Hermes etymology & anthropomorphic maps

From: Glen Gordon
Message: 5210
Date: 2000-12-30

>HERMES is, in the first place, a Deity of the Ways. That's why he is
>also connected with the spirit, the voyage for the Other World, the
>culture, the commerce, the thieves.

It would seem that Hermes is derived from the polymorphic fire god *XegWnis
(or should it be *Lukis < *leuk- "to shine"?) who frequently gets himself
into mischief -> Celtic Lugh/Lleu, Norse Loki & Indic Agni.

This neither-good-nor-bad fire deity pertains to all of the three realms and
functions, especially to all three _functions_. To illustrate, fire is
equally usable by priests for offerings, usable by farmers for agriculture
and usable by warriors for destruction. Hence, he is a "deity of the ways"
or "traveler" of sorts, a messenger quick as fire, voyaging from one realm
to the next, a friend and foe of all functions.

Strangely, this three-realm/function symbolism is also associated with
*Manus, the first man in reference to his three heroic labours, representing
each caste/realm, or to the three-headed serpent that he must slay to regain
his cattle... No I'm not confused. Greek Heracles had _12_ labours, yes, but
this is a later quadruplicative indulgence on the original theme attested in
Celtic myth. The "friend-and-foe-of-all-realms" quality shared by both
*Manus and *XegWnis/*Lukis would help explain the Celtic versions of the
myth where the two mythic individuals have been merged.

... Just one mystery to puzzle over yet: I can't quite figure out who
*XegWnis' mommy and daddy were. It really doesn't look like poor ol' Little
Fire had a father, or at the very least his father wasn't in the picture,
and he seems to be originally born to a virgin goddess, a goddess pertaining
to the seasons, moon, fertility, something of that sort. Greek: Maia has
Hermes. Celtic: Arianrhod has Lleu. Indic: Parvati has Ganesha. I see a
pattern here. Don't you?

As for the etymology of Hermes, some link the name Hermes to /herma/,
stone-heaps that were a common way of marking geographical areas for the
ancient pedestrian traveller. Of course, there is also Etruscan /Turms/ to
ponder on as well.

- gLeN

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