tudy of fairy story origins traces some back thousands of years, with one tale dating back as far as bronze age. In the 19th century Wilhelm Grimm, of the Brothers Grimm, believed many of the fairy stories they popularised were rooted in a shared cultural history dating back to the birth of the Indo-European language family.
Analysis showed Jack and the Beanstalk was rooted in a group of stories classified as The Boy Who Stole Ogre’s Treasure, and could be traced back to when eastern and western Indo-European languages split – more than 5,000 years ago. Beauty and the Beast and Rumpelstiltskin to be about 4,000 years old. A folk tale called The Smith and the Devil was estimated to date back 6,000 years to the bronze age.
Dr Jamie Tehrani said their study agreed with Grimm’s theory: “Some of these stories go back much further than the earliest literary record and indeed further back than classical mythology – some versions of these stories appear in Latin and Greek texts – but our findings suggest they are much older than that.”
Tehrani said: “We find it pretty remarkable these stories have survived without being written. They have been told since before even English, French and Italian existed. They were probably told in an extinct Indo-European language.”
The Armenian hypothesis of the Proto-Indo-European Urheimat, based on the Glottalic theory, suggests that the Proto-Indo-European language was spoken during the 4th millennium BC in the Armenian Highland.
Robert Drews, commenting on the hypothesis, says that “most of the chronological and historical arguments seem fragile at best, and of those that I am able to judge, some are evidently wrong”.
However, he argues that it is far more powerful as a linguistic model, providing insights into the relationship between Indo-European and the Semitic and Kartvelian languages.
He continues to say “It is certain that the inhabitants of the forested areas of Armenia very early became accomplished woodworkers, and it now appears that in the second millennium they produced spoked-wheel vehicles that served as models as far away as China. And we have long known that from the second millennium onward, Armenia was important for the breeding of horses. It is thus not surprising to find that what clues we have suggest that chariot warfare was pioneered in eastern Anatolia. Finally, our picture of what the PIE speakers did, and when, owes much to the recently proposed hypothesis that the homeland of the PIE speakers was Armenia.”
J. Grepin, reviewing Gamkrelidze and Ivanov’s book, wrote that their model of linguistic relationships is “the most complex, far reaching and fully supported of this century.”
Portasar (Armenian: “Mountain Navel”) or Göbekli Tepe (Turkish: “Potbelly Hill”) is an archaeological site at the top of a mountain ridge in the Southeastern Anatolia Region of Turkey, approximately 12 km (7 mi) northeast of the city of Şanlıurfa.
The tell includes two phases of ritual use dating back to the 10th – 8th millennium BCE. During the first phase, pre-pottery Neolithic A (PPNA), circles of massive T-shaped stone pillars were erected. More than 200 pillars in about 20 circles are currently known through geophysical surveys. Each pillar has a height of up to 6 m (20 ft) and a weight of up to 20 tons. They are fitted into sockets that were hewn out of the bedrock.
In the second phase, Pre-Pottery Neolithic B (PPNB), the erected pillars are smaller and stood in rectangular rooms with floors of polished lime. The site was abandoned after the PPNB-period. Younger structures date to classical times.
The purpose of the structures is not yet clear. Excavator Klaus Schmidt believed that they had been early neolithic sanctuaries. It is also apparent that the animal and other images give no indication of organized violence, i.e. there are no depictions of hunting raids or wounded animals, and the pillar carvings generally ignore game on which the society mainly depended, like deer, in favor of formidable creatures like lions, snakes, spiders, and scorpions.
It has been suggested that an elite class of religious leaders supervised the work and later controlled whatever ceremonies took place. If so, this would be the oldest known evidence for a priestly caste—much earlier than such social distinctions developed elsewhere in the Near East.
Schmidt’s view is that Göbekli Tepe is a stone-age mountain sanctuary. Radiocarbon dating as well as comparative, stylistic analysis indicate that it is the oldest religious site yet discovered anywhere. Schmidt believed that what he called this “cathedral on a hill” was a pilgrimage destination attracting worshippers up to 100 miles (160 km) distant.
