Thursday, September 22, 2022

Who Is The God Of Wine

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Seduction By Zeus And Birth Of Dionysus

ð?The God of Wine: the Liberalia in Honour of Bacchus / Liber Pater (Dionysus)ð?

In one version of the myth, Semele was a priestess of Zeus, and on one occasion was observed by Zeus as she slaughtered a bull at his altar and afterwards swam in the river Asopus to cleanse herself of the blood. Flying over the scene in the guise of an eagle, Zeus fell in love with Semele and repeatedly visited her secretly.

Zeus’ wife, Hera, a goddess jealous of usurpers, discovered his affair with Semele when she later became pregnant. Appearing as an old crone, Hera befriended Semele, who confided in her that her lover was actually Zeus. Hera pretended not to believe her, and planted seeds of doubt in Semele’s mind. Curious, Semele asked Zeus to grant her a boon. Zeus, eager to please his beloved, promised on the River Styx to grant her anything she wanted. She then demanded that Zeus reveal himself in all his glory as proof of his divinity. Though Zeus begged her not to ask this, she persisted and he was forced by his oath to comply. Zeus tried to spare her by showing her the smallest of his bolts and the sparsest thunderstorm clouds he could find. Mortals, however, cannot look upon the gods without incinerating, and she perished, consumed in a lightning-ignited flame.

Zeus rescued the fetal Dionysus, however, by sewing him into his thigh . A few months later, Dionysus was born. This leads to his being called “the twice-born”.

The Other God Of Death

As much as Dionysus was associated with revelry and the loss of inhibitions, he was also linked to much darker ideas.

The god of wine was also a god of death.

One of the gods epithets was Chthonios, relating to the world below. This title is typically used for beings associated with death and the underworld, including Hades.

In the stories of Dionysus, he made at least one trip to the underworld. When he had grown to adulthood, he travelled to the realm of his uncle Hades in search of the mother who had died before he was born.

According to one tradition, Heracles held back the hell hound Cerberus so Dionysus could pass. He brought his mother out of the land of the dead near Lake Lerna.

In another version, he was guided by Prosymnus, a young shepherd who lived near the lake. The mortal boy was in love with the god and asked to become his lover as a reward for his service.

Unfortunately, Prosymnus died before Dionysus could repay him.

Dionysus was successful in fetching Semele out of the underworld, however, and he raised her to godhood and immortality. In doing so, he became one of the few even among the gods who walked freely in Hades realm.

Other myths imply that he made this trip more than once for a woman he loved.

In some legends, Ariadne did not become a goddess as soon as she married Dionysus. She eventually grew old and passed away.

In some places, his shrines were shared with chthonic deities like Hecate, Persephone, and Nix.

Reasons God Approves Wine In The Bible

Our last post, The Joy of the Vine Is in the Wine, demonstrated 7 reasons that wine in the Bible contained alcohol. And if the post did not convince you, read Kenneth Gentrys book, God Gave Wine: What the Bible Says About Alcohol.

We have been defending the fact that God gave His seal of approval for certain foods and drinks that are controversial in todays society. Presently we are discussing wine in the Bible. Today will explore the fact that God not only approves of wine, but in certain circumstances He even commands its use.

As Christians we have an obligation to obey all that He commanded us and to teach others to do the same. Obeying all that God commands includes abstaining from certain behaviors. Beyond this we have Christian liberty or freedom. Gods law is so simple, but man loves to add to it.

No where is there a command to not drink wine in the Bible. Yet the command to drink wine in certain circumstances is evident as you will see below. When God does not forbid something in the Scripture, neither can we forbid it. To do so is an act of Pharisee-ism and legalism, an adding to the law of God. But as we will see, God not only does not forbid wine, He is pleased with it. Wine is a gift from God to be enjoyed on His terms, just like sexual intimacy and food are to be enjoyed on His terms. Our last post shared 7 reasons that wine in the Bible contained alcohol. And today we will double the evidence that God approves wine in the Bible.

