Class Notes (810,556)
Canada (494,148)
Classics (1,680)
CLA160H1 (318)
J.Ramsay (17)
Lecture 6

Lecture 6

5 Pages
Unlock Document

University of Toronto St. George

• Two societies stand out in Herodotus, which he explores in great depth • Egypt and Scythia • And they both become targets of a Persian invasion • Egypt falls; Scythia survives Egypt in World History • According to Herodotus, Egypt played an international role based on national values • National traditions of piety, respect for xenia and law abiding • Egypt is certain of her moral compass • But she falls very quickly to Persia • This happens, acc. Herodotus, after Egypt has lost a key piece of national belief/myth about where they come from and who they are: • Psemmeticus proves they are not the oldest people: the Phrygians are • Now they are second oldest, and it’s not the same.Ashattering blow • Their antiquity was central to their identity • This tradition cannot stand the test of it’s historia • At the same time of this undermining we see an increasing encroachment on values and ways from foreign ways that are contrary (Psammetichus has foreign mercenaries) • N the final conflict these mercenaries sacrifice kids and eat their blood • They themselves become contaminated • And the commit a widespread ancient taboo - they killed a Persian herald • This might have incurred the gods wrath and the reason they fell so quickly • Egypt was a teacher • But now as second oldest they are compromised • Herodotus implies their loss is due to the scieintific refuation of cherished national belief • Amyth is destroyed by historia Scythia • Modern Ukraine • Indo-European • Ossetians is their closest relatives • They survive the persians, but don’t defeat them • Herodotus describes their success with reference to key belief about themselves and where they come from - a national myth • The are the most recent race on earth (youngest) • And this belief is unimpaired • First man was born in their country which was previously uninhabited • Zeus and a river gods daughter • Targitaus is first scythian • He had three sons • Zeus sends items from the sky • The eldes tson took gold, and it catches fire when he approaches • The second son “” • The youngest son the fire died down and he took the golden thigns • This is what seals the sovereignty of th eyongest son - he is divinely approved to rule 1 function 2 function 3 function Sovereignty Warfare Production Cup Sagaris Plough and yoke • Charter myth Anyone can trace descent to brothers • • But only kings are to the youngest • The youngest son then establishes 3 kingdoms for his 3 sons, the largest one in which the gold was kept Largest kingdom = most powerful • • Myth ties them to their land • The first scythian is born from the land • Rivers very omportant as to what it means to be Scythia It is distinquished by rivers • • Above all the Borysthenes is natioanlly distinctive, on par with the Nile • They fell no shame for their youth but own it • Herodotus doesn’t like them, but admires their courage against persians and their conneciton to the land • Their women while they were on campaign married the slaves • They succeed to take back their home from slave usurpers • The manner of their resistance is inspired by the scythian origin myth They use their terrain (tied to land) • • They prevent anyone who attacks them from escaping • Use the rivers and terrain to lead an enemy army on a dance around the country and exhaust them Come close to destroying persians at the danube • • But the ionian greeks defeat this plan • Also have political unity • No hint of discord They are completley united in obedience to their paramoutn king • • Unlike the greeks they act as one • See this explained by their charter myth (acc. To herodotus) • They are descent from zeus His origin story gives him faith • Four gifts • When this went bad for Darius (denied him earth and water) the Scythian kings send him gifts: Bird, mouse, frog and five arrows • • \ 1 function 2 function 3 function Sovereignty Warfare Production Arrows Only to be escaped by: Bird, mouse, frog persians interpret the gifts as a warning: • Fly off like a bird • Scurry off like a mouse • Jump awa
More Less

Related notes for CLA160H1

Log In


Don't have an account?

Join OneClass

Access over 10 million pages of study
documents for 1.3 million courses.

Sign up

Join to view


By registering, I agree to the Terms and Privacy Policies
Already have an account?
Just a few more details

So we can recommend you notes for your school.

Reset Password

Please enter below the email address you registered with and we will send you a link to reset your password.

Add your courses

Get notes from the top students in your class.