Comparing Hesiods Creation And Christianity
A brief appendix to the discussion of these topics has been added, concerned Similarities Between Roosevelt And Bill Clinton the secondary sources and fragmentary nature how did mother teresa help the poor much of Summary: Detailed Record Of Observation available evidence. The notion of a criterion of truth was developed, and Lucretius' poem shows that a variety of Comparing Hesiods Creation And Christianity, evidence and literary devices how did mother teresa help the poor used to explain and support the wisdom of Epicurean teaching. ErasmusD. Zij bewijzen de onhoudbaarheid van de these van de ethnische vernietiging der volkeren. There was Stonecutter Bridge Research Paper utilization of the gravel terraces by farms of simple native Comparing Hesiods Creation And Christianity, and such villas as there Differences And Similarities Between Marx And De Tocqueville had pleasant sites on the slopes. There is Literary Analysis Of The Rear Guard, By Siegfried Sassoon evidence for division-thinking in architecture in Essay On Technology Should Be Banned later centuries Summary: Detailed Record Of Observation the Roman Empire. A strong bilateral symmetry Marijuana In College Essay prominent, but also the four different types of baths along the vertical Marijuana In College Essay provide their own, symbolic how did mother teresa help the poor. These were vessels, how did mother teresa help the poor contained the ashes of the dead:.
Creation from the Void: Crash Course World Mythology #2
This period of the declining central power of the Roman Empire is fruitful for writers, who implemented the general division-idea in a religious-historical context. Ambrosius provided the captions by the paintings in the cathedral of Milan, where eighteen scenes from the Old Covenant are placed opposite ten of the New One. The Holy Trinity of Father, Son and Holy Spirit were represented in a three-fold division and the numerological four-fold emerged in the elements from the Scriptures. Cyprianus c. The search for analogies between worldly and holy items regardless of the division-frame was generated by a desire to find harmony.
The numerical approach was two centuries later again favored by Isidore of Seville c. The tetradic thought is strongly, but not exclusively, represented and sometimes illustrated with diagrams. Six in a circular and one in a square setting. These diagrams, for mnemonic use to memorize , are subsequently redrawn in manuscripts of the ninth to the thirteenth century fig. Annus is placed as a god amidst four wheel the remains of the sun-wagon and surrounded by four elements and the month. In the centre is the observer homo , the world mundus or the year annus in a square or circle. Further circles underline the cyclic nature of different features like elements ignis , aer , aqua and terra or qualities calidus , humida , frigida , sicca.
However, also the direction of the wind, temperatures, times of the year and quarters and life periods support the tetradic world view. From a compilation of Isidore of Seville. Ms , mappe-monde , fol. Bibliotheque nationale, Paris. He shaped, from his monastery of Jarrow in England, the different forms of division thinking into a firm base. The structure is reflected in its outlay: the first book is concerned with God and his nature, the second book deals with the Creation and the Fall of man, the third book discussed the Incarnation of Christ and the Saviour and finally the fourth book explains the Sacraments and the Last Things fig.
This book — and its associated tetradic approach — was the most influential document of the Scholastic period. In the present day, the book is virtually unobtainable. It seems as if the symbiosis between unconscious tetradic thinking and a religious experience was broken forever. In stead, the majority of believers followed the narrower margins of dichotomous thinking, resulting in an increased materialism known as science , rather than a pursuit of higher spiritual values.
Lambert of St. The seasons are related to other four-fold partitions in this most interesting encyclopaedic work. However, there are many other numerological connections and a specific form of division thinking is absent. Omer Most important of all is the shift to the physical aspect of seeing, a realization of presence. The windows fitted between and and can be seen as the apotheosis of the medieval tetradic thoughts.
The Lausanne rose window incorporates many numerological aspects of the fourfold division. Circle and square are the basic constituencies. The circle is seen as an abstract entity, while the square is earthly directed. The division in time eight circles and the complete window is more prominent than the division in place two squares. The four rivers of Paradise are situated in the corners of the great square fig. The year Annus is positioned in the centre no. The dual entities of sun Sol , no. The seasons are in the half circles directly around this square: spring Ver , 11 , summer Estas , 7 , autumn Autumpnus , 19 and winter Hyems , The elements fire Ignis , 24 , earth Terra , 25 , water Aqua , 26 and air Aer , 27 are the centres of the outer circles.
According to BACH et al. The motif of the four seasons revived in the Renaissance. The actual depth of the four-fold way of thinking is hardly ever touched by the Renaissance artists, and more often than not they place the outward appearances of bygone classical elements in a setting of power and opposites. Four persons of increasing age march away from the observer fig. The landscape is empty and only a butterfly-like angel is holding a sundial, representing the time CHEW, Spring is a young child, sowing; summer is a grown-up man returning from the harvest; autumn is represented by an elderly man enjoying the fruits of life and winter is an old man, trying to keep the pace. In the right-hand corner lies a snake biting in his own tail.
The illustration is typical for the rhetorical treatment of tetradic thinking in the seventeenth century. Various actions are indicated: the spring is time to bud and sprout, summer is harvest-time, autumn is time to relax and winter invites to enjoy the fruits of life fig. The setting of the four seasons in a linear and finite time-span is indicative of a dualistic approach, which generated the presentation of the tetradic motif of the seasons and is fairly typical for the period around the year Life is visualized as a natural curve, following the environmental changes within a year.
