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Published online by Cambridge University Press:  01 October 2015


In chapter 12 of Birth of Tragedy, Nietzsche describes Socrates as the new Orpheus, who rises up against Dionysus and murders tragedy:

… in league with Socrates, Euripides dared to be the herald of a new kind of artistic creation. If this caused the older tragedy to perish, then aesthetic Socratism is the murderous principle; but in so far as the fight was directed against the Dionysiac nature of the older art, we may identify Socrates as the opponent of Dionysos, the new Orpheus who rises up against Dionysos and who, although fated to be torn apart by the maenads of the Athenian court of justice, nevertheless forces the great and mighty god himself to flee. As before, when he fled from Lycurgus, King of the Edonians, Dionysos now sought refuge in the depths of the sea, namely in the mystical waters of a secret cult which gradually spread across the entire world. (Trans. R. Speirs) (Cambridge, 1999), 64

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1 See M.S. Silk and J.P. Stern, Nietzsche on Tragedy (Cambridge, 1981), 179, 200; B. von Reibnitz, Ein Kommentar zu Friedrich Nietzsche, ‘Die Geburt der Tragödie aus dem Geiste der Musik’: Kap. 1–12 (Stuttgart, 1992), 338–9; B. Biebuyck, D. Praet and I. Vanden Poel, ‘Cults and migrations: Nietzsche's meditations on Orphism, Pythagoreanism, and the Greek mysteries’, in P. Bishop (ed.), Nietzsche and Antiquity: His Reaction and Response to the Classical Tradition (Rochester, NY, 2004), 151–69, at 165. None of these authors considers whether/how Nietzsche engages with the Bassarides. Given that Nietzsche regarded Aeschylean tragedy as the apogee of the Apolline and the Dionysiac synthesis, it is remarkable that he never explicitly discusses the Bassarides. There can be little doubt that he knew of it. Reconstructions were attempted by German scholars whose work Nietzsche knew: F. Welcker, Nachtrag zu der Schrift über die Aeschylische Trilogie nebst einer Abhandlung über das Satyrspiel (Frankfurt, 1826); G. Hermann, De Aeschyli Lycurgia Dissertatio (Leipzig, 1831), 3–30. The epitome appeared in A. Nauck's first edition of fragments of the lost tragedies, Tragicorum Graecorum Fragmenta (Leipzig, 1856). Nietzsche's friend E. Rohde refers to the Bassarides, the Lycurgia and (at some length) ‘Orphism’ in Psyche. Seelencult und Unsterblichkeitsglaube der Griechen (Freiburg, 1890–41) = Engl. trans. W.B. Hillis (London, 1925), 268 n. 10, 305 n. 2. The composer Peter Gast wrote to Nietzsche about his plans for an opera on the subject of an Apolline/Dionysiac Orpheus in 1885: see M. Vogel, Apollinisch und Dionysisch. Geschichte eines genialen Irrtums (Regensburg, 1966), 236. H. Lloyd-Jones notes the astonishing omission in Blood for the Ghosts: Classical Influences in the Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries (London, 1982), 173 n. 26.

2 The epitome existed in different recensions; a longer version, which included the bracketed portions of the text, is transmitted by Latin scholiasts. See West, M.L., ‘Tragica VI’, BICS 30 (1983), 6382 Google Scholar = ‘The Lycurgus trilogy’, in M.L. West, Studies in Aeschylus (Stuttgart, 1990), 26–50. The portions bracketed here did not appear in Nauck's edition but were printed by Radt, following West. However, Massimo Di Marco (‘Dioniso ed Orfeo nelle Bassaridi di Eschilo’, in A. Masaracchia [ed.], Orfeo e l'orfismo. Atti del seminario nazionale [Rome, 1993], 101–53) has since argued—in my view, decisively—that the bracketed portions of the text cannot be Aeschylean. Discussion below, p. 6.

3 Suppl. Wilamowitz.

4 My translation. For Orphic fragments, I use the numbering in A. Bernabé (ed.), Poetarum epici Graeci. Testimonia et fragmenta. Pars II, Fasc. 1–2: Orphicorum et Orphicis similium testimonia et fragmenta (Leipzig, 2004–5).

5 Understood in the broad sense as music, poetry and dance. On the Lycurgia as a model for the Bacchae, see E.R. Dodds, Euripides Bacchae (Oxford, 19602), xxxi-xxxiii. On ‘metatragedy’ see C.P. Segal, Dionysiac Poetics and Euripides’ Bacchae (expanded edition, Princeton, 1997 [1982]); A.F.H. Bierl, Dionysus und die griechische Tragödie: politische und ‘metatheatralische’ Aspekte im Text (Tübingen, 1991); Henrichs, A., ‘“Why should I dance?” Choral self-referentiality in Greek tragedy’, Arion 3 (1995), 55111 Google Scholar.

6 Fr. 57 Radt = Strabo 10.3.16.

7 Cf. E. Hall, Inventing the Barbarian: Greek Self-Definition Through Tragedy (Oxford, 1989), 130.

8 Cf. Nietzsche, Nachgelassene Fragmente 7 (July 1882 – Winter 1883/84) (Berlin, 1977), 102: ‘Socrates … der den Mysterien gegenüber ablehnend ist, im übrigen sich an Apollo hält (wie die Schwäne, die Diener des Apollo).’