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Travels And Invention Of Wine

Bacchus and AmpelosFrancesco Righetti

When Dionysus grew up, he discovered the culture of the vine and the mode of extracting its precious juice, being the first to do so but Hera struck him with madness, and drove him forth a wanderer through various parts of the earth. In Phrygia the goddess Cybele, better known to the Greeks as Rhea, cured him and taught him her religious rites, and he set out on a progress through Asia teaching the people the cultivation of the vine. The most famous part of his wanderings is his expedition to India, which is said to have lasted several years. According to a legend, when Alexander the Great reached a city called Nysa near the Indus river, the locals said that their city was founded by Dionysus in the distant past and their city was dedicated to the god Dionysus. These travels took something of the form of military conquests according to Diodorus Siculus he conquered the whole world except for Britain and Ethiopia.

Another myth according to Nonnus involves Ampelus, a satyr, who was loved by Dionysus. As related by Ovid, Ampelus became the constellation Vindemitor, or the “grape-gatherer”:

Another story of Ampelus was related by Nonnus: in an accident foreseen by Dionysus, the youth was killed while riding a bull maddened by the sting of a gadfly sent by Atë, the Goddess of Folly. The Fates granted Ampelus a second life as a vine, from which Dionysus squeezed the first wine.

Worship From The Middle Ages To The Modern Period

Facts About Dionysus, God of Wine

Though the last known worshippers of the Greek and Roman gods were converted before 1000 AD, there were several isolated instances of revived worship of Dionysus during the Medieval and early modern periods. With the rise of modern neopaganism and Hellenic polytheism, worship of the god has once again been revived.

According to the Lanercost chronicle, during Easter in 1282 in Scotland, the parish priest of Inverkeithing led young women in a dance in honor of Priapus and Father Liber, commonly identified with Dionysus. The priest danced and sang at the front, carrying a representation of the phallus on a pole. He was killed by a Christian mob later that year. Historian C. S. Watkins believes that Richard of Durham, the author of the chronicle, identified an occurrence of apotropaic magic with his knowledge of ancient Greek religion, rather than recording an actual case of survival of pagan rituals.

The late medieval Byzantine scholar Gemistus Pletho secretly advocated in favor of a return to paganism in medieval Greece.

In the eighteenth century, Hellfire Clubs appeared in Britain and Ireland. Though activities varied between the clubs, some of them were very pagan, and included shrines and sacrifices. Dionysus was one of the most popular deities, alongside deities like Venus and Flora. Today one can still see the statue of Dionysus left behind in the Hellfire Caves.

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God Of Homosexuality & Effeminacy


Euripides, Bacchae 350 ff :” âThis effeminate stranger .â”

Pseudo-Apollodorus, Bibliotheca 3. 28 :”Hermes took him to Ino and Athamas, and persuaded them to bring him up as a girl.”

Seneca, Oedipus 418 ff :”Fearing thy stepdame’s wrath, thou didst grow to manhood with false-seeming limbs, a pretended maiden with golden ringlets, with saffron girdle binding thy garments. So thereafter this soft vesture has pleased thee, folds loose hanging and the long-trailing mantle.”

Nonnus, Dionysiaca 14. 143 ff :” Dionysos was hidden from every eye . . . a clever babe. He would mimic a newborn kid hiding in the fold . . . Or he would show himself like a young girl in saffron robes and take on the feigned shape of a woman to mislead the mind of spiteful Hera, he moulded his lips to speak in a girlish voice, tied a scented veil on his hair. He put on all a woman’s manycoloured garments: fastened a maiden’s vest about his chest and the firm circle of his bosom, and fitted a purple girdle over his hips like a band of maidenhood.”

For MYTHS of Dionysos as the god of cross-dressing see: Dionysus Birth & Nursing Dionysus Wrath: Pentheus Dionysus & the Recapture of Mt Cithaeron


Seneca, Hercules Furens 472 ff :”But dainty Bacchus does not blush to sprinkle with perfume his flowing locks, nor in his soft hand to brandish the slender thrysus, when with mincing gait he trails his robe gay with barbaric gold.”