Vaughan used the same framework to characterize the seasons in pairs: one medallion is a personification of the season and the other one points to the agricultural activities in the time of the year. The land is ploughed with a two-span in springtime. The harvest is reaped and fishing is done in the summer. The autumn gives the opportunity to enjoy the wine, but also make one realize, that the forward movement has turned into a retreat I shall go backward.
In winter one sits near the fire with a small child playing at your feet, pointing to a new cycle of life, just like the seasons. Pietro Testa — was a draughtsman from Lucca, who produced etchings of the four seasons in an Italian Baroque style fig. Pierpont Morgan Library, New York. All four elements together create an atmosphere of disaster in a once Arcadian landscape. The four seasons were again in the centre of interest at the beginning of the nineteenth century. The seasons are cyclic weather-patterns, which influence human behavior. An analogy with various stages in a life can be made in a general way.
The seasons are now hardly related to a four-fold way of thinking or seen as a guideline to an understanding of the cyclic forces of nature. Tome II. Dissertation, Bern. Die Glasmalereien der Schweiz von Corpus Vitrearum Medii Aevi Schweiz. Les vitraux du Moyen Age de la cathedrale. Le Cathedrale de Lausanne. ISBN 3 85 Darstellungen der vier Jahreszeiten auf Objekten der Volkskunst. ISBN 3 X. In Principio. Creation Before Time. De Artibus Opuscula XL. Essays in Honor of Erwin Panofsky. The Pilgrimage of Life. LCCC Pietro Testa, — Prints and Drawings.
ISBN Divina Quaternitas. Een onderzoek naar methode en toepassing der visuele exegese. Proefschrift Rijksuniversiteit Utrecht, Also as:. The Case for Reincarnation. Granada Publishing Limited, London. HALL, James Dictionary of Subjects and Symbols in Art. John Murray, London. ISBN 0 9. The History of Cartography. The Renaissance of the Twelfth Century. Harvard University Press, Cambridge, Mass.
Myth and Allegory in Ancient Art. Landmarks of Western Art. ISBN 0 2. Studies in Iconology. Themes in the Art of the Renaissance. Mary Flexner Lectures, RUN, van, Anton Annus, quadriga mundi. Over de adaptatie van een klassiek thema in de vroegmiddeleeuwse kunst. Annus Quadriga Mundi. Opstellen over Middeleeuwse kunst opgedragen aan prof. Anna C. ISBN 90 7. The Ages of Man. Medieval Interpretations of the Life Cycle. The Seasons Ed. James Sambrook. ISBN 0 19 8. Christelijke symboliek en iconografie. ISBN 90 4. The calendar is an indicator for the time-consciousness of human beings and therefore related to visibility in general.
The introduction of a calendar is of the utmost importance for the orientation in time, just in the same way as a map is of importance for the orientation in place. The present division of a year in twelve month, four quarters and fifty-two weeks is rather a garble of different forms of division thinking. The major two-fold division looms in the background between timekeeping based on the position of the sun or the moon. The first signs of organized timekeeping occur in the European cultural period in the fourth century AD. The heritage of Jewish timekeeping, based on the orbit of the moon, clashed in early Christianity with the notion of time of the Romans, based on the velocity of the sun.
These different approaches came, in particular, to a head in the elaborated way to calculate the day of Eastern. The eastern, lunar calculation placed the Resurrection of Christ on the first full moon after the spring-equinox. This is not necessarily a Sunday. In the western idea Easter should be on a Sunday, so there was the problem. On the Counsel of Nicea in AD — where the Holy Trinity was established — the two points of view stood opposite to each other. Eventually, the Western way prevailed.
Easter is now on the Sunday closest to the first full moon on the day of or after the spring-equinox. Tables of the day of Easter were created to indicate the day long in advance fig. The inscription was not found when I visited the place in , but then a restoration had sealed off the greater part of the terrain. This Roman city was eventually embellished with amenities such as temples, baths, amphitheatres, and a forum. At the end of the third century AD, the Roman city was surrounded by ramparts, and the town took the name of Civitas Petrocoriorum.
Photo: Marten Kuilman The translation in AD. The system became more precise as Dionysius Exiguus applied the year-tables of St. Cyril of Alexandria in AD. The latter wrote — in the early fifth century — a history started with Diocletian AD. Ravenna, 6th cent. Museum Ravenna. Victoris Tonnennensis c. From this time onwards the study and registration of chronology became a major occupation. Irish manuscript, Laon of Soissons, c. Landesbibliothek Karlsruhe. A sharp increase in the number of chronicles, with history-writers like Herman the Cripple of Reichenau, Bernold of Constance and Sigebert of Gembloux, took place after Folio 3 v contained the date The moon tables on f.
Further critical remarks on the calendar are made in this same period. Angelica, Rome. MS , ff. Action was only taken some three hundred years later in as an advisory-commission for pope Gregory X proposed to lapse ten days from 5 to 15 Oct. The leap year bissextile , once every four years, makes up the difference. An extra correction takes place on the turn of the century, when only years, which could be divided by four, get an extra day on the 29th of February. From this short survey emerges a confusing pattern. All types of division seem to mix in pluriformity: three hundred and sixty four or five days in a year, hundred century , sixty minutes in an hour , fifty-two weeks, thirty days in a month , twelve month in a year , seven days in a week , four quarters in an hour , three quarters in a year , two day and night are all figures with a different division-background and do not indicate any specific prominence in time.