9 Arist. fr. 191 Rose. On Pythagoras and Apollo, see W. Burkert, Weisheit und Wissenschaft. Studien zu Philolaos und Platon (Würzburg, 1962) = Eng. trans. Lore and Science in Ancient Pythagoreanism (Cambridge, MA, 1972), 91, 141, 143, 147–50, 187.

10 On the tetractys and cosmic harmony, see Burkert (n. 9), 72, 186–8, 350–68. L. Zhmud, Pythagoras and the Early Pythagoreans, trans. K. Windle and R. Ireland (Oxford, 2012), 300–3, 337–46 argues that the symbolon about the tetractys is late, but considers the harmony of the spheres to be an indisputably early Pythagorean doctrine. See also C.H. Kahn, Pythagoras and the Pythagoreans: A Brief History (Indianapolis, 2001), 23–37; C. Riedweg, Pythagoras: His Life, Teaching, and Influence (Ithaca, NY, 2005), 29, 82–3. On Apollo's association with the sun in Pythagoreanism, see P. Boyancé, ‘L'Apollon solaire’, in Mélanges d'archéologie, d’épigraphie et d'histoire offerts à Jérôme Carcopino (Paris, 1966), 149–70.

11 Cf. M. Garezou, ‘Orpheus’, LIMC 7.1–2 (Zurich and Munich, 1994), 99. Orpheus is usually the son of Oeagrus. On Orpheus' father, see Orph. 890–901T. Apollo is first named as Orpheus’ father in Asclepiades of Tragilus (FGrHist 12 fr. 6b = Schol. Ap. Rhod. 1.23-5a = Orph. 896T), but cf. Pind. Pyth. 4.176–7 with K. Braswell's commentary ad loc.

12 See West, M.L., ‘ Odyssey and Argonautica ’, CQ 55 (2005), 3964 CrossRefGoogle Scholar, at 45–7.

13 The Herodotean passage is transmitted in shorter and longer versions: both suggest a close relationship between things Orphic and Pythagorean. Plutarch seems to have read the longer version (see n. 89 below), which is preferred by most modern scholars. See D. Asheri, A. Lloyd, A. Corcella, A Commentary on Herodotus Books I-IV, trans. B. Graziosi et al. (Oxford, 2007), ad loc. Important discussions for and against are Burkert (n. 9), 127–8 and I.M. Linforth, The Arts of Orpheus (London, 1941), 38–50. Zhmud, who wants to minimize the ritual elements of early Pythagoreanism, revives the argument for the shorter version ([n. 10], 218–38). He argues that Orphics and Pythagoreans were strongly differentiated, but this is not what the fifth- and fourth-century evidence suggests. As Zhmud himself states, ‘the similarity between Orphism and Pythagoreanism lay precisely in metempsychosis, with all the doctrinal and practical consequences that flowed from it’ ([n. 10], 223). These were not negligible: see Burkert (n. 9), 125–33. On the relationship between Orphics and Pythagoreans, see also W. Burkert, ‘Orphism and Bacchic mysteries: new evidence and old problems of interpretation’, in W. Wuellner (ed.), Protocol of the 28th Colloquy of the Center for Hermeneutical Studies in Hellenistic and Modern Culture (Berkeley, 1977); id., ‘Craft versus sect: the problem of the Orphics and Pythagoreans’, in B.F. Meyer, E.P. Sanders (edd.), Jewish and Christian Self-Definition. Vol. 3: Self-Definition in the Graeco-Roman World (Philadelphia, 1982), 1–22, 183–9.

14 On Orphic writings in Pythagorean circles, see Burkert (n. 9), 125–33; M.L. West, The Orphic Poems (Oxford, 1983), 7–15.

15 See W.C. Guthrie, Orpheus and Greek Religion: A Study of the Orphic Movement (London, 1935; rev. ed. 1952); P. Kingsley, Ancient Philosophy, Mystery, and Magic: Empedocles and Pythagorean Tradition (Oxford, 1995); A. Bernabé, ‘Platone e l'Orfismo’, in G. Sfameni Gasparro (ed.), Destino e salvezza: tra culti pagani e gnosi cristiana. Itinerari storico-religiosi sulle orme di Ugo Bianchi (Cosenza, 1998), 37–97; id., Platón y el orfismo. Diálogos entre religión y filosofía (Madrid, 2011). For connections between Platonic texts and the ‘Orphic-Bacchic’ gold leaves, see the indices locorum in A. Bernabé and A. Jiménez San Cristóbal, Instructions for the Netherworld: The Orphic Gold Tablets, trans. M. Chase (Leiden, 2008); R.G. Edmonds, Myths of the Underworld Journey: Plato, Aristophanes, and the ‘Orphic’ Gold Tablets (Cambridge, 2004), 51–2, 88–91.  On Plato and Pythagoreans, see P.S. Horky, Plato and Pythagoreanism (Oxford, 2013). On mystical terminology in Plato, see C. Riedweg, Mysterienterminologie bei Platon, Philon und Klemens von Alexandrien (Berlin, 1987).

16 See A. Dieterich, Nekyia: Beiträge zur Erklärung der neuentdeckten Petrusapokalypse (Leipzig, 1893; 19132), 122–35. J. Adam, The Republic of Plato. Edited with critical notes, and an introduction on the text (Cambridge, 1897).

