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The subsequent new construction of banqueting halls, in which around two hundred participants could eat, indicates in turn that these delimitations were abolished and a new cult community was formed. The identifying function of the ritual by means of distinction was put aside in favour of a newly defined identifying function. Stausberg ed. They originate in the communication among the participants themselves, in that these absorb the particular social and historical context and interpret them symbolically; they also define them.
These changes can take various forms. Rituals can even be invented, and yet claim the appearance of tradition for themselves. The festival of Artemis Laphria in Patrae, as documented by Pausanias, and the description of the burial of Philopoimen in Plutarch are two such examples.
The puzzling ritual of the Laphria becomes understandable, as soon as one takes into consideration the various semantic levels with regard to the historical context and to the ideology of the observer here: Pausanias.
In other words, he invents the ritual of the Laphria a second time for his readers, this time as an authentic and local product of Greek cultic practices. In a similar fashion the heavily emotional burial of Philopoimen in Plutarch may be analysed. The textual transformations experienced by the sacrificial ritual of the Laphria or the funerary ritual of Philopoimen at the hands of Pausanias and Plutarch indicate that rituals clearly are not only to be regarded as repositories of tradition, but also as indications of alternative contemporary models.
On the other hand, both authors act as inventors or modifiers of rituals. It is they who undertake alterations in the rituals they describe, within the process of communing with their readers. Here the text does not just limit itself to reproducing a ritual, but forms it. The text becomes an extension of the ritual itself, and the authors its agents. And together with these changes the semantics of the ritual had been altered, too.
In the political and social life in the communities of Roman Asia Minor, the members of the elite class and the citizens had a direct impact on the message of the funerary rituals, being at the same time influenced by them.
More complex is the identification of ritual changes taking place on a synchronic level. The ritual of swearing an oath is a case in point. Irene Berti, in her analysis of this ritual, has been able to show, using the Homeric epics, that not one ritual of swearing existed, but many such rituals or variants.
Although some of the ritual elements such as the self-curse, the sacrifice or sacrifice-like procedure and the gesture of touching are recognisably especially important, they are not always represented in the rituals of swearing that have been transmitted to us.
Sometimes they are represented, sometimes only a part is there. In this regard, the private or public character of the occasion does not seem to have had any influence upon the enactment of the ritual. Thus, treaties between states were finalised in just the same manner as the engye, namely by shaking hands.
Various performances of oath-rituals, on the other hand, were applied within the same context. Are the differences, which have been established in carrying out the oath-rituals modifications of these, or are they rather transformations of the ritual?
This means that form and meaning stand, and must stand, in an interrelationship with each other, if one wants the ritual to be successful. Changes to the performance may trigger changes to the semantics of the ritual and vice versa, i.
Thus, the presence or absence of one or more elements in the ritual performance may be caused by an adaptation to givens such as the occasion or the participants, without the function of the oath-taking ritual being questioned — at least by the participants.
The slaughtered animal or the metal bars sunk into the sea were intended to represent the fate of the one who broke his oath, and to intensify the emotions of the one swearing the oath. This intensification was intentional and was expected in other rituals such as funerals, too. On the other hand, the leges sacrae inform us that the Greek poleis repeatedly attempted to regulate these emotions, in particular in connection with what is probably the most emotionally laden ritual of all, the burial of the dead.
But why? Platvoet ed. These negotiations also run their course in an emotional fashion and can undermine the ritual stance of the participants, thus influencing the performance. Processions are among this kind of public and collective ritual, in the course of which murders, armed uprisings or rapes could occur. The examples of the murder of the Peisistratid Hipparchos during the Panathenaic Procession BC, Thucydides I, 20, 2 or the attack on procession participants in Sardeis by religious fanatics during a procession in honour of Artemis Ephesia approx.
