Greece eyes UNESCO cultural heritage listing for Ancient Greek land custom

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The Greek Ministry of Culture has submitted a request for the ancient Greek custom of ‘Polysporia’ to be part of UNESCO’s Intangible Cultural Heritage list, the ministry said in a statement.

The ancient custom was practiced across many parts of Greece until the very late 19th century, with the last traces to be found at the Church of Panagia Mesosporitissa in Elefsina.

The custom is believed to demonstrate how early Christians continued to worship the ancient gods by associating the Virgin Mary with Demeter, goddess of the harvest and agriculture.

It involves outdoor prayers and the distribution of a meal rich in boiled grains, beans and seeds.

Today, the custom is a field of common expression for all who inhabit Elefsina and contributes to the preservation of the city’s memory and its social cohesion.

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