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Subscribe to this list via RSS Blog posts tagged in Horned God

Posted by on in Culture Blogs
World Stag

They say that once long ago,

when the sky was in danger of falling,

he caught it up on his antlers

and held it,

and that way we weren't all crushed.

They say that it's him

as holds up the sky on his antlers

still, to this day.

So that's why they call him the World Stag,

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
A 1st-Century BCE Gold Cernunnos?

The Horned God is hot right now.

So call me a skeptic if you like, but I'm sorry: some things are just a little too convenient. How do you say "Too good to be true" in Witch?

An item that turned up on E-bay some while back was identified by the seller as a 1st century BCE golden La Tène phalera (harness decoration) depicting the god Cernunnos. Unprovenanced, supposedly from a private collection, it was priced at $7400.

Sorry, I'm not convinced. How convenient that a piece of art—previously, so far as I can tell, unknown to any art historian—depicting this god and none other (arguably the most identifiable god in Keltic mythology) should just happen to turn up in a "private collection."

If genuine, it's a pretty significant artifact, of intense interest to scholarship. If not...well.

The supposed phalera depicts the god in bust, with raised arms and branching (and intertwining) antlers. In his hands the god holds two items identified by the seller as torques, but which look more like curvilinear swastikas. If what he's wearing around his neck is supposed to be a torque, it doesn't resemble any other torque that I've ever seen in Keltic art.

And there's something wrong with those antlers, with their wavy tines on both sides of the beam. Image-search "Deer in Keltic art" and see if you can turn up anything like them.

More than anything else, the piece looks like the famous Gundestrup Antlered re-rendered in the form of the god-busts on the same cauldron, made by an artist not quite fluent in Keltic style. It's an interesting coincidence that, of all the "Cernunnoi" known from Keltic antiquity, only this one and the Gundestrup god are unbearded.

Art forgery is a profitable business. Within months of the initial excavations at Knossos, Minoan fakes were readily available on the European art market. Demand was high, and money good.

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  • Mab Nahash
    Mab Nahash says #
    The biggest giveaway is the squashed nose and right side of the face. Clearly that's an attempt to render the battered look of the

Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Local Horns

Wherever he goes, he wears the local horns, and sits among the local animals.

He of the Prairie, with bison, wolf, and jackrabbit.

He of the Forest, with deer, fox, and bear.

He of the Savannah, with elephant, giraffe, and antelope.

He of the Outback, with kangaroo, goanna, and dingo.

He of the Tundra, he of the Taiga, he of the Rainforest.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
The City of the Horned Apollo

If true, it's got to be one of history's more delicious ironies.

The ancient city of Cyrene, in what is now Libya, was founded in 620 BCE by colonists from the volcanic island of Thera (or Santorini), of Minoan archaeology fame.

Foremost among its patron gods was Apollo Kernaios, the Horned Apollo.

On the city's coinage, the god was shown in profile, with a crescent ram's horn curling around his ear. It was likely this image that gave rise to Lysimakhos' famous coins depicting the horned Alexander.

Over the centuries, the city was home to many famous statesmen, artists, and philosophers, but today its best-known resident (historic or not) is probably Simon of Cyrene, who is said in the Synoptic gospels to have carried the cross of Jesus when Jesus himself was too weak to carry it.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Beardman

Well, beards are back.

These days it seems like every third guy's sporting one.

Which brings me (of course) to the god of the witches.

Oh, it's a long and winding thread that I spin today, my friend. Take hold of the end and let's see where it leads us.

***

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Between the Stones

The boy froze when he saw the god.

Behind him in the woods, the rite had already begun. The path up from the circle wound through the trees. That's why he didn't see him until he was nearly upon him.

There, seated on the ground between the two tall stones that mark the head of the path.

Waiting. Watching.

His antlers seemed to touch the trees.

Brown eyes meet green.

The boy wanted to turn and run. He also wanted to stroke the velvet of that muzzle.

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In Which the Minstrel Roastbeef Invokes the Devil

Around 1261, the troubadour Rutebeuf (“Roast Beef”) published an early French miracle play, Le Miracle de Théophile.

Little did he know that he was about to make Wiccan history.

Based on 11th century Christian legend, the play tells the story of Theophilus (“god-lover”) of Adana, who sells his soul to the Devil. The Devil is called up, by a sorcerer named Salatin, with a mysterious chant:

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