These words are transliterated as small caps. In their usual order, they are: askion, kataskion, lix, tetrax, damnameneus and aision or aisia , though they can be rearranged into hexameter. These words resemble but are not Greek words, though Damnameneus was on of the Idaean Dactyls, the dwarf helpers of the magician-god Hephaestus. They were known to be in circulation since at least the 5th century BCE, though the first mention we have of them is a 1st century CE text found near Mycenae apparently giving thanks for vengeance. The Ephesian vengeance menysis was sent down. Firstly Hecate harms the belongings of Megara in all things, and then Persephone reports to the gods.
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When this was removed, the Milesian easily won his three successive victories. LpaTKa aXa. The aKvrapLOF pawrToi were little " patches" of parchment upon which the " auspicious Ephesian words " were written to " shield " the bearer. Quoted by Suidas, s. Perhaps one should emend rots -ya JoimrLv to batfovowatv with H.
Leiden, , , who mgkes the suggestion doubtfully, referring to Plutarch, Mor. Why not emend to Tro0s ait. To the copyist it had so little meaning that he muddled the formula itself, even though it was so common that a mere allusion was sufficient.
For the literary tradition, then, the Ephesia grammata are words of power, and there is no evidence of their hypostatization. When one turns to popular usage, on the contrary, he finds them transformed from a magic formula, from mere words, into active and powerful beings whose characters and performances are known. An exquisite example of the employment of these baiuoves as a written and spoken defense against evil is found in the Cretan tablet already mentioned, which dates from the fourth century B.
ElI[EpV jE? Wessely, " Neue griechische Zauberpapyri," in Denkschriften d. Classe, XLII , p. The allusion establishes the traditional order of the words, as against Roscher; see above, p. It was reprinted with fuller restoration and commentary by Wtinsch, Rh. LV , In but a few places have I ventured to depart from the readings of the latter. The readings are those of Winsch unless otherwise stated. WWunsch, M-McCown. OuVT M. This is a real rz7rwc67a, carmen, an incantation composed in the dactylic hexameter that was attributed to the Idaean Dactyli and containing the Ephesia grammata which were also ascribed to their ingenuity.
I make bold to render the rough and rugged lines freely: Hear ye, malicious pack that infesteth the Aethalian country, Forth from our homes, I say, away to your own dwelling places. Zeus, the averter of evil, and Heracles, sacker of cities, Healer, I call upon thee, on Victory, and on Apollo. Chester C.
McCown 5 Hear ye; the Lix of Tetrag the leaping flock now is bringing. Epaphos, Epaphos, Epaphos, flee; thou she-wolf, flee also; Dog, and thou Thieving Demon, thy fellow insatiate, together Flee ye away, infuriate raging, each to his dwelling. Keep off from the banquet the two greedy hell-hounds, O Aski Kataski. Happily he who knows binding magic may pass down the highway, Shorn of his senses the silent, traversing the spirit-thronged highway.
The manner in which the tablet was folded as well as its content shows that it was intended to be worn as an amulet. The lack of connection in the text indicates that it was made up of various charms compounded like a magic potion into a sort of panacea for all the evils that beast, man, or devil might attempt to work against the wearer.
But it uses only elements already present in the tablet which, with lines 11, 12, and 16, are sufficient for the purposes of this argument.
Aski Kataski appears as an individual, since it is addressed in the singular. Tetrag and Damnameneu are the two clearly defined characters. Three points not affected by uncertainties of text are important for the thesis here maintained: 1 the Ephesia grammata are regarded as persons, for they are directly addressed, 2 they are appealed to as beneficent, protecting spirits, and 3 Tetrag, 26 Mor.
In the same way the Palestinian fellah, when he has to go out at night where he thinks demons may be, " murmult beim Gehen bestandig Beschw6rungen vor sich hin, betet ununterbrochen oder ruft vortwahrend Gott oder einen Heiligen an. Volksmedizin im Lande der Bibel Abhandlungen d. Kolonialinstituts, xx , Hamburg , p. The Testament of Solomon, a Christian combination of Jewish and heathen demonology and magic, probably belongs to the third or fourth century after Christ.
It comes to us in manuscripts of the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries, six of which contain a passage which I read as a description of Lix Tetrax, the wind demon specially singled out for attention in the Cretan tablet.
The chapter which follows is a fair specimen of the whole: VII. Kal e? Whether Aski Kataski is to be taken as one name or two is indeterminable. In the literary tradition it is two. Windisch, No. First, do the manuscript readings justify the emendation?
Harleian Ms. Two other manuscripts of the same century, both copied from the same exemplar in Italy, one now No. James, Esq. Coke of Norfolk" in , having formerly been the property of a Cretan priest, Mark of Morzenos. McCown Bologna, the other No. Two manuscripts, one in Jerusalem, Sancti Saba No. Palaeographically there can be no objection to my conjecture. As to the first name, in such late and carelessly copied manuscripts as these, one need not seek a full explanation of such small alterations.
It is entirely in keeping with the general character of the manuscripts that the first, third, and fourth should preserve an unintelligible reading which closely resembles thd original, that the second should completely confuse it by pure carelessness or ineptitude, and that the last two should alter it into something reasonable and intelligible, but quite other than the author intended.
The second question is, Does the character of the demon in these two widely separated documents, the Cretan tablet and the Christian Testament, justify the identification? There are several reasons for answering in the affirmative.
First, although the literary references to the Ephesia grammata imply that they are words only, our two non-literary documents plainly regard them as powerful demons, or spirits, each with his own individuality.
In both Lix Tetrax is a wind and, most significantly, the "gift of Zeus" of the tablet is in the Testament "offspring of the Great One. The notable fact is that, in the Testament, contrary to all its usage, when men pray to the semitertian fever with certain magic words, Lix Tetrax cures them. With the passing of the cen- [ turies and the coming of the new religion, Lix Tetrag has undergone alterations, but the storm-demon of the Christian Testament is the lineal descendant of the Cretan ailuwv of the evening breeze.
In Pap. The chief sources are Diodorus Siculus, v, 6 f. See Lobeck, op. Leemans, p. A few of the many references to Damnameneus are listed by Wessely, op. A figure almost identical with that in Kopp, Palaeog.
When this was removed, the Milesian easily won his three successive victories. LpaTKa aXa. The aKvrapLOF pawrToi were little " patches" of parchment upon which the " auspicious Ephesian words " were written to " shield " the bearer. Quoted by Suidas, s. Perhaps one should emend rots -ya JoimrLv to batfovowatv with H. Leiden, , , who mgkes the suggestion doubtfully, referring to Plutarch, Mor. Why not emend to Tro0s ait.
The Ephesia Grammata: Genesis of a Magical Formula
The sacred site temenos at Ephesus was far older than the Artemision itself. Pausanias was certain that it antedated the Ionic immigration by many years, being older even than the oracular shrine of Apollo at Didyma. Callimachus , in his Hymn to Artemis attributed the earliest temenos at Ephesus to the Amazons , whose worship he imagined already centered upon an image bretas of Artemis, their matron goddess. Tacitus also believed in the Amazon foundation, however Pausanias believed the temple predated the Amazons.