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Date: Mon, 10 Feb 2003 08:25:35 -0800
From: Michael Andre-Driussi 
Subject: Re: (urth) Lowering the tone

Nigel wrote:
>Is it simply too gross to point to the phallic associations of the name, or
>at least its diminutive?

No, not at all.  Thanks for raising the point -- bringing it up -- drawing
it to our attention.

For all I know "Attis" might have a similar etymology (aside from association).

MYTHOLOGY, AND LEGEND has some nice notes: mention of the pine connection,
which we've noted before; a calendar of events, which goes like this

March 22 -- pine tree is cut and brought into the sanctuary of Cybele where
it is "swathed with woolen bands, decked with violets" and has an effigy of
a young man tied to it.

March 23 -- no comments given.

March 24 -- Day of Blood, with bloodletting and probably the
self-emasculation rites.

March 25 -- the resurrection celebration in a "licentious carnival."  (I've
always thought that this must be among the non-castrated, but this just
shows my own ridiculous biases.)

March 26 -- day of repose.

March 27 -- festival closes with a procession of the goddess image to the
Almo River where wagon and image were bathed.

Beware the ides of March, indeed!

Intriguing, but Green left Earth on March 14, came back April 15.

Arthur Cotterell's A DICTIONARY OF WORLD MYTHOLOGY has this tidbit:

"Union was achieved through either self-mutilation or a sacred marriage: to
all devotees was open what had once been the prerogative of West Asian
kingship" (under ATTIS).

I find this interesting as a case where there is mention of an option to
self-castration: a "sacred marriage."



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