Calendario Religioso, Hekatombaion – Ἑκατομβαιών

I Mese del Calendario, III anno della 699° Olimpiade – sacro ad Apollo (Hekatombaia) – primo mese dopo il Solstizio Estivo.
“Hekatombaion: questo era infatti il primo mese”, il “primo mese degli Ateniesi” (schol. Dem. Timocr. 707. 17; Anecd. Bekk. 247.1). “Nuova Noumenia: il primo giorno dell’anno. Che è Noumenia del mese Hekatombaion.” (Phot. Lex. 201)

[Aphrodisia, Hekatombaia, Kronia, Synoikia, Panathenaia]


Calendario Religioso dell’Attica – Hekatombaion [documento pdf online]

Principali Celebrazioni del Mese

– Dal tramonto del 3 Luglio– I giorno, Νουμηνία
Primo giorno dell’Anno
Εἰσιτήρια-Inaugurazione: sacrificio dei nuovi magistrati per Zeus Boulaios e Atena Boulaia.

– Dal tramonto del 6 Luglio, IV Quarto giorno- Τετρὰς Ἱσταμένου
Aphrodisia, in onore di Aphrodite Pandemos e Peitho.
Hanno anche inizio i lavori in Eleusi, in vista dei Misteri Maggiori di Boedromion.

– Dal tramonto del 8 Luglio, VI giorno – Ἓκτη Ἱσταμένου
Herakleia Marathonos
Nascita di Alessandro.

– Dal tramonto del 9 VII giorno – Ἑβδόμη Ἱσταμένου
Hekatombaia: onori ad Apollo Hekatombaios;
sacrificio ad Apollo Apotropaios (Tetrapoli di Maratona)

– Dal tramonto del 10 Luglio, VIII giorno – Ὀγδόη Ἱσταμένου
Arrivo di Teseo ad Atene.

– Dal tramonto del 14 Luglio, XII giorno- Δωδεκάτη
Kronia, dedicate a Kronos e alla Madre degli Dei- sacrificio pubblico, banchetti privati.

– Dal tramonto del 16 Luglio, XIV giorno – Τετάρτη Μεσοῦντος
Luna Piena

– Dal tramonto del 18 Luglio, XVI giorno – Ἕκτη Μεσοῦντος
Sacrifici preliminari a Zeus Phratrios e Athena Phratria;
Synoikia/Metoikia, si celebra il Synoikismos dell’Attica;
Sacrifici ad Athena ed Eirene.

– Dal tramonto del 19 Luglio, XVII giorno – Ἑβδόμη Μεσοῦντος
Sacrifici degli Orgeones all’Eroe Echelos e alle Eroine.

– Dal tramonto del 20 Luglio, XVIII giorno – Ὀγδόη Μεσοῦντος
Sacrifici degli Orgeones all’Eroe Echelos e alle Eroine.

– Dal tramonto del 23 Luglio, XXI giorno – Μετεικὰς
Onori ad Artemis e alla Kourotrophos (Erchia)

– Dal tramonto del 25 Luglio, XXIII giorno – Ὀγδόη Φθίνοντος/ Ὀγδόη μετ’εἰκάδας
Panathenaia Megala – Agoni Musicali

– Dal tramonto del 26 Luglio, XXIV giorno – Ἑβδόμη Φθίνοντος/ Ἑβδόμη μετ’εἰκάδας
Panathenaia Megala – Agoni Ginnici I giorno

– Dal tramonto del 27 Luglio, XXV giorno – Ἕκτη Φθίνοντος/ Ἕκτη μετ’εἰκάδας
Panathenaia Megala – Agoni Ginnici II giorno

– Dal tramonto del 28 Luglio, XXVI giorno – Πέμπτη Φθίνοντος/ Πέμπτη μετ’εἰκάδας
Panathenaia Megala – Agoni Equestri

– Dal tramonto del 29 Luglio, XXVII giorno- Τετρὰς Φθίνοντος/ Τετρὰς μετ’εἰκάδας
Panathenaia Megala – Agoni Militari, Pirrica ed Evandria

– Dal tramonto del 30 Luglio, XXVIII giorno- Τρίτη Φθίνοντος/ Τρίτη μετ’εἰκάδας
Panathenaia Megala – Lampadedromia, Pannychis, Processione, Ecatombe sull’Acropoli.

– Dal tramonto del 31 Luglio, XXIX Ventinovesimo giorno- Δευτέρα Φθίνοντος/ Δευτέρα μετ’εἰκάδας
Agone delle navi in onore di Poseidone ed Atena

– Dal tramonto del I Agosto, XXX Ἔνε καὶ νέα/ Τριακάς
Ἑκάτης δεῖπνον


Rivista Hellenismo- Hekatombaion 2789

Diciottesimo numero della rivista online Hellenismo.

