Essay on Greek Mythology vs. Ancient Near East Mytholgy

Essay on Greek Mythology vs. Ancient Near East Mytholgy

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Greek Mythology played a monumental role in the structural development of ancient Greece, not only as a society, but as individuals. Surprisingly, their religion was not exactly one of originality. In fact, their religion was loosely based on earlier cultures’ religions. It bears many strikingly similar resemblances to some of the oldest recorded religions in history. Ancient Greek religion is a type of polytheism called “Monarchial Polytheism.” That is, they believe in several different gods and deities but there is a supreme ruler above all of them. In order to fully understand how similar the mythological systems of religions have been throughout the years, you must look back towards the earliest of recorded civilizations. Polytheism dates back to the Mesopotamian and Ancient Egyptian religions, around the 4th millennium BC and possibly before that.
The Mesopotamian people were “polytheistic yet they were henotheistic also.” They had a structural hierarchy of deities, with certain gods being superior to others. The early Mesopotamian gods just like the ancient Greek gods, “bore many similarities to humans and were anthropomorphic.” Not only did they look like humans, they also often acted like humans. They would eat, sleep, and even consume alcohol which actually led to them feeling the effects of being drunk. Another thing that both religions have in common is the fact that most of the gods and goddesses of the Mesopotamian religion were related to each other. It was a sort of “family” of deities. Their gods were labeled much in the same manner as the Greek gods. They had the 4 creator gods: god of the sky, who was also the God of Gods and ruler of their heaven, then the god of storms, the god of the earth, and the god of ...

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...nto the Christian and Muslim eras on to around 800 CE. The patron of this particular city was the God Enlil. “Enlil legitimized the rule of kings and presided over pacts.” Several of the ancient kings of Mesopotamia sent offerings and prayed at this shrine.
The two most popular and famous Patron-cities of ancient Greece were Athens and Sparta.

Works Cited

Gordon, Cyrus. The Ancient Near East. 3rd Edition, Revised. W. W. Norton and Company, Inc., New York, 1965.
Bottero, Jean.(2001). Religion in Ancient Mesopotamia. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.
Bottero, Jean.(2001)37. Religion in Ancient Mesopotamia. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.
Nagle, D. Brendan. The Ancient World: Readings in Social and Cultural History. Prentice Hall 2001
Mark, Joshua J. 22 February, 2011. Mesopotamian Religion.

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