Boiotian Tripods: The Tenacity of a Panhellenic Symbol in a Regional Context

by Nassos Papalexandrou

Hesperia, Volume 77, Issue 2
Page(s): 251-282
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/40205749
Year: 2008


The author examines the ritual uses of tripod cauldrons in Boiotian public contexts, synthesizing material, epigraphic, and literary evidence. Dedications of tripods by individuals were expressions of prominent social status. Communal dedications made in the distinctively Boiotian rite of the tripodephoria were symbolic actualizations of power relations between the dominant center and its periphery. Remains of two suntagmata of tripods at the sanctuary of the hero Ptoios at Kastraki, near Akraiphia, provide evidence for the physical ambience of the sanctuary, the form of the tripods, and the collective rites associated with the dedications.