Lycurgus

If you wish your house to be well managed, imitate the Spartan Lycurgus. For he did not fence his city with walls, but fortified the inhabitants by virtue and preserved the city always free; so do you not cast around (your house) a large court and raise high towers, but strengthen the dwellers by good will and fidelity and friendship, and then nothing harmful will enter it, not even if the whole band of wickedness shall array itself against it.
—  Epictetus, Fragments XLV (translated by George Long)

CASUAL DIONYSOS REMINDERS

  • first god to bring someone back from the underworld (rescued his mother, semele) by bypassing thanatos and then turning his mother into a constellation. a man named prosymnus lead him in exchange for dionysos to be his lover, but he died before they could make love, and dionysos honored his memory by literally making the first dildo and placing it on his grave
  • when the ruler of thebes, penthenus, doubted dionysos’ godship, dionysos lured him to one of his groups of devotees, where he then used his control to turn everyone crazy, causing said devotees to rip penthenus apart with their bare hands
  • when king lycurgus of thrace found out that dionysos was in town, he locked up all of his nymph followers as punishment. what did dion do? he made lycurgus go mad, and chop his own son to bits and pieces with an axe. then, he even cursed the whole kingdom of thrace with drought, until lycurgus died, which made his people capture and murder him

SO BASICALLY: yeah dionysos is a chill guy who marks graves with dildos, but if u anger him he’ll rly fuck u up

OTTOMAN JANISSARY SYMBOLISM

This is an excerpt from my post: OTTOMAN MILITARY: JANISSARIES, SLAVE ARMY.

^ The above image is of a Asci Usta (”master cook”); Janissary attire is believed to have been inspired by the the attire of cooks.

The names of Janissary Orta ranks had culinary orientated names: the colonel or Corbaci (jorbaci, “soup maker”), NCOs or Asci Usta (Ashji Usta, “master cook”) and Junior officers or Bas Karakullukcu (Bash Karakullukju, “head scullion”). The Kazan (copper cooking pot) was an important symbol for the Janissaries being that their meal of the day was cooked therein, they would sit down together around it and the loss of this item meant that they would be disgraced and wouldn’t be allowed to march in parades. Although it may seem strange to some for something as simple as sitting down to eat with each other would warrant such symbolism but as most of you known families that do so are more likely to have closer bonds, even the Spartans under Lycurgus’ reforms would eat together at mess-halls (Syssitia, ”eating-together”) for the same reason (even their kings). The Turkish sultans referred to by the Janissaries as “the father who feeds us”.

If there are any errors please privately inbox me so I can update it. As always, if you’d like to read or learn about any specific historical subjects just let me know what they are and I will take note of them.

See Also:

  • Ottoman Military: Akinci and Deli, Light Cavalry Raiders – LINK.
  • Ottoman Military: Bashi-Bazouk, Infamous Mercenaries – LINK.
  • Ottoman Military: Janissaries, Slave Army – LINK

The Lycurgus Cup is an Ancient Roman goblet kicking around at the Smithsonian. You might wonder what could possibly be so technologically advanced about a cup (does it shimmy over to the fridge and fill itself with beer?). Scientists didn’t notice anything special about it either, until they held it up to the light. You see, it looks green when lit from the front. But when lit from behind, it turns a demonic red.

In 1990, British researchers tried to unlock the mystery of the devil’s beer stein. What they found was that the glass was full of gold and silver flecks 1,000 times thinner than a human hair. Basically, the Romans discovered nanotechnology – the science of manipulating incredibly small particles – and used it to make a bitchin’ pimp cup.

To make the cup, they would have had to grind up gold and silver into grains many times smaller than sand and fuse it to the glass in specific proportions to produce subatomic effects that we’re only just beginning to understand in recent decades.

5 Advanced Ancient Technologies That Shouldn’t Be Possible

2

The Lycurgus Cup is made out of a special type of glass, known as dichroic, which changes color when held up to the light. It was built in Rome in the 4th century. 

