November 20th, 2015

Death in Greek Mythology and related topics

Hi everyone, I have a bit of a request; a little broad, but all focused on death and it's related aspects of ancient Greek culture, life and mythology.  I have a fair bit of information already gathered, but I'm having trouble with some of it, so I figured I'd cast out a net to see what I could catch.

I've already exhausted the website Theoi and looked on wikipedia and the few books I have; so I've google searched the following - Hellenic death customs, Hellenic afterlife, Ancient Greek Mythology, Ancient Greek mythology and death, death in greek mythology, Hades, Hades Underworld, Underworld Greek mythology, Hades and Persephone, lectures on Ancient Greece; along with a few others in a variety of search engines (I'm a librarian so data mining is kind of my thing) so I'm here to see if any fresh eyes can catch what I've missed.  Below is sort of the specifics of what I'm hoping for

I’m looking for articles, websites (aside from the wonderous Theoi), ebooks, online lectures, etc that can help me out in terms of the Greek understanding of death, the underworld, and reincarnation.  Any any all help, links, info would be great on:


  • The differences of Hades, Tartarus, Elysium, etc.

  • Death customs

  • Thanatos vs Hades’ role in the lives of the living and the dead.

  • Knowledge of the different interpretations of the Persephone mythos; her role in the lives of the living and the dead; her realms of influence when on Earth and when in the Underworld.

  • The function of Keroberos/Cerberus, Charon, the Erinyes/Furies, the Moirai/Fates

  • The role necromancy and necromantic magic played in the areas of control of Hades and Persephone

  • The views of different ways of dying in the Greek life; in battle, childbirth, old age, suicide. murder - and how they would be ‘judged’ if such a thing was considered

I know that some things were definitely a regional aspect and that not every area of the Ancient Greek world would do things the same and I’m more than grateful for different areas’ viewpoints as well (Sparta vs Athens vs Thebes for example), and that it changed over time.

Okay thanks