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In a special way the mother is a figure in whom people see great power. The result in religion has been the worship of mother goddesses. Already in the European and Near Eastern Early Paleolithic (40,000–25,000 b.c.), the ability to give life found expression in many female figures with heavily

In: The Encyclopedia of Christianity Online

[German version] Numerous deities were referred to as ‘Mother’. In Greece, the oldest is a Mycenaean ‘Divine Mother’ (Matere teija, in the dative: PY fr. 1202); the most important are Demeter, Rhea and Gaia, as well as the Lycian Leto and, above all, that goddess who actually was called ‘Mother

In: Brill's New Pauly Online
Author: Heller, Birgit

[German Version] The supposed priority of mother symbolism in anthropomorphic ideas of God (God, Representations and symbols of) led many scholars in the past to postulate a “cult of the mother goddess as an archetypal phenomenon” (Heiler, but also van der Leeuw and others). But mother symbolism is

In: Religion Past and Present Online
Author: Dániel Balogh

Within the rock shelter and to the right of the shrine there is a sculpted panel depicting the seven mother goddesses (Fig. 2). The relief is eroded, but still in much better condition than the stylistically similar Saptamātṛ panels at Udayagiri. It shows the goddesses in bhadrāsana on separate

In: Indo-Iranian Journal
A timeless essay on the underlying structures of classical art and architecture.
This fundamental essay in the tradition of Vienna-School Structuralism traces the religious and sexual drives that gave rise to the distinct forms of Greek and Roman art and architecture. Kaschnitz demonstrates how the worship of male ancestors with upright stone monuments led to the Greek temple and classical sculpture--impenetrable forms dominating space and the viewer. Worship of the life-giving fertility of the mother-goddesses required underground, cave-like spaces that underlie the volumetric interiors of Roman and Etruscan temples that surround and enclose the viewer. The extensive bibliography, invoking a wide range of sources, provides invaluable insight into the wide range of disciplines that Kaschnitz explored, from comparative ethnography to folk psychology.


Kaschnitz-Weinbergs Essay von 1944, einer der Grundlagentexte der Strukturforschung, befasst sich mit der Religion und Architektur der Megalithkultur, um zu erklären, warum Griechen und Römer ganz unterschiedliche Konzeptionen von Form und Raum in Architektur und Bildhauerei realisierten.
Kaschnitz setzt die griechische Konzeption mit prähistorischen Kulturen in Beziehung, die Ahnen und Gottheiten in phallischen, aufrechten Monumenten verehrten. Er entdeckt die Vorgeschichte der römischen Konzeption in der Höhle, umhüllenden Räumen, die den Uterus der Mutter Erde evozierten. Dem Originaltext der englischen Erstübersetzung sind eine Einführung des Herausgebers, rekonstruierte Anmerkungen und eine umfassende Bibliographie beigegeben.

see  Cybele;  Mater Magna;  Mother goddesses...

In: Brill's New Pauly Online
Author: Olson, Carl

despite the claim by Dieterich's Mutter Erde (Mother Earth, 1905), which constructs a theology of a single great goddess, associated with the earth. In fact, there are many goddesses and most of them...

In: Religion Past and Present Online
Author: D. Pardee

The kôṯarātu, apparently ‘the (female) skillful ones’, appear in Ugaritic mythological texts in passages dealing with human conception and in the ‘pantheon’ texts as the equivalent of Mesopotamian mother-goddesses. A biblical reference to these goddesses has been proposed in Ps. 68.7 (e.g. W. F

Author: D. Pardee

The kôṯarātu, apparently ‘the (female) skillful ones’, appear in Ugaritic mythological texts in passages dealing with human conception and in the ‘pantheon’ texts as the equivalent of Mesopotamian mother-goddesses. A biblical reference to these goddesses has been proposed in Ps. 68.7 (e.g. W. F

[German Version] Cybele does not occur first in Greco-Roman Antiquity as a “late oriental” deity, instead, she is venerated as “Mother of the gods” or simply as “Mother” (Mother goddesses) already in the 6th century bce with a temple in the center of Athens. In Rome in 205/204 bce, the Stone of

In: Religion Past and Present Online