Бухгалтерское обслуживание юрист адвокат арбитраж.  |  фанера москва Russian version

Copyright © 2005 by Sergei V. Rjabchikov. All Rights Reserved.

A PLAGIARIST IS FOUND:
SHOW YOUR FACE,
"DR OLGA DAGMAR"!

Now Shapour Suren-Pahlav declared "Dr Olga Dagmar" as the author of both stolen "versions". He also replaced my name preserved in these "versions" by "Dr Olga Dagmar"'s name. You, Shapour Suren-Pahlav, cover your own tracks! I place a "letter" by "Dr Olga Dagmar" as well as new editions of the stolen "versions" in the end of this homepage (8th September 2005).

And now please read my comments.

"Dr Olga Dagmar" is an unreal person. The web site of this Shapour Suren-Pahlav is constructed so that everybody with a fictitious/invented name etc and with an e-mail created for this situation can send a material (including a stolen one from a book, journal or from the World Wide Web) to him. I think that Shapour Suren-Pahlav is responsible for all the materials as he is a real editor of his web site.

But I understand that he is a dishonest person. His web site contained a number of links to the London University and to SOAS (the School of Oriental and African Studies of the University of London), moreover, he declared that his circle was a part of SOAS. He used an e-mail address that looked like an e-mail address of SOAS. But this postal construction sent letter to another address!!! I preserved the corresponding string and now you can study this construction:

Shapour Suren-Pahlav cais@soas.ac.uk

Shapour Suren-Pahlav represented his web site as a part of the London University! And I found this situation accidentally.

His actions were illegal, and only several days ago he deleted mentions of the London University! But the word 'soas' is preserved in the name of his web site: http://www.cais-soas.com/ now...

Please read my reports:

  • A Plagiarist is Found: Part 1
  • A Plagiarist is Found: Part 2
  • A Plagiarist is Found: An Additional Information

    Two variants are possible. First, the plagiarist is Shapour Suren-Pahlav. I think so. The Google system finds homepages in several days after their publications in the World Wide Web. I found both stolen "versions" on the 3rd and 5th August 2005.

    Here they are:

    http://www.cais-soas.com/CAIS/Anthropology/scythian/scyth_sarmat_culture.htm

    and

    http://www.cais-soas.com/CAIS/Anthropology/scythian/interpretation_scyth-art.htm

    In the second "article" the subtitle "CAIS" appeared... So I think that it is Shapour Suren-Pahlav's creation!

    "New" "versions" of my articles were edited, my links were deleted here. The figures of these "versions" were renamed. The author's name was deleted... I have read the code of this "version", and found "the author": [META content="Shapour Suren-Pahlav" name=author] (I replaced the <> by [] to show this "miracle"!)

    But the stolen texts contained FORMAL EVIDENCES that they were stolen from my works:

    these "versions" contained references to my books:

    Rjabchikov, S.V., 1998. Drevnie texty slavyan i adygov. Krasnodar: Torgovo-promyshlennaya palata Krasnodarskogo kraya.

    {MY COMMENT: a chapter of this book is devoted to the decipherment of the Scythian/Sarmatian/Meotian script, this result as well as my ideas concerning Linear A from this my book are used in my articles placed on the WWW}

    Rjabchikov, S.V., 1998. Tainstvennaya Tmutarakan'. Krasnodar: Torgovo-promyshlennaya palata Krasnodarskogo kraya.

    Certainly, there are other evidences that I am the author of my articles. Some of my letters were published in the Linguistlist, I spoke on the Radio of Russia many times. An artist exists who prepared the picture of the bronze mirror of Meotian-Sarmatian period from a photo for the first original article. And so on.

    But the main evidence is my reputation. I published a number of articles in well known international scientific journals in other area: I deciphered the famous rongorongo script of Easter Island.

    I am a Christian and a honest man.