Wine Goddesses Around The World

Last week I had a delightful dinner at Tra Vigne Restaurant in Napa Valley with the owner of Silenus Vintners . This winery makes small lots of artisan wine as part of a custom crush operation, and the cabernets and chardonnays he shared over dinner were rich, concentrated, and fulfilling. When I asked him what Silenus meant, he said that he was a Greek god who was the tutor and faithful companion to Dionysus.

The conversation reminded me of the article I wrote last year about wine goddesses. It was at a time when I started wondering why we always heard about wine gods, but never the female version. Since women consume more wine than men, this started to bother me. Eventually I did some research on the subject and published a short article in Wayward Tendrils Quarterly which I am reprinting here with permission from the publisher. It highlights wine goddesses from around the world.

The Ancient Goddesses of Wine

Most historians now agree that wine was most likely discovered by a woman. However what is often left out of the history books are the ancient stories of the goddesses of wine most who came into being centuries before Bacchus and Dionysus.

Later, in 1500 BC, we find mention of another wine goddess, Paget, in the same part of the world. The clay tablets refer to her as working in the vineyard and helping to make wine.

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Modern Adaptation Of The Recipe

For my adaptation I have taken half the amount of fruit, and left out the animal aromatics ambergris and musk. These aromatics are practically unavailable. Regarding straining through a stocking : you could use a nylon stocking for straining the wine.For 1 bottle of wine preparation in advance 15 minutes plus two hours waiting preparation 10 minutes.

1 fles wine 1 russet apple 1 lemon100 gr powdered sugar5 cloves½ dl orange flower water

The True Origins Of Viticulture And Brewing Whether It Was In Sumeria The Lebanon Georgia And So On May Never Be Known For Sure

Dionysus The God of Wine, Festivity and Pleasure – (Greek Mythology Explained)

What is sure is that ever since he first created alcoholic drinks, man has usually ascribed to them divine properties.

As was pointed out in the Top 10 Wine Saints, Christianity merely replaced the old gods of wine, beer, grapes and grain, with new figureheads.

This often makes the identification of wine gods rather tricky and, aside from some of the more obvious standouts, ancient cultures and societies often venerated many figures connected to drink.

The Greeks in particular personified many things relating to wine, its effects and preparation, with minor deities.

There was Methe, the personification of drunkenness, Acratopotes, one of Dionysus companions and a drinker of unmixed wine, there was Ceraon who watched over the mixing of wine with water and Amphictyonis a goddess of wine and friendship between nations.

People would offer wine to their gods and the gods themselves often liked to drink, in some stories it is they that taught man the secrets of fermentation.

Norse mythology meanwhile promised unending drinking in the afterlife, while a particularly grim fate awaited newly deceased wrongdoers in Ancient Egypt.

Wine and beer as liberators of the senses, a means of relaxation and the celebration of life appear as the most important themes here but so too is the darker side of uninhibited pleasure, as readers of The Bacchae will know.

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Reigning In The Followers Of Bacchus

Prominent men like Livy and Cicero called for the revels of Bacchus to be brought under control. The wild Bacchanalia, they argued, was a threat to common decency and social stability.

In 186 AD, the senatus consultum de Bacchanalibus, or senatorial decree concerning the Bacchanalia, was issued.

The cult of Bacchus had become popular among Romes elite, furthering the risk it posed to public order. One of the senates own members, Publius Aebutius, put forth evidence of the Bacchanalias dangerous excesses.

The result was a moral panic among the citys elite. The fear was that the cult of Bacchus was plotting to destabilize Roman society by corrupting its highest authorities.

The extent of the senates decree was broad. In an unprecedented move, the Roman government all but outlawed Bacchuss celebrations throughout Italy.

The decree stated that it was illegal to own any property for the purposes of celebrating the Bacchanalia, no man or woman was allowed to hold officers in a Bacchanalian cult, and no agreements or promises were to be made between followers of Bacchus.

No version of the Bacchanalia could be held unless it was first given permission by a senate vote with at least one hundred members present. Even under senate approval, no more than two men and three women were allowed to gather together to celebrate the Bacchanalia.

The punishment for disobeying this decree was death.

