The Boy And The Owl: A Story About The Attributes Of God Based On The Poem
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The inhabitants of Brasiae, in Laconia, according to Pausanias (iii. 24. § 3), told a different story about the birth of Dionysus, When Cadmus heard, they said, that Semele was mother of a son by Zeus, he put her and her child into a chest, and threw it into the sea. The chest was carried by the wind and waves to the coast of Brasiae. Semele was found dead, and was solemnly buried, but Dionysus was brought up by Ino, who happened at the time to be at Brasiae. The plain of Brasiae was, for this reason, afterwards called the garden of Dionysus.
We may, however, remark at once, that all traditions which have reference to a mystic worship of Dionysus, are of a comparatively late origin, that is, they belong to the period subsequent to that in which the Homeric poems were composed; for in those poems Dionysus does not appear as one of the great divinities, and the story of his birth by Zeus and the Bacchic orgies are not alluded to in any way : Dionysus is there simply described as the god who teaches man the preparation of wine, whence he is called the "drunken god " (mainomenos), and the sober king Lycurgus will not, for this reason, tolerate him in his kingdom. (Hom. Il. vi. 132, &c., Od. xviii. 406, comp. xi. 325.) As the cultivation of the vine spread in Greece, the worship of Dionysus likewise spread further; the mystic worship was developed by the Orphici, though it probably originated in the transfer of Phrygian and Lydian modes of worship to that of Dionysus. After the time of Alexander's expedition to India, the celebration of the Bacchic festivals assumed more and more their wild and dissolute character.
Margaret Craven was born in Bellingham, Washington, in 1898, and attended Stanford University. She began her writing career as a newspaper journalist, and in fact it was a story she wrote for the Saturday Evening Post, based on the experiences of a minister in the Queen Charlotte Islands of British Columbia, that was the genesis of her novel I Heard the Owl Call My Name. For much of her life Craven had struggled with a career as a fiction writer, experiencing only nominal success, but at the age of sixty-nine her quietly moving book about life in a Kwakiutl Indian village would become the culmination of her career. 2b1af7f3a8