    The second situation is as follows. A plagiarist is not Shapour Suren-Pahlav. I insist that his web site is constructed in such a manner that any plagiarist can offer stoles data, but the owner and the editor, Shapour Suren-Pahlav, is responsible for their publication.

    Now he placed an unreal name, "Dr Olga Dagmar", in the stolen "versions". Why? I think that he wants to save his face. I do not know anything about this "Dr". The scientific works, the Google and other web systems do not answer this question, too.

    But we know something about Dagmar. This was a Danish princess, then a Russian empress, Marie Romanova, the wife of a Russian emperor, Alexander the 3rd. She was the mother of the last Russian emperor Nicholas the 2nd. She lived in Denmark after the revolution. Olga was one of her daughter. She died many and many years ago.

    Now it is clear that the "name" of "Dr Olga Dagmar" is a mask of the plagiarist. "Dr Olga Dagmar", show your face!

    Please see the stolen "versions". Now I realised that the plagiarist is Shapour Suren-Pahlav!!! He changed the stolen texts to delete my name from the references.

    He published references to my books in the following form (!!!):

    Dagmar, O., 1998a. Drevnie texty slavyan i adygov. Krasnodar: Torgovo-promyshlennaya palata Krasnodarskogo kraya.

    Dagmar, O., 1998b. Tainstvennaya Tmutarakan'. Krasnodar: Torgovo-promyshlennaya palata Krasnodarskogo kraya.

    Please copy the following file to your computer: www.cais-soas.com.zip. You can see the folders that contained the two stolen "versions" and pictures as they existed on the web site of Shapour Suren-Pahlav on the 12th August 2005! Please unpack this file! Now start the stolen "versions". You can see all mentions of SOAS (the School of Oriental and African Studies of the University of London) and the University of London that were placed illegally on the web site www.cais-soas.com at that moment. You can see references to the two books by Sergei V. Rjabchikov as well. The web administrator of the Kuban State University registered these folders together with their contents, he signed a document and all the pages of two "versions" printed in sheets from the World Wide Web directly.

    And now you can visit Library of Congress Online Catalog

    please print http://catalog.loc.gov/cgi-bin/Pwebrecon.cgi?DB=local&PAGE=First

    then print the word Riabchikov, S.V. in the window

    and the key word Author

    and click Begin Search

    You can see Riabchikov, S. V. (Sergei V.) here you can read the necessary info:

    Riabchikov, S. V. (Sergei V.) Riabchikov, S. V. (Sergei V.) Drevnie teksty slavian i adygov : [materialy po rasshifrovke drevnikh slavianskikh pisґmennostei] / S.V. Riabchikov. 1998

    (I use the letter combinations ja and ya, x, and the employees of the Library of Congress used the letter combinations ia, ks to transcribe the Russian words.)

    Of course, these two my books are kept in Russian leading libraries, the information about publications of my books was published in the special bulletins on new books!

    I am glad to learn that the plagiarist is Shapour Suren-Pahlav!!! I am sure!!!

    Sergei V Rjabchikov


    .


    PUBLIC NOTICE


    By: Dr Olga Dagmar

     

    Re: Sergei V. Rjabchikov - The Plagiarist

    The Slavonic Antiquity

     

     

     

    Dear Readers

     

    A number of my articles including these two articles ("The Scythians, Sarmatians, Meotians: Interpretation of the Ancient Cultures" - and - "The Interpertation of Scythian, Sarmathian, & Meotian-Sarmatian Motifs & Records") have already been stolen by someone called Sergei V. Rjabchikov. He have modified and published them under his own name in the The Slavonic Antiquity website.

     

    He has created the above-mentioned website, for his own financial gains, by plagiarizing other researchers and art history students' works and publishing them under his own name.

     

    He has created a section (Make A Donation to Sergei V. Rjabchikov!) in that website and asks visitors to donate funds to him.

     

     

    Please be aware of his deceptions, he is a pretender and plagiarist. Do not fall to his trap.

