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Bull's Leg

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  • Bradley Skene
    I m forwarding this e-mail which makes an observation that seems too obvious for anyone here (including me) to have thought of, namely that the bull s
    Message 1 of 5 , Nov 5, 2005
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      I'm forwarding this e-mail which makes an observation that seems too obvious for anyone here (including me) to have thought of, namely that the bull's hindquarters are largely missing form the constellation taurus and Near Eastern myth concerning a bull's leg may be related to that fact.
       
      Might not this bear on the the use of the Bull's leg in the Mithraic investiture scene?

      ---------- Forwarded message ----------
      From: chris < iiipariah@...>
      Date: Nov 5, 2005 3:55 PM
      Subject: [TabletofDestiny] Bunch of Bull
      To: TabletofDestiny@yahoogroups.com

      Well as this topic is -presumably - winding down i feel now is as
      good a time as any to make a few um.. closing points. I would have to
      say, Hex, that you've opened a can of worms here ..One I personally
      was unaware of at the time. Your questions were not common, and
      anything but simple. And hey - thats ok as far I can see nothing in
      the ANE is simple. But My take on the rather jagged road
      the board has taken in bringing the thread this far - its not that
      I'm set against new information/concepts or perspectives.  To me its
      largely how you've packaged it. If the goal is to build a solid
      foundation of knowledge constructed from serious academic material,
      and you hand us a piece and ask 'where does this hunch/guess fit
      in? ... We're going label it "guess" and throw it into a huge useless
      stack of them.  But after looking at this particular piece again, I
      see it may have been mislabeled - it does fit somehwre I've now seen
      when used in *the right context*.  My point is no one just guesses
      points like your trying to make - so tell us where you've read it and
      it can then be considered. Its not speculation if you cite your
      sources, its work in progress. That said I will try and shed some
      light here , though astronomy isn't really my thing.

             Perhaps you may have come across this concept reading Black
      and Green - The relevant part of their write up on the bull of heaven
      reads :
      "As a constellation, the Bull of Heaven is Taurus (see zodiac), and
      it has been suggested that the story of Enkidu throwing the thigh of
      the bull at Ishtar attempts to account for the apparent lack of the
      bull's hind quarters in the outline of the constellation." Or
      S.Langdon who says much the same thing on page 29 of his Mythology of
      All Races: Semitic. But what versions/periods do they refer to?

          There are many factors to consider in assessing this Idea that
      the Bull of Heaven as seen in the Sumerian version of 'Gilgamesh
      and the Bull of Heaven'  did in fact reference on some level a
      constellation.. for reference i am dealing with this source:  
      http://etcsl.orinst.ox.ac.uk/cgi-bin/etcsl.cgi?text=t.1.8.1.2 .
      Furthermore on this page there are 3 versions: one from "An unknown
      province, supplemented from Nippur mss" and another "from MeTuran"
      and lastly the third labeled "Fragment of an earlier version from
      Nippur, dating to the Third Dynasty of Ur" .. Therefore based on this
      and a few other things, I am reasonable sure that the first two are
      *Old Babylonian*. Yes the Gilgamesh  stories were originally written
      down in the UrIII era (2150), but with the exception of that UrIII
      shred at the bottom, the surviving versions of Gilgamesh and the
      Bull of Heaven as used at ETCSL -seem to be- O.B (1900-1600)..Right
      of the bat that means we are dealing with the constellation concepts
      of the Sumerians successors, not the Sumerians themsevles.
           So did the O.B's see him as a constellation then? Another look
      at stars as found at ETCSL tells me that at the very least, the Old
      Babylonians knew constellations. The word for star appears to be
      mul , while mul-mul can mean something 'radiant'.  Taking this into
      account I realized there are mentions of constellations in the Old
      Babylonian era Sumerian myths. In 3 texts to places to be exact, two
      of which are  Enki and the world Order (1) (see note 1 for text), and
      Lugalbanda and the mountain cave (2)..and the two constellations
      named in these are the chariot constellation and the field
      constellation(3).   The Sumerian name of the latter is " Mul.iku"
      while the former is " Mul.jicgigir" ..These names are comprehendible
      if you note that jicgigir is the word for chariot. So the word
      grouping 'star.chariot'  is interpreted 'chariot constellation' at
      ETCSL -  jicgigir is a chariot while  " Mul.jicgigir" is the chariot
      constellation. In the ancient text then, the convention in denoting
      constellations seems to have been the addition of "mul" to the
      object.  One would think the word for the Bull of Heaven
      constellation would be "Mul-gud-an-na" - in fact I have seen this
      constellation referenced that way in later texts. Therefore in the
      O.B version of "Gilgamesh and the Bull of Heaven" , you would expect
      to see 'mul-gud-an-na' if the Bull was considered a constellation at
      that point, but it is spelt simply  'Gud an-na' (Bull of Heaven).
      This is suggestive but not conclusive.
             Bull alone cannot be seen as identifying Gud an-na as a star
      or stars, in the same way that cows aren't always Nanna's cows,
      sometimes they are just cows. As has been noted, the term bull can
      imply a good number of things. I went through 269 search results for
      the word "Bull" at ETCSL, in an attempt to better understand the use
      of the word, and its still confusing. I do believe 'Wild bull' often
      describes deities and may suggest their  heavenly origin or parentage
      (4)..Still there may be indicators which point to his being a
      constellation in these Old Babylonian versions. When An objects to
      giving Inana the Bull he says: 

