre-battle sacrifices—are sacrifices of the σφάγιον type, ones not followed by a banquet.26 Paul Veyne has recently warned against any attempt to identify a single meaning of sacrifice: it had many different meanings, offered many different satisfactions.27 The idea of an equivalence of animal and man should not be struck off the list of meanings entirely; but it comes fairly low down that list, and is relevant only in relation to a restricted range of sacrifices.

Notes

1 Quod gaudium est innoxiorum animalium mactatione laetari? Arnobius, Adversus Nationes 7.4; cf. already Seneca, fr. 123 Haase, ap. Lactantius, Divinae institutiones 6.25.3: quae extrucidatione innocentium voluptas est?

2 E.E. Evans-Pritchard, Nuer Religion, Oxford, 1956, p. 280-281; G. Lienhardt, Divinity and Experience. The Religion of the Dinka, Oxford, 1961, p. 292; L. De Heusch, Sacrifice in Africa (trans. L. O’Brien and A. Morton), Bloomington, 1985, p. 9-11, with 15; H. Hubert, M. Mauss, Sacrifice: its Nature and Function (trans. W.D. Halls), London, 1964, p. 32 and 98 (originally published in L’Année sociologique, 1898); cf. e.g. V. Valeri, Kingship and Sacrifice. Ritual and Society in Ancient Hawaii, Chicago, 1985, p. 49; M. Bloch, Prey into Hunter, Cambridge 1992, p. 30 (quoting and rejecting a dissenting opinion of M. Detienne). The idea is often explicit in Indian texts: M. Biardeau, C. Malamoud, Le Sacrifice dans l’Inde ancienne, Paris 1976, p. 19; C. Malamoud, Cooking the World: Ritual and Thought in Ancient India (trans. D. White), Delhi, 1996, p. 59. Contrast the firm rejection by T. Gibson, Sacrifice and Sharing in the Philippine Highlands, London, 1986, p. 179.

3 W. Burkert, Homo Necans (trans. P. Bing), Berkeley, 1983.

4 Homer, Il. 3.103-104. On the sex of sacrifical victims see P. Stengel, Die griechischen Kultusaltertümer, Munich 19203, p. 152-153; A. Hermary, M. Leguilloux, ThesCRA I (2004), p. 97- 98.

5 See P. Brulé, R. Touzé, “Le hiereion: physis et psuchè d’un medium,” in V. Mehl, P. Brulé (eds.), Le Sacrifice antique. Vestiges, procédures et stratégies, Rennes, 2008, p. 120-121, who quote Plutarch, Questiones Graecae, 73, 281c: priests who bear a wound mark cannot preside over bird augury because ‘nobody would use a wounded animal for sacrifice’. On the selection of animals see C. Feyel, RPh 80 (2006), p. 36-42; for this purpose a castrated animal was whole, F.T. vanstraten, Hierà Kalá, Leiden, 1995, p. 185.

6 It was said that Agesilaus likewise, instructed by a dream to repeat Agamemnon’s sacrifice at Aulis, sacrificed a deer instead: Plutarch, Agesilaus, 6.6-11.

7 Plutarch, Pelopidas, 20.4-22.4.

8 For details on matters touched on only briefly here see P. Bonnechere, Le Sacrifice humain en Grèce ancienne, Athens-Liège, 1994.

9 Embaros: Pausanias Atticista e 35 Erbse = ap. Eustathius in Iliad 2.732, p. 331, 25, with the continuation in Anecdota Graeca (Bekker), 1.445.1-13. Helen: Aristodemus, 22 F 1A Jacoby = ap. [Plutarch], Parallela Minora, 35a, 314c.

10 Pausanias 10.8.1-2. Two cases gathered by Porphyry (De abstinentia 2.54.3; 56.4) from the margins of the Greek world, one from Cyprus, one from Laodicea in Syria, are scarcely reliable witnesses to the ways classical Greeks may have thought about their own religious practices.

11 Aelian, De natura animalium 12.34, and Euelpis of Carystus ap. Porphyry, De abstinentia 2.55.3. The details differ slightly but a connection seems inescapable.

