Cookies Policy

This site uses cookies. By continuing to browse the site you are agreeing to our use of cookies.

I accept this policy

Find out more here

The Phrygian Background of Kybele

No metrics data to plot.
The attempt to load metrics for this article has failed.
The attempt to plot a graph for these metrics has failed.
The full text of this article is not currently available.

Brill’s MyBook program is exclusively available on BrillOnline Books and Journals. Students and scholars affiliated with an institution that has purchased a Brill E-Book on the BrillOnline platform automatically have access to the MyBook option for the title(s) acquired by the Library. Brill MyBook is a print-on-demand paperback copy which is sold at a favorably uniform low price.

Access this article

+ Tax (if applicable)
Add to Favorites
You must be logged in to use this functionality

image of Numen

The cult of Kybele is well known from Greek and Roman sources and well-described in most modern literature on antique religions. The cult, however, is primarily known in its Roman version, which differs greatly from the cult in the ancient Phrygian homeland of Kybele. This article presents the latest research on this subject: iconography and roles, attendants relating to the goddess, cult places, rituals and worship, and transference of the cult from Phrygia to Greece.

The Phrygian goddess, characterised by features of wild nature, was represented primarily by predatory birds, and she was worshipped in mountainous settings. Instead of portraying her as a typical Mother goddess associated with nature, fertility and procreation, new research has argued that her status as a Mother derives from her connection to the king, thus being the mother of the state and the throne. It is also maintained in the article that Attis is a late, Greek invention, and that the cult in Phrygia did not take the form of a mystery religion. In conclusion, it is suggested that the Black sea area played a role in the development and the dissemination of the cult.

Affiliations: 1: Department of the Study of Religion and Danish National Research Foundation's Centre for Black Sea Studies, University of Aarhus, Tåsingegade 3, 8000 Århus C, Denmark;, Email:


Full text loading...


Data & Media loading...

Article metrics loading...



Can't access your account?
  • Tools

  • Add to Favorites
  • Printable version
  • Email this page
  • Subscribe to ToC alert
  • Get permissions
  • Recommend to your library

    You must fill out fields marked with: *

    Librarian details
    Your details
    Why are you recommending this title?
    Select reason:
    Numen — Recommend this title to your library
  • Export citations
  • Key

  • Full access
  • Open Access
  • Partial/No accessInformation