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Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature
(from ἄνθος, a flower, and φέρω, to carry away), an ancient festival celebrated in Sicily in honor of the heathen goddess Proserpine (or Persephone), in commemoration of her return to her mother in the spring, after having been carried away by Pluto; accordingly, it is a flower festival. Festivals of the same kind were held in honor of other deities, on which occasions maidens walked in processions carrying baskets filled with flowers, while a tune called Hierakion was played on the flute.
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McClintock, John. Strong, James. Entry for 'Anthesphoria'. Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature. https://www.studylight.org/encyclopedias/eng/tce/a/anthesphoria.html. Harper & Brothers. New York. 1870.