      "B46-B49. Great An replied to holy Inana: "My child, the Bull of
      Heaven would not have any pasture, as its pasture is on the horizon.
      Maiden Inana, the Bull of Heaven can only graze where the sun rises.
      So I cannot give the Bull of Heaven to you!"

      This would seem to be in line with the constellation - as I've read
      (5) Taurus was the spring equinox in  1800 B.C.,  meaning in the
      spring Taurus would appear on the dawn horizon.. and this corresponds
      with the O.B. period.. it would seem B46-49 recognizes this.
      Elsewhere I've heard a theory that the Bulls destruction of drying up
      rivers , striping the land dry etc, relates to how the spring equinox
      heralds the coming of summer which does such things but that's just
      too speculative to use.

      So far as the limb being thrown to Inana bit goes, the lines in
      question come from the O.B "A version from MeTuran" this is the
      ancient site now known as Tell Haddad. Only recently were texts been
      excavated there and only in 2000 was this "version from MeTuran" made
      available. .
      D49-D52. The king took his knife in his hand, just as if he were a
      master chef. He hit Inana with a haunch, he made her flee away like a
      pigeon, and demolished those ramparts. Standing by (?) the Bull's
      head, the king wept bitter tears: "Just as I can destroy you, so
      shall I do the same to her (?)."
      D53-D59. As he spoke, he consigned its hide to the streets, he
      consigned its intestines to the broad square, and the widows' sons of
      his city each took their share of its meat in baskets. He consigned
      its carcass to the knacker's, and turned its two horns into flasks
      for pouring fine oil to Inana in E-ana. For the death of the Bull of
      Heaven: holy Inana, it is sweet to praise you!"

      If the other O.B text indicates a recognition of the Bull of Heaven
      as a constellation, as Taurus, then this O.B text might indeed do the
      same. On the other hand it notice he gives the torso to the knackers -
      that is someone who chops up meat. If his tossing the shoulder at
      Inana accounts for the missing legs of Taurus, then you'd think by
      the same token his subsequent total mutilation of the bull would mean
      the devastation of Taurus altogether.
      But anyway that's as far as I know at the moment.  Hex, if you want
      further topics explored that's fine by me. But I suggest a less
      eclectic approach over  a much longer term. Or a gradual point by
      point dialogue rather then a manifesto heh it'll work better for
      everybody. That said I think I may have a useful resource for general
      Sumerian knowledge, that may address some things. Though I just found
      it myself http://cdli.ucla.edu/education.html



