ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Necromanteion or the oracle of the dead in Greece

Updated on July 25, 2014
Jim Traveler profile image

Jim is a traveler, a blogger, a free journalist. A man who loves to travel, to write about the places he loves, about the people he met.

What is Necromanteion?

The Necromanteion was one of the places of ancient Greece where pilgrims came to talk to the dead or to their beloved ones who had passed away. The temple is also known as the oracle where our world was connected to Hades, the underworld, where the souls of the dead where taken by the boat-man Acheron to the other world. And it was not a nice place to stay.

Calling the dead and the whole ceremony while calling the dead in the Necromanteion, which lies now 20 km near Parga, had a name : nekiya, which means the ritual when living people called the dead to ask them about the future. The Oracle of the dead in Greece, Parga was, thus, a temple. Oddysseus, the great greek hero came here to ask what he should do in order to return home where his wife, Penelope, was still waiting for him after the war of Troy and after wandering over the seas for more than nine long years. And not only him. Achiles also was brought here by his mother while going to the River Styxx, only a few km nearby the Necromanteion.

Picture of the Necromanteion

Necromanteion, the oldest oracle of the dead in Greece.
Necromanteion, the oldest oracle of the dead in Greece. | Source



get directions

The Necromanteion can be visited in Greece, near the city of Parga.

How one could talk to the dead?

According to Herodotus, the Necromanteion was the most important oracle among the others in ancient Greece.
It was here where even the great kings came to ask about their dead ancestors and talk to them. Now we have mediums who help the ones who believe that they can really talk to their fathers, mothers or other close persons.

In that time and we are talking about the 1st century BC, the Necromanteion was a kind of theatre, were the celebrants who wanted to speak to the dead had to face many challenges : after local, strange narcotics, they were led to some corridors, had to answer questions and leave offerings from time to time. At the ending of this initiation, a priest appeared, apparentely from nowhere and spoke about the dead. Achiles(we know him from the Troy's Brad Pitt), Agamemnon and all the other great heroes in Greek mythology came here to find what the gods or the underworld ghosts were planning for them.

View to the Necromanteion, the oracle of the dead in Greece
View to the Necromanteion, the oracle of the dead in Greece | Source

When did the oracle stopped talking...

After hundred maybe thousands of years when the Greeks have come and talk to their dead, Necromanteion or the oracle of the dead was destroyed.

It is interesting that while the pilgrim passed through corridors and gates or the Oracle of the Dead he was asked questions by the holly guide and he found answers to his questions only at the end of this journey. The Necromanteion was not the only oracle of this kind in Greece or, later, in the Roman Empire. We find such temples also in a cave at Cape Matapan, in southern Greece, where the Spartans built another home of Hades or in Heraklea Pontica in nowadays Turkey, known as the modern city of Karadeniz Eregli, at the Black Sea. Necromanteion is the oldest oracle in Greece.

Necromanteion was burnt and destroyed by the Romans while their expansion in 167 BC. It was described by Homer in the 8th century BC, by Herodotus in the 5th century BC and was discovered and excavated in 1955.


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)