Phallus, an image of the penis, often as erect, to be found in various contexts, in particular (a) in certain rituals associated with fertility, notably Dionysiac *processions (see dionysus): see e.g. Ar. Ach.243 on the Attic rural Dionysia (see attic cults and myths), *Semos in Ath. 622b-c on groups of ‘ithyphallics’ and ‘phallus-bearers’, *Varro in Aug. Civ. 7. 21 ‘for the success of seeds’ at the Liberalia (see liber pater);(b) as a sacred object revealed in the Dionysiac *mysteries, as in the Villa of the Mysteries fresco at *Pompeii; *Iamblichus (2) (Myst. 1. 11) mentions it as a symbol of secret doctrine;(c) in the costume of comedy (see comedy (greek), old), *satyric drama, and various low theatrical genres; *Aristotle (Poet. 1449a11) says that comedy originated in phallic songs;(d) on permanent display, often as part of a statue such as those of *Priapus or the *herms identified with *Hermes;(e) as apotropaic: e.
The Greek temple was the house of the god, whose image it contained, usually placed so that at the annual festival it could watch through the open door the burning of the sacrifice at the altar which stood outside (see statues, cult of). It was not a congregational building, the worshippers instead gathering round the altar in the open air, where they would be given the meat of the victims to consume (see sacrifice, greek). *Orientation was generally towards the east, and often towards that point on the skyline where (allowing for the vagaries of ancient Greek calendars) the sun rose on the day of the festival. The temple also served as a repository for the property of the god, especially the more valuable possessions of gold and silver *plate (see votive offerings).The core of the temple is the cella, a rectangular room whose side walls are prolonged beyond one end to form a porch, either with columns between them (in antis) or in a row across the front (prostyle). More prestigious temples surround this with an external colonnade (and are described as peripteral). They generally duplicate the porch with a corresponding prolongation of the walls at the rear of the cella, without, however, making another doorway into the cella (the opisthodomus, or false porch).