Dionysus cried bitterly as the sea nymph held him. “Thetis, I can’t do anything right! Everyone who gets close to me dies or gets punished for believing in me!”
Thetis stroked his hair soothingly. “Don’t give up, Dionysus. You will be a god, but you can’t let jealous mortals stand in your way. Go back to Lycurgus and teach him that he cannot disrespect you like this.”
“He’s got a whip!”
“You have weapons too.”
Dionysus thought about that. A fire began to burn in his stomach, as it had when he took his first gulp of wine. “You’re right. Thanks, Thetis.”
“Go get ’em, champ.”

(Percy Jackson’s Greek Gods, Rick Riordan)

Roman Lycurgus Cup is a 1,600-year-old jade green Roman chalice. 

When you put a source of the light inside it it magically changes colour. It appears jade green when lit from the front but blood-red when lit from behind or inside. Now we know that romans dissolve silver and gold particles into the glass. These particles are 50 nanometers wide, less than one-thousandth the size of a grain of table salt.

Bona Liberalia! 

Also a Happy Feast of St. Dionysus!

On Liberalia:

“There’s a popular festival of Bacchus, on the third day After the Ides: Bacchus, favour the poet who sings your feast. I’ll not speak about Semele: you’d have been born defenceless, If it hadn’t been that Jupiter brought her his lightning too. Nor will I tell how the mother’s labour was fulfilled In a father’s body, so you might duly be born their son. It would take long to tell of the conquered Sithonians, And the Scythians, and the races of incense-bearing India. I’ll be silent about you too, Pentheus, sad prey to your own mother, And you Lycurgus, who killed your own son in madness. Lo, I’d like to speak of the monstrous Tyrrhenians, who Suddenly became dolphins, but that’s not the task of this verse. The task of this verse is to set out the reasons, Why a vine-planter sells his cakes to the crowd. Liber, before your birth the altars were without offerings, And grass appeared on the stone-cold hearths. They tell how you set aside the first fruits for Jupiter, After subduing the Ganges region, and the whole of the East. You were the first to offer up cinnamon and incense From conquered lands, and the roast entrails of triumphal oxen. Libations derive their name from their originator, And cake (liba) since a part is offered on the sacred hearth. Honey-cakes are baked for the god, because he delights in sweet Substances, and they say that Bacchus discovered honey. He was travelling from sandy Hebrus, accompanied By Satyrs, (my tale contains a not-unpleasant jest) And he’d come to Mount Rhodope, and flowering Pangaeus: With the cymbals clashing in his companions’ hands. Behold unknown winged things gather to the jangling, Bees, that follow after the echoing bronze. Liber gathered the swarm and shut it in a hollow tree, And was rewarded with the prize of discovering honey. Once the Satyrs, and old bald-headed Silenus, had tasted it, They searched for the yellow combs in every tree. The old fellow heard a swarm humming in a hollow elm, Saw the honeycombs, but pretended otherwise: And sitting lazily on his hollow-backed ass, He rode it up to the elm where the trunk was hollow. He stood and leant on the stump of a branch, And greedily reached for the honey hidden inside. But thousands of hornets gathered, thrusting their stings Into his bald head, leaving their mark on his snub-nosed face. He fell headlong, and received a kick from the ass, As he shouted to his friends and called for help. The Satyrs ran up, and laughed at their father’s face, While he limped about on his damaged knee. Bacchus himself laughed and showed him the use of mud: Silenus took his advice, and smeared his face with clay. Father Liber loves honey: its right to offer its discoverer Glittering honey diffused through oven-warm cakes. The reason why a woman presides isn’t obscure: Bacchus stirs crowds of women with his thyrsus. Why an old woman, you ask? That age drinks more, And loves the gifts of the teeming vine. Why is she wreathed with ivy? Ivy’s dearest to Bacchus: And why that’s so doesn’t take long to tell. They say that when Juno his stepmother was searching For the boy, the nymphs of Nysa hid the cradle in ivy leaves. It remains for me to reveal why the toga virilis, the gown Of manhood, is given to boys on your day, Bacchus: Whether it’s because you seem to be ever boy or youth, And your age is somewhere between the two: Or because you’re a father, fathers commend their sons, Their pledges of love, to your care and divinity: Or because you’re Liber, the gown of liberty And a more liberated life are adopted, for you: Or is it because, in the days when the ancients tilled the fields More vigorously, and Senators worked their fathers’ land, And ‘rods and axes’ took Consuls from the curving plough, And it wasn’t a crime to have work-worn hands, The farmers came to the City for the games, (Though that was an honour paid to the gods, and not Their inclination: and the grape’s discoverer held his games This day, while now he shares that of torch-bearing Ceres): And the day seemed not unfitting for granting the toga, So that a crowd could celebrate the fresh novice? Father turn your mild head here, and gentle horns, And spread the sails of my art to a favourable breeze. If I remember rightly, on this, and the preceding day, Crowds go to the Argei (their own page will tell who they are). The Kite star turns downwards near The Lycaonian Bear: on this night it’s first visible. If you wish to know who raised that falcon to heaven, It was when Saturn had been dethroned by Jupiter: Angered, he stirred the mighty Titans to battle, And sought whatever help the Fates could grant him. There was a bull, a marvellous monster, born of Mother Earth, the hind part of which was of serpent-form: Warned by the three Fates, grim Styx had imprisoned him In dark woods, surrounded by triple walls. There was a prophecy that whoever burnt the entrails Of the bull, in the flames, would defeat the eternal gods. Briareus sacrificed it with an adamantine axe, And was about to set the innards on the flames: But Jupiter ordered the birds to snatch them: and the Kite Brought them, and his service set him among the stars.” - Ovid, Fasti III