     

     

    Top of Page

     



    Iranian Peoples

    THE SCYTHIANS, SARMATIANS, MEOTIANS: INTERPRETATION OF THE ANCIENT CULTURES


     

    By: Dr Olga Dagmar

    Please read the [ Public Notice ] regarding this article

    The nomad and farming Sarmatians (Sauromatae) related to the Scythians were closely connected with farming Meotians in the Kuban region for an appreciable length of time, from about 1st century B.C. - 2nd century A.D.

     

    One can suppose that the common culture was based on the nearness of the languages of both components. It is well known that the Scythians spoke an Indo-European language. As O.N. Trubachev proved, the language of the native inhabitants of Kuban, Sindi (Meotians), also belonged to the Indo-European languages. 

     

    The Sindi were descendants of the ancient Indo-Aryans who stayed in the Northern Caucasus partially (Trubachev 1976; 1978). 

     

    A bronze mirror of Meotian-Sarmatian period (1st - 2nd c. A.D.) was found in the Chernyshov barrow, Republic of Adygea, Russia (Leskov and Lapushnian 1987: 138, fig. 63, the right lower photo). The symbols depicted on it (see figure 1) are a key to the ancient cultures of the Scythians, Sarmatians and Sindi (Meotians).

     

    Figure 1.
    The ancient calendar on the bronze mirror. The first sun is included in the second sun. They represent the stages of the creation of the Universe.

    As a result, the god Hor (Old Russian Hors, Egyptian Horus) with the epithet Kolo 'Round' and the god Vit (Slavonic Vit with different epithets, Indo-Aryan Savitar) were the symbols of the winter solstice; the bull god Yarila was associated with the spring (1).

    The signs of the round mirror apply to a calendar, too. First, the circle with 12 rays is placed in the centre. It is a symbol of the sun as well as of a year (12 months). The "sun" is surrounded by another circle from which the four groups of triple short lines are drawn. It is the division of a year into four seasons.

    It is possible that the signs read in a clockwise direction. The three signs resemble the Greek letters beta, psi and eta (2). The two signs of a "spiral" read as modern Russian vertet' 'to turn round and round', (solntse)vorot 'motion of the sun', vershina 'top', varit' 'to boil', and Etruscan verse 'fire'. If the first "spiral" represented on the right side of the figure 1 denotes the winter solstice, December 22, then the "round" (the solar sign) denotes the summer solstice, June 22. The "spiral" precedes the Egyptian hieroglyph anh 'eternal'. This hieroglyph may correlate with the name of the Egyptian god of vegetation Osiris, a designation of the death and resurrection. On the other hand, the Scythian god Goitosiros corresponds to the Greek god Apollo (The History of Herodotus: Book IV). In this name one can pick out the Russian word goi associated with the fertility (Rybakov 1987: 70). I read the name Goitosiros as Goi t Osiros 'The Fertility is Osiros (Osiris)' (3). It is no wonder because the Egyptian god Osiris was worshipped in a part of the North Black Sea coastal area (Reder 1992: 268). This name looks like Russian yashcher 'lizard'. Perhaps it is related to the name of the West Slavonic chthonic power Iasse which helps the sun to rise in compliance with ancient beliefs (Rybarov 1994: 423). Besides, the main pagan god of the Circassians was Sozeris or Sozeresh, who was the patron of agriculture. Both variants of the name are also connected with the name of the god Osiris. The "spiral" may denote Russian kolo 'round' (4) as well (cf. Russian koleso 'wheel', kolobok from a Russian fairy-tale, lit. kolo bok 'round side', i.e. 'the sun'), cf. also the name of the pagan feast Kolyada (Belyakova 1995: 68). Interestingly, December 25 near the winter solstice corresponds to the day of Spiridon-povorot (Spiridon-Solntsevorot) in the Russian folk calendar (5).

