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CL 113 Golden Apples Ch. 15

by: Lauren Palermo

CL 113 Golden Apples Ch. 15 CL 113LEC

Marketplace > University at Buffalo > Classical Studies > CL 113LEC > CL 113 Golden Apples Ch 15
Lauren Palermo
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Chapter 15 of G.A. -due March 9
Myth & Religion Anc World
Woodard, R D
Class Notes
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This 5 page Class Notes was uploaded by Lauren Palermo on Tuesday March 8, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to CL 113LEC at University at Buffalo taught by Woodard, R D in Fall 2015. Since its upload, it has received 37 views. For similar materials see Myth & Religion Anc World in Classical Studies at University at Buffalo.

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Date Created: 03/08/16
Golden Apples: Ch. 15: Agamemnon and the Indo-European Threefold Death Pattern The pattern is found in two main forms:  Series or groupings of three deaths—each by different means  Single death by three different means simultaneously Commenta—Roman poet Lucan  Human sacrifices were made to the Gaulish deity …. o Esus by hanging o Taranis by burning their victims alive in a large wicker basket o Teutates by drowning them in a vat Esus—associated with the 1 function Taranis—associated with the 2 ndfunction Teutates—associated with the 3 function Yoshida—ancient Greek legend  Deaths consist of 2 murders and a suicide rather than the ritual sacrifice  The first murder: Larissa kills her father Piasus by drowning him innd vat of wine because he raped her  2 murder: Argonauts kills Cyzicus (King of Pelasigans) due to a misunderstanding  Suicide: Cleite hangs herself from a tree out of grief rd  Connects all three deaths to the 3 function The most evidence of these patterns comes from the Germanic speaking people  Three methods of human sacrifice and criminal execution o These were by hanging, drowning, and by a weapon  Hanging—associated with the god Odin (representative of the magico-religious portion of the 1 function) rd  Drowning/burial alive is associated with the 3 function  Weapon—associated with 2 ndfunction and the war god Adam of Bremen  Mentions both blood sacrifices and hangings of human and animal victims  The temple was a cult center for Odin(1 function), Thor (2 nd rd function), and Freyr(3 function) Legends  Two close friends suffer linked deaths  There are 4 versions of this  Saxo o King of Swedes: Hundingus drowns in a jar full of ale o His friend Hadingus hangs himself in grief  Two other versions include Fjolnir and Sveigdir o Ynglingatal and Ynglingasaga o Fjolnir (Swedish king) drowns o His son Sveigdir vows to search for Odin and ends up hurling himself into a giant rock which closes around him Faroese  Odin’s son dies by falling through a hole in the floow  His father ascends to heaven and remains king there  Drowning has a clear 3 function connection  Hanging/enclosed in a rost/ascends to heaven is connected to Odin—1 function Starkad  Pattern of the 3 sins of the warrior st rd  The 1 and 3 sins are murders  The 2 ndsin is being coward in battle  1 sin: killing King Vikar in a sacrifice to Odin—1 function rd rd  3 sin: killing King Olo in order to receive gold—3 function Finnish ballad  Christ names three sins of Magdalen—who murdered her children by fire, drowning, and live burial o The children would’ve grown up to be a knight, a burgher, and a priest st  Live burial replaces the hanging as a 1 function mode of death Fisher—Slavic: Chronicle of Henry of Livonia  Finnic Livionians plotted to kill Bishop Berthold either by burning his church, slaying him with a weapon, or drowning him Nestor Chronicle  Olga’s triple revenge on the Derevlians for the murder of her husband Igor  First murder was buried alive, second was locked in a bathhouse and burned and the third was put to the sword  Derevlians are representative of warriors, nobles, and commoners Havamal  Odin hung on a tree for 9 nights pierced with a spear as a sacrifice to himself to obtain the wisdom of poetry o He appears to undergo a symbolic immersion in addition to hanging and spearing  Dying a triple death In almost all the versions death is the fulfillment of a prophecy  Starkad’s muders of Vikar and Olo are fulfillments made by Odin  Odin’s triple death is not a result of a prophecy because he is considered to be his own prophet Welsh—Fourth Branch of Mabinogi  Victim reveals the unusual manner in which he can be killed  Lleu is the victim—he tells his wife Blodeuedd that he can be killed only by a spear and tells her where he can be speared o Her lover, Gronw spears him  Lleu is immediately transformed into an eagle and flies off screaming  Threefold death Saint Columba—Irish  Saint predicts that Aedh will be wounded in the neck with a spear, fall from a tree into water, and drown  The prophecy comes true Bishop Hildebert—Irish  A boy learns from Venus that he will die by a noose, from Mars that he will die by a weapon, and from Neptune that he will die by water  In a fall from a tree, the boy’s sword pierces him, his head is submerged into the river  Fall from a tree is metaphorical for a noose  Threefold death Irish Saint Moling  Saint tells Grag that he will die by a weapon, fire, and drowning  He doesn’t believe him but one day is comes true Thompson—modern European folktale  Victim is typically bitten by a snake while climbing a tree, he falls and drowns in the water below Ward believes:  Fall from a tree represents a form of hanging and shows that the element of death by fire is a Celtic sacrifice to Taranis  Threefold of death expresses a conception of the natural world as constructed of 3 essential elements or levels: air, land, water (underworld) st o 1 level: victim hangs in the air, falls through air, or ascends to heaven o 2 ndlevel: victim dies on earth, pierced by a weapon o 3 rdlevel: he drowns in water or is buried alive under the earth Agamemnon  Aeschylus is the earliest author to attribute death to Agamemnon where he is killed by his wife Clytemnestra in a bathtub with a sword o He is our main source for the threefold death motif  Blind prophetess: Cassandra was taken captive by Agamemnon has a vision of him entangled in a garment, struck with a weapon by his wife, and falling into water  The entangling robe/garment can be viewed as a noose st  The bath is connected with a ritual object—sacrificial vessel—1 function  The sword that kills him—2 ndfunction  Entangling robe is a symrdl of wealth and luxury—product of woman handicraft—3 function Hanging—means of suicide was generally used by women in Greek tradition Evidence of fulfillment of prophecy related to Agamemnon’s death:  The murder is a partial fulfillment of the curse of Thyeses on the house of his father  There’s an ironic premonition of the manner of his death where his wife tells how the rumors of his death kept her in a state of continual worry for the last 10 years  If his death was a ritual sacrifice it can also be seen as a criminal execution Three crimes/sins incorporated into the structure of Aeschylus’s Agamemnon: st  1 chorus: describes Agamemnon’s sacrifice of his daughter in order to obtain wind for the Greek ships sailing to Troy o They call him sacrilegious—indication thatsthis is a crime against the religious aspect—1 function  2nd chorus: tells how he caused so many Greek warriors to be killed nd o They are accusing him of a crime against the 2 function  3rd chorus: denunciates Helen and denounces wealth and those who seek to accumulate it o Therefore he sinned against the 3 function o The three choruses depict him as a trifunctional sinner and prepare us for his tripartite punishment It is unlikely that Aeschylus was the inventor of the motif of the threefold death as fulfillment of a prophecy  He used the conflict between the forces of the 3 function and those of the 1 and 2 nd combined  The motif has a central organizing role in the play


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