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Attis: A greek god in Anatolian Pessinous and Catullan Rome

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Chapter Summary

This chapter reconstructs the myth and ritual of Attis in the period up to Catullus. Religion is a living part of society, and the cult of Attis kept developing until the end of Late Antiquity, but that period would require a further study altogether: even with the stated restriction, it is not easy to get a grip on the early stages of Attis' cult. Our testimonies are few and sometimes difficult to interpret. Moreover, established opinions have too long been accepted - often without being properly scrutinized. The chapter tries to move as much as possible along chronological lines in order to see the myth and ritual of Attis in its historical development. It looks at the ?Lydian' complex, Attis' arrival in Greece, Attis in Phrygia, Attis' arrival in Rome and the poem of Catullus. It also reconstructs the history and meaning of the myth and ritual at Pessinous.

Keywords: Anatolian; Attis; Catullus; Greek god; Lydian; Pessinous; Phrygia; Rome



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