    The Greek letter beta corresponds to the March and September. I believe that this letter denotes the Proto-Slavonic word sounding approximately as bi, cf. Russian bit' (the root bi-) 'to beat'. It is possible that it is a designation of the Scythian god Papaios (= the Greek god Zeus per the History of Herodotus: Book IV), cf. Russian bah, babah 'bang!', bahnut', babahnut' 'to bang', Circassian bzh''yh'e 'autumn' and Old Indian payate 'he gives to drink'. The deity fits the Russian pagan god thunderer Perun 'The one who beats' (Vasmer 1987a: 246). The Scythian goddess of the earth, Api, is the wife of Papaios. One can compare the name Api with Russian pit' (the root pi) 'to drink'.

    The Greek letter eta corresponds to July. So it is safe to assume that this word e- is associated with Russian eda 'food' (cf. also est' 'to eat').

    The Greek letter psi corresponds to May - June. The word like ps is included in the name of the Scythian goddess Argimpasa (= Celestial Aphrodite per the History of Herodotus: Book IV). The name Argimpasa can be split into the three words, Ar gim pasa. The first word, ar, correlates with Russian ariets 'Aryan', yary, yarostny 'furious', yarovoy sev 'spring sowing', bychok-yarovik 'bull', Yarila 'the Russian pagan god of the fertility of the spring-time; associated with the day of Yury' (see Tokarev 1992: 686-7). The word gim is comparable with Russian zima 'winter' (cf. also Old Indian himas 'winter' (Vasmer 1986: 97)) and Russian gumno 'barn'. The term pasa is comparable with Russian pasti 'to pasture'. The expression ar gim may be translated as 'the transformation from the winter to the spring', otherwise it signifies 'the beginning of the works in the fields and of the pasture of cattle'. The name of this goddess is preserved in the name of the Circassian pagan goddess of the water of all the rivers, Pseguash. Here pse is Circassian psy 'water', cf. also Greek psakas, psias 'drop; fine rain'. The pair of the words, Russian pasti 'to pasture' and Circassian psy 'water', is comparable with the pair of the words, Russian vodit' 'to lead' and voda 'water'. Thus, the ancient word *pas might mean 'to pasture near the water'. One can read the determinative HEAD OF A HORNED ANIMAL of the Linear A as *pas, besides the Greek letter psi represents a horned animal. The name of Argimpasa is also similar to the name of the Greek giant Argos, the herdsman of the cow (goddess) Io.

    According to a Scythian myth (The History of Herodotus: Book IV), the first man Targitaos begat three sons. Another myth reports (the same source) that the Scythian equivalent of the Greek god Heracles met a woman with features of a serpent instead of the legs. So this semi-serpent bore him three sons. On these grounds, I think that Targitaos is equal to Heracles (Raevsky 1994: 206), and his name reads Tar gita 'The giving (god)' (cf. Russian dar 'gift', god 'year', Lithuanian guodas 'honour, glory, entertaining'), it is the Russian pagan god Dazh'bog 'The giving god' (Rybakov 1987: 76) and the Proto-Slavonic god Dar 'The giving (god)' of the Phaistos disk.

    I think that the Greek god Heracles (Erakles) has the Scythian origin, as the Russian kolo associated with the sun (see above) is included in his name (the segment kl). Really, the name Erakles is Er(os) Kles 'The hero (demi-god) Kl(es)'. This character fighted against the women-warriors Amazons (Amazones in Greek) lived in a region of the foot-hills of the Caucasus and of the Sea of Azov (Taho-Godi 1991: 63), and their name was associated in my opinion with Circassian myzh''o 'stone'. The latter term is written down on the Maikop slab (the 3rd c. B.C.) with the help of the signs of the Linear B (Linear A) as maza (Dagmar 1998a: 23). It is an Indo-European word, cf. Latin massa 'lump, piece' and German Masse 'thickness, layer'.

