According to an expression of Greek Theology, Koryvantes are Gods before the Olympian Gods. They are mentioned as the Gods of the wild mountainside, inventors of the rustic arts of metalworking, shepherding, hunting, archery, bow-making and beekeeping. They were the first who taught the human race hunting for food, husbandries agriculture metallurgy and dancing. They were also the first armed God-warriors and Gods of an orgiastic war dance performed to protect the infant God Zeus in a cave on Mount Ida in Krete.

«When Godess Rhea came to city Lyctos of Crete, at the cave of mount Idi to give birth to Zeus (the father of all Gods and humans), Koryvantes – Kourites helped Rhea to give birth by holding her fingers. For this they hold the name Idei Daktyloi (Fingers). In order to keep Zeus safely hidden from his father, the Titan Kronos, they drowned out his cries with a frenzied dance of clashing their spears and shields. Koryvantes are mentione by many myths, sometimes as three sometimes as ten Gods.»

M20.1Drakon (1)

Colhis Dracon – Koryvantas (Photo: theoi.com)

Greek theology always presents the Koryvantes Gods as protecting something, such as how they protected Zeus after his birth, how they were protecting Knowledge: Goddess Athena killed one of the Koryvantes to steal the Knowledge, or how they were protecting the Golden Fleece in Colhis: Jason killed one of the Koryvantes to steal it.

Koryvantes are presented either as naked armed young warriors or as dracons (Orphic Hymns to Koryvantes «θηρότυπον θέμενος μορφὴν δνοφεροῖο δράκοντος«) – we can assume that modern religion of Asian dragons and Koryvantes dracon religion may have common ground


Oprhic Hymn to Coryvas

Κορύβαντος, ϑυµίαµα λίβανον

Κικλήσκω χѳονὸς ἀενάου βασιλῆα μέγιστον,
Κύρβαντ’ ὀλβιόμοιρον, Ἀρήιον, ἀπροσόρατον,
νυκτερινὸν Κουρῆτα, φόβων ἀποπαύστορα δεινῶν,
φαντασιῶν ἐπαρωγόν, ἐρημοπλάνον Κορύβαντα,
αἰολόμορφον ἄνακτα, ѳεὸν διφυῆ, πολύμορφον,
φοίνιον, αἱμαχѳέντα κασιγνήτων ὑπὸ δισσῶν,
∆ηοῦς ὃς γνώμαισιν ἐνήλλαξας δέμας ἁγνόν,
ѳηρότυπον ѳέμενος μορφὴν δνοφεροῖο δράκοντος∙
κλῦѳι, μάκαρ, φωνῶν, χαλεπὴν δ’ ἀποπέμπεο μῆνιν,
παύων φαντασίας, ѱυχῆς ἐκπλήκτου ἀνάγκας.

To Coryvas, The Fumigation from Frankincense

The mighty ruler of this earthly ball, for ever flowing, to these rites I call;

Martial and blest, unseen by mortal sight, preventing fears,and pleas’d with gloomy night;

Hence, fancy’s terrors are by thee allay’d, all-various king, who lov’st the desart shade;

Each of thy brothers killing, blood is thine, two-fold Kurete, many-form’d, divine.

By thee transmuted Deo’s body pure, became a dragon’s savage and obscure: Avert thy anger, hear me when I pray, and by fix’d fate, drive fancy’s fears away.


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