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Aegina: Contexts for Choral Lyric PoetryMyth, History, and Identity in the Fifth Century BC$
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David Fearn

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780199546510

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199546510.001.0001

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Rethinking the Sanctuary of Aphaia

Rethinking the Sanctuary of Aphaia

(p.79) 2 Rethinking the Sanctuary of Aphaia
Aegina: Contexts for Choral Lyric Poetry

James Watson

Oxford University Press

This chapter discusses the Sanctuary of Aphaia, its cultic associations, and the sculptural decoration of the temple, in the context of early fifth-century history. Aphaia's characteristics as a local, kourotrophic deity with links to maritime and military affairs made her sanctuary a most suitable location for the Aeginetans to choose to express their rivalry with Athens. It is that rivalry which best explains the history of the sanctuary, including the Athenian decision to allow the sanctuary to fall into neglect once they had expelled the Aeginetans from their island at the start of the Peloponnesian War. By using and contextualizing all of the evidence available from the site, this chapter illuminates not only the Sanctuary of Aphaia itself, but also Athens and Aegina, the rivalry between them, and the ways in which such rivalries could be expressed in the ancient Greek world.

Keywords:   Sanctuary of Aphaia, Aegina, Aeginetans, temple, sculpture, cult, Athens

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