The initiatory character of Greek folk songs, especially of the ballads (paraloges), is an extended and spread out phenomenon. This study deals with songs that are of an initiatory nature par excellence, and in which one finds traces of main initiatory myths, such as the myth of the struggle with the monster, the myth of the heroic and initially victorious struggle with numerous enemies, the fury for war, the swallowing by the monster and the related theme of sinking into the sea, or of myths concerning the adolescent and marital initiation, perilous journeys and crossings, initiatory teaching, as well as the myth of the temporary initiatory death, shared by most of the songs.
For research purposes the folk song material under consideration has been organized in two different categories. The first one regards the ritual songs and the mythical (heroic or non-heroic) ballads that are dedicated to a main initiatory incident, which is examined separately, along with the various songs dedicated to it. The second group refers to the composite ballads containing multiple traces of various initiatory myths and incidents, which are examined thematically.
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