Plynteria Festival

On the 22st of May, the Hellenic Plynteria festival is observed.

The Plynteria is a festival in which the statue of Athena Polias who guards Athens is cleansed.

Women of the household of the Praxiergidai (the Athenian family tasked with the care of the statue of Athena Polias)  would take the image and remove the robes, jewelry, then wrap it for a formal procession to the sea at Phaleron, where it was purified by sea water.  At sundown the statue was taken by a torch lit formal procession back to the temple and re-adorned with clean robes and jewelry.

This is considered an importune time and considered quite unlucky so Athena’s temple was closed and so its a good time to clean and revamp Athena’s shrines/altars/tools.

Offer figs or cakes containing figs to Athena.

(C) T. Georgitsis

 

Kallynteria Festival

On the 21st of May, the Hellenic Kallynteria festival is observed.

The Kallynteria is a festival in which the temple of Athena was swept out, her lamps refilled and lit by her Athenian priestesses.

This is an auspicious time to clean and reset up your shrines or working altars to the gods – specifically Athena.

Offer olive branches or olive oil.

(C) T. Georgitsis

Khalkeia Festival

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This months Deipnon coincides with the Hellenic Khalkeia festival.

The Khalkeia was the Athenian modern day labor day dedicated to artisans.

Offerings of grain were made along with sacrificial meat to the Greek Gods – Hephaestus and Athena.

This is an auspicious time to start big or complicated project related to arts and crafts.

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“Hephaestus’ Workshop” by  Giorgio Vasari

Here is a hymn to Hephaestus featuring Athena which you can use as an offering prayer on the day:

Homeric Hymn 20 to Hephaistos

Sing, clear-voiced Muse, of Hephaestus famed for inventions. With bright-eyed Athena he taught men glorious crafts throughout the world, —men who before used to dwell in caves in the mountains like wild beasts. But now that they have learned crafts through Hephaestus the famed worker, easily they live a peaceful life in their own houses the whole year round.  Be gracious, Hephaestus, and grant me success and prosperity!

 Translated by Hugh G. Evelyn-White

(C) T. Georgitsis 2016