Greek-Hansen - Anthropology 2G03 Readings in Indo-European...

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Anthropology 2G03 – Readings in Indo-European Myth Colarusso - 63 Greek Myth Hansen, William, Introduction, pp. 6 – 51 Ch. 2 (optional) – this is an overview Other readings by deity or topic. Noted as (H: xx- yy) Identity : non-Slavic Balkan peoples (would characterize the Albanians also) pre-IE Greece: many odd words, place names 1st wave IE (c. 2500 BCE): Pelasgians, Pelastoi (Baltic-like), Cen(t)taurs, Tyrsenians (Lemnians)(Hittite-like) 2nd wave IE: 2a – Mycenaean Greeks (c. 1800 BCE), Bronze Age, wrote in Linear-B, destroyed Minoan civilization (2500 –1200 BCE) of Crete Fought Trojan War (1250 BCE), Continued by the Ionian Greeks (eastern Mediterranean and west coast of Anatolia) 2b – Dorian Greeks from north (1200 – 1100 BCE) Mycenaean and Dorian together are now called “Hellenic.” Shared Balkans with Illyrians (Albanians?), Epirotes, Thracians, Mysians, Brygi, Macedonians, Dacians, and Getae. Distinctive linguistic patterns: *s hV-, -VøV-, *w hu-, -VøV-, -VuC- *y dz-, h-, -ø-, -ViC-, (*-CyV- -CCV-) *Ch…Ch C…Ch (Grassman’s Law) These place Greek close to Armenian, Phrygian (both of Anatolia), Iranian (Central Asia), and perhaps Macedonian. Had many cultural influences from Anatolians (1st wave IE) (Hittites, Luwians, later Lycians, Lydians, Carians)
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Anthropology 2G03 – Readings in Indo-European Myth Colarusso - 64 Also from Middle East: Phoenicians (writing 1500 BCE), and Egyptians (both non-IE) Syncretistic tradition incorporating many cults, beliefs, and tales. Adopted Phoenician characters around 800 BCE. Traveled widely and colonized: Aegean Sea (E Mediterranean), Black Sea, west coast of Anatolia, southern Italy, Sicily, Riviera, Caucasus, Taurus (Crimea) Originally north of present day Greece. In Classical times confined to southern portion of Greece. Greek politics ran from democracies to tyrannies. Greece yielded a distinctly “Hellenic” corpus. This was preserved by Muslim Civilization after the fall of Rome. It was revived during the Renaissance and Enlightenment. It is a yardstick for all myth. It played a huge role in the Romantic movement, with the Greek revolt against the Ottomans (poets Shelley and Byron) Its composite character was only recently (1970s) recognized. Greek myths have a mundane, almost static quality at times. BUT many have startling, almost bizarre psychological quality. There is no one “canon” for this corpus. Homer and Hesiod (800 BCE) through Tzetzes (1000 CE) (Byzantine folklorist) to modern compilers: Bullfinch, Robert Graves, Edith Hamilton, Graves is meticulous, produces variants, preserves tone, BUT he is trying to recover pre-IE “Great Goddess” and fertility cults, “Minoan religion.” His views are idiosyncratic. Hamilton is elegant, insightful, and accurate,
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Greek-Hansen - Anthropology 2G03 Readings in Indo-European...

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