Thargelia


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Thargelia

May-June
This ancient Greek festival was celebrated in Athens on the sixth and seventh days of the ancient Greek month of Thargelion (which fell sometime between late May and early June) to honor Apollo. In addition to offerings of first fruits, or the first bread from the new wheat, it was customary to select two condemned criminals (either two men or a man and a woman) to act as scapegoats for community guilt. First they were led through the city and then driven out and banished. If circumstances warranted a greater sacrifice, they were killed—either thrown into the sea or burned on a pyre. On the second day of the festival there was an offering of thanksgiving, a procession, and the official registration ceremony for individuals who had been adopted.
SOURCES:
DictFolkMyth-1984, p. 67
NewCentClassHandbk-1962, p. 1069
OxClassDict-1970, p. 1051
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23) The Thargelia was scapegoat ritual: the Athenians would select, feed and expel a [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] from the city.
Such scapegoating of course was not uncommon in the Athens of Sophocles and Socrates, as both ritual expiation (at the Thargelia festival) and political ostracism.
opens with the matter-of-fact mention of Diotima, Thargelia, and Aspesia as evidence that even women were philosophers .
When we look at our miracle closely, we see that it greatly resembles the famous or infamous Greek ritual of the pharmakos always performed during the Thargelia festival, perhaps on other occasions as well.