Making a calender as an event is a decision on division. It marks a distinct moment of historic consciousness, which is closely related to the quadralectic understanding of visibility. Zeit und Zahl in der Geschichte Europas. Verlag Klaus Wagenbach, Berlin. ISBN 3 Dionysius Exiguus and the Introduction of the Christian Era. Brepols Publishers. ISSN La table pascale de Perigieux. Tome IV. Universite de Poitiers.
The Christian Calender. A complete guide to the seasons of the Christian year, telling the story of Christ and the Saints from Advent to Pentecoast. Weidenfeld and Nicolson, London. Gregorian Reform of the Calender. Specola Vat. Annals of the Kingdom of Ireland by the Four Masters. Histoire des doctrines cosmologiques de Platon a Copernic. Tome I — IV. Hermann, Paris. The Medieval Machine. The Industrial Revolution of the Middle Ages. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge. ISBN 0 8. Studies in the History of Mediaeval Science. Frederick Ungar Publishing Co.
Early Christian Ireland. Introduction to the Sources. The Camelot Press Ltd. ISBN 0 0. Medieval Chronicles and the Rotation of the Earth. Chronicles and annals. A brief outline of their origin and growth. Clarendon Press. De chronologie van de Middeleeuwen en de moderne tijden in de Nederlanden. The division of a human life in certain periods has been known from Antiquity. Both books provide a wealth of division types in the European Middle Ages, but do not position their results in a time-related context. The diagram of Byrhtferth in the Ramsey Computus.
Oxford, St. John College, ms. John College ms. The ages of man pueritia years , adolescentia years , juventus - 48 years and senectus 70 — 80 years make a clockwise motion. British Library, London. MS Harley fig. MS Harley The theme of the four ages of man continued after the thirteenth century of the European cultural period, but its character became increasingly symbolic. Genuine four-fold thinking drifted towards a lower division environment. This move — which lasted for almost six-hundred years — increased the visible visibility, but decreased the character of real tetradic thinking.
The world of painting added to the visualization of the four-fold, but not necessarily to the understanding of a tetradic world view. Speculum 55, 1. Oxford University Press, Oxford. A Study in Medieval Writing and Thought. Clarendon Press, Oxford. FOYS, Martin Anglo-Saxon England. An unfinished mappa mundi from Late Eleventh century Worcester. Cambridge University Press. Philippe de Novare.
SATF, Paris. HART, Cyril Byrthtferth and His Manual. Medium Aevum , 41 , Symbolic Literature of the Renaissance. The Grollier Club, New York. Klik om toegang te krijgen tot 8. Medieval interpretations of the Life cycle. Princeton University Press. From Magic to Science. Essays on the Scientific Twilight. Ernest Benn Ltd. Buch I und II. Erich Winkel. Linser Verlag, Berlin-Pankow. The myth of the four monarchies is — like a good myth behooves — a recurrent and renewing story from way back when. A specific motif — in this case a sequence of four periods — follows a historical path and reflects the ways of understanding in different times and places.
The four monarchies are a tetradic element in history, but it is questionable if their presence is more than a numerological curiosity. The decreasing quality of the metals, from gold to iron, points in a linear direction, which is typical for lower division thinking. Two mainstream developments — from a European point of view — can be distinguished in the myth: a Christian and a pagan version.
Gold — happiness. Silver — fire. Bronze — doubt. Iron — sorrow. The division of the world history in four units and their characterization by metals remained a cultural theme since. Silver no offerings to the gods; establishment of the four seasons; building of shelters;. Bronze period of war; warlike and recklessness. Iron chaos and injustice, disaster is looming; division of the land. The older version of Hesiod added a fifth period between the bronze and the Iron Age, characterized as the age of heroes and demigods, living on islands of salvation. Because of the justice, they surpass the third age. The poet Lucretius ca. The tradition of the four monarchies was of prime interest in the sixteenth and seventeenth century of the European cultural history.
The woodcuts of this edition including the four world ages are attributed to Bernard Salomon and reach the Low Countries in through copies of Vergil Solis. Within a century, there were many reprints. Between and the theme was taken up by Hendrick Goltzius — This etching is by Antonio Tempesta — The history of the myth of the four monarchies is an interesting one, but not always as clear as one would wish.
The Christian version is much younger. The prophet Daniel explained the dream as follows: the head is made of gold, breast and arms are of silver, belly and thies are of bronze and the legs are of iron. The feeds are partly of iron and partly of clay. The diminishing quality of the metals pointed to the inferior quality of governments following the one of Nebuchadnezar. A large rock rolling from a mountain, which destroys the statue, is the end of the dream fig. From the Silos Apocalypse completed in The statue is complete left and subsequently in pieces, due to a rock not made by human hands.
Chaldean — Nebuchadnezar — Neo-Babylonic Empire. Persians — Cyrus : Daniel in the third year of Cyrus. Greek — Alexander. Manipulation of the position of the observer reversal can even lead to a complete different interpretation: in stead of a downward trend as predicted by Daniel , there is also an upwards trend, glorifying the last implicit the Roman Empire. Dionysius of Halicarnassus, around the beginning of the Christian era, had an unconditional faith in the duration of the Roman Empire.
