Religious Practice and the Delian Neighbourhoods: Some Case Studies
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This article explores the relationship between neighbourhood and religious practice by examining three distinct areas on Hellenistic Delos. The focus is on the relationship between the creation of religious centres within neighbourhoods and individual choices made by the inhabitants of such neighbourhoods: did worshippers move to specific neighbourhoods to be near a shrine or did they create a shrine near their new home? How far would an individual go to worship a specific deity? My analysis shows that in order to sacrifice to a civic deity of choice, a worshipper was willing to travel far beyond her or his neighbourhood, while at the same time bestowing votives on deities of the neighbourhood and focusing on household religion. While occasionally a cultic centre attracted individuals to a specific neighbourhood, it was more common that worshippers created their own religious 'cityscapes' where they lived, including places of worship.