No announcement yet.

Interpretatio Graeca / Romana

  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Interpretatio Graeca / Romana


    I was reading about the old roman (ethruscan) gods, before they start mixing their myths with the Geeks. They basically got a lot of Greek philosophers and payed them to teach theology to the reach families, the problem was they had different religions in several ways, so they start to converge their view of their gods to make it closer to the Greek counterpart. Mars was one of the main gods for Romans, but Ares was a minor god os battles for Greeks, while Athena as the real goddess of war for the Greeks and was Minerva, goddess of engineering for Romans.

    The same happened a few centuries later, when the Romans got in contact with the Celtic pantheon (or pantheons, as there was almost one pantheon for each village) and Egiptian pantheon. Immediately, the Romans start assuming their gods were the same, just assuming different mantles, Jupiter is a warrior leader, Zeus is a selfish leader, so, Ra, as a leader must be Jupiter but with a different mantle.

    Toutatis is one example of god that was popular in the Celtic population as a god of protection of their village, so it was Mars for the roman legionaries, that called Mars Toutatis (look for it in Wikipedia, it’s interesting).

    The point of all this long text is, what do you think about a single ancient pantheon that had several mantles for different peoples they visited, but is still the same. It’s a proto-pantheon that was translated for several European/Egipt cultures.

    I am not trying to translate the Shen to roman standards or the Orisha, they are their on proto-pantheon, Orisha / Loa are the same, with a few addons for each side, for example.

    Actually the reason for I started reading the Interpretatio Graeca subject was the Loa / Orisha crisis, as I really liked Miss De La Croix from 1e and being unable to recreate her in the 2e is kind of annoying (she is in the Demigod book cover, why can’t we create her properly?), so I went thru some Brazilian Candomblé x Santeria x Vodon comparisons and origins, and end up on some crazy “For Toutatis” Asterix Loa Crossover (internet is a crazy place)...

  • #2
    Originally posted by Mateus Luz View Post
    The point of all this long text is, what do you think about a single ancient pantheon that had several mantles for different peoples they visited, but is still the same. It’s a proto-pantheon that was translated for several European/Egipt cultures.
    Do you mean the Proto-Indo-Europeans? I would advise against it as it involves using the hyper theoretical reconstruction of religious belief primarily through linguistic backtracking which is... I mean, if you want to do it for your games go wild, but my God it's really complicated. And Egypt is also not Proto-Indo-European, it's part of its own linguistic descent line unconnected to Proto-Indo-European.

    Or are you just talking about something else? Sorry, I'm having a bit of a hard time following. If you are having a hard time with establishing Loa material, Scion: Companion has the Loa in it, though it obviously won't be out for a while.

    Also! I do want to say awesome catching the notion that there would be no such thing as a 'Celtic' Pantheon, but likely a massive number of hyper-regional figures each used as a religious figure for specific tribal groups. The Wikipedia article on Toutatis is exceptionally out of date however as the theory that Toutatis was a single God was overturned almost a century ago in Celtic Studies. Toutatis is more likely a title for a class of deity than a single deity, with all the hyper-regional tribal deities being a Toutatis rather than a single deity being Toutatis spanning all of Gaul. Andraste, Arduinna, Bussurigios, Olloudius, and Sulis are examples of these figures that were probably part of this 'classification' of regional tribal deities. But! I'll avoid going into detail on that since I don't want to distract from your question about proto-Pantheons.

    Scion 2e Homebrew Projects:
    The Šiuneš, the Pantheon of the Hittite Empire, The Enduri: the Pantheon of the Manchu Peoples, The Sgā’na Qeda’s: the Pantheon of the Haida First Nation, The Abosom: The Pantheon of the Ashanti, Lebor Óe In Dea: an Expansion for the Túatha Dé Danann.


    • #3
      I guess I went all around and didn’t put a order properly, but the idea is that there is not a bunch of pantheons but just a few with several mantles, maybe they have a Multiple Personality Disorder or just pretend to be different people, but in the end they are the same. It’s not a thing for heroes to discuss, it’s more for a latter adventure, when our guys are gods and turn out to discovery they are a big crazy family. God would be capable of belong to more than one pantheon if they create the proper mantle, maybe changing their most basic definitions this way, their purviews and callings, during the process.

      It’s very interesting what you said about the Celtics, because you can find a lot of incongruent information about most of gods on both Greek/Roman and Nordic Pantheons when you look for old informations, probably because of local histories and the fact they were not really unified in the beginning, with a written “compendium” of the myths appearing latter.

      Your signature made me remind of the best Interpretatio Graeca in my view, it’s the fact that Troy (Illia) was in the Hittite Empire, so they would probably honour the Hittite Panteon, not Apollo, but as Homer was Greek he written as if the people from Troy would believe in the same gods as him.


      • #4
        Seems a bit problematic. I mean, sure there was a lot of cultural crossing as Rome, et al conquered and were conquered in turn. That said, a lot of those pantheons have their own unique histories and cultural context. When you're talking about largely oral traditions, you need to be careful when looking back at how conquerors ascribed similarity to the faiths of conquered peoples.
        Last edited by saedar; 02-01-2019, 03:01 PM.