Artemis Vrauronia

Vrauron is one of the most important ancient cities of Attica, placed in the south-east seashore. A river called Erasinos goes through this ancient town. The place was inhabitted before 3500 b.C. and in the museum we can see items from the Mycenaean civilization, the Age of Bronze and the Geometric Period.

When Iphigeneia came back from the city of Tauroi (Euxeinos Pontos) with Orestes, she brought the wooden statue of Artemis and she put it in the temple of Artemis in Vraurona. Iphigeneia was the priestess (kleidouchos) of Artemis.

The city was connected with the Acropolis of Athens and the cult of Artemis, as the young girls were dedicated to Artemis in Athens and after preparations and training, when they became 10 years old they came to Vrauron for the final stage of their initiation. Many statues of those girls can be seen in the museum, as well as tools for making wool threads, clay toys, jewelry, boxes to keep their cosmetics etc. Next to the temple, there was a stoa, in which the girls had the choice to stay and sleep or live there. Only the front side of the stoa and two sides have been excavated.

The temple (19.20 x 10.35 m) is in a watery soil and as I can understand the lack of putting water barriers has damaged the bottom side of the doric kions. There are water snakes in the place and a lot of vegetation. These give life to a sacred place, helping the connection with the Goddess. In the altar we know that Artemis, Leto, Apollo, Dionysos and Iphigeneia were worshipped. Facing the temple, there was the old house of Iphigeneia and her grave or temple (7.75 x 4.45 meters). Sadly, there is nothing but ruins. The main temple was built in the 5th century, as the old temple was nearby, but destroyed by the barbarians of Xerxes after the battle of Thermopylaes. The old temple of the 7th century became a church of saint Georgios and it is still there, but sadly closed. The church has 2 wall painting of the 15h century A.D. yet, none of them is preserved by the archaeologists.

From the statue of Artemis nothing has been saved, but you can see various interesting statues of the Goddess in the museum. I have to remind that Artemis and Hekate are identified as the same Goddess from ancient times in Hellas, but I do not want to give more information on that subject, as many people who read the Crossroads Witch take information without attributing back to us. Another important artifact is the construction of a stone bridge, which helped the horse cars to come to the temple without sinking in the muddy soil. In the museum there is a statue of Triple Hekate holding lampades (long torches) and we also see Artemis holding a long torch in 2 anaglyph anathematikes plaques/ marble votive reliefs. We have a video in the website from 2016 which was taken by Eirini.

The archaeological place is not easily accessible with bus, you have to have a car. It is open until 3 30 and the museum until 3 o' clock. The museum does not want the exhibits to be uploaded online or promoted or seen. This weird behavour is common within "greek" museums, and I have come to the conclusion that they simply do not want visitors and Hellenes to know their History. Besides the difficulties, if you have the chance to visit Vraurona, go to the museum. The ticket is 6 euros.

Artemis, 5th century b.C. Artemis, 4th century b.C.
Votive relief from marble, 420 b.C. Artemis pets a goat Arktoi, the girls of the mystery cult
Votive relief, bull sacrifice to Artemis Triple statue of Hekate with lampades
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Theurgy and Philosophy are two different methods which lead to the union with God.


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