Statue of Diogenes in Sinop, Turkey (Ancient Sinope)
The objects of enjoyment,
Even after staying with us for a long time,
Are sure to leave us sometime;
Then what difference their privation
In this way makes to men,
That they do not of their own accord discard them?
If the enjoyments leave us on their own initiative,
That is to say, if they tear themselves from us,
They produce great affliction of the mind;
But if men voluntarily renounce them,
They conduce to the eternal bliss of self-possession!
My basic premise is this, that since Arcado-Cypriot (written in the syllabary Linear C) subsisted all the way through from ca 1100 BCE to ca 400 BCE (700 years!), before the Arcado-Cypriots, i.e. Arcadians, finally caved in to alphabetic Hellenistic Greek, otherwise known as “koine” (the common language), in the face of its otherwise universal use, is without a shadow of a doubt the ancient Greek dialect most closely related to Mycenaean Greek (written in the syllabary Linear B), being for all intents and purposes its younger cousin, it must logically follow that Mycenaean Greek must be Greek and nothing but Greek. The really peculiar notion held by a tiny minority of self-appointed high-minded “researchers” that Mycenaean is not Greek, and that Michael Ventris, as brilliant and methodologically logical as he was to a fault, was merely “making clever guesses as to what the language was, truly boggles the mind. It intend to establish once-and-for-all that such silly notions are not only specious in the extreme, but entirely tautological. The mere fact that the two dialects share a virtually common grammar and vocabulary is enough to lay the myth that Mycenaean Greek is not Greek to rest forever. For if it is not Greek, then what on earth is it? And if such researchers are so clever (and apparently brighter than a genius of Ventris' stature), then they ought to have long since been able to decipher whatever the blazes they imagine it is. But they have not, and I wager my life they never will.
The Austrian stamp issued in 1965 shows a clay tablet with a cuneiform text. A head of an Assyrian king or god is in the background. The clay tablet comes from the second millennium b.c.
Since at least the time of the ancient Egyptians, cats have been cherished as companions, worshipped as idols, and kept as agents of pest control and good luck. But now French archaeologists have found evidence that our close relationship with cats may have begun much earlier.
The carefully interred remains of a human and a cat were found buried with seashells, polished stones, and other decorative artifacts in a 9,500-year-old grave site on the Mediterranean island of Cyprus. This new find, from the Neolithic village of Shillourokambos, predates early Egyptian art depicting cats by 4,000 years or more.
Another story has Anu overthrowing the king of heaven Alalu after serving him for nine years. After Anu was king for nine years Kumarbi fought with him and bit his genitals, swallowing some seed. Kumarbi boasted that he had destroyed the manhood of Anu; but the latter predicted that Kumarbi would give birth to three monsters. The god Ea helped deliver one from his side and a second from his loins, who as god of the wind helped Anu to defeat Kumarbi in battle. Kumarbi turned to the Lord of the Sea for help, and a child of black stone was born and placed on Kumarbi’s knee. Then the goddesses took the child and placed it on the right shoulder of the giant Upelluri in the depth of the sea; but the child, Ullikummi, grew quickly to the water’s surface and then to the floor of heaven.
Ishtar tried to seduce him, but he was deaf and blind. The storm god ordered the seventy gods to battle him, but they failed also. Then Tasmisu went to consult with Ea, who took them to Enlil, who had previously held him on his lap and could not oppose him. So Ea went to Upelluri, who did not know anything about the problem nor about the earth being separated from heaven by a magic knife. With this clue Ea returned to the old gods, who had been present at the creation of the world to recite the ancient mystic verses. This time with the magic knife Ea was able to cut off the giant’s feet and cut up his body. Thus Kumarbi never did rule over the gods. This story affirmed the ancient gods and allowed the king to rule for more than nine years.
Another story of cosmic combat has a dragon named Illuyankas defeating the storm god. In revenge he invites the dragon to a banquet prepared by Inaras, who goes to the city to get help from Hupasiyas. He tells her that if she has sexual intercourse with him, he will have the strength needed. She agrees, and after the banquet Hupasiyas ties up the dragon with a rope when he is too large to get into the opening of his cave; then the storm god is able to kill him. Inaras realizes that if Hupasiyas goes home to his wife, she and her children will gain the supernatural power, which could not be allowed. So she builds a house on a lonely cliff and takes Hupasiyas there, forbidding him to look out the window lest he see his wife and children. However, after twenty days he looks out and sees them. He begs to be allowed to go home, and her only solution is to kill him by burning the house down. This story describes the power sexual union was believed to have as well as a reluctance to share divine power with lowly humans.
3. Wilt thou that I show thee them that are clad thus, them that have on a marriage garment?
Call to mind those holy persons, of whom I discoursed to you of late, them that wear garments of hair, them that dwell in the deserts. These above all are the wearers of the garments of that wedding; this is evident from hence, that how many soever purple robes thou wert to give them, they would not choose to receive them; but much as a king, if any one were to take the beggar’s rags, and exhort him to put them on, would abhor the clothing, so would those persons also his purple robe. And from no other cause have they this feeling, but because of knowing the beauty of their own raiment. Therefore even that purple robe they spurn like the spider’s web. For these things hath their sackcloth taught them; for indeed they are far more exalted and more glorious than the very king who reigns.
And if thou wert able to open the doors of the mind, and to look upon their soul, and all their ornaments within, surely thou wouldest fall down upon the earth, not bearing the glory of their beauty, and the splendor of those garments, and the lightning brightness of their conscience.
For we could tell also of men of old, great and to be admired; but since visible examples lead on more those of grosser souls, therefore do I send you even to the tabernacles of those holy persons. For they have nothing sorrowful, but as if in heaven they had pitched their tents, even so are they encamped far off the wearisome things of this present life, in campaign against the devils; and as in choirs, so do they war against him. Therefore I say, they have fixed their tents, and have fled from cities, and markets, and houses. For he that warreth cannot sit in a house, but he must make his habitation of a temporary kind, as on the point of removing straightway, and so dwell. Such are all those persons, contrary to us. For we indeed live not as in a camp, but as in a city at peace.