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One of the oldest Greek gods, Demeter (Roman name: Ceres) guaranteed the fertility of the earth and protected farming and vegetation. This close connection with the earth was inherited from her mother Rhea, and doubtless she was a reincarnation of local mother-Earth goddesses, commonly worshipped in rural communities. Daughter of Kronos and Rhea, sister... [continue reading]
Magna Graecia (Megalē Hellas) refers to the coastal areas of southern Italy which were colonized by various ancient Greek city-states from the 8th to 5th centuries BCE. Sicily, although also a region of Greek colonization, is not usually included in this area. However, later writers such as Strabo did include Sicily and the term even came to signify... [continue reading]