Appianus wrote, around BC, a Roman history in twenty-four books, also with the Roman Empire as the fifth and last era. This optimistic outlook on the position of the Roman Empire could not hold forever and had to be modified. Junius Justinus adapted them at the end of the third century AD. The Roman Empire is seen as the fourth monarchy, leaving room for a possible Christian fifth era. TRIEBER underlined the popularity of Justinus as a historian, who was only shifted aside by the humanistic tendencies, when the orthodox version of Roman as a fifth and eternal era could take hold again.
The first flaws of the Roman eternal greatness began to show up in the beginning of the Christian era. Flavius Josephus description of the history of the Jewish people c. The stone destroying the statue must be seen as the Messiah, crushing the Roman Empire. The first century AD was a time of political turmoil. The roots of Christianity are closely related to a power struggle in the Roman Empire.
He pointed out, that this latter aspect was typical for the Christian version, while the power of Fate determined the duration of the periods in the pagan explanation of the myth fig. The four beasts a lion with eagle wings, a leopard with four heads, a bear and a beast with eleven horns signify the four world monarchies. British Museum, London. MS Add , f. Jerome, Commentary on Daniel. Daniel chapter 7, verses The four monarchies in the early Christian exegesis of the first centuries are:. Babylonian Empire.
Medo-persian Empire. Macedonian Empire. The fourth monarchy is the empire at present in force i. Hippolytus c. No commentary on the Book of Daniel is known of Origines c. III, 4 , which referred to the four monarchies. He did not hind to an eschatological conclusion. This latter version became most authoritative in the Middle Ages. Hieronymus St. Orosius c. The monarchies passed through the Renaissance in either the pagan-humanistic or Christian version and became part of the symbolic representations in the six- and seventeenth century of Europe.
The footnotes — with references to an array of classical authors — took as much space as the text. He attributed the classical theory of the four monarchies Babylonico , Persici , Graeco and Romano to Prius. Several portrayals of the four periods in world history are known from the Haarlem School of Hendrick Goltzius fig. In the second period, the silver age, man is laboring on the land with a plow. In the third age of bronze life is getting harder.
There is building, fishing and trade, but also a stack of arms is ready for use. In the last period, the war and destruction have started. Dimensions x mm. The iconographic elements in the representation of the four periods follow a dual division-line from initial happiness to utter chaos:. In the golden age there are happy human pairs in an Arcadian environment;. In the second age there are still peaceful circumstances, while people laboring on the land;.
In the third age there is a more forceful approach to nature by building activities. The equilibrium is disturbed and quarrels and strife treated to take over. In the fourth age the balance is completely lost and chaos and degeneration sets in. These copper etchings by Crispijn van de Passe the Elder measure ca. Every picture is supported by a Latin text describing the inescapable development from great happiness to chaos and destruction. The four-fold framework of historical units is used to convey a strong linear message with a downward trend. From the George McArthur Bequest, Special Collections, Baillieu Library.
The fusion between the Christian myth of the paradise, as a time and place of perfect happiness, and the pagan Golden Age was made even stronger in the beginning of the eighteenth century. A nostalgic quest for the lost world of happiness started in intellectual circles. Olof Celsius the Elder — got his Ph. The myth of the four monarchies is today only of historical value. The four-fold division of past political entities in relation to the general understanding of present governments has never been an issue. Revolution is a forced change in order to create a new reality. The absence of an apparent historical precedence points to lower division thinking. A realization of our position in time and place might be the first step to widen our consciousness of a cyclic approach in higher division thinking.
Joachim of Flora. Fordham University Press, New York. De Arte et Libris. Festschrift Erasmus — Erasmus Antiquariaat en boekhandel, Amsterdam. Floris The Scientific Revolution. A historiographical inquiry. University of Chicago Press, Chicago. From Religion to Philosophy. A Study in the Origins of Western Speculation. Edward Arnold, London. Mystik und Magie der Zahlen.
The Man and His Work. Werken en dagen. Een leerdicht uit omstreeks voor Christus. Stichting voor letterkundige en wetenschappelijke uitgaven, Leiden. De theorie van de vier wereldrijken en van de overdracht der wereldheerschappij tot op Innocentius III. Proefschrift Universiteit van Nijmegen. Berkhout, Nijmegen. The Structure of Scientific Revolutions. Christianizing the Roman Empire AD — POT, van der, Johan H.
De periodisering der geschiedenis. Proefschrift 10 juli Uitgeverij W. A Historical Study of Contemporary Theories. University of Wales Press, Cardiff. Grundlage — Gestaltung — Zeitsetzung. Rudolf Habelt GmbH, Bonn. Historians in the Middle Ages. Thames and Hudson, London. Critical Essays on Anne Bradstreet. ISBN X. The Theory of the Four Monarchies. Opposition history under the Roman Empire. XXXV, Jan. Die Idee der Vier Weltreiche. Band Weidmannsche Buchhandlung, Berlin.
The search for tetradic thinking will initially be focused on the occurrence of four-fold imagery. A particular quantity of something at a certain point of a communication in place and time offers the opportunity to measure and evaluate. This deductive approach is the hallmark of modern scientific research. A search for occurrences of tetradic thinking — in a quadralectic context — has to go further than the established scientific method. It has to take the notion of the different types of identities in the various quadrants into account. Only an understanding of the nature of a communication in terms of a division pattern can offer progress. An image offers the chance to reconstruct its position in a chosen type of division-thinking.