Beer Sex And Gods: Meet The Deities That Inspired These Brews

It may seem hard to believe, but back in the day, religion, baby making, and booze were a holy triumvirate. Its tough for our brains to grasp, structured as they are by a Judeo-Christian and then a post-Enlightenment scientific worldview. Were trained from toddlerhood to compartmentalize the state, religion, and sexual reproduction into silos that are never meant to mix. But in our not-so-distant past as humans, youll find a hedonic mass of buzzed people worshipping gods who were too busy helping people make booze and babies to bother with the whole guiding principles and proper way to live thing. Indeed, back in ye olden times, booze, babies, and the capricious creators of earth were not just interconnected they were downright symbiotic. And beer anthropology can prove it.

Alan Duane Eames , an anthropologist dubbed the Indiana Jones of Beer, devoted his professional life to ferreting out the roots of beer culture and the manner in which it reflected and influenced larger societal patterns. In his quest, he visited 44 countries, discovered hieroglyphics about beer while crawling through tombs in Egypt, and trekked extensively through the Amazon on a quest for a particularly delicious and elusive tribal black beer.


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Temples And Cult Images

Pliny the Elder describes the Aventine Triad’s temple as designed by Greek architects, and typically Greek in style no trace remains of it, and the historical and epigraphical record offers only sparse details to suggest its exact location, but Pliny’s description may be further evidence of time-honoured and persistent plebeian cultural connections with Magna Graecia, well into the Imperial era. recommends that Liber’s follow an Greek model, as a “just measure between the severe manner of the and the tenderness of the Corinthian,” respectful of the deity’s part-feminine characteristics.

Gods named Liber and Libera play a major role in the / by and .

Who Are The Gods Of Wine

Dionysus, Or Bacchus, God Of Wine Photograph by Science Source

In Greek Mythology Dionysus was the god of the grape harvest, wine, winemaking, grape cultivation, fertility, ritual madness, theater, and religious ecstasy. His festivals were the driving force behind the development of Greek theater. He may have been worshiped as early as 1500 BC.

To the Romans the god of wine was known a Bacchus. He was also the Roman god of good-cheer, hilarity, ecstasy, mirth and revels. It was written that Roman festivals thrown in the name of Bacchus, Bacchanalia, got a bit out of hand becoming scandalous, extremely colorful ecstatic events. Viewing them as a religious cult the Roman Senate prohibited the festivals. It is believed that thousands of revelers were jailed and even put to death.

Michaelangelos Bacchus on display at Bargello, Florence, Italy

You can find all kinds of paintings and sculptures based on both Gods of Wine and Bacchanalia in museums, libraries and Google Images. Be warned, they can be graphicenticingly so.

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Physical Descriptions Of Dionysus

Classical literature offers only a few, brief descriptions of the physical characteristics of the gods.

Homeric Hymn 7 to Dionysus 1 ff :”He appeared on a jutting headland by the shore of the fruitless sea, seeming like a stripling in the first flush of manhood: his rich, dark hair was waving about him, and on his strong shoulders he wore a purple robe.”

Euripides, Bacchae 90 ff :” the bull-horned god , and he crowned him with crowns of snakes.”

Euripides, Bacchae 135 ff :”In the mountains . . . the leader of the dance is Bromios, euhoi! The plain flows with milk, it flows with wine, it flows with the nectar of bees. Bakkheus , raising the flaming torch of pine on his thyrsos, like the smoke of Syrian incense, darts about, arousing the wanderers with his racing and dancing, agitating them with his shouts, casting his rich locks into the air. And among the Mainades cries his voice rings deep.”

Euripides, Bacchae 230 ff :”Some stranger has come . . . fragrant in hair with golden curls, having in his eyes the wine-dark graces of Aphrodite.”

Euripides, Bacchae 350 ff :” âThis effeminate stranger .â”

Euripides, Bacchae 455 ff :” âYour body is not ill-formed, stranger, for women’s purposes . . . For your hair is long, not through wrestling, scattered over your cheeks, full of desire and you have a white skin from careful preparation, hunting after Aphrodite by your beauty not exposed to strokes of the sun, but beneath the shade.â”

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