    Let us examine the names of Targitaos' children, and then we shall search for the name of the semi-serpent goddess. Their names are Leipoxais, Arpoxais and Kolaxais. They received a golden plough, yoke, battle-axe and cup from the sky. These items show that the names of the sons denotes estates (farmers, cattle-breeders, and nobility) of the Scythians indeed. The common form -xa- means 'people'. As Old Russian yazyk means both 'language' and 'people' (Ilarion 1994: 115), I suggest the root kaz- (cf. south Russian kazati 'to speak') means 'people', too (6). The term leipo 'farmer' is comparable with Russian lapot' 'bast shoe' (< lapa 'foot' in Vasmer 1986: 459). Tleps is the name of a Circassian pagan god, the patron of smiths, it signifies lit. t leps 'this is a farmer, i.e. a Meotian (not a nomad)'. The term arpo 'cattle-breeder' is comparable with Russian rabota 'work' (the root rab), and German Arbeit 'work'. Then the term kola 'nobleman' denotes lit. 'the sun' (see above).

    Auchatai is the nation of Leipoxais; Katiari and Traspians are the nations of Arpoxais; Paralatai (the Royal Scythians) is the nation of Kolaxais. The term auchatai correlates with Russian ohotnik 'hunter', and ohota 'hunt' (7); the term katiari compares with Russian skotovod 'cattle-breeder', skot 'cattle' < s kot (kosh) 'near a carriage', and the term traspian may be restored as t raspian 'this is razboynik 'robber' (who steals cattle)' (cf. Russian razboy 'robbery', razboynik 'robber'). At last, the term paralatai means '(the people of the god) Perun (and Lada (?)). Thus, the structure of the Scythian society is detailed.

    The Scythians are called Skoloti, i.e. S koloti '(The people) near the sun' (8), or Skoloti 'warriors' associated with Russian zakolot' 'to stab', cf. also Lithuanian kalu 'I strike (with a hammer or a axe)' (Vasmer 1986: 296). At last, the term Skoloti can be associated with Russian sokol 'falcon', cf. Russian cherkas 'Cossack' and cherkes 'Circassian' (9) < Ossetic charkas 'eagle' (Vasmer 1987b: 344); the term sokol 'falcon' signifies 'prince' in Slovo o polku Igoreve (The Song of Igor's Host), a masterpiece of the earliest Russian literature. Interestingly, the ancient term ant 'Slav' is equal to Etruscan antas 'eagle'. So, the names of the Slavs, Cossacks and Circassians has the common origin.

    The names of the three sons in the version of the myth about the semi-serpent goddess are Agathyrsos, Gelonos and Skythes. The term agathyrsos correlates with Russian bogatyr' 'bogatyr (cavalryman)'; the similar term bagatar was registered among Alani (Ossets) in the 10th - 11th c. A.D. (Sakharov and Novosel'tsev 1997: 54). The term gelonos 'farmer' is split into ge (Greek ge 'earth') and lono (cf. Russian lono 'bosom'). The term skythes 'Scythian' is comparable with Russian skitat'sya 'to wander'. So the word 'Scythian' means lit. 'nomad'.

    The structure of the Scythian society is registered in a Russian fairy-tale, Ivan Bykovich, as well. Three brothers were born from the golden fish (the Russian Dazh'bog, the Scythian Targitaos). Their names are Ivan-charevich (Ivan, the son of a tsar (king)), Ivan, kuharkin syn (Ivan, the son of a cook), and Ivan Bykovich (Ivan, the son of the bull). The brothers were driving to the river Smorodina (*S moro 'Near the sea/death'), i.e. Kuban.

