1.26.08.Neolithic.Minoan.Mycenaean

1.26.08.Neolithic.Minoan.Mycenaean - GREEK AND ROMAN...

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GREEK AND ROMAN RELIGIONS (01:190:326) 01/26/08: Neolithic, Minoan and Mycenaean religion, et al.
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But First… the Paleolithic Human burial attested in Paleolithic – approx. 30,000 yrs ago “Civilization” begins in Neolithic (after 12,000 yrs ago) with development of agriculture : important dimension of all early religious practices Important development: domestication of herd animals (cattle, sheep, goats, horses)— nonhuman members of human society, focus of sacrificial practices
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Catal Huyuk Oldest extant Neolithic city (earliest layers dating ca. 7500) Find some of the earliest religious remains from Mesopotamia Predated by earliest layers of J ericho (but J . is less well preserved)
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Layout of Layer dating to 6000 BCE
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Hunting Wall Panting ca. 5500 BCE
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Neolithic Culture (In Brief) Domestic architecture, pottery, control of fire, cooking, weaving, stone/bone tools & hunting weapons, harvesting & storage of grains, nascent animal domestication Ritual/symbolic focus on birth, generation, hunting, gathering, animals, plants, death – cultivation of memory of dead? Ideas of transcendence and immortality? Relatively egalitarian – no marked social stratification or divisions of labor (perhaps along gender lines, though unclear)
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Mother Goddess On the site, excavations have found “mother goddess” figures, like the one pictured below
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Mother Goddess (cont’d) Other, older figures (such as the Venus of Willendorf, dating ca. 30,000 – 25,000) depict this same figure The worship of a mother goddess – or a Great Godess – seems to be a common feature to Neolithic religious practice throughout the Mediterranean, such as we can reconstruct. A blending of different attributes (maiden, mother, old , woman ; darkness – birth – renewal)
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Mesopotamian Epics and Deities
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Mesopotamia In addition to Catal Huyuk, some of the oldest and earliest established human settlements (the name Mestopotamia comes from the Ancient Greek for “between the rivers”, i.e. the Tigris and the Euphrates). Several city-states were prominent at different times, first Sumer, which later divided into smaller city states by the 4 th millennium BCE – Akkad, Uruk, and Ur, etc.
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