12 Hesiod, Theogony, 535-561.

13 Theophrastus ap. Porphyry, De abstinentia 2.27: animal sacrifice is an ὑπάλλαγμα of human.
The otherwise puzzling claim in the following chapter of Porphyry that the Pythagoreans sometimes sacrificed animals ἀνθ’ ἑαυτῶν must be understood in the light of this theory, whether that chapter is to be assigned to Theophrastus or to Porphyry: on both points see the notes in G. Clark’s translation, Porphyry, On Abstinence from Killing Animals, London, 2000, p. 151.

14 Pausanias 3.16.9-10; Euripides, Iphigeneia in Tauris, 1449-1461; Pausanias 7.19.4-9 with 20.1-2.

15 See e.g. Bonnechere, o.c. (n. 8), ch. 1, “Sacrifice humain et rites d’initiation à l’âge adulte,” and the works he cites. On this use of δεκατεύειν, attested by a fragment of Demosthenes, Against Medon, quoted by Harpocration d 16, see R. Parker, Polytheism and Society at Athens, Oxford, 2005, p. 233.

16 Cf. H.S. Versnel, “Self-Sacrifice, Compensation and the Anonymous Gods,” in J. Rudhardt, O. Reverdin (eds.), Le Sacrifice dans l’antiquité, Vandœuvres-Genève, 1981, p. 168-169 (Entretiens Hardt, 27), with the clarification of A. Bendlin, “Anstelle der Anderen sterben,” in J.C. Janowski et al. (eds.), Stellvertretung, Neukirchener, 2006, p. 9-41, at 39-40; the animal is offered in lieu of a child’s natural death, not in lieu of a human sacrifice.

17 See R. Parker, Miasma, Oxford, 1983, p. 370-374.

18 T. Gaisford, Paroemiographi Graeci, Oxford, 1836, p. 126 no. 57 (from Codex Coislinianus 177), also printed in the app. crit. to Diogenianus 3.60 Leutsch-Schneidewin.

19 C.A. Faraone, “Molten Wax, Spilt Wine, and Mutilated Animals,” JHS 113 (1993), p. 72-76; also the treaty formula of the pater patratus in Livy 1.24.8: si prior defexit (populus Romanus) publico consilio dolo malo, tum illo die Juppiter populum Romanum sic ferito, ut ego hunc porcum hic hodie feriam, “if the Roman people by public decision and deliberate deceit first breaks this treaty, then on that day may Juppiter strike the Roman people as I shall strike this pig here today.” But for doubts whether post-homeric Greek oath sacrifices were accompanied by “so… thus” curses see E.J. Bickerman, “Cutting a Covenant,” in his Studies in Jewish and Christian History I (trans. B. McNeil), Leiden, 20072, p. 1-31 at 15-20 (published in French as “Couper une alliance” in ed. 1 of the same work, Leiden, 1976).

20 Wine: Homer, Iliad 3.300; wax figurines: ML 5.44-51.

21 Seen for instance in three plays of Euripides, Heraclidae, Phoenissae, and Erechtheus.

22 Xenophon, Hellenica 2.4.18-19; cf. Bonnechere, o.c. (n. 8), p. 249-260.

23 M.H. Jameson, “Sacrifice before Battle,” in V.D. Hanson (ed.), Hoplites. The Classical Greek Battle Experience, London, 1991, p. 197-227.

24 Cf. J.-P. Vernant, “Artémis et le sacrifice préliminaire au combat,” REG 101 (1988), p. 238.

25 So M. Dillon, “Divination and the Sphagia before Ancient Greek Battles,” in Mehl – Brulé, o.c. (n. 5), p. 235-251.

26 Some oath-sacrifices were eaten (Pausanias 5.24.10-11), but doubtless not where the victim was mutilated to anticipate the perjurer’s fate.

27 P. Veyne, “Inviter les dieux, sacrifier, banqueter,” Annales (2000), p. 3-42 at 21-22.

Auteur

New College, Oxford
Wykeham Professor of Ancient History in the University of Oxford. He has written Miasma. Pollution and Purification in Early Greek Religion (Oxford 1983), Athenian Religion : a History (Oxford 1996), Polytheism and Society at Athens (Oxford 2005). Chapter 5 of his most recent book, On Greek Religion (Cornell 2011), attempts a general account of Greek (animal and vegetable) sacrifice.

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