Orphic Tablets and Hymns

(ca. 400 BCE–300 CE)


  • Bacchus: the Roman name for Dionysius, the Greek god of wine
  • Caecilia Secundina: the name of the woman for whom the tablet was written
  • Corybantes: a dancing religious order that worshipped the Phrygian goddess Cybele with drumming and dancing and whose members made up the nine dancers who venerated Rhea
  • Curetes: also Corybantes, a dancing religious order
  • Demeter: the goddess of agriculture and the mother of Persephone
  • Dionysus: the god of wine and festivity
  • Euboleus: originally a god of plowing; he becomes a swineherd who witnesses Persephone’s abduction.
  • Euclês: a common Greek name that may have been chosen for its euphony in the context
  • frankincense: an aromatic resin used in perfumes and incense
  • Hades: either the underworld itself or the god of the underworld
  • Jove: Zeus
  • Mars: the god of war
  • myrrh: an aromatic resin, at times more valuable than gold
  • Persephone: the wife of Hades
  • Phanes: a mystic god of procreation
  • Pluto: that is, the god Hades
  • Priapus: the...
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Orpheus and Eurydice (Library of Congress)

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