Photo by O. Louis Mazzatenta

Two rearing lions flank a statue of the mother-goddess Matar, also referred to as Kybele, in the alcove of the sanctuary at Arslankaya, not far from Gordion. The facade of the temple is decorated with geometric designs similar to those on the serving stands found in the Midas Mound. Matar/Kybele was probably the central deity of the Phrygian cult; she is depicted in large reliefs in temples as well as in smaller sculptures, where she is generally shown holding a cup to her mouth. According to classical sources, the cult of Kybele was associated with orgiastic rituals accompanied by a kind of musical harmony known specifically as “Phrygian.”