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Asclepieion

From Academic Kids

In ancient Greece, an asclepieion was a healing temple, sacred to the god Asclepius.

Alternative spelling: asklepieion

Starting about 300 BC, the cult of Asclepius grew very popular. His healing temples were called asclepieion; pilgrims flocked to them to be healed. They slept overnight and reported their dreams to a priest the following day. He prescribed a cure, often a visit to the baths or a gymnasium. Since snakes were sacred to Asclepius, they were often used in healing rituals. Non-poisonous snakes were left to crawl on the floor in dormitories like an asclepieion, where the sick and injured slept.

Hippocrates may have begun his medical career at an asclepieion.

The oldest known asclepieion was at Trikke (now known as Trikala) in Thessaly.

Pausanias remarked that, at the asclepieion of Titane in Sikyonia (founded by Alexanor, Asclepius' grandson), statues of Hygieia were covered by women's hair and pieces of Babylonian clothes. According to inscriptions, the same sacrifices were offered at Paros.

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