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Alexander the Great

[Na] Leader of the Macedonians. Born in 356 bc, Alexander was tutored in his early years by Aristotle before succeeding his father Philip as king of Macedonia and the mainland of ...

Alexander the Great

Alexander the Great   Reference library

The Oxford Companion to World Mythology

...king. The grateful Gordius thanked the people and honored Zeus in the temple square by dedicating his vehicle to the god and tying its pole to its yoke by means of a complex knot. An oracle claimed that the one who could untie that knot would rule in Asia . When Alexander came to Phrygia, he cut the knot with his sword and proclaimed himself the conqueror named by the oracle. When in 331 he made a pilgrimage to a great temple of the god Amon-Ra in Egypt — a god the Greeks thought of as a version of Zeus—he decided that, like the old Egyptian...

al-Khidr, the Green One, Tests the Patience of Moses

al-Khidr, the Green One, Tests the Patience of Moses (Arabic areas)   Quick reference

A Dictionary of African Mythology

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Subject Reference
Current Version:
2002

...the Green One, Tests the Patience of Moses (Arabic areas) al-Khidr, the Green One (Swahili: Hishiri; Fulfulde: Halilu), a mythic hero, was the spokesman for the divine. He was associated with the sea, commanding the obedience of the four quarters; he was the deputy of God on the sea and his representative on the earth. He revealed esoteric doctrines to men of exceptional sanctity. al-Khidr became immortal when he drank from the Well of Life. He encouraged Alexander, the “two-horned one,” so called because, al-Khidr told him, he was the lord of the two...

Amadán

Amadán   Quick reference

A Dictionary of Celtic Mythology

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Subject Reference
Current Version:
2004

..., the Great Fool, is the Perceval -like hero of several Irish folk narratives and a sometime leader of the fairy host in narrative and poetry. Amadán na bruidhne, the fool of the fairy mounds or palaces, is greatly feared because he may administer the fairy stroke , causing paralysis, crippling, or death; he is most active in June. There does not appear to be a connection between the folk figure and the colloquial use of Amadán in spoken Irish and English. See EACHTRA AN AMADÁIN MHÓIR . A Scottish ballad version is ‘Laoidh an Amadain Mhóir’, in Alexander...

Rishabha

Rishabha (South and Central Asia)   Quick reference

A Dictionary of World Mythology

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Subject Reference
Current Version:
2003

...from ordinary existence. To Sravana Belgola, the granite eminence sacred to the Jains in Mysore, came the aged Chandragupta Maurya, having taken a similar vow of renunciation and travelled southwards with his guru , Bhadrabahu. This monarch had come to power in 322 bc , five years after the raid of Alexander the Great into the north-western plains of India, and under his energetic rule the states of the Ganges valley were amalgamated into a powerful empire. Like the Buddha, Chandragupta Maurya belonged to the pre-Aryan nobility, whose more vigorous sons...

Society for Folk Life Studies

Society for Folk Life Studies   Quick reference

A Dictionary of English Folklore

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Subject Reference
Current Version:
2003

...Founded September 1961 , ‘The Society aims to further the study of traditional ways of life in Great Britain and Ireland and to provide a common meeting point for the many institutions engaged with the various aspects of the subject’. The movement towards the founding of folk museums and folk life programmes in Britain was already taking shape in the 1930s, heavily influenced by Scandinavian models, and the need for a society and a journal was apparent, but the intervention of the Second World War postponed further development. The relatively short-lived...

Judaism and its Abrahamic relatives

Judaism and its Abrahamic relatives   Reference library

The Oxford Companion to World Mythology

...religious ways of the indigenous Canaanites . Judah became an exclusively Jewish theocratic state. The Persian Empire under the Achaemenid dynasty in the Middle East included not only Babylonia and Palestine but also Egypt and much of Anatolia . The empire lasted until 333–331 b.c.e. , when Persia was conquered by Alexander the Great of Macedonia. With Alexander's early death in 323 , the empire was divided up by his generals. The Ptolemies gained control in Egypt, the Seleucids and Parthians in Mesopotamia , Palestine, and Persia ( Iran ). Once...

Daniel

Daniel (West Asia)   Quick reference

A Dictionary of World Mythology

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Subject Reference
Current Version:
2003

...recurred after the death of Alexander the Great, whose conquest of the Persian Empire left rich pickings for his generals, and ‘they brought untold miseries upon the world’. In particular the Seleucid ruler Antiochus Epiphanes ( 175–163 bc ) drove them into open revolt. The Book of Daniel , the earliest example of apocalyptic literature, was propaganda written to comfort the Hebrews resisting the Hellenizing policy of the Seleucids. It concerns the discomfiture of Nebuchadnezzar, the symbol of all oppression, and the vindication of Daniel as the true adherent...

Celtic mythology

Celtic mythology   Reference library

The Oxford Companion to World Mythology

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...Early in the fourth century b.c.e. Celtic tribes (Celtae or Galli) overran the city of Rome. In 279 b.c.e. Celts ( Keltoi ) attacked Delphi , and soon after that Celts (Galatae) penetrated Asia Minor, where they founded Galatia in the area around ancient Gordion, the city of King Midas , where Alexander the Great was said to have destroyed the famous Gordian knot. The Celtic migrations to Britain took place from the fifth century b.c.e. to the arrival of the Belgae in the first century b.c.e. Celts were in Ireland at least as early as the third...