        1-: http://etcsl.orinst.ox.ac.uk/cgi-bin/etcsl.cgi?text=t.1.1.3# 
      285-298. The lord established a shrine, a holy shrine, whose interior
      is elaborately constructed. He established a shrine in the sea, a
      holy shrine, whose  interior is elaborately constructed. The shrine,
      whose interior is a tangled thread, is beyond understanding. The
      shrine's emplacement is situated by the constellation the Field, the
      holy upper shrine's emplacement faces towards the Chariot
      constellation. Its terrifying awesomeness is a rising wave, its
      splendour is fearsome. The Anuna gods dare not approach it. …… to
      refresh their hearts, the palace rejoices. The Anuna stand by with
      prayers and supplications. They set up a great altar for Enki in the
      E-engura, for the lord ……. The great prince ……. …… the pelican of the
      sea.
      2- You will have to look in the transliteration of Lugalbanda and the
      moutain cave, almost to the bottem c.1.8.2.1
      3-The field constellation could relate to "mul.iku the Field star =
      part of Andromeda, identified with Annunitum = NE Pisces" Mul.iku was
      used as a reference point for some constellations and was also called
      the 'path of the moon' (Ulla Kock-Westenholz p.133)
      4- Deities described as "Wild Bull" : Ninurta t.1.6.1, Pabilsag
      t.1.7.8, Gilgamesh t.1.8.1.3, Nanna t.4.13.01, Utu t.2.4.2.17, 
      Numušda t.2.6.7.1, Nindublaga t.2.5.3.3, Enki t.4.07.7, Enlil
      t.4.07.7, as well as An himself in "Enki and the world order." He is
      also called the "breed-bull" here t.2.5.5.3
      (These codes are ETCSL translation numbers. Open any ETCSL text and
      change the numbers in the url bar to load these)
      5- I have estimates that differ by millenia about when exactly Taurus
      was the spring equinox - but I'm going with Ulla Koch-Westenholz in 
      Mesopotamian Astrology pg.23





       

      YAHOO! GROUPS LINKS



    • Aion Antiquities Wallace
      Why is the leg always referred to as a foreleg in translations from the hieroglyphic (and Demotic)? Even if the OB texts/myths influenced the Egyptian the
      Message 2 of 5 , Nov 5, 2005
      • 0 Attachment
        Why is the leg always referred to as a "foreleg" in translations from the hieroglyphic (and Demotic)?  Even if the OB texts/myths influenced the Egyptian the subject in question obviously got interpreted as a foreleg.  At all events the subject in the Denderah zodiac and in the Mithraic corpus does not look like a hind leg.

        Bradley Skene <anebo10@...> wrote:
        I'm forwarding this e-mail which makes an observation that seems too obvious for anyone here (including me) to have thought of, namely that the bull's hindquarters are largely missing form the constellation taurus and Near Eastern myth concerning a bull's leg may be related to that fact.
         
        Might not this bear on the the use of the Bull's leg in the Mithraic investiture scene?

        ---------- Forwarded message ----------
        From: chris < iiipariah@...>
        Date: Nov 5, 2005 3:55 PM
        Subject: [TabletofDestiny] Bunch of Bull
        To: TabletofDestiny@yahoogroups.com

        Well as this topic is -presumably - winding down i feel now is as
        good a time as any to make a few um.. closing points. I would have to
        say, Hex, that you've opened a can of worms here ..One I personally
        was unaware of at the time. Your questions were not common, and
        anything but simple. And hey - thats ok as far I can see nothing in
        the ANE is simple. But My take on the rather jagged road
        the board has taken in bringing the thread this far - its not that
        I'm set against new information/concepts or perspectives.  To me its
        largely how you've packaged it. If the goal is to build a solid
        foundation of knowledge constructed from serious academic material,
        and you hand us a piece and ask 'where does this hunch/guess fit
        in? ... We're going label it "guess" and throw it into a huge useless
        stack of them.  But after looking at this particular piece again, I
        see it may have been mislabeled - it does fit somehwre I've now seen
        when used in *the right context*.  My point is no one just guesses
        points like your trying to make - so tell us where you've read it and
        it can then be considered. Its not speculation if you cite your
        sources, its work in progress. That said I will try and shed some
        light here , though astronomy isn't really my thing.

