Saturday, 26 May 2012

Queens ladies and Mistresses

Queens Mistresses and Ladies.

There are three words in Greek that can be translated as Queen Lady or Mistress.

Ἄνασσα was a archaicism and ποτνια and the related forms δέσποινα and δέσποτις can be appplied to a woman whether she was human or mortal.

The most common word in classical times was βασίλεια which with a shift of accent βασιλεία also meant realm. The Greeks changed this by adding other feminine suffixes to the βασιλε radical.

Linear B texts give us an earlier form of *gwasir or mayb even*wasil?

I rather prefer *gwasir since we now of other words in Classical Greek with an initial B that derived from a change of IE *GW to B.

Other words are βασιληίς βασιλίς βασίλιννα and βασίλισσα.

Do I hear anyone thinking kyria? That only translates as lady and never to my knowledge as Queen?

Tuesday, 22 May 2012

Hellas Throne of the Gods


Hellas and Hellene have a common origin probably in a very ancient word archaic even in the Classical era and the word probably meant “Throne” used to a way similar to the English and particularly the British usage of CROWN to imply legal authority.

Looking up Hellen and Hellenist in the BIG full size Liddell and Scott I came across several interesting references.

The η in Hellen Ἕλλην has a α in Dorian leading to a usage of Ἑλλάννιος where most Greek dialects use Ἕλληνικός the adjective derived from the name of Hellen son of Deucalion ancestor of the Hellen tribe who lived in Thessaly first mentioned by Homer in the Iliad in the area around Dodona then called Hellas Ἑλλάς.

Hesiod Herodotus Aeschylus and Euripides all referred to Greeks as Hellenes.

Liddell and Scott also mentions a rare word in the Laconian dialect of Dorian Greek ἡ ἑλλά which was a kind of chair and also mention a fragment of a Hellenistic historian Idomeneus who said that the word was also used in Dodona to refer to the seat of the god Zeus.

So Hellen founder of a city realm and tribe was perhaps the heir to the ?divine?  THRONE, what we might call a crown prince, and Hellenes may have originally been the “Crown” tribe, the princely ones, just as Wang means royal in Chinese but so many people have that family name now that it no longer implies royal descent though clearly marks you as a HAN?

This certainly makes as much or more sense than derived it as Sun Helios?

Tuesday, 15 May 2012

LERNA and LEGENDS reposted

Due to its popularity I'm bumping this ( a 3rd time a couple of years later) so more readers can see it.
#LERNA site of the #HYDRA legends is also a fascinating archaeological site.
I've collected a set  of the most interesting and useful  images I could find for you to use.

The Hydra was said to have been a many headed water snake however the lake at Lerna which has now dwindled to a mere pool seems to have had a very thin barrier between it and the sea.

Perhaps the Hydra was a giant squid or octopod swept into the lake by a storm who attacked swimmers?

Yet The Lake was supposedly always unsafe to swim in even after the Hydra was killed.

The legend speaks of Heracles burning the stumps of the Hydra however other legends also tell of him creating large scale water diversion schemes. Was the Hydra a parasite or disease in a coastal wetland? Was the charcoal from burnt trees used to purify water. Another part of the legend tells of a forest being cut down. Did Heracles divert water into a channel beginning the process of draining the lake and coastal wetlands ? Did he block a dangerous sinkhole perhaps?

Map of Lerna Was the lake north or south of modern Lerna village?

Here's a diagram showing the archaeological site. One of the oddest things about Lerna is that the famous House of Tiles one of the largest #Helladic structures in ancient Greece seems to have been delibarately pulled down carefully and then buried under a tumulus. What were later occupants trying to do? Cherish the ancients or protect themselves from ghosts?

You'll see this aerial shot several times if you google image search Lerna. It seems to date back to the 50s?

I suggest you use Google Earth as their image set show the site area and photos of the springs !

And do read Pausanias if you can!

Monday, 7 May 2012

First Feminine Nouns Long EE Final

More First Declension Feminine Nouns

A few posts back I mentioned that a final long a sound changed to a long e - η in Attic and Ionic.

This is why we have first declension nouns ending in both η and α.

Here's 20 η final nouns that follow the First Declension Pattern.

Άστραπή a flash of lightning

Βροντή A roar of and Thunder

Γραμματική a female teacher of basic literacy from Γράμματα letters

Δίκη Law Order Right Hence Justice

Ζώνη a belt or sash or girdle the origin of Zone.

ενή a sleeping place animal's lair, bird's nest or bed for humans
yet in plural εναί the anchor stones thrown off the prow of a ship into the sea.

Κεφαλή the head Now you know why an octopus can also be called a cephalopod.

Κολωνή a hill or mound

Μαχή War Battle This was borrowed into English via Latin and became – machia and -machy.

Μηχανή The origin of – MECH and also again via Latin of Machine.

Νίκη Victory

γχνη the pear tree and its fruit

Πύλη a Gate Don't Confuse this with Φυλή Phyle a tribe group or clan.

Ῥώμη Power Strength Force Might Yes Rome or Roma the goddess and city.

Σκήνη A cover or shelter shade cloth or tent

Σωφροσύνη Moderation Discretion Prudence Chastity Commonsense Virtue

λη Hule Forest Wood Hylo-

Τύχη Fortune

Ψυχή The soul