Brill’s New Pauly

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(744 words)

[German version]

(τέμενος/témenos (plural teménē), 'the separated', from Greek τέμνειν/témnein, 'cut, divide off'). In Mycenaean [1] and Homeric linguistic use, a high quality piece of land granted to a ruler or noble [2; 3]. However, in Homeric epic, deities are also encountered as the owners of a temenos, which could contain an altar (Hom. Il. 8,48; 23,148; Hom. Od. 8,363) and thus was a cultic site. In the subsequent period, the term became restricted to the area of the sacred, but retained both aspects. Thus, in accordance with the original meaning, temenos can describe estates wh…

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Zimmermann, Klaus (Jena), “Temenos”, 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 24 September 2021 <>
First published online: 2006
First print edition: 9789004122598, 20110510

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