What is apotheosis?

What Does apotheosis Mean

Apotheosis is a term that derives from the Latin apotheōsis and that finds its most remote origin in a Greek word that can be translated as “deification” . The concept may refer to the granting of the dignity of the gods to heroes .

The apotheosis consisted, in the ancient world, of a ceremony that invested some mortal (such as an emperor or another monarch) with divine characteristics. This supposed that those virtuous men, after their death, rose to a category of the gods. It is important to note that in many cultures apotheosis was also practiced with the ruling figures, kings , queens, princes and princesses who were wished to remember for some type of memorable action carried out during their tenure.

The Greeks, for example, not only offered solemn and majestic funerals to the great men of their time, but also elevated them and rendered them divine honors through apotheosis.
Beginning and end of the rituals of apotheosis
These types of ceremonies have their origin in Ancient Greece and have been inherited by other cultures, such as the Roman. However in the case of the Greeks the deity to the hero was granted through an oracle , while the Romans did it through a decree of the Senate.
In turn, there was an extreme relationship between the adored figures and the constellations; to such an extent that it was believed that when one of them died it would occupy a place in the sky. When Julius Caesar died, for example, a paradoxical event took place; at the time he was killed a new comet was circulating in the sky, the stella crinita. This further strengthened the people's belief in the deity of this man who had been taken from them. The faith of the people was affirmed by the evidences and the apotheosis acquired an irrevocable force. Starting with Caesar, the rest of the emperors who succeeded him were automatically placed on a pedestal , considered gods to the people .
When Christianity is established and has a large number of followers, the divinity of these public figures is questioned; suddenly it seemed as if the people stopped believing that human creatures with supernatural powers could exist . However, what happened was that power and respect began to be deposited with bishops and saints and no longer with those who ruled the regions.

Current meanings of the term
The notion, nowadays and by extension of this classical meaning, is used to name the exaggerated exaggeration or flattery of a person : “The apotheosis of the singer in his native land became evident from the last series of concerts he gave in the local theater ” , “ The truth is that I have my feet on the ground and I do not believe in any apotheosis, beyond the good intentions of the people ” , “ Some officials celebrate the apotheosis of their superiors with the intention of achieving a promotion ” .
It is worth mentioning that today the term apotheosis is used to refer to a manifestation of great enthusiasm that takes place at some point in an event, a celebration or other type of collective act. We leave you two representative examples of this last case: "With the striker's last goal, the apotheosis came" , "The audience shouted and applauded in the midst of the apotheosis .

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