Ephesos 2 are countered by regulations which detail the form and course of a procession. Do such regulations aim at forming a common identity alone? That both depend on each other and co-exist, with a fragile harmony between them that had to be preserved, is quite obvious. Engels, Funerum sepulcrorumque magni The performance of funerary rituals is a characteristic example of this. Ancient Greece, starting with Solon, produced a series of normative interventions with regard to burials.
Goffmann, Interaction Ritual. Behaviour designates what is characteristically expressed by means of attitude, clothing, and handling and serves to express to others that one is prepared to follow the given rules and ignore any other possibilities. For this reason, emotions must be subject to the particular social function of the ritual in this case, the funerary rituals , and their expression is not to endanger the performance of the ritual and, consequently, its success, in any way.
The demonstration of emotions during the performance of funerary rituals was indeed the subject of close observation and criticism, as Manolis Skountakis reveals in his paper. Using the example of the consolatory work of Plutarch, Consolatio ad uxorem, the hyperbole extravagant display of the emotions in funerary rituals is discussed.
Plutarch denounces the ways in which people perform burials and the mourning customs of his day, because of the expressions of immoderate grief. What Plutarch criticises is not the ritual itself, but rather the unacceptable way the ritual is performed. The ritual attitude of the participants is, in his opinion, not only excessive, but is put on in a downright theatrical manner.
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The enrichment of the ritual performance with emotional elements, which according to tradition were to be suppressed, led to the theatricality of the ritual. The funerary ritual was no longer dedicated to the deceased; rather it offered a stage for self-representation of relatives and other participants, and for their social and political desires and needs.
Whether Plutarch unconsciously fell victim to his own criticism, or distinguished between private and public funerary rituals, may be safely left aside here; his literary adaptation shows that in his time public funerary rituals played a large role in the hierarchisa-tion of society and its constant confirmation. This public discourse on the preservation or re-introduction of rituals can be examined with the help of popular decisions, as far as these have been preserved. Stefan Hotz distinguishes between already neglected traditional rituals and those, which were threatened with neglect.
Because the inscriptional testimony dates from the Roman Imperial Period, the reasons for interrupting the rituals generally have to do with the financial position of the Greek cities of the time. Members of the local elite undertook the developed initiatives, but they had first to be negotiated. The reference to the past and to tradition -particularly in the course of the Second Sophistic —, but also to personal piety forms the motive of the initiators.
Where the documents permit a closer examination of the chances of success, one can observe how temporary these attempts at restitution were. The fact that some rituals were no longer attractive, were neglected or abolished reveals above all the fragility of the rituals, when the tie between the ritual and its specific context was broken.
Rituals may be subject to change as long as they are given a certain communicative function. Leach, s. Shannon, W. However, if one sees communication as a ritual, then the emphasis is more on the performance than the process as such, on participation rather than use, on the meaning rather than the result; in a ritual, one is not just a listener, but also a creator.
Henk S. To perceive a ritual in such a specific way is in itself a convention resulting from a previous communication, which had occurred again on the occasion of a ritual performance. Thus, the detection of associations provoked by ritual permit us an insight not only in the construction of a ritual, but also in the creation of its message s.
The umbrella category of the leges sacrae may only be partially justified, but the subsumed testimonials do document communication with regard to sacral matters. Both contributions analyse the levels of communication embedded in these inscriptions and the factors guaranteeing these communications. Metrical sacred regulations appear in numerous contexts and may contain an oracular response.
The oracular sacred regulations demonstrate directness in the communication between the deity and the community. The community asks the divinity a question or for advice, and the deity answers. The answer in the form of a metrical oracle is one of the characteristics, which define the authenticity of the communication and the legitimacy of the subsequent action.
The second characteristic of these oracular sacred regulations is that they are not only unrelated to one particular situation, but also consisted of general instructions concerning the relationships with divinities, such as the importance of purity. In this way, they not only communicate to the reader a few specific regulations concerning the religious life of the community, but, through their form and their set of contextual characteristics, they also express the ritual conception of communication between the community and the deity, between the members of the community, and between the reader, the deity, and the community.