               Perhaps you may have come across this concept reading Black
        and Green - The relevant part of their write up on the bull of heaven
        reads :
        "As a constellation, the Bull of Heaven is Taurus (see zodiac), and
        it has been suggested that the story of Enkidu throwing the thigh of
        the bull at Ishtar attempts to account for the apparent lack of the
        bull's hind quarters in the outline of the constellation." Or
        S.Langdon who says much the same thing on page 29 of his Mythology of
        All Races: Semitic. But what versions/periods do they refer to?

            There are many factors to consider in assessing this Idea that
        the Bull of Heaven as seen in the Sumerian version of 'Gilgamesh
        and the Bull of Heaven'  did in fact reference on some level a
        constellation.. for reference i am dealing with this source:  
        http://etcsl.orinst.ox.ac.uk/cgi-bin/etcsl.cgi?text=t.1.8.1.2 .
        Furthermore on this page there are 3 versions: one from "An unknown
        province, supplemented from Nippur mss" and another "from MeTuran"
        and lastly the third labeled "Fragment of an earlier version from
        Nippur, dating to the Third Dynasty of Ur" .. Therefore based on this
        and a few other things, I am reasonable sure that the first two are
        *Old Babylonian*. Yes the Gilgamesh  stories were originally written
        down in the UrIII era (2150), but with the exception of that UrIII
        shred at the bottom, the surviving versions of Gilgamesh and the
        Bull of Heaven as used at ETCSL -seem to be- O.B (1900-1600)..Right
        of the bat that means we are dealing with the constellation concepts
        of the Sumerians successors, not the Sumerians themsevles.
             So did the O.B's see him as a constellation then? Another look
        at stars as found at ETCSL tells me that at the very least, the Old
        Babylonians knew constellations. The word for star appears to be
        mul , while mul-mul can mean something 'radiant'.  Taking this into
        account I realized there are mentions of constellations in the Old
        Babylonian era Sumerian myths. In 3 texts to places to be exact, two
        of which are  Enki and the world Order (1) (see note 1 for text), and
        Lugalbanda and the mountain cave (2)..and the two constellations
        named in these are the chariot constellation and the field
        constellation(3).   The Sumerian name of the latter is " Mul.iku"
        while the former is " Mul.jicgigir" ..These names are comprehendible
        if you note that jicgigir is the word for chariot. So the word
        grouping 'star.chariot'  is interpreted 'chariot constellation' at
        ETCSL -  jicgigir is a chariot while  " Mul.jicgigir" is the chariot
        constellation. In the ancient text then, the convention in denoting
        constellations seems to have been the addition of "mul" to the
        object.  One would think the word for the Bull of Heaven
        constellation would be "Mul-gud-an-na" - in fact I have seen this
        constellation referenced that way in later texts. Therefore in the
        O.B version of "Gilgamesh and the Bull of Heaven" , you would expect
        to see 'mul-gud-an-na' if the Bull was considered a constellation at
        that point, but it is spelt simply  'Gud an-na' (Bull of Heaven).
        This is suggestive but not conclusive.
               Bull alone cannot be seen as identifying Gud an-na as a star
        or stars, in the same way that cows aren't always Nanna's cows,
        sometimes they are just cows. As has been noted, the term bull can
        imply a good number of things. I went through 269 search results for
        the word "Bull" at ETCSL, in an attempt to better understand the use
        of the word, and its still confusing. I do believe 'Wild bull' often
        describes deities and may suggest their  heavenly origin or parentage
        (4)..Still there may be indicators which point to his being a
        constellation in these Old Babylonian versions. When An objects to
        giving Inana the Bull he says: 

        "B46-B49. Great An replied to holy Inana: "My child, the Bull of
        Heaven would not have any pasture, as its pasture is on the horizon.
        Maiden Inana, the Bull of Heaven can only graze where the sun rises.
        So I cannot give the Bull of Heaven to you!"

