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Title: «Η γυναικεία παρουσία στην Ψαλτική Τέχνη: η περίπτωση των αστικών ναών της Βυζαντινής Αυτοκρατορίας»
Authors: Σπυράκου, Ευαγγελία
Chairs: Αλεξάνδρου, Μαρία
Κρητικού, Φλώρα
Αργυρίου, Μαρία
Μαζέρα-Μάμαλη, Σεβαστή
Σπυράκου, Ευαγγελία
Type: Conference Paper
Subjects: FRASCATI::Social sciences
FRASCATI::Humanities::Arts (arts, history of arts, performing arts, music)
Keywords: Women's Studies
Soundscape (Music)
Byzantine Musicology
Historically Informed Performance
Byzantine Monasticiscm
Psaltic Art
Byzantine nuns
Βυζαντινός Χορός
Byzantine Choir
Issue Date: 23-Nov-2019
Volume: 1o Συμπόσιο Ορθοδόξων Ψαλτριών "Γυναίκες Ψάλτριες Βυζαντινής & Εκκλησιαστικής Μουσικής. Διδασκαλία & Διεύθυνση Γυναικείου Χορού Ψαλτριών"
Abstract: The participation of women in Byzantine Offices has aroused the interest of researchers in various aspects. On the one hand, their active part during Worship as Deaconesses within sacred rituals. On the other hand and concerning the art of chanting, women are identified as singers or composers of sacred music. As a whole, ‘women in Worship’ is still being investigated as an interdisciplinary topic. The present paper focuses on the possible inclusion of Deaconesses in Chanting. When dealing with the chanting part of the Offices, the female presence as a member of the Choir of the byzantine secular churches has been documented since 2005, through the function of the Askētēria. They were semi-monastic communities, living around churches, chanting in Offices but mainly serving the burial procedures, being paid according to the Justinian legislation. Their presence, under various terms, can be traced back to the first Christian centuries. This type of secular monasticism was characteristic of Byzantine Monasticism that was based upon the rules of Vasileios the Great. Along with the Askētēria, the present survey investigates the probable participation of Deaconesses in Chanting through historical and iconographic sources, along with rubrics of Liturgical Typika, Euchologies, and Foundation Documents. Firstly, the terms related to the salaried chanting women of the secular temples of Byzantiumare briefly presented and documented: namely Parthenoi, Adousai, Graptai, Myroforoi(Myrrhbearers), Askētēria - Askētriai - Askētēriai, kanonikai. These terms, based upon their context and intersection with other sources, indicate the firm exclusion of the above-mentioned women from the lay ones and their inclusion in the extended notion of ecclesiastical orders. These women are sometimes depicted in hagiographic types mainly of the Amomos and the Akathistos Hymn. More specifically, their depiction in the Akathistos is directly linked with its integral part in the Presbeiaservice, which was the main duty of the Graptai with the collaboration of the Orphans of Pantokrator monastery. Secondly, the unclear use of the term kanonikai both for the Askētēria and the Deaconesses is identified in several cases, without this fact meaning any attempt to equate the different church members. Moreover, the equation of Askētēria and Parthenoi is observed. The use of common terms derives from their monastic or semi-monastic background, which is obvious in the terms themselves is elaborated by rubrics of Euchologia. These facts in addition to the common living space of Deaconesses and Askētēria around the church, their common positioning during Worship, and the corresponding chanting duties of Deacons attest to the inclusion of the Deaconesses among women voices that chant in secular churches of Byzantium
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