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Hermes & the Euexia: A Note on Nudity, Youth & Divinity in the Gymnasium

Abstract : During the annual festival of the Hermaia, participants in the gymnasium competed in the euexia, a contest judging the beauty and form of the naked body. As part of the annual festival to Hermes, the euexia celebrated aspects and attributes important both to the gymnasium and to its patron deity. Just as the fit and beautiful body was a sign of civic virtue, the process by which it was attained was inspired by Hermes: in the evanescent period of youth, gymnasts strove for recognition in the contests of the gymnasium. Euexia or physical fitness was closely bound with the idea of exertion and physical effort, mirroring the mythic strivings of Hermes as expressed in a set of actions, aspects, and attributes of the god at work in other fields.
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Submitted on : Friday, April 5, 2019 - 10:27:27 AM
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Benjamin Coseo Perriello. Hermes & the Euexia: A Note on Nudity, Youth & Divinity in the Gymnasium. Mètis - Anthropologie des mondes grecs anciens, Daedalus/EHESS, 2009, N.S.7, pp.277-283. ⟨10.4000/books.editionsehess.2486⟩. ⟨halshs-02090766⟩



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