Från kraftprov till systembejakande talmagi. Jubileer i antiken


  • Anne-Marie Leander Touati
  • Lovisa Brännstedt
  • Henrik Gerding


This paper highlights and discusses the concept of the jubilee in Antiquity through a series of case studies. The ancient jubilee is defined as a temporally based, and often recurring, communal celebration, which encompasses longer time spans, from ten to a thousand years. The examples elaborated on by the present authors are: the Jewish Yovel, the Egyptian Heb-Sed and the Roman decennalia (Leander Touati); the Augustan secular games (Brännstedt); and the celebration of the founding of Rome (Gerding). With one noticeable exception, the Augustan secular games, the sources rarely give us a complete and detailed picture of the celebrations. Still a number of common characteristic traits can be outlined: utopian ideas, unification, ceremonial display, celebration of power and prosperity and the confirmation of social and political structures.