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APOLLO and ... MARS?

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  • João S. Lopes Filho
    I found this in http://www.users.qwest.net/~mcochrane/Myth/Apollo/apollo.html I d like to hear your comments... In light of Apollo s resemblance to various
    Message 1 of 3 , Oct 1 9:51 PM
      I found this in
      http://www.users.qwest.net/~mcochrane/Myth/Apollo/apollo.html
      I'd like to hear your comments...
      " In light of Apollo's resemblance to various Oriental gods identified with
      the planet Mars, it is significant to note that the Greek god's close
      resemblance to the Latin god Mars has long been acknowledged. Well over a
      hundred years ago, Roscher documented that the cults of Apollo and Mars were
      fundamentally analogous. Roscher pointed to a host of features shared in
      common between the two gods, including the following:
      (1) each was associated with the first month of the year;
      (2) each was identified with certain animals and sacred trees;
      (3) each was regarded as a patron of migrations and founder of cities;
      (4) each was associated with colonizing ventures as exemplified by the Latin
      ver sacrum rite.
      Apollo, like Mars, was invoked as a great warrior to fend off the hostile
      neighbors. An early Greek prayer invokes Apollo as follows: "Send a
      far-darting arrow from your bow against the enemy. Strike, O Paian!"
      Indeed, the Athenian army appears to have been under the direct patronage of
      Apollo.
      Both gods were associated with the advent and warding off of pestilence and
      disease. The name Isminthians-signifying that god who sends, but also
      averts, plagues of mice (smintheus is an ancient Cretan word meaning
      "mouse")-is one of the Latin god's oldest epithets.
      Yet the very same epithet was applied to Apollo in Asia Minor. This fact,
      if it does not support the identification of Apollo and Mars, at least
      supports the view that the two gods were functionally analogous in ancient
      cult. The fact that the cult of Apollo Smintheus has yet to be found on
      mainland Greece-but only upon the outlying islands of Crete and Rhodes,
      sites of archaic Greek colonies situated between mainland Greece and Asia
      Minor-is an indication, perhaps, that Apollo's cult originally came to
      Greece from the ancient Near East.
      An unusual feature of Mars' cult is the war-god's identification with a
      wolf. This motif is attested very early and, as the epithet lupus Martius
      attests, would appear to be central to the mythology and iconography
      surrounding the Latin god.
      As Apollo Lykeios, the ancient Greeks understood Apollo as a wolf-god
      (lykeios is from a Greek stem meaning "wolf"). As the chorus of Aeschylus'
      Seven attests, Apollo the wolf was conceived as a warrior: "Lykeios, lord,
      be wolvish toward the enemy's army." Wolves were sacrificed to Apollo at
      Argos and elsewhere on the Greek peninsula (this in spite of the fact that
      wolves were extremely rare animals in Greek cult), and in Argive ritual a
      wolf was pitted in combat against a bull, this latter rite said to symbolize
      Apollo's combat with Poseidon. Although scholars have observed that
      Apollo's lupine-characteristics belong to the most archaic stage of his
      cult, an explanation of the significance of Apollo Lykeios has not been
      forthcoming."
      (...)
    • MCLSSAA2@fs2.mt.umist.ac.uk
      ... I thought that Greek [sminthos] = mouse , [Smintheus] = mouse god . ... I thought that Apollo was a gun-god and [Apollon Lykaios] = Apollo of light ,
      Message 2 of 3 , Oct 2 4:09 AM
        --- In cybalist@y..., "João S. Lopes Filho" <jodan99@u...> wrote:
        > ... plagues of mice (smintheus is an ancient Cretan word meaning
        > "mouse")

        I thought that Greek [sminthos] = "mouse", [Smintheus] = "mouse god".

        > An unusual feature of Mars's cult is the war-god's identification
        > with a wolf. ...

        I thought that Apollo was a gun-god and [Apollon Lykaios] = "Apollo of
        light", but when the old Greek word *[ly:ke:] = "light" got disused,
        various of its derivatives were thought to relate to [lykos] =
        "wolf", and so belief changed.

        As regards Mars the war-god, war is destructive and so are wolves.