In this Gattungskreuzung the divinity does not speak through an oracle to the reader or to the community, but the elements of the oracular regulations metrical form, gnomic statements, demands for purity were adopted in order to make this impression or, better said, to guarantee communication on all the levels mentioned previously.
Here, a transfer of the ritual form of communication from the oracular to the non-oracular regulations has taken place? They point to a series of actions, which take place on several levels and in which no clear-cut border between active agents or senders and passive spectators or receivers can be recognised.
In this way, those factors are determined which permit changes in ritual to be seen as suitable and acceptable: who is responsible for the changes, what means are used to effect change, and how are changes in ritual legitimised? The observation that these negotiations are carried out in a performative manner is fundamental. At a particular place the popular assembly and at a particular time the communication about a particular proposal took place; the roles of agent and spectator were continually negotiated in the course of the event.
The whole event was successful, or rather effective, when the results of the negotiation were seen and felt by all participants to be communal. That rituals were also used for communication in asymmetol— rical or hierarchical relations is nothing new; one need only consider, for example, the communication between divinities and humans. The possibilities opened up by this ritual communication are, however, interesting; in particular the adaptations needed for the construction or confirmation of such relations.
The relation between king ruler and subjects is one such asymmetrical relation. Kuhn investigates those processes of communication triggered by the cult of the ruler, in this case Demetrius Poliorcetes.
The equation of Macedonian kings with divine beings led to a reinterpretation and inversion of rituals belonging to the mode of communication between mortals and deities. One of them is the ritual of the theoxenia: quartering Demetrius in the Parthenon was intended to symbolise the assimilation of the king with the goddess Athena. In the Parthenon Athena is supposed to have received him as a guest and entertained him correspondingly.
In this manner the accom-modation was placed within a special ritual context, namely that of traditional hospitality in general and that of the ritual of the theoxenia in particular. Theoxenia is a term signifying the entertainment of divine guests in a mortal house. In the case of Demetrius the ritual has been inverted, for the goddess is now host for a mortal.
A ritual, then, is being used to establish direct communication with a wider public. By means of the conscious inversion of the ritual the persons addressed are drawn to the message — Demetrius is supposed to be the equal of gods —, rather than the message being brought to the people.
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The designation of the Athenian emissaries as theoroi, and, not least, the enquiry in the form of an oracular consultation of Demetrius were intended to place Demetrius in a particular context: he takes on the role of Pythia and in this fashion becomes a medium of divine will.
The ritual of the theoria and the consultation of the oracle is thus altered, on the one hand making the person of Demetrius the main attraction, and on the other placing the communication between king and subjects on another level. The three events — the tearing of the peplos during the Panathenaic Festival, the growth of hemlock around the altars of the Soteres, and finally the interruption of the procession during the Dionysiac Festival because of an unusual cold spell — were interpreted by Plutarch as a sign of divine disapproval of the change in ritual for Demetrius, initiated by the Athenians, and simultaneously as a divine refusal to communicate further with mortals.
The communication between Demetrius and the Athenians characterised by the adaptation of already existing rituals and their traditions, failed precisely because of the use of these rituals.
Thus, the dynamic process connected with the cult of the ruler provoked a contrary process, which can be seen in the divine intervention and subsequent deviations and failed rituals. Thomas Kruse investigates the ritualised communication between the populace and the magistrates, which took place in the context of festive gatherings or public meetings.
Through the medium of acclamations the demos was able to express its approval or its criticism of the administrative practices of the magistrates — which was recorded in writing — and also to present its petitions. This ritual, however, also allowed the hierarchy to be renegotiated and emphasised. They retain their original shape, but not their inner form, and so lose their true weight and beauty. They also usually go no bigger than 11pt, although at this size or smaller they may save you 25 percent of ink consumption.
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