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An ancient folk story-telling, about Theagenis from Thassos

A study from Stefanos D. Imellos

Theagenis from Thassos was, as known, a famous athlete of the ancient times. Specifically, he was a champion of the Olympic games of wrestling and pangration. His reputation for his extra-ordinary athletic achievements and his physical strength, soon overlapped the borders of his own country and as a result, the historical facts about him, are mixed with myths, ever after the centuries, since 480 b.c.

According the best and main source of knowledge, about this hero, the much newer Pafsanias, his co-country men were offering gifts to him, as he was a god. «thinking of him as a god and give offers to him»1, says Pafsanias. Offers to a bronze statue which was settled to the center of the ancient city of Thassos.

Varius matters (chronological, wide-historical, religius, archaeological, and others) about Theagenis, have already been satisfactually researched. The last one, in deed, is the study of archeologist Jean Pouilloux2, laying on 43 large pages and is very enlighting, since the writter gives all the links to the ancient sources, which are few and he mentions some newer bibliography, as well, so, there is no need to talk about them now.

What is going to be talked about here, is very specific. It's about the faith of ancient Thassians and Greeks (Hellenes), that the bronze statue of Theagenis and Theagenis himself, had the ability to cure patients.

This whole study of Stefanos D. Imellos, has not yet been translated. Please refer to the greek language article, here.

1. Pafsanias. 6, 11, 8.

2. Jean Pouilloux, Recherches sur l'histoire et les cultes de Thasos, I De la fondation de la cité, à 196 avant J.-C, Paris 1954, e. 62-105 (École Française d'Athènes, Études Thasiennes, III).

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