Jouer avec les dieux : la katábasis de Rhampsinite dans l’Hadès (Hdt., II, 122)

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Abstract

The second book of Herodotus’ Histories on Egypt tells the story of the katábasis of the wealthy and happy pharaoh Rhampsinitus, who descended into Hades while still alive. In the Underworld the ruler played dice with Demeter: sometimes he won, sometimes he lost. Returning from Hades he brought back a small golden cloth as a gift from the goddess. According to Herodotus, the Egyptians celebrate the return of the king with a festival during which one of the priests is blindfolded and led to the road to the sanctuary of Demeter. From here on he is guided by two wolves that later take him back to the starting point. The elements of this story, and in particular the links between katábasis, kingship, game and prize, which can find other terms of comparison within the Mediterranean context, will be considered in the light of the Greeks’ knowledge and representations of the Underworld.
Lingua originaleFrench
pagine (da-a)175-192
Numero di pagine18
RivistaLES ÉTUDES CLASSIQUES
Volume83
Stato di pubblicazionePublished - 2016

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