17 West (n. 14), 11–13. On Krater, see Kingsley (n. 15), 133–48; Nilsson, M.P., ‘ Krater ’, HThR 51 (1958), 53–8Google Scholar. On the opposition between Pythagorean and Dionysiac elements in the Bassarides, see Seaford, R., ‘Mystic light in Aeschylus' Bassarai ’, CQ 55 (2005), 602–6CrossRefGoogle Scholar, at 605–6.

18 S. Halliwell, The Aesthetics of Mimesis: Ancient Texts and Modern Problems (Princeton, 2002), 98.

19 Halliwell (n. 18), 99.

20 The Bassarides/Bassarai (both titles are attested) was named after its chorus of Thracian maenads, wearers of a fox-skin garment called the βασσάρα. Our earliest attestation for Bassarids is Anacreon's Διόνυσου σαῦλαι Βασσαρίδες (fr. 411 Page/Campbell). For a reference to Bassarids in a recently discovered funerary epigram by Posidippus, see Bremmer, J.N., ‘A Macedonian maenad in Posidippus (AB 44)’, ZPE 155 (2006), 3740 Google Scholar. On the Aeschylean tetralogy, see Welcker (n. 1), 103–22; Hermann (n. 1), 3–30; K. Deichgräber, Die Lykurgie des Aischylos. Versuch einer Wiederherstellung der dionysischen Tetralogie (Göttingen, 1939); D.F. Sutton, ‘Aeschylus’ Edonians’, in Fons Perennis: Saggi critici di filologia classica raccolti in onore del Professore Vittorio D'Agostino (Turin, 1971), 387–411; id., ‘A series of vases illustrating the madness of Lykourgos’, Rivista di studi classici 23 (1975), 351–5; West (n. 2); Di Marco (n. 2); Seaford (n. 17); E. Suárez de la Torre, ‘Apollo and Dionysos: intersections’, in A. Bernabé, M. Herrero de Jáuregui, A. Jiménez San Cristóbal, R. Hernández, R. Martín (edd.), Redefining Dionysus (Berlin, 2013), 58–81; M. Tortorelli Ghidini, ‘Dionysos versus Orpheus?’, in Bernabé et al. (in this note), 144–58. See also J. Harrison, Prolegomena to the Study of Greek Religion (Cambridge, 1908; 19223), 461; Guthrie (n. 15), 41–8; G. Murray, Aeschylus (Oxford, 1940), 154–9.

21 On the date, see West (n. 2 [1990]), 48–50 and Di Marco (n. 2), 146–8.

22 The theme is illustrated in contemporary vase painting. See Sutton (n. 20 [1975]), 351–5.

23 West (n. 2 [1990]), 39–42.

24 West (n. 2 [1990]), 29 makes Orpheus part of Dionysus’ retinue in the first play. Fr. 60 of the Edonians refers to a mousomantis, whom West takes to be Orpheus. The (corrupt) fragment, however, could also apply to Dionysus—so Deichgräber (n. 20), 251–2—or to Orpheus qua priest of Lycurgusso Hermann (n. 1), 16–17; Di Marco (n. 2), 131–3.

25 Di Marco (n. 2), 117–24.

26 Di Marco (n. 2), 122.

27 Orpheus’ mother, Calliope, qua Muse, is Pierian. On Orpheus’ father as Apollo or Oeagrus, see n. 11. Thucydides (2.99) says that the Edonians and the Pierians originally lived in Macedonia but were expelled by the Temenid kings into Thrace, where they occupied the territory north and south of Mt Pangaeum. It was only during the period from the mid to the late fifth century that Orpheus acquired Thracian and (still later) Phrygian attributes. On Polygnotus’ mural in the Cnidian Lesche (c. 460 b.c.e.), he was represented as a Greek (Paus. 10.30.6), as in all the early vase paintings (see F. Lissarrague, ‘Orphée mis à mort’, Musica e storia 2 [1994], 269–307, at 273–4). On the complex ethnographic status of Macedonians, see J.M. Hall, ‘Contested ethnicities: perceptions of Macedonia within evolving definitions of Greek identity’, in I. Malkin (ed.), Ancient Perceptions of Greek Ethnicity (Cambridge, MA, 2001), 159–86. On the Thracian setting of the drama, see E. Hall (n. 7), 130, 133, 136, 143–4.

28 Cf. Seaford (n. 17).

29 R. Kannicht, ‘Zu Aesch. Fr. 23 und Trag. Adesp. Fr. 144 N’, Hermes 85 (1957), 285–91.

30 Linforth, I.M., ‘Two notes on the legend of Orpheus’, TAPhA 62 (1931), 517 Google Scholar argues that the only definitively Aeschylean part of the hypothesis is the statement that Dionysus sent the Bassarids against Orpheus. This is too sceptical. An earlier theory that the epitome refers to a choral ode is also generally rejected. See West (n. 2 [1990]), 36; Di Marco (n. 2), 126–7.

