The Greek Myths - Chapter 8, Pan & Dionysus Summary & Analysis

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Chapter 8, Pan & Dionysus Summary and Analysis

Somehow, through the long course of history, Pan has become interwoven with Dionysus. This is only signified in the text when Robert Graves reports that Pan claimed to have had sexual relations with many of the women also intimately associated with Dionysus. The way it is described that Dionysian women said 'Yes' to Pan. Pan does not claim that they switched from being worshipers of Dionysus to worshipers of Pan. However, during the preceding millennium and even more so over the last century the two have become melded together. This occurred in part in the education system where the majority are introduced to a hybrid of Grecian and Roman history. Pan and Dionysus are both associated with horns, with sexually vigorous men who may suffer from being ugly, making their sexuality none-the-less powerful but at times more frightening to the women. Both are closely tied to nature but also to revelry. Music, particularly the pan-pipes are also famed. In this complete guide, the two are treated with a greater degree of separation than such readers might be used to.

This god is rightly known as the harbinger of wine. Libya and Palestine are known to be the first homes of wine. However, the rise of Dionysus occurs at the same time as the improvement in humanity's ability to cultivate grapes and to make wine in far more places than had ever been previously known. The triumph of the vineyard and the adoption throughout much of the known world - at least the Middle East, North Africa and West Asia, including India as well the area within Greece, were all transformed by this. Dionysus nowadays is known casually mainly as a god of revelry, music and the mixture of goat and man. This assemblage often occurs in the countryside and can also be readily linked to the god Pan - especially when any given worshiper is intoxicated. The triumph of alcohol over chewing laurel leaves among humans was considered a rather major change. Orpheus is the ultimate bard. People claimed he had been given an instrument directly from Apollo and taught by the Muses themselves. Orpheus also served as a priest of Apollo. He retained this post even when followers devoted to Dionysus invaded and captured Thrace. Orpheus was ultimately killed/murdered by Wild Women in a targeted attack that followed upon a low level slaughter of husbands. Other deities deemed the murders unjustified. Surviving Thracian husbands had their wives tattooed as a strong social message against murdering priests. Dionysus was able to preserve his female followers, but only by transforming them into a grove of oak trees. Apollo and Dionysus are the primary gods in this chapter.

This section contains 459 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)
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