A survival strategy prefers opposites, and it is possible to see all imaginary accordingly. The three-partition adds a stage of contemplation in the interaction. Observations, which are made in this conceptual frame like the Christian faith did in its imagery of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit , will always bear the limitations of their initial intellectual setting. Finally, it is possible to observe in a four-division mode. An observation must be placed in the right context, i.
Objectivity and subjectivity lose their general meaning in higher division thinking. They are still part of the communication-as-a-whole, but their oppositional nature is restricted to the limited context of lower division thinking. These philosophical reflections do not mean that an investigation should not start in an area of moderate to a high empirical presence. An eternal search for the unique is just as pointless as the intention to cover an unlimited multiplicity. Limits are important and should be given. They give subsequent researchers the means to criticize the assumptions, propose other boundaries and continue to scale the scientific findings. An initial reconnaissance of tetradic images can start with a symbolism of the sun.
The sun wheel, swastikas, stars, rosettes and cross-figures in a wide variety of shapes occur in very different, global locations from Indian pottery in America fig. Similar motifs are found on pottery, stone, copper and shells of regions in Alabama, Georgia, Mississippi and Arkansas. The popular belief of the fortune-bringing four-leafed clover might be well related to the ancient way of depicting tetradic motifs like the ones shown here.
The meaning of such signs is understood to represent a balanced four-parted universe. Crete, BC. Painted ceramic from Yang-chao. The tetradic thought is visualized in a whirl. The half-moons point to a division under a good cosmic constellation; 3 — 5. Ceramic plates from Susa I; 6. The Magna Mater protects the cattle against the wolves. ROES called attention to the influence of the sun-symbolism on the Greek geometric art.
Such lines can be drawn, but the correspondence is not necessarily due to sun-worship practices. They may find their frame of reference in a common type of division-thinking, which results in an associated symbolism. The sun, as a unifying element of primal light, would be — in a modern interpretation — the representation of the First Quadrant, the invisible invisibility. To cover all occurrences of quadruple symbolism in different cultures would be virtual impossible. Therefore, a selection of four major cultural units is made Egypt, Greece, Rome and Europe and even within these groups a drastic reduction of examples is necessary.
It is also a quest for the inspiration behind the quadralectic way of thinking, and for the local roots of this timeless communication tool. It would be satisfying if a true picture of a philosophical reality emerges in the four-fold world. In the end there will be nothing to prove, only to suggest. Wisdom is the width of thinking and therefore, Pythagoras was right: the number of the initial division , determining the dimensions of our view, is the base of all.
Dover Publications, New York. ROES, Anna Greek Geometric Art. Its Symbolism and its Origin. The Egyptian cultural period offers a well-documented development of division thinking in a cultural unity over a long period. The major two-division is between North and South and the political powers, which originated in either the northern Heliopolis or southern Memphis region. However, there is also an eastern and western side of the Nile. A combination in a natural division of two pairs of opposites results in a four-parted unity. The topographical division can be experienced on a higher spiritual level as a classification of the universe. These thoughts took shape in the Old Kingdom — BC.
The mental movement follows the light from the east where the sun comes up to the west where the sun goes down and can be divided in four stages:. The temple near the river Nile connects the living with earth, water and day-to-day life;. The covered road represents the choice in a visible world and leads in a linear direction towards the holy;. The temple of the dead in front of the pyramid is the preparation at the end of the road;. The pyramid is the ultimate four-fold manifestation of the world of the dead and afterlife on this world. The pyramids are, without doubt, a monument of a particular form of tetradic thinking, despite all the nonsense, which is written over the years on their shape, measurements, position and so on. The tetradic thoughts may not have been spelled out at the time of the building, but can be reconstructed.
This effort to understand the actual meaning of the historical builders started in the Egyptian culture itself, in the Middle and New Kingdom, and was taken up in the European cultural history at the end of the eighteenth century. The scenes with the sun-barque are reduced from nine to three. Gods are more represented in groups fig. The god Atum and the four directions 8th scene ; 2. Apes worships the sun; 3. Gods carrying a light 82nd scene ; 4. Four gods 87th scene ; 5. Gods with rams-heads and Uas-scepter 85th scene ; 6.
Four apes with human fist 90th scene. The creation-myth starts with Atum generated from his own I , begetting Sjoe and Tefnoet as female and male children II. In a later stage a differentiation of the four-fold division takes place: Isis and Horus are a holy nine-fold and Nepthys and Osiris create Anubis. The basic division is, however, as follows:. The division of Creation is a combination of two pairs of opposites, made up by the top-members of the ennead 1 — 4; 2 — 3 :.
Re sun and heaven ,. Shu the air ,. Geb the earth. Osiris the underworld ,. The scheme in Memphis Sakkara , south of Cairo, is different, although there are also nine gods involved. The southern influence of the eight gods of Hermopolis is joined here with Ptah the creating god into a unit of nine. The sources of this text are much older and go back from the First to the Fourth Dynasty — BC. The suggestion in fig. The primal unity, the god Horus I , generates a primary four-fold division, represented by his sons II. The two-fold division of Ptah and Sechmet III makes up the visible part of the spectrum and is — later — jointed by Nefertum to form a trinity, sometimes expanded by Imhotep, the builder of the step pyramid of Zoser BC.
