The Ancient Library

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dream, there is no doubt as to its actual appearance. It vanishes beneath the earth with a cry, and to Achilles it is a final proof that there is an existence in another world. Thirdly, the ghost implies that when once the funeral rites are performed its power to visit this earth will be at an end —

ov yap it' aSris VMrcro/iat "AuJao, eieifv' fie irvpbs

The funeral rites are what M. van Gennep calls rites de separation. And this, on the whole, remains the doctrine of necromancy. Those who wish to learn of the future from the dead must either, like Odysseus, make a voyage to some portal of the Lower World, or else possess the magic power to cleave an opening to Hades by their spells.

Of course the theory of ghosts, in almost every land, is inconsistent if tried by the standards of logic and reason. The philosophers of a later age are puzzled, not merely by the haunting of the scenes of crimes by departed spirits, but also by the problem why if the soul is spiritual, the ghost appears in bodily shape.2 And even ghosts whose bodies have been buried appear in dreams. We have already

1 Compare the case of Killos the charioteer of Pelops. Theopompus ap. Schol. Horn. Iliad ix. 38. 2 [Plut.] De vita Homeri 128.

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