Added in “Rivista Hellenismo 2789

Mensis Quinctilis
Considerazioni sulla preghiera
La poetessa Enheduana
Il Rituale dell’evocatio. Una prova epigrafica dell’interpretatio romana.
Nella terra di Perum. Qualche nota sulla cultura artistica della Russia pagana
‘La setta di Hecate’
Ironiche considerazioni sul cristianesimo

– Divinità e miti nell’Arte moderna- III parte

The frieze of the Attic Calendar

Fregio generale

This frieze can be seen on the top of the wall above the main entrance of the church of Agios Eleutherios in Athens, also known as ‘Little Metropolis’, that is why this frieze is often referred to as the ‘Frieze of Little Metropolis’. This church is completely made up of fragments of ancient monuments…the main entrance, as already said, is decorated by this frieze of Pentelic marble, which shows the months of the Attic Calendar, some festivals, and the complete circle of the Zodiac. It is very important also because it attempts to put together and coordinate the lunar calendar (Attic months and festivals) and the solar calendar (the signs of the Zodiac).

It has been fully discussed by I. Svoronos, L. Deubner and E. Simon. I write here a small summary in order to help all those who are making reasearches on the Attic Calendar, as well as in behalf of those who are simply interested to discover and know better their roots…

It begins with the month Pyanepsion, which may allude to its dating to the period of Emperor Hadrian. Thus, the frieze begins with a personification of the Attic month Pyanepsion (from left to right).


He is young, wearing a chiton with short sleeves and a himation. This is a month rich in festivals, and three can easily be recognized here: the Pyanopsia are represented by a boy holding a branch on his shoulder, the Eiresione. A naked man treading on a pile of grapes and holding out a vine branch stands for the Oschophoria. A woman carrying a cista on her head stands for the Thesmophoria. Next comes the zodiac sign of Scorpio, shown without its claws because these will be used to indicate Libra further down the frieze at its end. A muffled male dancer comes next. He wears boots and his face is covered by his cloak. He may represent another festival, held towards the end of Pyanepsion, either the Apatouria or the Chalkeia.


Maimakterion is shown as a young man wrapped up in his cloak, for this month introduces winter. Next come the ritual ploughing and sowing: end of agricultural works. Next, the zodiacal sign of the Sagittarius.


The Attic month Poseideon  wears a himation covering his chest, and boots. His long hair and luxuriant beard are unusual for a citizen, being more common to divine figures like Zeus. Period of the Winter Solstice.


Poseideon is accompanied by a festival personification. The festival in question is symbolized by a cock fight, which takes place over a palm branch in front of a table laden with five crowns. Three judges sit behind the table: the festival of the Rural Dionysia. Next the zodiacal sign of the Capricorn.


Next is Gamelion, bearded, covered by a mantle and in boots. He is followed by Dionysos as a child, carrying a thyrsos and riding a billy goat, an allusion to the Lenaia. The woman on the right may symbolize the Theogamia/Gamelia on the 27th day of the month. The block breaks off at this point, marking the end of the frieze as reused by the christians. But the original frieze would have continued, carrying the zodiac signs of Aquarius and Pisces, the personifications of the Attic months Anthesterion and Elaphebolion, and allegories of the festivals in Anthesterion.

The frieze resumes with a festival personification holding out a wreath.  A bearded man leading a goat to sacrifice may stand for the Megala Dionysia/en astei. Next is the zodiac sign of Aries- beginning of Springtime.


The personification of Mounichion, shown as a young man with bare chest, stands next to Artemis and Her deer, who symbolize the festival of Mounichia, on the 16th of the month. The cross obliterates the upper part of the sign of Taurus. A naked runner with a torch is visible to the right of the cross. The runner may well be associated with the torch-race at the Bendideia. He may, in fact, stand for Thargelion itself.


Skirophorion, represented as a young man with bare chest and crowned with fruit, comes next, followed by Gemini. The naked athlete crowning himself may stand for the foot race at the Skira.


The next festival event is Dipoleia, held on the Akropolis on Skirophorion 14. It is represented by the Boutypos holding an axe over a bull. Next the zodiacal sign of Cancer. The next month is Hekatombaion, young and half-naked, who holds out a wreath and is followed by the personification of the Great Panathenaia. The Panathenaic procession is symbolized by the ship cart carrying the peplos of Athena, which was partly obliterated by a cross. The height of the summer is marked by the zodiac sign of Leo shown on top and the star Sirius below.


Next there is a winged woman holding out a plate of fruit, perhaps the zodiac sign of Virgo: the lack of a lunar month, let alone of any festivals, in the solar month from Leo to Virgo is surprising. It may indicate that what we have here is an intercalary month, Hekatombaion II.


Metageitnion personified as a young  follows the sign of Virgo. Herakles stands next to him. His appearance here may be explained by the Herakleia festival, known as the Herakleia at Diomeia or at Kynosarges. The young woman in Attic peplos and chiton with short sleeves holding an inverted mirror  could be Kore: Eleusinia festival.

Boedromion is then represented: he is another palliatus. The personified month is accompanied by a horseman, presumably representing one of the Athenian ephebes that escorted the holy things from Eleusis to the Athenian Eleusinion. The frieze concludes with Scorpio’s claws, symbolizing Libra.