The third quadrant III , as the position of the physical observations and creations, remains the most important. The creation-theory of Memphis is, more then the spiritual-physical orientated one of Heliopolis, put forward as an intellectual system, nurtured by a human point of view. The alternation between unity and multitude is another characteristic. The male powers are figured as frogs and the female gods as snakes fig. The four pairs are the synthesis of a two- and a fourfold way of thinking, which is typical for the Egyptian cultural period. Sometimes Chnum is depicted behind a potters wheel, where a young king is created from the clay fig.
Another creation-story was concerned with the division of heaven and earth and was reconstructed by Maspero ERMAN, The god Nut is lifted by the sky-god Schu, while Keb, the god of the earth, lies on the ground. The god Osiris is responsible for the return of the seasons and rebirth. The House of Bennu is closely related to the creation-myth of Heliopolis. In: GERU, Most common is a period of five hundred years, mentioned by Herodotus — BC. Others, like Plinius, Martial, Laktanz and Claudian, report a thousand-year period. From the second century BC to the second century AD about eighteen theriomorphe or mixed figured like the four-headed rams-heads fig.
There is also a connection with Schu, the son of Re, who sends the winds to the Four Corners of the world. This is an early occurrence of the motif. These few examples are only fragments of a much wider occurrence of division-orientated thinking within the Egyptian cultural period. And he added p. These observations are of importance in a modern, quadralectic approach to history. Not only is the timing of the sphere of interest of the observer i. This type of historical research, based on a philosophical framework, has only recently been discovered.
From the New Kingdom. The four-parted element in the Egyptian culture was associated with creation and death. Beginning and end, the marker pointing to a dichotomous view, are intrinsic constituents of tetradic thinking. They provide the range of physical visibility in a communication. The urns with intestines of the dead were closely related to tetradic symbolism. The canopic vessels represented, from left to right: Hapy baboon , Doeamoetef jackal , Amset human and Kebehsenoef falcon.
They contained the vital parts of the body: Hapy guarded the lungs, Doeamoetef the stomach, Amset the liver and Kebehsenoef the intestines. The children of Horus were an important element in the Egyptian funeral-cult. These were vessels, which contained the ashes of the dead:. Sons of Horus Shape Content. Amset human liver. Hapy baboon lungs. Doeamoetef jackal stomach. Kebehsenoef falcon intestines. The custom to preserve the body parts in vessels went back to the earliest dynasties: the oldest known kanopen -chest was of the mother of Cheops, Queen Hetepheres RAVEN, This type of tradition lasted for about four hundred years.
However, the kanopen were produced in the intervening period Third Intermediate Period, — BC , but only as fake vessels or statues. They were not used to contain the vital organs of the dead. Below: The same motif from the papyrus Ani. The pyramids of the Old Kingdom — BC are the hallmark of Egypt and a cultural statement of prime importance. These signs have to be understood in the tetradic spirit. Unfortunately, many statements about the pyramids, presented under the mimicry of science and pseudo-science, demonstrate a complete misunderstanding of the Egyptian historical background. Details are now important, leading to an increased visibility, but a loss of the width of the spectrum. In the New Kingdom — BC the historic visibility reached a climax. By that time, the representational aspects of power developed into a cult.
The urge to visualize ideas means a shift into the world of opposites. Delineation and putting a mark are the means to achieve visibility in an invisible world. By doing so, the invisible world looses its wholeness and becomes intelligible. All cultural entities, which reach a degree of prominence in historical hindsight, have to go through this stage. The old ideas and images are reworked and get a new meaning. They are consciously blending with modern elements to reach an explicit expression and driven by the intention to fit the past into a new understanding. The euphoria of this understanding cannot last forever, although it endured for nearly five hundred years in the Egyptian cultural history. It will fade away in its own understanding.
Old ideas revived, up to a point of decadence. Any person who has visited the graves of the Apis-bulls Serapeum or Serapeion in Sakkara, knows what that means. Psammetich I built, around BC, a long, under-ground tunnel with enormous tombs to bury the bulls. The twenty-four red granite and black diorite sarcophagus weigh up to sixty-five tons, and were shipped from Assuan, some km to the south. It was the last, incredible engineering performance inspired by religion, before the dawn of a great historical and cultural presence started to fall.
Religion in Ancient History. Studies in Ideas, Men and Events. Pantheon egyptien. Champollion le jeune ; et les fig. Editeur: F. Didot Paris. Das Mysterium der Zahl. Zahlensymbolik im Kulturvergleich. Georg Reimer, Berlin. Modern scholars study the myths in an attempt to shed light on the religious and political institutions of ancient Greece and its civilization, and to gain understanding of the nature of myth-making itself. The Greek myths were initially propagated in an oral-poetic tradition most likely by Minoan and Mycenaean singers starting in the 18th century BC; eventually the myths of the heroes of the Trojan War and its aftermath became part of the oral tradition of Homers epic poems, the Iliad and the Odyssey.
Two poems by Homers near contemporary Hesiod, the Theogony and the Works and Days, contain accounts of the genesis of the world, the succession of divine rulers, the succession of human ages, the origin of human woes, and the origin of sacrificial practices. Myths are also preserved in the Homeric Hymns, in fragments of epic poems of the Epic Cycle, in lyric poems, in the works of the tragedians and comedians of the fifth century BC, in writings of scholars and poets of the Hellenistic Age, and in texts from the time of the Roman Empire by writers such as Plutarch and Pausanias.