        This would seem to be in line with the constellation - as I've read
        (5) Taurus was the spring equinox in  1800 B.C.,  meaning in the
        spring Taurus would appear on the dawn horizon.. and this corresponds
        with the O.B. period.. it would seem B46-49 recognizes this.
        Elsewhere I've heard a theory that the Bulls destruction of drying up
        rivers , striping the land dry etc, relates to how the spring equinox
        heralds the coming of summer which does such things but that's just
        too speculative to use.

        So far as the limb being thrown to Inana bit goes, the lines in
        question come from the O.B "A version from MeTuran" this is the
        ancient site now known as Tell Haddad. Only recently were texts been
        excavated there and only in 2000 was this "version from MeTuran" made
        available. .
        D49-D52. The king took his knife in his hand, just as if he were a
        master chef. He hit Inana with a haunch, he made her flee away like a
        pigeon, and demolished those ramparts. Standing by (?) the Bull's
        head, the king wept bitter tears: "Just as I can destroy you, so
        shall I do the same to her (?)."
        D53-D59. As he spoke, he consigned its hide to the streets, he
        consigned its intestines to the broad square, and the widows' sons of
        his city each took their share of its meat in baskets. He consigned
        its carcass to the knacker's, and turned its two horns into flasks
        for pouring fine oil to Inana in E-ana. For the death of the Bull of
        Heaven: holy Inana, it is sweet to praise you!"

        If the other O.B text indicates a recognition of the Bull of Heaven
        as a constellation, as Taurus, then this O.B text might indeed do the
        same. On the other hand it notice he gives the torso to the knackers -
        that is someone who chops up meat. If his tossing the shoulder at
        Inana accounts for the missing legs of Taurus, then you'd think by
        the same token his subsequent total mutilation of the bull would mean
        the devastation of Taurus altogether.
        But anyway that's as far as I know at the moment.  Hex, if you want
        further topics explored that's fine by me. But I suggest a less
        eclectic approach over  a much longer term. Or a gradual point by
        point dialogue rather then a manifesto heh it'll work better for
        everybody. That said I think I may have a useful resource for general
        Sumerian knowledge, that may address some things. Though I just found
        it myself http://cdli.ucla.edu/education.html



          1-: http://etcsl.orinst.ox.ac.uk/cgi-bin/etcsl.cgi?text=t.1.1.3# 
        285-298. The lord established a shrine, a holy shrine, whose interior
        is elaborately constructed. He established a shrine in the sea, a
        holy shrine, whose  interior is elaborately constructed. The shrine,
        whose interior is a tangled thread, is beyond understanding. The
        shrine's emplacement is situated by the constellation the Field, the
        holy upper shrine's emplacement faces towards the Chariot
        constellation. Its terrifying awesomeness is a rising wave, its
        splendour is fearsome. The Anuna gods dare not approach it. …… to
        refresh their hearts, the palace rejoices. The Anuna stand by with
        prayers and supplications. They set up a great altar for Enki in the
        E-engura, for the lord ……. The great prince ……. …… the pelican of the
        sea.
        2- You will have to look in the transliteration of Lugalbanda and the
        moutain cave, almost to the bottem c.1.8.2.1
        3-The field constellation could relate to "mul.iku the Field star =
        part of Andromeda, identified with Annunitum = NE Pisces" Mul.iku was
        used as a reference point for some constellations and was also called
        the 'path of the moon' (Ulla Kock-Westenholz p.133)
        4- Deities described as "Wild Bull" : Ninurta t.1.6.1, Pabilsag
        t.1.7.8, Gilgamesh t.1.8.1.3, Nanna t.4.13.01, Utu t.2.4.2.17, 
        Numušda t.2.6.7.1, Nindublaga t.2.5.3.3, Enki t.4.07.7, Enlil
        t.4.07.7, as well as An himself in "Enki and the world order." He is
        also called the "breed-bull" here t.2.5.5.3
        (These codes are ETCSL translation numbers. Open any ETCSL text and
        change the numbers in the url bar to load these)
        5- I have estimates that differ by millenia about when exactly Taurus
        was the spring equinox - but I'm going with Ulla Koch-Westenholz in 
        Mesopotamian Astrology pg.23





