Ephesia Grammata
(261 words)

[German version]

(Ἐφέσια γράμματα; Ephésia grámmata, ‘Ephesian letters of the alphabet’). Designation for a series of words devoid of meaning ─ (askion kataskion lix tetrax damnameneus aision or aisia) that was used orally and in writing for apotropaic and salvation-bringing purposes. Their name comes from the fact that they were engraved on the statue of Artemis of Ephesus (Paus. ap. Eust. Od. 19,247). They were spoken in  exorcism (Plut. Mor. 706 de) for the protection of a bridal couple which was ritually encircled (Men. Fr. 313);  Croesus supposedly used them to put out the b…

Cite this page
Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH), “Ephesia Grammata”, in: Brill’s New Pauly, Antiquity volumes edited by: Hubert Cancik and , Helmuth Schneider, English Edition by: Christine F. Salazar, Classical Tradition volumes edited by: Manfred Landfester, English Edition by: Francis G. Gentry. Consulted online on 18 March 2018 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/1574-9347_bnp_e331410>
First published online: 2006
First print edition: 9789004122598, 20110510

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