The Coordination and Combination of Traditional Civic and Ruler Cult Festivals in the Hellenistic and Roman East
From the Hellenistic period on, various Greek civic festivals in honour of traditional deities have been coordinated or even combined with similar expressions of the ruler cult. The usual results were festivals under a joint name, such as ‘Dionysia and Demetrieia’. These latter ‘appended’ festivals meant — practically and/or ideologically — a supplementary but no less important part of the whole festivity in the cities that instituted them. They helped them ensure the monarchs’ goodwill without swelling the relevant cult costs, especially when they shared an organisational framework with the old festivals of the cities. Such examples concerning Alexander and members of the dynasties of the Antigonids, the Seleucids and the Attalids are collected here and examined in detail. The continuation of this cult practice into the Roman period of the Greek East, both during the Republic and the Empire, is also sketched.
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