From Sabazius’ Invisible Basilica:

Dionysus

(prehistoric/mythic)

by T. Apiryon

Copyright © 1995, 1999 Ordo Templi Orientis. All rights reserved.

Also known as Bacchus, Iacchus, Bassareus, Trietenicus and Liber. Thracian god of ecstasy, terror, guilt and atonement, death and resurrection, vegetation, trees, wine, madness, and drama. Crowley thought Dionysus was “probably an ecstatic from the East,” and one of the principle models for the syncretic legend of Christ. Herodotus places the birth of Dionysus (i.e., his appearance in Greece) at c. 1600 b.c.e. See Krishna, Chapter 71 of Liber Aleph,Part III of The Heart of the Master, Chapter 7 of The Book of Lies, and The Book of Thoth, II:0. Both Dionysus and his father Zeus are closely associated with the earlier Phrygian deity named Sabazios.

In the Orphic theogony (which differs substantially from the more well-known cosmogony of Homer and Hesiod), Dionysus appears successively in three forms: Phanês-Dionysus, the bisexual god of Light, burst from the silver egg of the cosmos (the so-called Orphic Egg is sometimes depicted as an egg girt with a serpent) at the beginning of time. Phanês was also known by the names of Protogonos, Ericapaeus, Eros and Mêtis ( a name previously applied to the Titaness who presided over the planet Mercury). Alone, Phanês created a daughter, Nyx (Night), with whom he begot Gê or Gaia (Earth) and Ouranos or Uranus (Heaven). These begot the Fates, the Centimani, the Cyclôpes (who built the world), and the Titans, with their leader Cronus (Saturn). In the revolt of the Titans against Uranus, Cronus became ruler of the World, and begat the gods. The leader of the gods, Zeus, wrested rulership of the world from Cronus by eucharistically swallowing his great-grandfather Phanes (Metis), assimilating his power. Zeus then took the form of a serpent and begot the second Dionysus, Dionysus-Zagreus, the Horned Child, upon his daughter Persephonê.

