Brill’s New Pauly

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(354 words)

[German version]

(μύησις/mýēsis, Lat. initiatio). Myesis is the initiation into a mystery (μυστήρια/mystḗria, Lat. initia) whereby the candidate for initiation became a μύστης (mýstēs, Lat. initiatus, initiated). As an additional rank the initiated could later attain the epopteía .

As nomen actionis for the verb μυέω/myéō (‘I initiate’; lat. initiare), which is considered a causativum to μύω/mýō (‘I close [lips/eyes]’), myesis semantically presupposes the term mýstēs, which, like mystḗria, is not derived from myéō but rather from mýō [1; 7. 414f.]. This derivation, which…

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Heinze, Theodor (Geneva), “Myesis”, 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 31 October 2020 <>
First published online: 2006
First print edition: 9789004122598, 20110510

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