Ares Enyalios, Brazen god of the spear, Rallier of men to battle,
We offer unto you our victories at the end of this season that you have ensured
And for your glory offer many more to come with the next.
Drive us, oh Obrimos, that we may accept only victory in the company of your companions,
That we may accept victory or death and nothing more
Victory from Golden Aphrodite
Victory from Deimos
Victory from Phobos
Victory from Agon
Victory from Harmonia
Let men sing your praises from the gore of the fallen
Let men sing your praises from the high walls of their homes
Let us dance as the Spartoi for your amusement
As you have brought us victory in war, we pray you bring us strength in peace
Let us bear strong and sharp children
Let us bear order upon our disordered land
Let us exchange arms for the labors of the field;
Encourage peace, to gentle works inclined,
And give abundance, with benignant mind.
Festivals to Ares, though rare in Greece, occurred during autumn, as Ares was said to rule during the time of Scorpio. In addition, the Spartan and Macedonian New Year would fall in October, which is the end of the year’s campaign season. This is a most fitting time to sacrifice to Ares. Ares’ festivals were often attended by either sex, but not together- men and women sacrificed to Ares separately. It was more common for men to sacrifice to Ares, but there was a women’s only festival celebrating the victory of the women of Tegea over Spartan invasion.
Incorporated in the above prayer are many allusions to the cult and poetic titles of Ares, which highlight both his violent and non-violent natures, for he was worshipped as both a war-like god and a giver of order and bounty. Ares was often worshipped alongside Aphrodite. The last four lines of the poem come from the Orphic Hymn to Ares, which I included in my poem to highlight the style which is common to Aresian poetry and literature- a supplication to the god for peace, for that is the ultimate goal and reward of war.