Zeus bequeathed rulership of the world and the underworld upon his son while he was still a child, even setting him upon the great throne and letting him hold the lightening-bolt scepter. This aroused the envy of the Titans and of his wife, Hêra. Hêra bribed the guards whom Zeus had entrusted to protect the child (the Kourêtes), and distracted the child with toys and a looking glass. While Zagreus was beholding his own face in the looking glass, the Titans, ceremonially smeared with white gypsum, entered and attacked him, tearing him to pieces and devouring him. Enraged, Zeus destroyed the Titans with his thunderbolt, and from their ashes, commingled with those of Dionysus-Zagreus, arose the human race. Humans are therefore of a dual nature: the Dionysian divine nature imprisoned in the Titanic material nature.

Athena, goddess of Wisdom, had witnessed the murder of Dionysus-Zagreus and had even managed to save his heart from the rage of the Titans. She brought it, still beating, to her father Zeus. Zeus consumed the heart, as he had previously consumed the Serpent-entwined Egg of Light of his great-grandfather Phanês. He then came to Semelê, daughter of Cadmus (Semelê was the Thracian word for “Earth”) and begot upon her the third Dionysus, known as Dionysus-Lyseus or Bakkhos, or simply as Dionysus. [Another version of the legend has Athena preserving the heart of Zagreus within a small figure she fashioned from the gypsum of the Titans, into which she breathed life.] Dionysus was born on the winter solstice in a cavern in Mount Nusa (one theory of the origin of the name Dionysus derives the name from words meaning “God of Nusa”). Having been born twice, once as Zagreus and once as Lyseus, Dionysus is known as Dithyrambos, the “twice-born.”

Hêra, always jealous of her mate’s numerous lovers and their children, disguised herself as Semelê’s maidservant and convinced Semelê that she deserved to behold Zeus in his true splendor. The next time she saw him, Semelê tricked Zeus into swearing to grant her a wish; which was, of course, that he reveal his true form to her. He reluctantly complied, and she was instantly burned to ashes by the intolerable glory of his manifestation.

Zeus placed Dionysus in the care of the Nysaean Nymphs, who nurtured him through his childhood, and for which they were rewarded by Zeus by being placed among the stars as the Hyades. [Another version of the legend states that Zeus hid the child within his own thigh until the child had attained puberty; an alternative theory of the origin of the name Dionysus derives the name from Dios-nusos, “the nurseling of Zeus”.]

When fully grown, Dionysus discovered the methods of culturing the vine and extracting and fermenting its juice; but Hêra, ever jealous, struck him with madness and caused him to aimlessly wander the earth. Walking one day on the shore on an island in the Greek Archipelago, he was abducted by Tyrrhenian pirates, who mistook him for the son of a rich king and expected a heavy ransom. They carried him aboard their ship and attempted to bind him with ropes; but the knots untied themselves and the ropes fell to the deck. The sea around the ship turned to wine, and a vine began to grow up the mast. The god assumed the form of a lion or panther, and the pirates, in terror, leapt overboard and were transformed into dolphins.

In Phrygia, he was cured of his madness by the Great Mother Goddess, his grandmother Rhea (also known as Cybelê, Bona Dea and Magna Mater), who initiated him into her mysteries. He then set out to teach viticulture and to establish his cult among the peoples of the world.

He marched through Syria, Lebanon, Caucasian Iberia (modern Georgia), India, Egypt and Libya accompanied by a retinue of his votaries, dancing ecstatically and shouting the mystic word “euoi” (Latinized as the familiar “evoe”). His votaries included the female maenads or bacchantes, tattooed, clad in fox-skins and playing frame-drums or cymbals; the male satyrs, clad in panther-skins and bearing thyrsi (a thyrsus was a rod tipped with a pine cone, with streamers of ivy); and Silenus, his fat, aged, drunken companion and keeper, riding on an ass. Despite his slovenly appearance and his perpetual drunkenness, Silenus possessed immense knowledge and wisdom, and was greatly respected by the votaries of Dionysus.