31 On the vases, see M. Schmidt, ‘Der Tod des Orpheus in Vasendarstellungen aus Schweizer Sammlungen’, in H.P. Eisler and G. Seiterle (edd.), Zur griechischen Kunst 9, AK Suppl. (1973), 95–105; F. Graf, ‘Orpheus: a poet among men’, in J.N. Bremmer (ed.), Interpretations of Greek Mythology (London, 1987), 80–106; Lissarrague (n. 27), 269–307; M. Garezou (n. 11); B. Cohen, ‘Man killers and their victims: inversions of the heroic ideal in classical art’, in ead., Not the Classical Ideal: Athens and the Construction of the Other in Greek Art (Leiden, 2000), 98–131; T.J. McNiven, ‘Behaving like an other: telltale gestures in Athenian vase painting’, in Cohen (in this note), 71–97.

32 Lissarrague (n. 27), 277–86.

33 S. Burges Watson, ‘Orpheus’ erotic mysteries: Plato, pederasty, and the Zagreus myth in Phanocles F 1', BICS 57 (2014), 47–71.

34 e.g. LIMC s.v. ‘Orpheus’ 25–8. LIMC ‘Orpheus’ 26 depicts a (bearded) Thracian man standing defensively between Orpheus (un-bearded) and a Thracian woman, sickle in hand. In a striking scene on a hydria in Boston dating to the 460s (LIMC s.v. ‘Orpheus’ 28), a Thracian man and a boy look on passively as five women attack Orpheus.

35 Burges Watson (n. 33); cf. Guthrie (n. 15), 49–50.

36 Cf. Graf (n. 31).

37 Lissarrague (n. 27).

38 See Cohen (n. 31); McNiven (n. 31); Jourdan, F., ‘Orphée est-il véritablement un homme? La réponse grecque: l'efféminé versus l'initiateur des hommes’, LEC 76 (2008), 129–74Google Scholar.

39 Eur. frr. 182b-220 Kannicht, Pl. Grg. 506b, 485e. On Euripides’ representation of the mousikos and its political implications, see Wilson, P., ‘Euripides’ tragic muse’, ICS 24–5 (1999–2000), 427–49Google Scholar. On Plato's treatment of the subject, see A.H. Hobbs, Plato and the Hero: Courage, Manliness, and the Impersonal Good (Cambridge, 2000).

40 See Burges Watson (n. 33).

41 LIMC s.v. ‘Orpheus’ 9. In LIMC s.v. ‘Orpheus’ 12 and 22 Orpheus’ head is also raised heavenwards, which Garezou (n. 11), 99 plausibly interprets as a sign of ekstasis.

42 Cf. C.P. Segal, Orpheus: The Myth of the Poet (Baltimore, 1989).

43 On early representations of satyrs, see T.H. Carpenter, Dionysian Imagery in Archaic Greek Art (Oxford, 1986), ch. 5; C. Isler-Kerényi, Civilizing Violence: Satyrs on 6th-Century Greek Vases (Göttingen, 2004); ead., Dionysus in Archaic Greece: An Understanding through Images (Leiden, 2007). On satyrs more generally, see F. Lissarrague, ‘On the wildness of satyrs,’ in T.H. Carpenter and C.A. Faraone, Masks of Dionysus (Ithaca and London, 1993), 207–20; id., ‘The sexual life of satyrs,’ in D.M. Halperin, J.J. Winkler, F.I. Zeitlin (edd.), Before Sexuality: The Construction of Erotic Experience in the Ancient Greek World (Princeton, 1990), 53–82. On dance in satyr play, see B. Seidenstecker, ‘Dance in satyr play’, in O. Taplin and R. Wyles (edd.), The Pronomos Vase and its Context (Oxford, 2010), 213–29.

44 On Bassarids, see above, n. 20. On maenads more generally, see Henrichs, A., ‘Greek maenadism from Olympia to Messalina’, HSPh 82 (1978), 121–60Google Scholar; Bremmer, J.N., ‘Greek maenadism reconsidered,ZPE 55 (1984), 267–86Google Scholar; Bremmer (n. 20); A.F. Jaccottet, Choisir Dionysos. Les associations dionysiaques ou la face cachée du dionysisme (Zurich, 2003), with further bibliography.

45 LIMC s.v. ‘Orpheus’ 22 (c. 460 b.c.e.), LIMC s.v. ‘Orpheus’ 23–4 (c. 430 b.c.e.).

46 (Trans. R. Speirs) (Cambridge, 1999), 21. The assertion I have bracketed cannot apply to Orpheus and may be one reason why Nietzsche did not engage explicitly with the Bassarides. For an incisive discussion of the evidence about Dionysus and for relevant bibliography, see A. Henrichs's entry on ‘Dionysus’ in OCD 4. On conceptions of Dionysus in literature and scholarship, see Henrichs, A., ‘Loss of self, suffering, violence: the modern view of Dionysus from Nietzsche to Girard’, HSPh 88 (1984), 205–40Google Scholar; id., ‘“He has a god in him”: human and divine in the modern perception of Dionysus’, in Carpenter and Faraone (n. 43), 13–43; and the recent collections by Bernabé et al. (n. 20) and R. Schlesier, A Different God? Dionysos and Ancient Polytheism (Berlin, 2011).

