November 17, 2015
This bizarre hymn to the armed warrior dancers alludes to fantastic, horrifying, and changeful apparitions, perhaps a nod to anticipated horrors on the battlefield and the reputation of the Korybantes as “wizards.”
39. Κορύβαντος, θυμίαμα λίβανον.
Hymn to Korybantos, Armed Warrior Dancers
Divine connection: libanon (frankincense)
Κικλήσκω χθονὸς ἀενάου βασιλῆα μέγιστον,
I call foundational Earth’s everlasting Basilea majestic,
Κύρβαντ' ὀλβιόμοιρον, Ἀρήιον, ἀπροσόρατον,
Power-stepping, whole life fated, Ares’ warriors, impervious to the grave,
νυκτερινὸν Κουρῆτα, φόβων ἀποπαύστορα δεινῶν,
Night-loving Kouretes, terrifying, paralyzing, powerful,
φαντασιῶν ἐπαρωγόν, ἐρημοπλάνον Κορύβαντα,
Phantasmic companion in battle, lone-roaming Korybantes
αἰολόμορφον ἄνακτα, θεὸν διφυῆ, πολύμορφον,
Eternally changing form, forever reviving, divinely dual-natured, with many forms,
φοίνιον, αἱμαχθέντα κασιγνήτων ὑπὸ δισσῶν,
Crimson bloodied siblings subdivided under
Δηοῦς ὃς γνώμαισιν ἐνήλλαξας δέμας ἁγνόν,
Deos, who with wisdom exchanges embodiment purified,
θηρότυπον θέμενος μορφὴν δνοφεροῖο δράκοντος·
So that beastly creatures lawfully morph into dark-born serpents.
κλῦθι, μάκαρ, φωνῶν, χαλεπὴν δ' ἀποπέμπεο μῆνιν,
I call on blest, loud, savages to dispatch wrath,
παύων φαντασίας, ψυχῆς ἐκπλήκτου ἀνάγκας.
Pause fantastic illusions of the Soul terrified by Necessity.
 Chthonos (χθονὸς) is the foundational aspect of Earth, personified as the immortal Goddess Chthon (Χθών), literally “foundation (Χ) + divine (θ) + load-bearing (ονὸς).”
 Basilea (βασιλῆα) means “ruler” and contains the root word “basis”. Note the feminine ending –a.
 Areion (Ἀρήιον) means of the immortal God of war, Ares, that is, warriors.
 Kouretes are youthful (κουριος) armed warrior dancers. Note the feminine form ending in -a: koureta (Κουρῆτα).
According to Strabo’s Geography 10.3.20-22, “Some…believe that the Curetes were the same as the Corybantes and were ministers of Hecatê. …it is probable that the Curetes and the Corybantes were the same, being those who had been accepted as…‘youths,’ for the war‑dance in connection with the holy rites of the Mother of the [Goddesses and G]ods…and all have assumed that they were wizards and attendants of the Mother of the [Goddesses and G]ods, and that they lived in Phrygia about Ida.” http://penelope.uchicago.edu/Thayer/E/Roman/Texts/Strabo/10C*.html
Nonnus, in Dionysiaca 3. 61-75 ff (trans. Rouse), describes the dances of the Corybants:
"Already the bird of morning was cutting the air with loud cries; already the helmeted bands of desert-haunting Corybants were beating on their shields in the Cnossian dance, and leaping with rhythmic steps, and the oxhides thudded under the blows of the iron as they whirled them about in rivalry, while the double pipe made music, and quickened the dancers with its rollicking tune in time to the bounding steps. Aye, and the trees whispered, the rocks boomed, the forests held jubilee with their intelligent movings and shakings, and the Dryads did sing. Packs of bears joined the dance, skipping and wheeling face to face; lions with a roar from emulous throats mimicked the triumphant cry of the priests of the Cabeiroi, sane in their madness; the revelling pipes rang out a tune in honor of Hecate…”
 Korybantes are Phrygian (modern Turkey) devotees of Kybele/Rhea, the immortal Mother of the Goddesses and Gods. The name means: youth (Κορύ) + stepping/marching/dancing/placing (βαντα). Note the feminine form ending in -a.
 Of two (δι) + natures (φυῆ) may mean androgynous (devotees of Kybele/Rhea were known to self-castrate as a sign of devotion to the Mother Goddess, they may be considered both male and female in nature); or, of two races, i.e. Greek and Phrygian.
 Deos (Δηοῦς) is the immortal Goddess Demeter.
 The word dragon (δράκοντος) is usually translated as “serpent” or “snake.”
 Psyche (ψυχῆς) is the immortal Goddess of the soul.
 Ananke (ἀνάγκας) is the immortal Goddess of that which is, often painfully, necessary.