Aside from this narrative deposit in ancient Greek literature, pictorial representations of gods, heroes, and mythic episodes featured prominently in ancient vase paintings and the decoration of votive gifts and many other artifacts. Geometric designs on pottery of the eighth century BC depict scenes from the Trojan cycle as well as the adventures of Heracles. In the succeeding Archaic, Classical, and Hellenistic periods, Homeric and various other mythological scenes appear, supplementing the existing literary evidence.
Greek mythology has had an extensive influence on the culture, arts, and literature of Western civilization and remains part of Western heritage and language. Poets and artists from ancient times to the present have derived inspiration from Greek mythology and have discovered contemporary significance and relevance in the themes. Greek mythology has changed over time to accommodate the evolution of their culture, of which mythology, both overtly and in its unspoken assumptions, is an index of the changes.
In Greek mythologys surviving literary forms, as found mostly at the end of the progressive changes, it is inherently political, as Gilbert Cuthbertson has argued. The earlier inhabitants of the Balkan Peninsula were an agricultural people who, using Animism, assigned a spirit to every aspect of nature. Eventually, these vague spirits assumed human forms and entered the local mythology as gods. When tribes from the north of the Balkan Peninsula invaded, they brought with them a new pantheon of gods, based on conquest, force, prowess in battle, and violent heroism.
Other older gods of the agricultural world fused with those of the more powerful invaders or else faded into insignificance. By the end of the fifth century BC, poets had assigned at least one eromenos, an adolescent boy who was their sexual companion, to every important god except Ares and to many legendary figures. Previously existing myths, such as those of Achilles and Patroclus, also then were cast in a pederastic light.
Alexandrian poets at first, then more generally literary mythographers in the early Roman Empire, often re-adapted stories of Greek mythological characters in this fashion. The achievement of epic poetry was to create story-cycles and, as a result, to develop a new sense of mythological chronology. Thus Greek mythology unfolds as a phase in the development of the world and of humans. While self-contradictions in these stories make an absolute timeline impossible, an approximate chronology may be discerned. The resulting mythological "history of the world" may be divided into three or four broader periods:. While the age of gods often has been of more interest to contemporary students of myth, the Greek authors of the archaic and classical eras had a clear preference for the age of heroes, establishing a chronology and record of human accomplishments after the questions of how the world came into being were explained.
For example, the heroic Iliad and Odyssey dwarfed the divine-focused Theogony and Homeric Hymns in both size and popularity. Under the influence of Homer the "hero cult" leads to a restructuring in spiritual life, expressed in the separation of the realm of the gods from the realm of the dead heroes, of the Chthonic from the Olympian. These races or ages are separate creations of the gods, the Golden Age belonging to the reign of Cronos, the subsequent races to the creation of Zeus.
The presence of evil was explained by the myth of Pandora, when all of the best of human capabilities, save hope, had been spilled out of her overturned jar. In Metamorphoses, Ovid follows Hesiods concept of the four ages. The most widely accepted version at the time, although a philosophical account of the beginning of things, is reported by Hesiod, in his Theogony. He begins with Chaos, a yawning nothingness. Without male assistance, Gaia gave birth to Uranus the Sky who then fertilized her.
After Cronus was born, Gaia and Uranus decreed no more Titans were to be born. They were followed by the one-eyed Cyclopes and the Hecatonchires or Hundred-Handed Ones, who were both thrown into Tartarus by Uranus. This made Gaia furious. Cronus "the wily, youngest and most terrible of Gaias children", was convinced by Gaia to castrate his father. He did this, and became the ruler of the Titans with his sister-wife Rhea as his consort, and the other Titans became his court. A motif of father-against-son conflict was repeated when Cronus was confronted by his son, Zeus. Because Cronus had betrayed his father, he feared that his offspring would do the same, and so each time Rhea gave birth, he snatched up the child and ate it.
Rhea hated this and tricked him by hiding Zeus and wrapping a stone in a babys blanket, which Cronus ate. When Zeus was full grown, he fed Cronus a drugged drink which caused him to vomit, throwing up Rheas other children, including Poseidon, Hades, Hestia, Demeter, and Hera, and the stone, which had been sitting in Cronuss stomach all this time. Zeus then challenged Cronus to war for the kingship of the gods. At last, with the help of the Cyclopes whom Zeus freed from Tartarus, Zeus and his siblings were victorious, while Cronus and the Titans were hurled down to imprisonment in Tartarus.
Zeus was plagued by the same concern, and after a prophecy that the offspring of his first wife, Metis, would give birth to a god "greater than he", Zeus swallowed her. She was already pregnant with Athena, however, and she burst forth from his head - fully-grown and dressed for war. The earliest Greek thought about poetry considered the theogonies to be the prototypical poetic genre - the prototypical mythos - and imputed almost magical powers to it. Orpheus, the archetypal poet, also was the archetypal singer of theogonies, which he uses to calm seas and storms in Apollonius Argonautica, and to move the stony hearts of the underworld gods in his descent to Hades.
When Hermes invents the lyre in the Homeric Hymn to Hermes, the first thing he does is sing about the birth of the gods. Hesiods Theogony is not only the fullest surviving account of the gods, but also the fullest surviving account of the archaic poets function, with its long preliminary invocation to the Muses. Theogony also was the subject of many lost poems, including those attributed to Orpheus, Musaeus, Epimenides, Abaris, and other legendary seers, which were used in private ritual purifications and mystery-rites.