    Now one can find the name of the semi-serpent goddess. This character is represented on a Scythian gold horse frontlet (Galanina, Domansky and Smirnova 1981: 67, 68, photo). The goddess stands on the border of two worlds; the World Tree with 12 branches or petals (they are 12 months, i.e. a whole year) is depicted above her head. Her legs are replaced by two serpents. According to Y.A. Shilov's (1995: 189-90) investigation of the archaeological cultures of the Indo-Aryans, the team of a bull was presented together with the two snakes and symbol of fertility in a burial. On the other hand, the Indo-Aryan bull god Rudra 'Howling' was associated with snakes (Shilov 1995: 192). On these grounds I conclude that Argimpasa [Ar gim pasa] is this semi-serpent goddess. There is a good probability that an image of the goddess is a cow, too. Some features of this goddess are reflected in the Russian pagan gods Yarila and Veles.

    Circassian g''ethe 'spring-time' is comparable with Russian gad 'reptile (snake)', gadyuka 'snake species', Serbo-Croat gad 'dirtiness, mud', and Old Indian gad 'to crawl'.

    One can reconstruct the name of the Scythian god corresponding to the Greek god Ares. According to Herodotus (The History: Book IV), this god was incarnated in an iron sword akinakes placed on the top of a "temple" (a big heap of brushwood). The victims to this god were cattle, horses, and even captives. Obviously this historian reported the god's name, and it was consonant with the word akinakes 'sword'. I think that it is the god Agin (Agni) = the Indo-Aryan god Agni 'Fire'. This name is preserved in the Circassian pagan god's name Ahin 'the protector of cattle'. A priest holding a knife is represented on a seal of the Aryan state Mitanni; here the sign of the god Agni is shown, too (Shilov 1995: 266).

    The sign of the mirror corresponding to October - December is the head of a horse. A Scythian silver amphora (Galanina, Domansky and Smirnova 1981: 43, photo) is decorated with the sign of a winged horse. 11 petals (months) is depicted above its head. Hence a horse symbolizes a certain month of the Scythian (Sarmatian) calendar. Interestingly, in conformity with the data of the excavations of the Indo-Aryan burials (Shilov 1995: 205), the skulls of horses indicate the sunsetting in winter. It is known that the Indo-Aryan god Agni 'Fire' became like a horse and a man (Shilov 1995: 203). Russian loshad' 'horse' is comparable with Old Church Slavonic l'shchati 'to shine' (Dagmar 1998a: 8). The horse Dadhikra of the Indo-Aryan mythology played a role of the sun swimming through the ocean of the other world (Shilov 1995: 202). This horse was closely connected with the deity Agni (Toporov 1991a). The wise man Dadhyanc who was closely connected with this horse received the enclosures for cows (Toporov 1991b). An Indo-Aryan symbol, number 5, is associated with the horses in several burials (Shilov 1995: 202). On the other hand, the Scythian tip of the sheath of a sword (Galanina, Domansky and Smirnova 1981: 104, photo) is covered with 5 signs of the sun (fire). Conceivably mech-samorub 'the sword which hews itself' mentioned in Russian fairy-tales conforms to the Scythian sacral sword.

    Relying on such data, I conclude that the images of the Scythian (and Sarmatian) god Agin/Agni are iron sword and horse, cf. the wordplay in Russian: rezat' 'to cut' and rezvy kon' 'fast horse'. Later this god was replaced by the goddess Makosh' (or Mokosh') in the Russian mythology. This name is associated with Russian kosh signifying 'carriage' and 'military transport' (Schilov 1995: 358). On the other hand, Russian skot 'cattle' means lit. s kot (kosh) 'near a carriage'. The component ma- in the goddess' name belongs in my opinion to the Indo-European root *mei- denoting ideas "agreement" and "consent". Perhaps the word ma- is the reflex of the name of the Indo-Aryan sun god Mitra (Toporov 1992a: 154). Makosh' is the solar deity, too (Belyakova 1995: 101). According to ancient beliefs (Rybakov 1994: 390, 392), the Friday before November 21 is dedicated to the goddess Makosh'. This goddess is represented together with two horsemen on a Russian embroidery (Rybakov 1994: 391). The record of the Phaistos disk tells of the girl Kyat (Makosh') who whips up horses to the winter solstice (Dagmar 1988: 9). Moreover, this deity is presented among the pagan Circassian deities as Kodes 'the god of the sea'. It is not wonder, because the ancient Indo-European god of the sea was incarnated in a horse or a bull (Losev 1992: 323). Besides, the Russian fairytale character Koshchei Bessmertny may be related to the goddess Makosh'.