47 On this myth and its relation to ‘Orphism’ in the Classical period, see Nilsson, M., ‘Early Orphism and kindred religious movements’, HThR 28 (1935), 181230 Google Scholar; Linforth (n. 13), 147–56; W. Burkert, ‘Le laminette auree: da Orfeo a Lampone’, in Orfismo in Magna Grecia. Atti del quattordicesimo convegno di studi sulla Magna Grecia (Naples, 1975), 81–104; id., Da Omero ai magi. La tradizione orientale nella cultura greca (Venice, 1999), 59–86; West (n. 14), 15–26, 140–76; F. Graf and S.I. Johnston, Ritual Texts for the Afterlife: Orpheus and the Bacchic Gold Tablets (New York, 2007), 50–93; A. Henrichs, ‘Dionysus dismembered and restored to life: the earliest evidence (OF 59 I-II)’, in M. Herrero de Jáuregui, A. Jiménez, E. Luján, R. Martín, M. Santamaría, S. Torallas (edd.), Tracing Orpheus: Studies on Orphic Fragments (Berlin, 2011), 61–8; R. Gagné, Ancestral Fault in Ancient Greece (Cambridge, 2014), 453–72. R.G. Edmonds III argues that the Zagreus myth is a modern construct: see Tearing apart the Zagreus myth: a few disparaging remarks on Orphism and original sin’, CA 18 (1999), 3573 Google Scholar; and his Redefining Ancient Orphism: A Study in Greek Religion (Cambridge, 2013), 453–72. He is successfully refuted by Henrichs (in this note) and Bernabé, A., ‘La toile de Pénélope: a-t-il existé un mythe orphique sur Dionysos et les Titans?’, RHR 219 (2002), 401–33CrossRefGoogle Scholar.

48 Procl. In R. I 174–5 = Orph. 503T. See Di Marco (n. 2), 134 n. 85 and 150–2. Cf. F. Nietzsche, The Pre-Platonic Philosophers, trans. G. Whitlock (Urbana, 2000), 11 n. 2 = Excerpts from F. Bornmann and M. Carpitella (edd.), Nietzsche Werke, Kritische Gesamtausgabe, vol. 4, part 2 (Berlin, 1995): ‘The name (Orpheus) points to darkness, as well as underworld descent, Orpheus is torn to pieces by the Maenads, Zagreus, by the Titans.’

49 Cf. J. Harrison (n. 20), ch. 9; Rohde (n. 1), 335–47; E.R. Dodds, The Greeks and the Irrational (Berkeley, 1951), 135–56; A. Henrichs, ‘Mystika, Orphika, Dionysiaka: Esoterische Gruppenbildung-en, Glaubensinhalte und Verhaltensweisen in der griechischen Religion’, in A. Bierl, W. Braungart (edd.), Gewalt und Opfer. Im Dialog mit Walter Burkert (MythosEikonPoiesis 2) (Berlin, 2010), 87–114.

50 See West, M.L., ‘The Orphics of Olbia’, ZPE 45 (1982), 1729 Google Scholar; Zhmud, L., ‘Orphism and Graffiti from Olbia’, Hermes 120 (1992), 159–68Google Scholar.

51 On the Gorgias passage, see further below, p. 12. Cf. the opening of Orph. frr. 485 and 486.

52 See H.D. Betz, ‘“A child of Earth am I and of starry Heaven”, in R.G. Edmonds III (ed.), The “Orphic” Gold Tablets and Greek Religion: Further Along the Path (Cambridge/New York, 2011), 102–19.

53 H.J. Rose, ‘The ancient grief. A study of Pindar, fr. 133 (Bergk), fr. 127 (Bowra)’, in C. Bailey (ed.), Greek Poetry and Life: Essays Presented to Gilbert Murray on his 70th Birthday (Oxford, 1936), 79–96. Rose's theory has found widespread (if not quite universal) acceptance. See A. Bernabé, ‘Una cita de Píndaro en Platón Men. 81 b (fr. 133 Sn.-M.)’, in J.A. López Férez (ed.), Desde los poemas homéricos hasta la prosa griega del siglo IV d.C. Veintiséis estudios filológicos (Madrid, 1999), 239–59; Graf and Johnston (n. 47); Bernabé and Jiménez San Cristóbal (n. 15); Edmonds (n. 47). On the Zagreus myth, see above, n. 47.

54 The doctrine of recollection is proved by the demonstration of a slave boy's ability to resolve a mathematical puzzle. On memory in the gold leaves, see Janko, R., ‘Forgetfulness in the golden tablets of memory’, CQ 34 (1984), 89100 CrossRefGoogle Scholar; Bernabé and Jiménez San Cristóbal (n. 15), passim. Scholars have also noted the affinities between the Pindaric quotation and Empedocles, frr. 146–7. On Orphics and Pythagoreans in the Meno passage, see R.S. Bluck's commentary ad loc. in his volume Plato's Meno (Cambridge, 1961).

55 Grg. 493a. See E.R. Dodds, Plato Gorgias. A Revised Text with Introduction and Commentary (Oxford, 1959), ad loc.; Burkert (n. 9), 248–9 n. 48; Bernabé, A., ‘Una etimología platónica: sôma-sêma ’, Philologus 139 (1995), 204–37Google Scholar; Kingsley (n. 15), 113–14, 116–17, 165–71.

56 Phd. 61e-62c forms an integrated discussion: Philolaus, 61e; mysteries, 62b. Cf. Guthrie (n. 15), 162. C.A. Huffmann, Philolaus of Croton: Pythagorean and Presocratic: A Commentary on the Fragments and Testimonia with Interpretive Essays (Cambridge, 1993), 406–9 disagrees, but he considers the passage in isolation from the other Platonic passages discussed here and, like Zhmud (n. 10), sees Orphics and Pythagoreans as strongly differentiated groups.