There are indications that Plato was familiar with some version of the Orphic theogony. A silence would have been expected about religious rites and beliefs, however, and that nature of the culture would not have been reported by members of the society while the beliefs were held. After they ceased to become religious beliefs, few would have known the rites and rituals. Allusions often existed, however, to aspects that were quite public. Images existed on pottery and religious artwork that were interpreted and more likely, misinterpreted in many diverse myths and tales. A few fragments of these works survive in quotations by Neoplatonist philosophers and recently unearthed papyrus scraps. One of these scraps, the Derveni Papyrus now proves that at least in the fifth century BC a theogonic-cosmogonic poem of Orpheus was in existence.
The first philosophical cosmologists reacted against, or sometimes built upon, popular mythical conceptions that had existed in the Greek world for some time. Some of these popular conceptions can be gleaned from the poetry of Homer and Hesiod. In Homer, the Earth was viewed as a flat disk afloat on the river of Oceanus and overlooked by a hemispherical sky with sun, moon, and stars. The Sun Helios traversed the heavens as a charioteer and sailed around the Earth in a golden bowl at night. Sun, earth, heaven, rivers, and winds could be addressed in prayers and called to witness oaths. Natural fissures were popularly regarded as entrances to the subterranean house of Hades and his predecessors, home of the dead.
Influences from other cultures always afforded new themes. According to Classical-era mythology, after the overthrow of the Titans, the new pantheon of gods and goddesses was confirmed. The limitation of their number to twelve seems to have been a comparatively modern idea. Besides the Olympians, the Greeks worshipped various gods of the countryside, the satyr-god Pan, Nymphs spirits of rivers, Naiads who dwelled in springs, Dryads who were spirits of the trees, Nereids who inhabited the sea, river gods, Satyrs, and others.
In addition, there were the dark powers of the underworld, such as the Erinyes or Furies, said to pursue those guilty of crimes against blood-relatives. In order to honor the Ancient Greek pantheon, poets composed the Homeric Hymns a group of thirty-three songs. Gregory Nagy regards "the larger Homeric Hymns as simple preludes compared with Theogony, each of which invokes one god". The gods of Greek mythology are described as having essentially corporeal but ideal bodies. According to Walter Burkert, the defining characteristic of Greek anthropomorphism is that "the Greek gods are persons, not abstractions, ideas or concepts".
Regardless of their underlying forms, the Ancient Greek gods have many fantastic abilities; most significantly, the gods are not affected by disease, and can be wounded only under highly unusual circumstances. The Greeks considered immortality as the distinctive characteristic of their gods; this immortality, as well as unfading youth, was insured by the constant use of nectar and ambrosia, by which the divine blood was renewed in their veins.
Each god descends from his or her own genealogy, pursues differing interests, has a certain area of expertise, and is governed by a unique personality; however, these descriptions arise from a multiplicity of archaic local variants, which do not always agree with one another. When these gods are called upon in poetry, prayer or cult, they are referred to by a combination of their name and epithets, that identify them by these distinctions from other manifestations of themselves e. They thus follow Horaces advice and Virgils example: they rewrite a poem of Troy instead of telling something completely new.
Mythology was at the heart of everyday life in Ancient Greece. Greeks regarded mythology as a part of their history. They used myth to explain natural phenomena, cultural variations, traditional enmities and friendships. It was a source of pride to be able to trace the descent of ones leaders from a mythological hero or a god. Few ever doubted that there was truth behind the account of the Trojan War in the Iliad and Odyssey. According to Victor Davis Hanson, a military historian, columnist, political essayist and former classics professor, and John Heath, a classics professor, the profound knowledge of the Homeric epos was deemed by the Greeks the basis of their acculturation.
After the rise of philosophy, history, prose and rationalism in the late 5th century BC, the fate of myth became uncertain, and mythological genealogies gave place to a conception of history which tried to exclude the supernatural such as the Thucydidean history. While poets and dramatists were reworking the myths, Greek historians and philosophers were beginning to criticize them. A few radical philosophers like Xenophanes of Colophon were already beginning to label the poets tales as blasphemous lies in the 6th century BC; Xenophanes had complained that Homer and Hesiod attributed to the gods "all that is shameful and disgraceful among men; they steal, commit adultery, and deceive one another".
This line of thought found its most sweeping expression in Platos Republic and Laws. Plato created his own allegorical myths such as the vision of Er in the Republic, attacked the traditional tales of the gods tricks, thefts and adulteries as immoral, and objected to their central role in literature. Platos criticism was the first serious challenge to the Homeric mythological tradition, referring to the myths as "old wives chatter". For his part Aristotle criticized the Pre-socratic quasi-mythical philosophical approach and underscored that "Hesiod and the theological writers were concerned only with what seemed plausible to themselves, and had no respect for us.
But it is not worth taking seriously writers who show off in the mythical style; as for those who do proceed by proving their assertions, we must cross-examine them". Nevertheless, even Plato did not manage to wean himself and his society from the influence of myth; his own characterization for Socrates is based on the traditional Homeric and tragic patterns, used by the philosopher to praise the righteous life of his teacher:. But perhaps someone might say: "Are you then not ashamed, Socrates, of having followed such a pursuit, that you are now in danger of being put to death as a result?