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whole day to witness it, forgetful of everything else. The Corybantian was of a very wild cha­racter : it was chiefly danced in Phrygia and in Crete ; the dancers were armed, struck their swords against their shields, and displayed the most extravagant fury ; it was accompanied chieity by the flute. (Lucian, Ib. 8 ; Strab. x. p. 473 ;

Plat. Grit. p. 54.) The preceding woodcut from the Museo Pio Clementino (vol. iv. pi. 2) is sup­posed to represent a Corybantian dance. Respect­ing the dances in the theatre, see chorus.

Dancing was applied to gymnastic purposes and to training for war, especially in the Doric states, and was believed to have contributed very much to the success of the Dorians in war, as it enabled them to perform their evolutions simultaneously and in order. Hence the poet Socrates (Athen. xiv, p. 629. f.) says,

i 8e



There were various dances in early times, which served as a preparation for war : hence Homer (//. xi. 49, xii. 77) calls the Hoplites Tr/juAees, a war-dance having been called TrpuAf? by the Cre­tans. (Mtiller, Dor. iii. 12. § 10.) Of^such dances the most celebrated was the Pyrrhic (?? IlDpptx^), of which the vrpuAis was probably only another name: this Plato (Leg. vii. p. 815) takes as the representative of all war dances. The invention of this dance is placed in the mythical age, and is usually assigned to one Pyrrhicos, but most of the accounts agree in assigning it a Cretan or Spartan origin ; though others refer it to Pyrrhus or Neo-ptolemus, the son of Achilles, apparently misled by the name, for it was undoubtedly of Doric origin. (Athen. xiv. p. 630, e ; Strab. x. p. 466 ; Plat. Leg. p. 796 ; Lucian, Ib. 9.) It Was danced to the sound of the flute, and its time was very quick and light, as is shown by the name of the Pyrrhic loot C"0'), which must be connected with this dance : and from the same source came also the iProceleusmatic (^w) or challenging foot. (MU1-ler, Hist, of the, Literal, of Greece, p. 161.) The Pyrrhic dance was performed in different ways at Various times and in various countries, for it was by .no means confined to the Doric states. Plato (Leg. vii. p. 815) describes it as representing by rapid movements of the body the way in which missiles and blows from weapons were avoided, and; also the mode in which the enemy were attacked. In the non-Doric states it was pro­bably not practised as a training for war, but only as a mimetic dance : thus we read of its being -dcinced by women to entertain a company. (Xen. A nab. vi. 1. § 12.) It was also performed at Athens at the greater and lesser Fanathenaea by Ephebi, who were called Pyrrhichists (Hvfflixurral') and were trained at the expense of the Choragus, (SchoL ad Arklopk. Nub. 988 ; Lysiag,



. p. 698, Reiske.) In the mountainous parts of Thessaly and Macedon dances are per­formed at the present day by men armed with muskets and swords. (Dodwell, Tour through Greece^ vol. ii. pp. 21, 22.)

The following woodcut, taken from Sir W. Hamilton's vases (ed. Tischbein, vol. i. pi. 60), represents three Pyrrhicists, two of whom with shield and sword are engaged in the dance, while the third is standing with a sword. Above them is a female balancing herself on the head of one, and apparently in the act of performing a somerset ; she no doubt is taking part in the dance, and per­forming a very artistic kind of KvS'Krr-rjffis or tumbling, for the Greek performances of this kind surpass any thing we can imagine in modern times. Her danger is increased by the person below, who holds a sword pointing towards her. A female spec­tator sitting looks on astonished at the exhibition.


The Pyrrhic dance was introduced in the public games at Rome by Julius Caesar, when it was danced by the children of the leading men in Asia and Bithynia. (Suet. Jul. Caes. 39.) It seems to have been much liked by the Romans ; it was exhibited both by Caligula and Nero (Dion Cass. Ix. 7 ; Suet. Ner. 12), and also frequently by Hadrian. (Spartian. Hadr. 19.) Athenaeus (xiv. p. 631, a) says that the Pyrrhic dance was still practised in his time (the third century a. d.) at Sparta, where it was danced by boys from the .age of fifteen, but that in other places it had become a species of Dionysiac dance, in which the history of Dionysus was represented, and where the dancers instead of arms carried the thyrsus and torches.

Another important gymnastic dance was per­formed at the festival of yvjj.voiraio'ia, at Sparta in commemoration of the battle at Thyrea, where the chief object according to Mtiller (Dor. iv. 6. § 8) was to represent gymnastic exercises and dancing in intimate union: respecting the dance at this festival, see gymnopaedia.

There were other dances, besides the Pyrrhic, in which the performers had arms, but these seem to have been entirely mimetic, and not practised with any view to training for war. Such was th.e Kapiraia peculiar to the Aenianians and Magnetos, which was performed by two armed men in the following manner: one lays down his arms, sows the ground, and ploughs with a yoke of oxen, fre­quently looking around as if afraid ; then comes a robber, whom as soon as the other sees, he snatches his arms and fights with him for the oxen. All

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