Ἑνδεκάτη/ Πρώτη Μεσοῦντος, XI dayFrom today’s sunset:...
Ἑνδεκάτη/ Πρώτη Μεσοῦντος, XI day
From today’s sunset: eleventh day of Elaphebolion.
Our best wishes also for the Spring Equinox and the beginning of the Springtime, sacred to the Mother of the Gods and Helios the King, as told to us by the great Emperor Julian (Hymn to the Mother of the Gods)!
Megala Dionysia- Agones in the Theatre.
From the eleven to thirteen (or fourteen, as other say) of Elaphebolion the Agones, competitions in the theater of Dionysus in the presence of the God, were held, at which took part the priests and the entire population, and many foreigners who came specially to Athens for the occasion;. Before the performances, the ten Strategoi together poured a libation to the God in the theater, while the Peristiarkhoi sacrificed the piglets to purify the theater. Five were comedies in competiotions (except for a temporary reduction to three, given the difficulties of the Peloponnesian War); in the tragic contest competed three poets, each with a tetralogy consisting of three tragedies and a satyr play. The first contest concerns precisely dithyrambs. In the order prescribed by the law of Evégoros, to the dithyrambs follows a komos; The second day is devoted to comedy (a fact confirmed by numerous inscriptions of V, IV and II BCE), and then follow the tragic tetralogies. (cf. Hellenismo, ‘Calendario Religioso’)
(Relief with Dionysiac procession and dances, 50-40 BCE, Madrid Museo Nacional del Prado…)