57 For a more detailed investigation of these Platonic passages with bibliography, see Bernabé (n. 15) and Kingsley (n. 15), 159–71. On the relation between Orpheus, Bacchic mysteries and Pythagoreanism, Burkert's discussions (n. 13) remain seminal.

58 In Aristophanes’ Frogs (1032), it is Aeschylus who begins the contest for Dionysus’ affections by referring to Orpheus’ founding of ‘our’ (i.e. Eleusinian) mysteries as his special benefaction. It is attractive to suppose that the tragedian was being credited for his mythical innovation. On Orpheus and Eleusis, see F. Graf, Eleusis und die orphische Dichtung Athens in vorhellenistischer Zeit (Berlin, 1974); id., ‘Orfeo, Eleusis y Atenas’, in A. Bernabé and F. Casadesús (edd.), Orfeo y la tradición órfica: un reencuentro (Madrid, 2008), 671–96; Bernabé, A., ‘Orfeo y Eleusis’, Synthesis 15 (2008), 1336 Google Scholar.

59 See M. Detienne, ‘Les chemins de la déviance: orphisme, dionysisme et pythagorisme’, in Orfismo in Magna Grecia. Atti del quattrodicesimo convegno di studi sulla Magna Grecia (Naples, 1975), 49–79. On Pythagoreanism in comedy, see fr. 58E DK and Burkert (n. 9), 199–202. Aristophanes’ representation of Socrates as an initiator into newfangled mysteries belongs to the same anti-elitist discourse. M. Rashed argues plausibly that Aristophanes’ Socrates has Pythagorean traits: see Aristophanes and the Socrates of the Phaedo ’, OSAPh 36 (2009), 107–36Google Scholar.

60 See Burkert (n. 9), 115–17; Kahn (n. 10), 7; Riedweg (n. 10), 104–6. On perceptions of Pythagorean brotherhoods as oligarchic, see Horky (n. 15), 96–124.

61 LIMC s.v. ‘Orpheus’ 70 = s.v. ‘Apollon’ 872.

62 See Linforth (n. 13), 123–33; Graf (n. 58), 9–22. On Musaeus’ Eleusinian genealogy, see Henrichs, A., ‘Zur Genealogie des Musaios’, ZPE 58 (1985), 18 Google Scholar. The fact that Herodorus of Heraclea wrote a treatise on the poetry of Orpheus and Musaeus suggests that their writings were closely connected in the late fifth / early fourth century. Pausanias describes Musaeus as ‘copying Orpheus in everything’ (10.7.2). He surely has in mind Musaeus’ poems, all but one of which he ascribed to Onomacritus (1.22.7). The frequent pairing of Orpheus and Musaeus in Plato points in the same direction (Ap. 41a, Resp. 364e, Ion 536b, Prt. 316d); cf. Ar. Ran. 1032–3 and Hippias fr. 86 B 6 DK.

63 LIMC s.v. ‘Orpheus’ 69 = s.v. ‘Mousa/Mousai’ 99.

64 S. Burges Watson, ‘Muses of Lesbos or (Aeschylean) Muses of Pieria? Orpheus’ head on a fifth-century hydria’, GRBS 53 (2013), 441–60.

65 West (n. 2 [1990]) also makes Orpheus deliver the prophecy about Lycurgus’ punishment, but puts this prophecy in the first play. His reconstruction differs from that of other scholars. He plausibly argues that the Bacchae gives a persuasive model for the inclusion of Lycurgus’ accidental murder of Dryas in the Edonians. But he also shifts to the first play the onset of famine after Dryas’ death, the oracle instructing the Edonians to bury Lycurgus alive, the fulfilment of this instruction and the amalgamation of Lycurgus and Dionysus on Mt Pangaeum. This seems too much and leaves nothing from ps.-Apollodorus for the Neaniskoi. It also results in a premature resolution of the conflict between Lycurgus and Dionysus. Since Aeschylus’ tetralogies were always thematically connected and since we are dealing with a Lycurgia, it is probable that its central problem was resolved at the end of the third play, not the first.

66 On this passage, see Linforth (n. 13), 60–6; Diggle, J., ‘The prophet of Bacchus: Rhesus 970–3’, SIFC 5 (1987), 167–72Google Scholar = Euripidea (Oxford, 1994), 320-6; West (n. 2 [1990]), 32; Di Marco (n. 2), 115; A. Feickert, Euripidis Rhesus. Einleitung, Übersetzung, Kommentar (Frankfurt, 2005), ad loc.; V. Liapis, A Commentary on the Rhesus Attributed to Euripides (Oxford/New York, 2012), ad loc.

67 That the Muse is referring to Eleusis is clear from the use of the term μυστήρια: cf. Feickert (n. 66), ad loc., Liapis (n. 66), ad loc. and Graf (n. 58), 29.

68 ὅς γε Matthiae: ὅς τε Q: ὥστε VaL.

69 Soph. Ant. 955–65. See Sourvinou-Inwood, C., ‘The fourth stasimon of Sophocles Antigone ’, BICS 36 (1989), 141–65Google Scholar; M. Griffith, Sophocles Antigone (Cambridge, 1999), ad loc.

