Original Research

Die antieke Griekse ‘religieuse’ liriek

W. J. Henderson
Literator | Vol 16, No 1 | a602 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/lit.v16i1.602 | © 1995 W. J. Henderson | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 30 April 1995 | Published: 30 April 1995

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W. J. Henderson, Departement Griekse & Latynse Studies, Randse Afrikaanse Universiteit, Johannesburg, South Africa

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Abstract

All occasions during which ancient Greek lyric was performed, were originally and intrinsically embedded in religious ceremony, but certain lyric forms were addressed more directly to some divine being in whose honour the ceremony was being performed. The spatial context of this kind of lyric performance was mostly a public gathering of officials and populace, and the content (references to ritual and myth), form and manner of performance (generally choral odes performed by a chorus of singer-dancers, accompanied by an ensemble of flutes and/or lyres, and percussion instruments) reflect this more ‘religious' and public nature. This broad characterisation cannot, however, be applied rigidly and consistently to the surviving poetic texts. In this article, which surveys the various forms of this kind of lyric, 'religious' is interpreted as ‘in honour o f a divine being' as opposed to a mortal being.

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