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Page:Folk-lore - A Quarterly Review. Volume 8, 1897.djvu/385

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The Binding of a God. 349

image. We thus reach the very ultimate basis of the con- ception of the idol. The first idol is a stone erected to mark a theophany ; it defines the place where the god has once appeared and will surely appear again, if he be suit- ably approached and his worshippers secure communion with him by eating the totem animal, in other words the god himself, and pouring the blood, which is the life, on the stone where the deity resides. It was no part of the primitive view of sacrifice that the stone should be fashioned in the divine image. That, as well as the devices for con- lining and restraining the god, and those for preventing the tabued image from causing injury to its worshippers, were later conceptions.

The special case in ritual to which I have tried to lead up in this survey is that of the famous legend of the im- prisonment of Ares by the sons of Aloeus.^ Dione in the Iliad gives this as one of the cases in which men have brought grievous woe upon the Immortals. " So suffered Ares when Otos and stalwart Ephialtes, sons of Aloeus, bound him in a strong prison-house, yea in a vessel of bronze lay he bound thirteen months. Then might Ares, insatiate of battle, have perished, but that the stepmother of

' Iliad, V, 385 sqq. As to the other literature of the legend, Mr. Rouse refers me to a version in Apollodorus (i. 7, 4), who says he was trying to storm heaven. The SchoHast to the Iliad says he killed Adonis from jealousy on account of Aphrodite, and adds that when set free he went to Naxos and hid in the ctSz/po/^pwrts Tre-pa. According to Pausanias (iii. 15, 7) he was chained in Sparta. It may be also noted that this legend in the Iliad is told by Dione, who is quite a shadowy form, perhaps one of the old disestablished goddesses or a double of Hera. If the word /cepa/^os is Cyprian, it would, as the Scholiast says, connect the legend with the oriental worship of Adonis. Since this paper was written I have accidentally come across a note by Mr. J. G. Frazer {Classical Review, vol. ii. p. 222) in which the same explanation of the Ares legend is given. He gives an instance of a god of rain, thunder and lightning shut up in New Guinea (Chalmers and Gill, Woi-k and Adven- ture in New Guinea, p. 152) and other instances from the same part of the world ( Tijdschrift voor Indische Taal-land-en-volkenkunde, dl. xxvii. p. 447, sq. ; Bijdragen tot de Taal-land-en-volkenkunde van Neerlandsch Indie, 4de volg., dl. viii. p. 183) sq.