    Herodotus (The History: Book IV) also reported the name of the god Thagimasados who was equal to the Greek god Poseidon. I split the name Thagimasados into three parts, Ta gima sad 'This is the winter, (the god) Sad'. This chthonic deity Sad is preserved in the character Sadko from the Russian traditional heroic poem of the same name. Sadko is the sea god. One can compare the morpheme sad with the name of Seth, the enemy of Osiris in the Egyptian mythology; German Sand 'sand'; Russian syad' 'sit down!'; and Eglish '(sun)setting'. The name of the Circassian pagan goddess, the girl of the sea water Hepeshuash, is divided into Hepe shuash, where hepe is associated with Russian gibnut' 'to perish', gubit' 'to destroy', and shuash is associated with the name Sad. I suppose that the name of the girl means 'The destroying Sad'.

    So one can define more precisely the srtucture of the Scythian religion (see Raevsky 1994: 206-10). The goddess Tabiti (Indo-Aryan Tapas (Raevsky 1994: 205); cf. also Russian topit' 'to heat', teply 'warm'; cf. the name of the Russian pagan supreme god Svarog < Old Indian svar 'the sun' and ruh- 'to grow; to be born') begat the god Papaios/Perun with the epithet "Wind" and goddess Api, they begat the god Goitosiros, goddess Argimpasa, god corresponding to Ares (Agin/Agni) and god Targitaos. Then Targitaos and Argimpasa begat the Scythians.

    Let us examine the bronze mirror again. The sun represented in its centre is Tabiti. On the mirror one can pass a line between points of the vernal equinox (March 22) and of the autumnal equinox (September 22). It is worth noting that both corresponding signs are the letter beta symbolizing the god Papaios (cf. Russian bab'e leto 'warm time in September', and even babay 'an oral fetish to frighten a child'). The "round" (the solar sign) denotes the god Targitaos. The certain months of this calendar are specified by the signs of the deities Goitosiros (December, the winter solstice), Argimpasa (May - June), Agin/Agni (October - December) and Targitaos (June, the summer solstice).

    Then one can reconstruct all the seasons (season/specific days/actions of the Russian folk calendar):

    1st season / November 22 - February 21 / the winter solstice of December 22; the feast Kolyada; the day of Spiridon-Solntsevorot of December 25 (10).

    2nd season / February 22 - May 21 / the day of Vlasy (the god Veles, protector of herds) of February 24; the vernal equinox of March 22; the day of Krasnaya gorka of April 25; the day of Yury (Egory) of May 6: the beginning of the works in the fields and of the pasture of cattle.

    3rd season / May 22 - August 21 / the day of Yarila of June 17; the summer solstice of June 22; the day of Kupala of June 24.

    4th season / August 22 - November 21 / the day called oseniny of September 21; the autumnal equinox of September 22; the day of Fedora of September 24: the end of summer and of season called bab'e leto 'warm time in September'; the day of Egory osenny of October 13: the end of the works in the fields; the main week dedicated to the goddess Makosh' before November 21.

    On the basis of present knowledge, I think that Herodotus described the Scythian religious calendar in his History.

    Another calendar is inscribed on a mirror of Meotian-Sarmatian period (1st - 2nd c. A.D.) from the same Chernyshov barrow (Leskov and Lapushnian 1987: 138, fig. 63, the left upper photo). Here the left-side swastika (the symbol of the winter solstice according to Shilov 1995: 467) is depicted in the centre of the round. The 28 days are shown as the short radial lines. Number 14 (28:2) is the number of the lunar calendar connected with the god Osiris (Shilov 1995: 200).

