March 3, 1999
Chapter 2- Athenas Shrines and Festivals
What is this article about?
This article describes the positioning and significance of various temples and shrines of the Acropolis. These temples and shrines served for the performance of age-old rituals at Athenas festivals. A festival was celebrated for a given god at the usual time his help was needed. There were three festivals which were regarded as Athenas: the cleansing festival, the threshing festival and the festival of games.
The cleansing festival consisted of the image, a wooden version of Athena, being bathed and its robe being washed by several attendants. The threshing festival is when a precession went from the Acropolis to the farmland west of Athens to inaugurate the threshing or harvesting of grain. The festival of games is when the grain had been harvested, the summer heat brought a lull, so the whole city celebrated with games and a grand parade.
What does this tell us about the worship of Athena and Greek attitudes towards
It allows the reader to visualize the layout of the various Athenian shrines and temples. It also describes her importance to Greek citizens by attributing several different festivals to myths about her. This illustrates that attitudes towards her as a Greek goddess were so mighty that she has an entire city including a temple with festivals dedicated in her name.
How does this relate to the course?
The events of this chapter give insight about how Athena plays a pivotal role in Greek life. Not only is Athena regarded as an all-powerful goddess, but she is also highly favored by mortals due to her willingness and ability to come to their aid, as demonstrated in The Odyssey and Euremides. Athena is therefore renowned as "A Goddess of the People".