In both astrology and historical astronomy, the zodiac (Greek: ζῳδιακός, zōidiakos) is a circle of twelve 30° divisions of celestial longitude that are centered upon the ecliptic, the apparent path of the Sun across the celestial sphere over the course of the year. The paths of the Moon and visible planets also remain close to the ecliptic, within the belt of the zodiac, which extends 8-9° north or south of the ecliptic, as measured in celestial latitude. Because the divisions are regular, they do not correspond exactly to the boundaries of the twelve constellations after which they are named.
Historically, these twelve divisions are called signs. Essentially, the zodiac is a celestial coordinate system, or more specifically an ecliptic coordinate system, which takes the ecliptic as the origin of latitude, and the position of the Sun at vernal equinox as the origin of longitude.
Astrology has a strong mythological component. Each zodiac sign has a planet and a mythology that can potentially teach you something. The unifying theme of mythology is that many different disparate cultures from around the world have myths that are very similar and can be associated with each other.
There are many common correlations throughout mythology, astrology and psychology. The same archetype seems consistently prevelant in personality assessment as well. Classifications of personality type or any kind of personality branding is just another tool for distinguishing and organizing information about our lives.
The constellations themselves are figures from ancient mythology; many of them represent individuals who were given places in the sky by Jupiter (Zeus) at the end of their mortal lives. The signs of the zodiac, while no longer identical to the constellations, still retain the personalities of the corresponding constellations. The planets and asteroids are also named for mythological beings.
Modern astrology has taken a cue from the psychology of Carl Jung, and has integrated the gods and goddesses of mythology into its lore. World mythologies include just about every personality type you can imagine, so there is a story that fits everyone. In fact, there is a set of stories that, taken together, will describe your persona, your actions, and your overall life path.
The profound insights of myth can connect us not only with the larger human family but also with a sense of meaning and an awareness of the timeless patterns of an intelligent, living cosmos.
Legends, myths, and fairy tales are all various types of folklore, most of which have been passed down through generations. Legends are usually based on some sort of historical fact and have had their characters or events embellished over the tellings and retellings.
Fairy tales generally have some sort of fantastic element, and might feature magic, imaginary creatures, and often a conflict between sides that are clearly good and evil. A myth has its basis in religion, often telling stories of supernatural beings or creators, and usually explaining some sort of natural phenomenon.
Jung, in his work with patients, developed a sense of the archetypes that drove his various clients to do what they did. He found that many people are impelled to act a certain way—they have tremendous drive to discover something, achieve something or be something special. Jung identified these drives with archetypal figures from mythology.
Each sign of the zodiac reflects specific drives. For example, Capricorn’s drive is the search for dharma, or the right way to work out one’s life. Thus, Capricorn is closely associated with careers in astrology. Myths that include a component of struggle toward greatness are all associated with Capricorn (and its planet Saturn) in some way.
Anu (also An; from Sumerian An, “sky, heaven”) is the earliest attested Sky Father deity. In Sumerian religion, he was also “King of the Gods”, “Lord of the Constellations, Spirits and Demons”, and “Supreme Ruler of the Kingdom of Heaven”, where Anu himself wandered the highest Heavenly Regions.
An was believed to have the power to judge those who had committed crimes, and to have created the stars as soldiers to destroy the wicked. His attribute was the Royal Tiara. His attendant and Overseer was the God Ilabrat.
Ensí (spelled PA.TE.SI), in Sumerian cuneiform, hence occasionally transliterated as patesi; possibly derived from <en si-k>, “lord of the plowland”; borrowed into Akkadian as iššakkum) is a Sumerian title designating the ruler or prince of a city state.
In Old Norse, ǫ́ss (or áss, ás, plural æsir; feminine ásynja, plural ásynjur) is the term denoting a member of the principal pantheon in the indigenous Germanic religion known as Norse religion. This pantheon includes Odin, Frigg, Thor, Baldr and Týr. The second pantheon comprises the Vanir. In Norse mythology, the two pantheons wage the Æsir-Vanir War, which results in a unified pantheon.
