Hellene: A Complex Word and Contemporary Pagan Use

Hellenic Faith


The word “Hellene” can invoke various thoughts. From the concept of Ancient Greece’s shared identity, to Pagans that remained to the Gods, to Emperor Julian’s vision of Hellenic religion, and to the identity of the modern Greek nation. This article seeks to explore the history of this word, and give thoughts over how the term suitably denotes as an identity for contemporary practitioners of Hellenism.

Hellene as a Cultural Identity

There were many terms used to refer to the Greeks. Among them were Achaeans, Danaans, and Argives, which were all used to denote a common Greek identity, but also prominent was Hellene. The word Hellene means “bright,” and may relate to the God, King Helios.

In Hellenic mythology, Deucalion and Pyrrha, survivors of the deluge who became the first King and Queen of northern Greece, bore a son named Hellen, eponymous king of the Hellenes who…

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