Fomorians

Fomorians   Quick reference

A Dictionary of Celtic Mythology

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Subject Reference
Current Version:
2004

..., who inherits the leadership of the Tuatha Dé Danann from Nuadu Airgetlám . The great champion of the Tuatha Dé Danann, Lug Lámfhota , is the grandson of a Fomorian. Although the root of the conflict between the Fomorians and the Tuatha Dé Danann in Cath Maige Tuired is extraordinarily deep, the pre-text within the narrative is the unsuitableness of Bres as king: he insults poets and demands humiliating tributes from the race of the gods made subject. Nuadu returns to power and Lug Lámfhota presents himself in court to aid the cause. The central conflict...

Scotland

Scotland   Quick reference

A Dictionary of Celtic Mythology

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Subject Reference
Current Version:
2004

...Gaelic ballads, purported to be a lost epic, contemporary with the ancient classics. The widespread acceptance of this imposture promoted an international interest in Irish and other Celtic traditions. By the mid to late 19th century, informed collectors had assembled large collections of Scottish Gaelic tradition: John Francis Campbell, Popular Tales of the West Highlands (4 vols., Paisley, 1861 ); Archibald Campbell, Waifs and Strays in Celtic Tradition (4 vols., London, 1889–91 ); Alexander Cameron, Reliquiae Celticae (2 vols., Inverness, 1894 )....

Greek mythology

Greek mythology   Reference library

The Oxford Companion to World Mythology

...of Greek mythology we generally refer to the accumulated body of material that would have been known, for instance, to Aristotle and Alexander the Great at the beginning of the so-called Hellenistic Age in the fourth century b.c.e. , with some augmentation from the later works of such literary figures as Apollonius of Rhodes and Apollodorus , whose works owe much to the stories told by the early-fifth-century b.c.e. writer Pherecydes of Leros. It should be noted, however, that until the Hellenistic period, when Apollodorus, Hyginus, Diodorus...

South and Central Asia

South and Central Asia   Quick reference

A Dictionary of World Mythology

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Subject Reference
Current Version:
2003

...The rite of sallekhana , or fasting until death, is favoured as a way of final withdrawal by advanced ascetics. Kalanos, the holy man who burned himself on a pyre at Susa in front of the bewildered troops of Alexander's army, could have been a Jain. Opposed to this drastic life renunciation was Tantric Buddhism and Hinduism, a movement culminating at the turn of the first millennium and finding its enduring monuments in the temples at Khajuraho and Bhubaneswar. Impressive for their erotic sculpture, whose loving figures exalt in mithuna , ‘the state of...

Mallā

Mallā (T.)   Reference library

The Princeton Dictionary of Buddhism

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Current Version:
2017

...rather than a great city, the Buddha disabused him of this notion, telling him that Kuśinagarī had previously been the magnificent capital named Kusāvatī of an earlier cakravartin king named Sudarśana ( P. Sudassana ). The Buddha’s body was cremated at the Makutabandhana shrine in Kuśinagarī, after which the relics were removed to the assembly hall. There, the brāhmaṇa Doṇa (S. Droṇa ) distributed them among the many claimants from different kingdoms and clans that were demanding their share. The Buddha claimed many disciples from the Mallā country as...

Mahāvyutpatti

Mahāvyutpatti (T.)   Reference library

The Princeton Dictionary of Buddhism

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Subject Reference
Current Version:
2017

...vocabulary. The work is organized into 283 categories, the purpose of some of which (the eighteen kinds of śūnyatā , the ten virtuous actions, the thirty-two marks of a mahāpuruṣa ) are more self-evident than others (“names of strange things,” “various terms”). During the seventeenth century, Chinese, Mongolian, and Manchurian equivalencies were added to the lexicon so that the terms would be available in the four major languages used in the Qing empire (Manchu, Chinese, Tibetan, and Mongolian). The first English translation was made by Alexander Csoma De...

None but the BRAVE deserve the fair

None but the BRAVE deserve the fair   Quick reference

Oxford Dictionary of Proverbs (6 ed.)

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Current Version:
2015

...but the BRAVE deserve the fair The pair referred to in Dryden’s poem ( Alexander’s Feast ) are Alexander the Great and the Athenian courtesan Thaïs. □ 1697 dryden Poems ( 1958 ) III. 148 Happy, happy, happy Pair!…None but the Brave deserves the Fair. 1829 p. egan Boxiana 2nd Ser. II. 354 The tender sex…feeling the good old notion that ‘none but the brave deserve the fair’, were sadly out of temper. 1873 trollope Phineas Redux II. xiii. All the proverbs were on his side. ‘None but the brave deserve the fair,’ said his cousin. 1978 f....

NO man is a hero to his valet

NO man is a hero to his valet (1605–94)   Quick reference

Oxford Dictionary of Proverbs (6 ed.)

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Subject Reference
Current Version:
2015

...sees all his master’s human weaknesses. Attributed in this form to Mme Anne-Marie Bigot de Cornuel ( 1605–94 ): il n’y a pas de héros pour son valet‐de‐chambre , no man is a hero to his valet. The idea however can be traced back to Alexander the Great’s general Antigonus (4th cent. bc ): plutarch Apophthegmata Hermodotus in his poems called him Son of the Sun. He that attends my close-stool, said he [Antigonus], sings me no such song. Cf. 1603 j. florio tr. Montaigne’s Essays iii . ii. Few men haue beene admired of their familiers.…In my...

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