2. Asking Questions: Dionysios and Kittos

In this film we find about the question that Dionysios wants to ask the oracle–but not from Dionysios… And Kittos also reveals that he wants to ask a question…

For an immersive experience follow these viewing instructions. More information about the historical background of the scene can be found below.

The oracle question that Dionysios wants to ask is based on a question that was asked at Dodona by a man called Lysanias. The evidence shows that Lysanias was not the only man to ask such a question:

Lysanias asks Zeus Naos and Dione whether the child with which Annyla is pregnant

is not from him?

Kittos’ question dates to 350 BCE and asks:

Will Kittos get the freedom from Dionysios that Dionysios promised him?

Discussion Questions:

  1. Archephon’s question is about the future; but Dionysios’s question is about the present. What does this indicate about the role of oracles in daily life?
  2. Kittos wants to ask the oracle about his chance of freedom. What kind of life did a slave have, and what kind of future could he look forward to? Are you surprised to find a slave asking a question at an oracle like this?

Film Credits:

Dionysios: David Jones

Kittos: Talhah Nesar

Archephon: Henry Fuller

Priestess 1: Aniqah Rawat

Priestess 2: Eleanor Fulford

Scripted by: Riley Nicholas with Esther Eidinow

Directed by: Jimmy Hay

Filmed and edited by: Daisy Dai, Liping Pan (Orange Vision Productions)

Produced by: Kirsten Cater, Esther Eidinow, Jimmy Hay, David Jones, Talhah Nesar

From an idea by Esther Eidinow. Funded by The Leverhulme Trust.

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