Honestly, I don’t know why the following individual hasn’t been made a Sanctus before now, but alas, sometimes such things fall through the cracks…Whether he will be depends to a degree on the thoughts of people in the Ekklesía Antínoou on such matters, but because Sannion has dedicated several posts yesterday and today to this purpose, I thought I had better get in on the action as well, no matter how late or humble my efforts toward such might be.
There are many good reasons to suggest him as a Sanctus, including his devotion to Dionysos, his popularity amongst the people, his having had lovers both male and female, his connection to the Ptolemies and to Kleopatra VII in particular (perhaps she, too, should be added to the Sanctae?–if Elizabeth Taylor is, why not her as well?), his representation of the last vestiges of the Roman Republic, his having been a Lupercus, and his continuing influence on Roman life and politics after his death all suggest themselves as good reasons. I don’t think we should hold against him that Octavian/Augustus, the first bearer of the Numen Augusti, didn’t end up getting along with him later in the Second Triumvirate and basically brought about his death…even though we worship several Emperors here, I don’t think he was necessarily “hateful” toward that institution (since it didn’t exist before his death!), nor are many holders of that office (including some of his descendants!) averse to him as much as the first Princeps and Imperator was. So…arguments for and against are happily entertained here in the comments.
And, don’t you think in the bust below, he sort of looks like he could be Antinous’ uncle? Maybe not…but, sort of…!?!
Not for him was it to die in battle,
struck down by some random sling or sword.
Not for him was it to die at sea,
drowned when a ship went afoul of Poseidon.
Not for him was it to die of sickness,
for Apollon’s arrows would never reach him.
Not for him was it to die of old age,
for he was full of vigor to his dying day.
Instead, the most able hand in all the continents
of Asia, Europa, and Africa took him down,
the worthiest hand, anointed by the Gods of Egypt,
drowned in the wine-cask of great Dionysos,
the most skillful hand, kissed by a goddess
upon the earth–the last Isis of the Ptolemies–,
the strongest hand, that could look Hades in the eyes
and not tremble nor falter in its purpose.
And, just because I thought it was an awesome, and even erotic, scene, here’s one of my favorite portrayals of the death of Mark Anthony, from the HBO series Rome‘s second season’s final episode. (And I know, not everyone likes this portrayal…but I do, and this is my blog, so there!)