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Ἄλλος οὗτος ῾Ηρακλῆς

Abstract : The paper re-examines the well-discussed issue of the so-called “tripartite theology”. As the fragments of the Antiquitates rerum divinarum point out, Varro, in the wake of Mucius Scevola, reconsidered the traditional ways of representing gods (the mythice theology, the physice one and the politice one). Therefore he proposed an original synthesis of them, characterised as specifically Roman and defined, accordingly, in Latin as theologia civilis. Probably before the codification of the theory in the philosophical-antiquarian work, he had already reflected about the specific limits of the three theologies in the satirical representation of the Menippean Ἄλλος οὗτος ῾Ηρακλῆς. Dealing with the identification of Hercules and Mars, the satire proves that Roman ritual tradition (of the pontiffs and the Salii) agrees with philosophical theories. On the other hand, it shows how people are incapable of doing without the mythical accounts. Thus Varro assumes that the new type of Roman theology must preserve also some elements of the theologia mythice in order to restore the traditional religious belief in his society.
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https://halshs.archives-ouvertes.fr/halshs-02113683
Contributor : Agnès Tapin <>
Submitted on : Monday, April 29, 2019 - 9:48:04 AM
Last modification on : Friday, May 3, 2019 - 11:01:23 AM

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Irene Leonardis. Ἄλλος οὗτος ῾Ηρακλῆς. Mètis - Anthropologie des mondes grecs anciens, Daedalus/EHESS, 2017, N.S.15, pp.355-376. ⟨10.4000/books.editionsehess.4755⟩. ⟨halshs-02113683⟩

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