The cognate term in Old English is ōs (plural ēse) denoting a deity in Anglo-Saxon paganism. The Old High German is ans, plural ensî. The Gothic language had ans- (based only on Jordanes who glossed anses with uncertain meaning, possibly ‘demi-god’ and presumably a Latinized form of actual plural *anseis). The reconstructed Proto-Germanic form is *ansuz (plural *ansiwiz).
Unlike the Old English word god (and Old Norse goð), the term ōs (áss) was never adopted into Christian use and survived only in a secularized meaning of “pole, beam, stave, hill” or “yoke”.
In the Norwegian rune poem, óss is given a meaning of “estuary” while in the Anglo-Saxon one, ōs ᚩ takes the Latin meaning of “mouth”. The Younger Futhark rune is transliterated as ą to distinguish it from the new ár rune (ᛅ), which continues the jēran rune after loss of prevocalic *j- in Proto-Norse *jár (Old Saxon jār).
Since the name of a is attested in the Gothic alphabet as ahsa or aza, the common Germanic name of the rune may thus either have been *ansuz “god”, or *ahsam “ear (of wheat)”.
The a-rune ᚫ was named after the æsir. Ansuz is the conventional name given to the a-rune of the Elder Futhark, ᚨ. The name is based on Common Germanic *ansuz “a god, one of the main deities in Germanic paganism”. The shape of the rune is likely from Neo-Etruscan a (), like Latin A ultimately from Phoenician aleph.
The Phoenician letter is derived from an Egyptian hieroglyph depicting an ox’s head and gave rise to the Greek Alpha (Α), being re-interpreted to express not the glottal consonant but the accompanying vowel, and hence the Latin A and Cyrillic А. Oxen are thought to have first been harnessed and put to work around 4000 BC.
The aurochs was an important game animal appearing in both Paleolithic European and Mesopotamian cave paintings, such as those found at Lascaux and Livernon in France. Aurochs existed into the Iron Age in Anatolia and the Near East, where it was worshiped as a sacred animal, the Lunar Bull, associated with the Great Goddess and later with Mithras.
The analysis of bovine DNA has revealed that all the taurine cattle (Bos taurus) alive today descend from a population of only 80 aurochs. The earliest evidence of cattle domestication dates from circa 8,500 BCE in the Pre-Pottery Neolithic cultures in the Taurus Mountains.
The two oldest archaeological sites showing signs of cattle domestication are the villages of Çayönü Tepesi in southeastern Turkey and Dja’de el-Mughara in northern Iraq, two sites only 250 km away from each others. This is presumably the area from which R1b lineages started expanding – or in other words the “original homeland” of R1b.
The early R1b cattle herders would have split in at least three groups. One branch (M335) remained in Anatolia, but judging from its extreme rarity today wasn’t very successful, perhaps due to the heavy competition with other Neolithic populations in Anatolia, or to the scarcity of pastures in this mountainous environment.
A second branch migrated south to the Levant, where it became the V88 branch. Some of them searched for new lands south in Africa, first in Egypt, then colonising most of northern Africa, from the Mediterranean coast to the Sahel.
The third branch (P297), crossed the Caucasus into the vast Pontic-Caspian Steppe, which provided ideal grazing grounds for cattle. They split into two factions: R1b1a1 (M73), which went east along the Caspian Sea to Central Asia, and R1b1a2 (M269), which at first remained in the North Caucasus and the Pontic Steppe between the Dnieper and the Volga.
It is not yet clear whether M73 actually migrated across the Caucasus and reached Central Asia via Kazakhstan, or if it went south through Iran and Turkmenistan. In the latter case, M73 might not be an Indo-European branch of R1b, just like V88 and M335.
R1b-M269 (the most common form in Europe) is closely associated with the diffusion of Indo-European languages, as attested by its presence in all regions of the world where Indo-European languages were spoken in ancient times, from the Atlantic coast of Europe to the Indian subcontinent. The history of R1b and R1a are intricately connected to each others.