The Month of Boedromion - A Hellenistic Lunar Calendar By Lilliana Blackstar
The ancient people of Greece and Athens lived by a Lunar Calendar - counting the first day of a month to be the first day that the New Moon is visible in the night sky. The New Moon in Virgo happens on the evening of September 6th, So I have calculated that this Hellenistic Lunar Month begins on September 7th 2021. (This calculation might be different depending on region - this is my own personal calculation for North America)
Boedromion was the Lunar Month sacred to Hestia and Apollo. It was also considered to be the First Month of the year to ancient Athens - so Happy Hellenic New Year! The seventh (7th) day of Boedromion was a Sacred Feast Day of Apollo; Boedromia. The Full Moon of the month of Boedromion is considered a Sacred Day of Hestia (Vesta). Boedromion 15 through 21 included the sacred pilgrimage and festival of the Eleusinian Mysteries to honor Demeter and Persephone! Below I have outlined some of the sacred Feast Days of this month so you can participate in your own way if you choose.
Boedromion 1 (Sept 7) - Noumenia “Noumenia” is the New Moon, and the first day of the month. It was generally a time to honor Hestia and Zeus, along with any primary Deities of the household or family. Offerings were made to Hestia (Vesta) and the Home was cleansed and blessed for the new month. Prayers and offerings were also made to Zeus for good fortune, and each family or household may have had other deities that they prayed to and made offerings to at Noumenia. * note* The people of Ancient Athens would have considered Noumenia to begin the first night that the Waxing Crescent moon is visible in the sky. While the New Moon in Virgo actually takes place on September 6th, I have placed the Noumenia on the 7th for this reason. Also keep in mind that the Ancient Romans and Greeks considered the day to begin at sunset . . . so Noumenia actually begins when the sun sets on September 7th, and lasts until sunset on the 8th. Hellenistic New Year (Boedrmion 1 / Sept 7 2021). The New Moon before the Fall Equinox was considered the beginning of the New Year! Therefore with this Lunar Calendar, the night of September 7 / Boedromion 1 is the first day of the year. The New Moon that occurs before the Fall Equinox will be a time when both Moon and Sun are in the sign of Virgo - the Virgin. Hestia is a Virgin Goddess who was honored "First and Last" - it was customary to give offerings to Hestia at the beginning of every month and every year - thus this month is sacred to Hestia.
Boedromion 2 (Sept 8) - Niketeria The second day of the month was a time to honor Agathos Daimon - the benevolent Household Spirit. Ancient Greeks believed that each household had it’s own Daimon (Spirit) and it would be amiss to not honor these spirits at the start of each month. Other Deities of House and Home may also have been honored at this time. Niketeria was an annual day to celebrate and honor the Goddess Nike - held yearly on the second day of Boedromion.
Boedromion 3 (Sept 9) The third day of every month was considered sacred to Athena. Offerings and prayers to Athena were appropriate, and it may have also been a day that artisans and shopkeepers would open their shops again to sell their goods or be hired, or other civic duties were tended to.
Boedromion 4 (Sept 10) The fourth day of every month was a day sacred to Aphrodite, Eros, and Hermes. Offerings and Prayers were made to these Deities on the 4th day of each month.
Boedromion 5 (Sept 11) - Genesia This was an annual Feast Day to honor the Dead and ancestors - particularly deceased parents and grandparents. Visit the graves of ancestors or make libations to them, or honor them at your ancestors altar. Remember the dead by telling stories about them and sharing a feast in their honor.
Boedromion 6 (Sept 12) - Artemis Agrotera The sixth day of every month was a day sacred to Artemis. Prayers and Offerings were made to Artemis at this time. The sixth day of the month of Boedromion was a special feast day in honor of Artemis The Huntress; making offerings to Artemis in praise of her skills as a hunter and warrior.
Boedromion 7 (Sept 13) - Boedromia The seventh day of every month was a day sacred to Apollo; prayers and offerings would be made in his name. As Boedromion is a time of harvest with a Solar Equinox fast approaching, this is a day of additional Feasting and Celebration to honor Apollo.
Boedromion 8 (Sept 14) The 8th day of every month was a day to honor and pray to Poseidon.
Boedromion 9 (Sept 15) The 9th day of every month was a day to honor Rhea (Gaia) and The Muses as well as Demeter.
Boedromion 12 (Sept 18) - Demokratia An annual celebration in which the ancient Athenians celebrated democracy. Offerings were made to Zeus and Athena, as well as to Themis - a Titan Goddess of Divine Law. An appropriate way to celebrate Demokratia in modern times would be to make offerings to Zeus, Athena, and Themis with gratitude for your democratic freedoms and pray for a just and fair democratic system to prevail. Update your voter registration and look into volunteering or donating to a campaign you support as a form of offering.
Boedromion 14 (Sept 20) - Full Moon The Full Moon during the month of Boedromion was considered sacred to Hestia (Vesta). Every full moon of the year is sacred to a different Deity, but as this is the first Full moon of the year - it is Hestia's full moon.
Boedromion 15 - 21 (Sept 21 - 27) Eleusinia ta megala - The Eleusinian Mysteries A Week-long festival and initiation to a Mystery cult of Demeter was held annually at the city of Eleusis outside of Athens. You can take time this week to honor the Descent of Persephone and the grief of Demeter, and make offerings and prayers to them as you wish. (There is a modern re-creation of the Eleusinian Mysteries held by the Aquarian Tabernacle Church of Wicca. However, it is held around the time of the Spring Equinox every year. Check out Spring Mysteries Festival at www.atcwicca.org to learn more!)
Boedromion 16 (Sept 22) - The Fall Equinox (Northern Hemisphere) the Mysteries of Persephone's descent and Demeter's mourning are celebrated at the Fall Equinox.
Boedromion 19 (Sept 25) Not a traditional Greek Holiday but I'm making note of it because - On September 25 The Ever Green Hearth will be holding our Annual Mabon Ritual. This is our yearly celebration of The Fall Equinox and it will be held online! It is free and open to the public. We will be journeying to the Underworld to meet with Persephone and Hades. Check the Events section and our Facebook page for details!
Boedromion 29 (Oct 5) - Hekate’s Deipnon The last day of the month, the Dark Moon before the New Moon is the day sacred to Hekate. I find the time of the Dark Moon to be a great time to work with Hekate through Meditation and Divination. The Ancient Athenians also honored Hekate by leaving food for the poor at crossroads - you can put a modern twist on this by making a monthly donation to a local food pantry or shelter.
I hope you have a wonderful Boedromion and that this calendar gives you some inspiration to connect with the season and honor the Gods!
Resources - https://www.hellenion.org/
https://sites.google.com/site/sophialinus/Home/links/lunarcalendarlinks/helleniccalendar/boedromion https://baringtheaegis.blogspot.com/2013/09/the-festivals-of-early-boedromion.html https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Boedromia
Lilliana Blackstar is an active member and Dedicant of the Ever Green Hearth. They are also a Senior at Woolston Steen Theological Seminary, and an Astrologer at www.hestiasmuse.net. Check out the Lunar Monthly Guidance through their Patreon blog at www.patreon.com/hestiasmuse