ABSTRACT

A holy man’s reputation did not need to end with his death. His departure created a vacuum which others might feel obliged to fill. How and why should he become a saint, a hero, or a cult-figure? Lucian had no doubts about one case: he ‘foresaw’ in the case of Peregrinus an oracular shrine at the site of the pyre, with Peregrinus himself as a daimon and a healer, and priests and their accoutre­ ments, with a nocturnal mystery and dadouchia.1 Of course he selects details which bring in references to fire; but he was not so far wrong. Peregrinus’ native Parium did in due course boast a statue of him which gave oracles;2 the holy man’s status had been enhanced, and quite predictably so.