The worship of Dionysus was savage and ecstatic, his votaries participated in orgia in which live animals (usually a spotted fawn, a goat, an ox or a bull) were torn apart and devoured raw. It was believed that the god entered the worshippers and possessed them through this Eucharist of living flesh, called the Omophagia. Animal skins and masks were worn, and a bull-roarer (rhombus) was used to simulate the thundering of Zeus.

As Dionysus and his retinue traveled the world spreading his cult, those who accepted him were rewarded with ecstasy. Those who opposed him were stricken with madness, and brought down by the hideous results of their own deranged atrocities. After establishing his cult across the known world, he returned to Greece, bringing his orgiastic Phrygian rites with him. He was not well received. Pentheus, king of Thebes, had him arrested, tried, scourged and thrown into prison. For this, Dionysus drove all the women of Thebes mad, including Agave, Pentheus’s mother. They became maenads, and went out into the hills to conduct their Dionysian orgies. Pentheus imprudently followed them. Agave and her companions detected the spy, and in wild rage they fell upon him and tore him to pieces. Thus was Hellas converted to the religion of Dionysus; and Dionysus moved on.

On the island of Naxos, Dionysus discovered a girl weeping on the rocks. It was Ariadnê, the daughter of the Cretan king Minos, who had just been abandoned by Thêsêus. Dionysus fell in love with her; they wedded, and had many children.

Dionysus crowned his exploits by descending into the Underworld to recover his mother, Semelê. He took her to Olympus where she was ever after worshipped as Thyonê.

Many scholars believe that the Greek dramatic tradition ultimately originated in the ecstatic rites of Dionysus. The dramatic tradition is known to have originated in the Hellenic Mystery Schools, and the first of these schools was that of the Orphic Mysteries, which incorporated civilized, allegorical versions of the Dionysian rites into their system.

The ram, the dolphin, the serpent, the tiger, the lion, the lynx, the panther, the ox, the goat and the ass are sacred to Dionysus; and his symbols were the phallus, the bull and the thyrsus. According to Forlong, the Greek letters I.H.S. were carved over his shrine.

References:

  • Crowley, Aleister; The Book of Lies [1913], Samuel Weiser, NY 1978 
  • Crowley, Aleister; The Book of Thoth [1944], Samuel Weiser, NY 1969/74 
  • Crowley, Aleister; The Heart of the Master [Ordo Templi Orientis, 1938], New Falcon Publications, Scottsdale, Arizona 1992 
  • Crowley, Aleister; The Gospel According to Saint Bernard Shaw [1916], Stellar Visions, San Francisco 1986 
  • Crowley, Aleister; Liber Aleph vel CXI, The Book of Wisdom or Folly [Thelema Publishing, 1962], Samuel Weiser, York Beach, Maine 1991 
  • Forlong, J.G.R.; Faiths of Man, a Cyclopaedia of Religions [Bernard Quaritch, 1906], University Books, NY 1964 
  • Frazer, James G.; The Golden Bough; the Roots of Religion and Folklore [1890], Avenel Books, NY 1981 
  • Gaster, Theodor H.; The New Golden Bough, a New Abridgement of the Classic Work by Sir James George Frazer;Mentor Books, NY 1959 
  • Graves, Robert; The Greek Myths, Volume I, George Braziller, NY 1959 
  • Guirand, F.; “Greek Mythology” in The New Larousse Encyclopedia of Mythology. Hamlyn, NY 1959/1968 
  • Harrison, Jane Ellen; Themis; a Study of the Social Origins of Greek Religion [1912/1927], University Books, NY 1962
  • Herodotus; The Histories [c. 430 b.c.e.], transl. by Aubrey de S‚lincourt [1954]; revised, with an introduction and notes by A.R. Burn; Penguin, London 1972 
  • Mead, G.R.S.; The Orphic Pantheon, The Alexandrian Press, Edmonds, Washington 1984 
  • Ovid; Metamorphoses, translated by Rolfe Humphries, Indiana University Press, Bloomington 1955/1973 
  • Puhvel, Jaan; Comparative Mythology, Johns Hopkins University Press, Baltimore 1987 
  • Robinson, Herbert Spencer and Knox Wilson; The Encyclopedia of Myths and Legends of All Nations, Kaye & Ward, London 1962 
  • Wili, Walter; “The Orphic Mysteries and the Greek Spirit” [1944] in The Mysteries, Papers from the Eranos Yearbooks, Bollingen Series XXX.2, edited by Joseph Campbell, Princeton/Bollingen, Princeton NJ 1955/1978 
  • Zimmerman, J.E.; Dictionary of Classical Mythology, Harper & Row, NY 1964 


