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Bible Encyclopedias

Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature


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(ςΑβαρις ), in Greek legend, was

(1) a priest of Apollo, whom the latter presented with a golden arrow, by which he was able to fly around the earth. It is related of him (Herod. 4:36) that he came from the Hyperboreans, about the time of Croesus, to Greece in order to deliver that country from a frightful plague. He built a temple to Proserpina at Sparta (Strabo, 8, 301; Pausan. iii, 13, 2). He is said by Iamblicus, in his Life of Pythagoras, to have performed wonders by means of an arrow which he had received from Apollo. Brucker relates that, in the time of a general plague, Abaris was sent by the Scythians on an embassy to the Athenians. This plague happened in the third Olympiad. There seems little reason to doubt that Abaris went from place to place imposing upon the vulgar by false pretensions to supernatural powers. He passed through Greece, Italy, and many other countries, giving forth oracular predictions, pretending to heal diseases by incantation, and practicing other acts of imposture. Some of the later Platonists, in their zeal against Christianity, collected the many fabulous tales reported of Abaris, and exhibited them in opposition to the miracles of Christ.

(2.) A table companion or a friend of king Turnus.

(3.) An inhabitant of Caucasus who was slain by the hand of Perseus on the occasion of his marriage with Andromeda. See Smith, Dict. of Class. Biog. and Mythol. s.v.

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Bibliography Information
McClintock, John. Strong, James. Entry for 'Abaris'. Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature. Harper & Brothers. New York. 1870.

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