By Margaret Alexiou
Margaret Alexiou's The Ritual Lament in Greek culture, first released in 1974, has lengthy considering the fact that been confirmed as a vintage in different fields. this can be the single customary and diachronic examine of realized and renowned lament and its socio-cultural contexts all through Greek culture during which an outstanding range of assets are built-in to provide a complete and penetrating synthesis. Its interdisciplinary orientation and huge scope have rendered The Ritual Lament in Greek culture an vital reference paintings for classicists, byzantinists, neohellenists, folklorists, and anthropologists. Now a moment variation, revised through Dimitrios Yatromanolakis and Panagiotis Roilos, has been made on hand. This re-creation additionally features a useful up to date bibliography on ritual lament and loss of life in Greek tradition.
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Additional resources for The Ritual Lament in Greek Tradition, 2nd Edition
TKE~. evo~ ~PXE yooto. II. 720-3 They brought in singers, leaders of the dirges, who sang laments in mournful tune, while the women wailed in chorus. White-armed Andromache led their keening. Only the laments of the kinswomen-Andromache, Hekabe and Helen-are given in full, and it is these we are interested in from a literary point of view. Yet the mourning for Hector clearly involved more than a string of solos followed by a refrain of keening: there are two groups of mourners, professional singers and kinswomen.
111 At the same time it is probable that the early legislation was successful in its fundamental anti-aristocratic aims. There was a gradual transformation in the function and nature of funeral ritual, in accordance with the social changes which had taken place, and the aristocratic hold on these traditions, together with the privileges which they entailed, was broken down. As for the relation between ritual and lament, it is possible to detect Tradition and change in antiquity 23 a change in emphasis from the public lamentation at the grander ceremonies of prothesis and ekphorti to a more personal kind of lamentation at the tomb.
Simonides, the first poet known to have composed choral threnoi, wrote them all for wealthy families outside his native Keos, for the court of the Skopadai in Thessaly, and for Antiochos in Larisa. 90 It has been plausibly suggested that the small number of these threnoi to survive is due to the restrictive legislation. , who first strengthened hero war- Tradition and change in antiquity 19 ship in Attica; and in doing so he did not introduce anything new or extraneous to Greek religion, but revived and extended what had long been popular in local tradition.