Topic Subject:Hannibal, Sertorius, Julius Civilis... and Odin?
posted 05 December 2013 22:57 EDT (US)
Thought you guys might find this to be a fun article. I came across it while doing my Sertorius research, and the gist is that Hannibal, Sertorius, and Julius Civilis, those one-eyed war lords who annoyed the Romans so, may have had their aspects incorporated into the iconography of Odin.
It's a cool article, if a bit silly, and I desperately wish it was true, because that's such a fun idea.
Africa, Thomas W. 1970. The One-Eyed Man against Rome: An Exercise in Euhemerism. Historia 19: 52838.
It's available on JSTOR.
Edorix High King of Britain
posted 14 December 2013 05:58
1 / 5
We can find mythological parallels of the one-eyed father-god in, for example, the Irish Balor, or the Egyptian Apep, who I would maintain to all be reflexes of the same earlier chthonic father-deity whose head was a rock and whose eye was the sun (cf. birth of Athena goddess of clearsightedness from the head of Zeus). I find this a better suggestion than such a blatantly Romanocentric view - although it is refreshing.
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EDORIX ~ ancient briton ~
Terikel Grayhair Imperator
posted 16 December 2013 04:28
2 / 5
I tried to access the article, but so far have failed miserably.
I can imagine the parallels, though. back when Scandinavian societies were forming by people moving north, the growing power of Rome was quickly becoming legendary. It is not a far fetch to incorporate bits of Rome's greatest adversaries into the chief god, especially if that bit is pretty obvios and identical.
However, this assumes that the Nordic peoples knew Rome intimately enough to know her foes and who gave her the most problems, as well as their physical characteristics. Since The North was separated from Rome by a fair bit of Germania Magna as well as some very cold water, I doubt the Nordics had done much more than heard of Rome and her glory, much less fashion gods crafted to defeat such power. Rome herself knew of Thule (where the Nordics were supposed to live) but very little beyond that.
Thus, without reading the article, I assume the loss of Odin's eye (a trade for wisdom) to be a coincidence, not a deliberate anti-Roman propaganda to say "our gods are better than your whole city-empire".
I've read a bit about ancient religions and it's striking how many parallels they share. It's as if one group of people invented a pantheon of gods and the rest of the world adopted it only with different names and tweaked stories. So I'd assume the origins of Odin and the Norse gods goes back long before Rome arrived on the scene. Nice idea though.
Pitt Tribunus Laticlavius
posted 22 December 2013 07:27
4 / 5
I tried to access the article, but so far have failed miserably
You can find the article here. Ordinarily you need a subscription to access JSTOR and since completing university I haven't been able to (and now I've lost all the articles I downloaded over the years too ...).
However, they recently started allowing limited access. You can read about 3 articles a fortnight. You just need to sign up (click the "read online for free" button and provide email etc details).
The link is a bit of a long bow, but the parallels are interesting.
"Into the face of the young man who sat on the terrace of the Hotel Magnifique at Cannes there had crept a look of furtive shame, the shifty, hangdog look which announces that an Englishman is about to talk French." - P.G. Wodehouse, The Luck of the Bodkins
Terikel Grayhair Imperator
posted 23 December 2013 06:21
5 / 5
It was the signing-up part that frustrated my efforts to peruse the article.
I guess the anonymizer I use at my place of employment in order to tunnel through the filter hinders access to JSTOR. (A man has to have his priorities in order).
Thus I will have to sacrifice some RTW playing time at home in order to read this. Thus this will be a very precious and expensive article to read.