         

        YAHOO! GROUPS LINKS



      • capanellius
        ... I m forwarding this e-mail which makes an observation that seems too obvious for anyone here (including me) to have thought of, namely that the bull s
        Message 3 of 5 , Nov 5, 2005
        • 0 Attachment
          --- In mithras@yahoogroups.com, Bradley Skene <anebo10@g...> wrote:

          I'm forwarding this e-mail which makes an observation that seems too
          obvious for anyone here (including me) to have thought of, namely
          that the bull's hindquarters are largely missing form the
          constellation taurus and Near Eastern myth concerning a bull's leg
          may be related to that fact.

          Might not this bear on the the use of the Bull's leg in the Mithraic
          investiture scene?

          ****

          From: chris < iiipariah@...>
          Date: Nov 5, 2005 3:55 PM
          Subject: [TabletofDestiny] Bunch of Bull

          "If his tossing the shoulder at Inana accounts for the missing legs
          of Taurus, then you'd think by the same token his subsequent total
          mutilation of the bull would mean the devastation of Taurus
          altogether."

          *****


          If Bull was considered to be immortal, like the cattle belonging to
          later Solar deities, then Taurus would have to remain in the sky.
          The myth arises possibly to account for the missing legs that had
          already, and always, been noted about Taurus.
        • dicconf
          ... In some translations it is not the bull s leg, but the bull s phallus that Gilgamesh throws at Innana -- a much more pointed insult to the goddess of
          Message 4 of 5 , Nov 6, 2005
          • 0 Attachment
            On Sun, 6 Nov 2005, capanellius wrote:

            > From: chris < iiipariah@...>
            > Date: Nov 5, 2005 3:55 PM
            > Subject: [TabletofDestiny] Bunch of Bull
            >
            > "If his tossing the shoulder at Inana accounts for the missing legs
            > of Taurus, then you'd think by the same token his subsequent total
            > mutilation of the bull would mean the devastation of Taurus
            > altogether."

            In some translations it is not the bull's leg, but the bull's phallus that
            Gilgamesh throws at Innana -- a much more pointed insult to the goddess of
            fertility. (And, I think, more apposite given Gilgamesh's recital of the
            nasty things She had done to her human and animal lovers.) I wonder if
            there is really a difference in possible translations, or the references
            to "leg" were a bit of Bowdlerizing?

            -- Dick Eney

            > If Bull was considered to be immortal, like the cattle belonging to
            > later Solar deities, then Taurus would have to remain in the sky.
            > The myth arises possibly to account for the missing legs that had
            > already, and always, been noted about Taurus.
          • Park McKellop
            Insult? Or recognition that she needs help? ;-) Park dicconf wrote: In some translations it is not the bull s leg, but the bull s phallus
            Message 5 of 5 , Nov 6, 2005
            • 0 Attachment
              Insult?  Or recognition that she needs help? ;-)
               
              Park

              dicconf <dicconf@...> wrote:
              In some translations it is not the bull's leg, but the bull's phallus that
              Gilgamesh throws at Innana -- a much more pointed insult to the goddess of
              fertility.  (And, I think, more apposite given Gilgamesh's recital of the
              nasty things She had done to her human and animal lovers.)  I wonder if
              there is really a difference in possible translations, or the references
              to "leg" were a bit of Bowdlerizing?

              -- Dick Eney


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