8/23/99

Originally published in

Red Flame No. 2 – Mystery of Mystery: A Primer of Thelemic Ecclesiastical Gnosticism

by Tau Apiryon and Helena; Berkeley, CA 1995 e.v.

Lycurgus, driven mad by Dionysos, attacks his wife. Name-piece of the Lycurgus Painter, 350-340 BC. British Museum.
In Greek mythology, Lycurgus (also Lykurgos, Lykourgos) was the king of the Edoni in Thrace, son of Dryas, the “oak”, and father of a son whose name was also Dryas. He banned the cult of Dionysus. When Lycurgus heard that Dionysus was in his kingdom, he imprisoned Dionysus’s followers, the Maenads, or drove them and Dionysus out of Thrace with an ox-goad. Dionysus fled, taking refuge in the undersea grotto of Thetis the sea nymph.

The compiler of Bibliotheke (3.5.1) says that as punishment, Dionysus drove Lycurgus insane. In his madness, Lycurgus mistook his son for a mature trunk of ivy, which is holy to Dionysus, and killed him, pruning away his nose and ears, fingers and toes. Consequently, the land of Thrace dried up in horror. Dionysus decreed that the land would stay dry and barren as long as Lycurgus was left unpunished for his injustice, so his people bound him and flung him to man-eating horses on Mount Pangaeüs. However, another version of the tale, transmitted in Servius’s commentary on Aeneid 3.14 and Hyginus in his Fabulae 132, records that Lycurgus cut off his own foot when he meant to cut down a vine of ivy. With Lycurgus dead, Dionysus lifted the curse.

PENTHEUS' BFF

REMEMBER PENTHEUS? THE ASSHOLE WHO DIDN’T LIKE DIONYSUS? WELL, HE HAD A FUCKING BFF. LYCURGUS (NOT THE LEGAL DICKFACE FROM ATHENS) WENT AND FUCKING BANNED THE WORSHIP OF DIONYSUS. MEGA STUPID IDEA.

DIONYSUS MADE HIM GO CRAZY. NOT JUST ANY KIND OF CRAZY - EXTREME GARDENING CRAZY. HE THOUGHT HIS LITTLE SON WAS SOME FUCKING IVY SO HE PRUNED HIS FUCKING FACE. 

HE THEN GOT SHITFACED DRUNK AND WENT MORE CRAZY, TRIED TO RAPE HIS MOTHER THEN HE GOT EVEN CRAZIER AND KILLED HER AND HIS OTHER CHILDREN. 

DIONYSUS EVENTUALLY GOT BORED OF FUCKING WITH THIS ASSHOLE AND MADE HIM GET EATEN BY FUCKING PANTHERS. DO NOT FUCK WITH DIONYSUS. EVER. 

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The Lycurgus Cup in the British Museum

(Ancient Art Podcast 58 by Lucas Livingston)

Lycurgus Cup

The ‘Lycurgus Cup’ depicts the death of the mythical King Lycurgus, who interrupted the secret rites of the god Dionysus and his followers. Lycurgus is shown entangled in a vine, which trapped and strangled him. The cup has the rare property of dichroism, appearing pea-green in reflected light, and deep red when light shines through it.

Glass: A Short History by David Whitehouse, 2012.

Roman Lycurgus   1,600-year-old jade green  chalice.  a source of the light inside it it magically changes colour.  jade green when lit from the front but blood-red when lit from behind or inside