Soteira, savior of ships: Mediterranean identity in the hellenistic period

Eleonora Bedin, Gil Gambash

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Was there such a thing as a Mediterranean identity in antiquity? And if so, how are we to define it? This article addresses these questions, focusing on maritime-based religious associations within Mediterranean societies and how these associations developed over time. Through an examination of the maritime, climatic, and geographical aspects of the human experience during the Hellenistic period, it is possible to evaluate the nature of Mediterranean deities and their common features across boundary lines of locality, nationality, ethnicity, and culture. The emerging picture suggests that the cross-cultural dimension of Mediterranean deities allows for the existence of a superordinate identity that may best be described as Mediterranean.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)89-119
Number of pages31
JournalMediterranean Studies
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1 Nov 2021

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021 The Pennsylvania State University, University Park, PA.


  • Epigraphy
  • Hellenism
  • Identity
  • Maritime deities
  • Maritime religions
  • Mediterranean
  • Syncretism

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cultural Studies
  • General Arts and Humanities
  • Sociology and Political Science


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