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On the Inception of the Wine-Cod and its Development in Anatolia, in the Light of the Ivriz Relief
S. Gökhan TİRYAKİ*

The Aegean migrations not only caused the fall of centralized political systems but also, with their new political structure, paved the way for serious breaks within the socio-cultural arena. The Neo Hittite city-states and their chief Gods bore many traces from earlier traditions; yet, the atmosphere of this period differentiated between the political power and their Gods. The only division that can be observed up to this date, had occurred in the identity of the Mother Goddess, but a further division seems to have taken place at this time, dividing the identity of the Father God also.

At this point, the image of the "Chief God of the Sky", which can be observed in the works commissioned by the Varpalavas family, divides to produce the Wine God, honored for his strolling in the vineyard distributing the essence of wine to the grapes, rather than maintaining an identity honored for making other countries kneel before the king. Hence, we are presented with this division and this differentiation forms the subject of this article.

Baal-Tarz (the God of Tarsus) in Cilicia in the 4th century B.C. and Zeus Ampelides (Zeus of the vine) in Phrygia in the 3rd century A.D. are identical and present us with the longevity and unifying effects of this continuity of belief. As can be seen from the depictions on vase paintings, the concept of a wine-god emerging as Baki in Lydia and Bacchus in the Hellenic world shows this essence sprouting forth, when Tarhunzas of the vineyard left the Father God and continued his existence as a singular identity, and hence, the Father God also bore an identity which "created others from the himself" as his spouse the Mother Goddess had done.

Thus, this essence, as revealed by the legends, seems to have accomplished its formation when the Father God comes to Pessinus and learns of the mysteries from the Mother Goddess. It should not be surprising that Anatolia, where viticulture and wine production first emerged, was the cradle for such a cult and its deity, the Wine God.

*S. Gökhan Tiryaki, Akdeniz Üniversitesi, Fen-Edebiyat Fakültesi, Arkeoloji Bölümü, 07058 Kampüs - Antalya.

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