Greek hero cult

Hero cults were one of the most distinctive features of ancient Greek religion. In Homeric Greek, “hero” (heroes, ἥρως) refers to a man who was fighting on either side during the Trojan War. By the historical period, however, the word came to mean specifically a dead man, venerated and propitiated at his tomb or at a designated shrine, because his fame during life or unusual manner of death gave him power to support and protect the living.

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