70 Diggle (n. 66).

71 See Burkert (n. 9), 154–9; Graf (n. 31), 91–2. The similarities between Orpheus and Zalmoxis form part of Dodds’ argument ([n. 49], 144–5) that Orpheus reflected a shamanic background.

72 Cf. Deichgräber (n. 20), 283.

73 Nietzsche, Kritische Studienausgabe, vol. 7, fr. 7 [122], aphorism 175. Lyceius is a widely dispersed epithet for Apollo, attested from the seventh century. The cult seems to have been important in Pythagoras’ hometown of Metapontum, where the temple of Apollo Lyceius was situated next to the agora. See F. Graf, Apollo (New York, 2009), 121. In the Classical period the epithet Lyceius is connected with wolves, especially in the context of Apollo's role in warding off hostile invaders. Chantraine analyses the second part of the name Lycurgus as deriving from *wergo = ‘repel’. This points to Apollo's ‘wolf-slaying’ aspect, which seems to be directed to the protection of the city-flock against the dangerous outsider. Cf. Aesch. Sept. 145, Ag. 1257; Soph. El. 6–7; and see W. Burkert, Structure and History in Greek Mythology and Ritual (Berkeley, 1979), 165–6 n. 24. The wolf also serves as a symbol for the outlaw from the Archaic period (e.g. Alc. fr. 130.16–25 L.-P.). See M. Detienne and J. Svenbro, ‘The feast of the wolves, or the impossible city’, in M. Detienne and J.P. Vernant (edd.), The Cuisine of Sacrifice Among the Greeks, trans. P. Wissing (Chicago, 1989), 148–63; R. Buxton, ‘Wolves and werewolves in Greek thought’, in J.N. Bremmer (ed.), Interpretations of Greek Mythology (London, 1987), 60–79. In Argos a foundation myth told how, when the Egyptian Danaus, descendant of Zeus and Io, arrived in Argos to claim the kingship, a wolf killed the lead-bull of the local herd. They accepted the omen and replaced their king with the outsider (Pausanias 2.19.3–4). If we consider the Lycurgia in relation to this discourse, we find Dionysus in the role of the ‘Lupine’ outsider, with the ‘Apolline’ Lycurgus as the defender of the city's laws. Hence, from a ‘lupine’ perspective Apollo and Dionysus emerge as aspects of the same phenomenon. Wolves and Apollo Lyceius are also connected with initiation. This fits well with the Neaniscoi and the Rhesus. Dionysus Bassareus has vulpine rather than lupine connections (see above, n. 20). Zalmoxis, on the other hand, was associated with bear-hide in ancient etymologies. See Rohde (n. 1), 268 n. 10; Graf (n. 31), 91. According to Macrobius (Sat. 1.18.9), Dionysus Bassareus was depicted bearded. These different animals may have referred to different initiatory phases. Interesting in this regard is the reference to Apollo Lyceius on a sixth-century b.c.e. bone tablet from Olbia. See L. Dubois, Inscriptions grecques dialectales d'Olbia du Pont (Geneva, 1996), no. 93; W. Burkert, ‘Olbia and Apollo of Didyma: a new oracle text’, in J. Solomon (ed.), Apollo: Origins and Influences (Tucson, 1994), 49–60. On the initiatory aspects of Apollo Lyceius, see Jameson, M., ‘Apollo Lykeios in Athens’, Archaiognosia 1 (1980), 213–36Google Scholar; Gernet, L., ‘Dolon le loup’, Mélanges Franz Cumont. Annuaire de l'institut de philologie et d'histoire orientales et slaves 4 (1936), 189208 Google Scholar; Burkert, W., ‘Apellai und Apollon’, RhM 118 (1975), 121 Google Scholar.

74 On this epigram, see the helpful discussion of B. Scherer, ‘Der Tod des Zauberers: die Orpheus-Epigramme in der Anthologia Palatina’, in M.A. Harder, R.F. Regtuit, G.C. Wakker (edd.), Hellenistic Epigrams (Groningen, 2002), 175–200.

75 βακχςειόμαντιEllis, Wilamowitz: ΒΑΧΙΟΣΟΜΑΝΤΙΣ F: ΒΑΚΣΙΟΣΟΜΑΝΤΙΣ BVZ: ΚΑΒΑΙΟΣΟΜΑΝΤΙΣ NDP ΒΑ R: βακχεύς, ὁ μάντις Nauck.

76 These also occur in fr. 23, quoted by the metrician Hephaestion as a rare example of consecutive bacchiacs and identified by the metrician Choeroboscus as coming from the Bassarides.

77 LIMC s.v. ‘Apollo’ 768a.

78 See W. Burkert, Griechische Religion der archaischen und klassischen Epoche (Die Religionen der Menschheit 15) (Stuttgart, 1977) = Greek Religion, trans. J. Raffan (Cambridge, MA, 1985), 224.

