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10. Religion and Magic in Roman Corinth

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Chapter Summary

This chapter explores some aspects of the interplay of religion and magic in Roman Corinth. It primarily focuses on the Sanctuary of Demeter and Kore on the northern slopes of Acrocorinth beginning in the early years of the newly-founded Roman colony. The chapter briefly considers other literary and archaeological evidence for magical practices in the city and its adjacent territory. The most abundant physical evidence for the practice of magic in Roman Corinth, however, is provided by numerous lead tablets inscribed with magical spells, curses, and prayers to the gods and spirits of the underworld. These have turned up in excavations in several parts of the ancient city and its territory in wells, graves, and especially in sanctuaries. Excavation in another sector of Roman Corinth has revealed evidence that the practice of magic in this city continued at least into late antiquity.

Keywords: magical practices; newly-founded Roman colony; religion; Roman Corinth; Sanctuary of Demeter



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