        With [Mars] compare Greek [Are:s], and the Greek verb [marnamai] = "I
        fight".
      • MrCaws@hotmail.com
        ... identified with ... close ... over a ... Mars were ... shared in ... cities; ... the Latin ... hostile ... Paian! ... patronage of ... pestilence and ...
        Message 3 of 3 , Oct 2 6:39 PM
          --- In cybalist@y..., "João S. Lopes Filho" <jodan99@u...> wrote:


          > I found this in
          > http://www.users.qwest.net/~mcochrane/Myth/Apollo/apollo.html
          > I'd like to hear your comments...
          > " In light of Apollo's resemblance to various Oriental gods
          identified with
          > the planet Mars, it is significant to note that the Greek god's
          close
          > resemblance to the Latin god Mars has long been acknowledged. Well
          over a
          > hundred years ago, Roscher documented that the cults of Apollo and
          Mars were
          > fundamentally analogous. Roscher pointed to a host of features
          shared in
          > common between the two gods, including the following:
          > (1) each was associated with the first month of the year;
          > (2) each was identified with certain animals and sacred trees;
          > (3) each was regarded as a patron of migrations and founder of
          cities;
          > (4) each was associated with colonizing ventures as exemplified by
          the Latin
          > ver sacrum rite.
          > Apollo, like Mars, was invoked as a great warrior to fend off the
          hostile
          > neighbors. An early Greek prayer invokes Apollo as follows: "Send a
          > far-darting arrow from your bow against the enemy. Strike, O
          Paian!"
          > Indeed, the Athenian army appears to have been under the direct
          patronage of
          > Apollo.
          > Both gods were associated with the advent and warding off of
          pestilence and
          > disease. The name Isminthians-signifying that god who sends, but
          also
          > averts, plagues of mice (smintheus is an ancient Cretan word meaning
          > "mouse")-is one of the Latin god's oldest epithets.
          > Yet the very same epithet was applied to Apollo in Asia Minor.
          This fact,
          > if it does not support the identification of Apollo and Mars, at
          least
          > supports the view that the two gods were functionally analogous in
          ancient
          > cult. The fact that the cult of Apollo Smintheus has yet to be
          found on
          > mainland Greece-but only upon the outlying islands of Crete and
          Rhodes,
          > sites of archaic Greek colonies situated between mainland Greece
          and Asia
          > Minor-is an indication, perhaps, that Apollo's cult originally came
          to
          > Greece from the ancient Near East.
          > An unusual feature of Mars' cult is the war-god's identification
          with a
          > wolf. This motif is attested very early and, as the epithet lupus
          Martius
          > attests, would appear to be central to the mythology and iconography
          > surrounding the Latin god.
          > As Apollo Lykeios, the ancient Greeks understood Apollo as a wolf-
          god
          > (lykeios is from a Greek stem meaning "wolf"). As the chorus of
          Aeschylus'
          > Seven attests, Apollo the wolf was conceived as a
          warrior: "Lykeios, lord,
          > be wolvish toward the enemy's army." Wolves were sacrificed to
          Apollo at
          > Argos and elsewhere on the Greek peninsula (this in spite of the
          fact that
          > wolves were extremely rare animals in Greek cult), and in Argive
          ritual a
          > wolf was pitted in combat against a bull, this latter rite said to
          symbolize
          > Apollo's combat with Poseidon. Although scholars have observed that
          > Apollo's lupine-characteristics belong to the most archaic stage of
          his
          > cult, an explanation of the significance of Apollo Lykeios has not
          been
          > forthcoming."
          > (...)

          I read the article, found it very interesting.

          The idea of a connection with Mars is interesting, since there isn't
          a good match for Apollo in the Greek pantheon. Mars originally was a
          protector of fields and herds, a hunting god, and a god of
          boundaries at least according to my Roman Religion professor. These
          match up well with some of Apollo's attributes.

          I want to find details about the shared sacred animals, trees, etc.
          That's intriguing stuff.

          I would speculate that the wolf attribute might be associated with
          the idea of a role as protector and destroyer of herds and cattle, as
          well as with war and the underworld.

          One thing that occured to me when I read it-They were discussing
          the nature of Hyperborean Apollo, an epithet usually used to denote a
          northern origin of the deity-From the peoples beyond the North Wind.

          I thought of a different meaning to this though-In the Pelasgian
          Creation Myth, which I was discussing with Glen in a different thread,

          The fist being is goddess Eurynome, who starts out alone, dancing
          above the waters. She eventually dances, creating Ophion out of the
          northern wind, a serpent, who coils about her and mates with her.
          This impregnates her, so she turns into a dove and lays an egg.
          Ophion coils about this egg seven times, and then the universe
          emerges from the egg.

          The article mentions that Apollo's favorite number is 7, a rather
          unusual Hellenic number. So I propose that this Hyperborean name is
          referring to Apollo's identification with the primeval male
          principle, Ophion.
          Apollo has association with serpents, being one and slaying them.
          Many of Apollo's attributes identify him with ithyphallic fertility
          gods appropriate for this serpentine Ophion deity.

          Cort Williams
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