79 The identity of this Aristotle has not been established. Macrobius also refers to two Latin authors from the first century b.c.e. (Varro and Granius Flaccus) before the first of his three quotations from tragedy. When, later in the chapter, he quotes Orphic verses identifying Dionysus with the sun, he cites a work of Cornelius Labeo, a third-century Neoplatonist theologian, entitled On the Oracle of Apollo of Claros. He says that Labeo developed an interpretation identifying Liber and the sun as Iao. Arnobius also cites both Aristotle the theologian and Granius Flaccus for the same doctrine. P. Mastandrea, Un neoplatonico latino. Cornelio Labeone: testimonianze e frammenti (Leiden, 1979) argues that Labeo is the common source of Arnobius and much of Macrobius’ Sat. 1.17. For the identification of Dionysus and Apollo, Macrobius also refers to his arguments from the previous chapter that Apollo is the sun. There, in the discussion about Apollo's title ‘Ieios’ and the address ‘Ie Paian’, he quoted Apollodorus of Athens. Like Labeo, Apollodorus had a special interest in divine syncretisms; he may be Macrobius’ ultimate source.

80 δέσποτα φιλόδαφνε βάκχε, παιὰν Ἄπολλον εὔλυρε = fr. 477 Kannicht.

81 The name bears an obvious resemblance to Zalmoxis but our knowledge of Thracian is too defective for any reliable conclusions to be drawn from this. Robert Kaster notes (on Macr. Sat. 1.18.11) that ‘the cult title Zylmydr(i)ênos is found on inscriptions dedicated to Asclepius in Thrace’, which brings to mind the Orphic tablets mentioned in the Alcestis (p. 14, above).

82 On this (and later) evidence cf. Seaford (n. 17).

83 Cf. J. Diggle, Euripides Phaethon (Cambridge, 1970), ad loc.

84 See above, p. 3.

85 On astral imagery in the Eleusinian mysteries, see E. Csapo, ‘Star choruses: Eleusis, Orphism, and new musical imagery and dance’, in M. Revermann and P. Wilson (edd.), Performance, Iconography, Reception: Studies in Honour of Oliver Taplin (Oxford, 2008), 262–90. Cf. A. Hardie, ‘Muses and mysteries’, in P. Murray and P. Wilson (edd.), Music and the Muses: The Culture of ‘Mousikê’ in the Classical Athenian City (Oxford, 2004), 11–37.

86 Cf. Eur. Ion 1074–80. On Philodamus, see B.R. Lee, ‘Philodamus’ Paean to Dionysus: a Literary Expression of Delphic Propaganda’ (Diss., University of Illinois, 1975); L. Käppel, Paian: Studien zur Geschichte einer Gattung (Berlin, 1992), 207–90; Strauss-Clay, J., ‘Fusing the boundaries: Apollo and Dionysos at Delphi’, Metis 11 (1996), 83100 CrossRefGoogle Scholar.

87 For the argument that the Derveni author is a religious practitioner, see D. Obbink, ‘Cosmology as initiation vs. the critique of Orphic mysteries’, in A. Laks and G.W. Most (edd.), Studies on the Derveni Papyrus (Oxford, 1997), 39–54; G. Betegh, The Derveni Papyrus: Cosmology, Theology and Interpretation (Cambridge, 2004). Contra: Janko, R., ‘The physicist as hierophant: Aristophanes, Socrates, and the authorship of the Derveni papyrus’, ZPE 118 (1997), 6194 Google Scholar; id., The Derveni papyrus (Diagoras of Melos, Apopyrgizontes Logoi?): a new translation’, CPh 96 (2001), 132 Google Scholar.

88 Orph. 36V = Callim. fr. 643 Pf.; Philochorus (fourth century b.c.e.) said that the locals showed the remains of Dionysus at Delphi (FGrHist 328 fr. 7a).

89 De Is. et Os. 364f = (in part) Orph. 613T: ὁμολογεῖ δὲ καὶ τὰ Τιτανικὰ καὶ Νυκτέλια τοῖς λεγομένοις Ὀσίριδος διασπασμοῖς καὶ ταῖς ἀναβιώσεσι καὶ παλιγγενεσίαις. The language and syntax of the opening sentence echoes the longer version of the sentence about Orphic rites at Hdt. 2.81 (cf. n. 13, above) and may be Plutarch's way of indicating that he is explaining the historian.

90 Above, p. 12.

91 2.669–719. On this passage, see Hunter, R., ‘Apollo and the Argonauts: two notes on Ap. Rhod. 2, 669–719’, MH 43 (1986), 5060 Google Scholar.

92 The scholia connect the epithet with light and with wolves. On the role of Apollo Lyceius in the Lycurgia, see above, n. 73. Cf. the third-century Olbian inscription: Βίος-Βίος, Ἀπόλλων-Ἀπόλλων, Ἥλιο̣[ς]-Ἥλιος, Κόσμος-Κ[όσ]μος, Φῶς-Φῶς (Orph. 537V = Dubois [n. 73], no. 95).

93 See Henrichs (n. 44), 152–5; C. Sourvinou-Inwood, Hylas, the Nymphs, Dionysos and Others: Myth, Ritual, Ethnicity: Martin P. Nilsson Lecture on Greek Religion (Stockholm, 2005).

94 On the opposition, see P. Wilson, ‘Athenian strings’, in P. Murray and P. Wilson (n. 85), 269–306.

95 See J.M. Barringer, Art, Myth, and Ritual in Classical Greece (Cambridge, 2008), 159–70. Philodamus’ paean seems to have been commissioned at the same time as the building of the temple.

96 Warm thanks to Kathy Coleman, Albert Henrichs, Miguel Herrero de Jáuregui, Philip Horky, Richard Hunter, Richard Janko, Joshua Katz and Gregory Nagy for their comments on this paper.

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