A Dream on Trial

A Dream on Trial AbstractThis paper re-examines Hyperides’ speech In Defence of Euxenippus as evidence for the role of divination in fourth-century BCE Athens. The oration recounts an occasion of oracular divination through incubation at Amphiaraos’ sanctuary in Oropos, whereby the Athenian Assembly ordered individuals to undergo incubation to resolve an issue concerning land ownership. This paper argues that Hyperides’ speech not only furnishes crucial evidence which broadens our understanding of divination beyond the famous oracle at Delphi, it also provides us with a valuable case study for the process of oracular consultation. The paper analyses the different stages of this process, including the selection of incubants, the nature of the dream received and the aftermath of incubation, demonstrating how the dream could be contested. It thereby sheds new light on the complexities of oracular transmission and interpretation, both of which are open to contestation as a result of the multiplicity of religious authority. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Mnemosyne Brill

A Dream on Trial

Mnemosyne, Volume 72 (3): 32 – Feb 1, 2018

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Publisher
Brill
Copyright
Copyright © Koninklijke Brill NV, Leiden, The Netherlands
ISSN
0026-7074
eISSN
1568-525X
DOI
10.1163/1568525X-12342558
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

AbstractThis paper re-examines Hyperides’ speech In Defence of Euxenippus as evidence for the role of divination in fourth-century BCE Athens. The oration recounts an occasion of oracular divination through incubation at Amphiaraos’ sanctuary in Oropos, whereby the Athenian Assembly ordered individuals to undergo incubation to resolve an issue concerning land ownership. This paper argues that Hyperides’ speech not only furnishes crucial evidence which broadens our understanding of divination beyond the famous oracle at Delphi, it also provides us with a valuable case study for the process of oracular consultation. The paper analyses the different stages of this process, including the selection of incubants, the nature of the dream received and the aftermath of incubation, demonstrating how the dream could be contested. It thereby sheds new light on the complexities of oracular transmission and interpretation, both of which are open to contestation as a result of the multiplicity of religious authority.

Journal

MnemosyneBrill

Published: Feb 1, 2018

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