Slavic earth goddess, Mokosh, at Harvest.

by John McCannon
Goddess of the earth worshipped by the ancient Slavs; one of the most primeval deities in the pagan Slavic pantheon. Mokos is most likely a later and more strongly personified variant of the Slavs’ elder earth goddess, “Damp Mother Earth,” or Mati syra zemlya. According to Roman Jakobson and Marija Gimbutas, the worship of such a primal earth goddess was widespread among the Slavs and their neighbors; this is attested to by the fact that the earth deities of a number of Baltic, Phrygian, and Finno-Ugric peoples exhibit similar characteristics and seem to derive from the Indo-Iranian Ardvi Sura Anahita (“Humid Mother of the Earth”). Just prior to the conversion of the Eastern Slavs to Christianity, Mokos was worshipped officially in Kievan Rus, along with Perun and other deities mentioned in the Primary Chronicle.
As the only female god of note to be worshipped by the Slavs, Mokos assumed a broad range of divine roles. She was first and foremost a symbol of the earth’s fertility. During the early spring, it was taboo to spit on or strike the ground, since Mokos was said to be pregnant then. Holidays were dedicated to her in the autumn, after the harvest. The belief that Mokos invested the earth with divinity was reflected in peasant practices that, in some parts of Russia, Ukraine, and Belorussia, persisted into the 19th century: the swallowing of a lump of soil to consecrate wedding vows, the placing of earth upon one’s head to seal oaths, the confession of one’s sins to a hole in the ground instead of a priest.
Over time, Mokos became a patron of women, especially those bearing children or giving birth. She oversaw women’s work, such as spinning and weaving. By some groups, such as the Czechs, her name was invoked in times of drought. She was also thought to protect flocks of sheep. The strength of her cult remained substantial, even after the Christianization of the Slavs; as late as the 17th century, Orthodox priests attempted to uncover Mokos-worshippers among the peasantry, asking women whether or not they had “gone to Mokos.” In Russia, Mokos was partially absorbed into Orthodox worship, in the guise of St. Paraskeva-Piatnitsa (“Paraskeva-Friday”), whose name day fell in late October, around the time of Mokos’s former harvest celebration.

6

Tom Ryan Appreciation Week - Day 3 - Favourite Episode

I chose 1x06 because I found myself quite surprised at how sad I was to see Captain Ryan go. Not to say that I didn’t like him, he was just the type of character that I didn’t have any strong feelings for at first but when it came to his death scene I realised that I didn’t want him to go.

Watch on doctorwho.tumblr.com

DOCTOR WHO Ep 3 Sneak Peek: The Doctor & Clara Meet Robin Hood! - Premieres this Saturday, September 6th on BBC America

"That is not Robin Hood!"

"Well then who, sir, is about to relieve you of your magic box?"

In “Robot of Sherwood,” in a sun-dappled Sherwood forest, the Doctor (PETER CAPALDI) discovers an evil plan from beyond the stars, and strikes up an unlikely alliance with Robin Hood. With all of Nottingham at stake, the Doctor must decide who is real and who is fake. Can impossible heroes actually exist?

With guest stars TOM RILEY (Da Vinci’s Demons) & BEN MILLER (Primeval).

Want to learn about Poland? Alright, here we go!

  • Poland’s formal name is Rzeczpospolita Polska (Republic of Poland).
  • Poland’s national anthem was written  Italy! In 1797, Polish troops were fighting at the side of Napoleon in Italy when it was composed.
  • The 380,000-acre (150,000-hectare) Białowieża Primeval Forest in Poland is Europe’s last ancient forest and home to 800 European bison, Europe’s heaviest land animals.
  • The first “Polish” ruler recorded in history was Mieszko, about 963 CE.
  • On November 11, 1918, Poland declared itself a republic, independent of Russia. Poles still celebrate this date, though it was forbidden from 1939 to 1989 by the Soviets.
  • the Polish Resistance movement under under German occupation in World War II was the largest resistance movement in Europe. Poland never surrendered officially to the Nazis. 
2

//Dark and Magical Beings//

Furies -

In Greek and Roman mythology, the Furies were female spirits of justice and vengeance. They were also called the Erinyes (angry ones). Known especially for pursuing people who had murdered family members, the Furies punished their victims by driving them mad. When not punishing wrongdoers on earth, they lived in the underworldand tortured the damned.

According to some stories, the Furies were sisters born from the blood of Uranus, the primeval god of the sky, when he was wounded by his son Cronus*. In other stories, they were the children of Nyx (night). In either case, their primeval origin set them apart from the other deitiesof the Greek and Roman pantheons.

Most tales mention three Furies: Allecto (endless), Tisiphone (punishment), and Megaera (jealous rage). Usually imagined as monstrous, foul-smelling hags, the sisters had bats’ wings, coal-black skin, and hair entwined with serpents. They carried torches, whips, and cups of venom with which to torment wrongdoers. The Furies could also appear as storm clouds or swarms of insects.

primeval-atom said:

have you ever read the Gormenghast novels? if so what did you think of them?

(previously: x x x) oh, gormenghast. i have pressed it into the hands of so many friends i have raved about it drunk and sober i have written academic essays about it let me tell you about this book

how do i describe gormenghast—it’s a story about family and tradition and power and freedom and class and madness and darkness and beauty. it’s a gothic bildungsroman and a comedy of manners and a political chessgame and a tale of revolution. it’s about two fascinating anti-heroes: steerpike is corrupt and half-repulsive, treacherous and machiavellian and magnificent, with vicious ideas above his station; titus groan is dark and hungry and mercurial, clawing himself out of the choking pall of nobility and ritual and tradition. it’s about pleasure, because the prose is rich and decadent and fullblooded, and no other novel is so intensely visible, painting canvases of lush roiling gloom and characters in sharp mordant detail. you’re seduced, surrounded, then swallowed. 

and castle gormenghast is a character in its own right, a feral baroque labyrinth of stone, an infinite castle-city without centre, an ancient affront to reason, scarved in black ivy. it’s sublime and grotesque, sprawling and proliferate: dripping misshapes of stalactite tallow-wax and plaster cracked in cobwebs and sweltering infernal kitchens and cellars and catacombs and warping staircases and numberless towers and bastions and quadrangles. brooding in umbra, slumping and ruinous. ruled by obscure and stagnant law and tradition and ritual. time-gnawed, yet out of time. 

titus groan, the first book, is the best, but gormenghast, the second, is almost as brilliant. the third, titus alone, lacks something vital but has flashes of genius. the last, titus awakes, was salvaged and pieced together from fragments by peake’s wife four years ago, and doesn’t come near to the original trilogy, but it’s a poignant tribute to his creation; to him. 

as a whole, it’s powerfully weird and melodramatic and swollen with dread as ripe as thunder. it unfolds slowly and meanders through intricacies. it demands long and devoted attention. there’s nothing supernatural in it, but it will haunt you. it’s full of ruin and decay, but what you’ll remember is how much life there is in it: menacing and exuberant and tragic and comic and cruel and beautiful and demanding—howling—to be felt. 

In our scientific civilization, the mysterious continues along the edges. It seems primeval for us, an inner awareness that all of rationalism will not explain away. Einstein saw its reality clearly, as did Jung. The numinous clings.
—  "Uneasy Trinity" - the quest for dominace in science, religion, and magic.
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