    Another calendar is inscribed on a mirror of Meotian-Sarmatian period (1st - 2nd c. A.D.) from the same barrow (Leskov and Lapushnian 1987: 138, fig. 63, the right upper photo). The round symbolizes the sun; the four "tridents" denote the four seasons, they are (November 22 - February 21), (February 22 - May 21), (May 22 - August 21), and (August 22 - November 21). The four "spirals" signify the motion of the sun throughout the year.

    A calendar record may be inscribed on a mirror of Meotian-Sarmatian period (1st - 2nd c. A.D.) from the same barrow (Leskov and Lapushnian 1987: 138, fig. 63, the left lower photo). Several groups of lines are depicted on this mirror.

    The Circassian language is an Indo-European one. I should like to add the following parallels: Circassian h''uray 'round', cf. south Russian horovod 'round', Greek horos 'round dance', Latin gyrus 'round'; Circassian h''uy 'male', cf. Russian goy 'abundant'; Circassian ''etyn, p''etyn 'to raise', cf. Russian den', Etruscan tin-, Latin dies 'day'; Circassian tyg''e, dyg''e 'the sun' (11), cf. Old Indian dahas 'fire, heat', German Tag 'day'; Circassian sh''h'e 'head; top', cf. German hoch 'tall'; Circassian mafe 'day', maf''e 'fire', cf. Latin moveo 'to move'; Circassian nef 'light', cf. Russian nebo 'sky'; Circassian g''ny 'winter', cf. Russian zima, Old Indian himas 'winter'; Circassian nart 'hero in Circassian folklore', cf. Russian narod 'people' (12); Circassian inyzh 'evil ghost', cf. Russian niz 'bottom', nizhny 'lower'.

    It is known that the Circassian hero (nart) Sosruko (Sausryk''u) was connected with the solar myths (Kaloev, Mizhaev and Salakaya, 1992: 200). He returned the fire to other heroes as well (Mizhaev 1992). The following record - Mafa narata Sushe-riko - is written down on the Maikop slab (the 3rd c. B.C.) with the help of the signs of the Linear B (Linear A) (Dagmar 1998a: 23). The text means 'The fire (day) of the hero (by the name) Dryness/Sun-King'. Here the name Sushe-riko (Sosruko, Sausryk''u) consists of the word sushe (cf. Russian sush' 'dry place', suhoy 'dry' and Old Indian surya 'the sun') and of the word riko (cf. Latin rex, Etruscan luc-, Old Indian rajan 'king', German Reich 'state', and even Polynesian ariki 'chief'). I think that Sushe-[riko] is a variant of the name of the Indo-Aryan god Surya 'The Sun' who is represented as the eye of the deities Mitra, Varuna, and Agni; sometimes this god is equl to Savitar (Toporov 1992b). Interestingly, the fragment of a Tmutarakan' amphora contains the word sush 'dryness' and the picture of an eye (Dagmar 1998b: 22-3). On the other hand, the inhabitants of the ancient Russian town Tmutarakan' worshipped, by hypothesis (Vernadsky 1948), the god Hors. The name of Tmutarakan' (cf. Russian t'ma 'darkness, gloom' and tarashchit (glaza) 'to goggle') may be a symbol of the death and resurrection, of the Egyptian/Scythian deities Horus and Osiris. In the Abkhazian mythology Hudysh is connected with Sasrykva (the Abkhazian variant of Circassian Sosruko) (Salakaya 1992). Alternatively, according to the Indo-Aryan mythology, Surya competed with Etasha (Toporov 1992b: 478). The names Hudysh and Etasha are similar. Several features of the hero Sosruko are preserved in the Russian fairytale character Koshchei Bessmertny. In the Circassian mythology there are Thozhey, the horse of the hero Sosruko, and his enemy, the old woman Uorsar (Mizhaev 1992). I read the name Thozhey as T hozhey 'This is a fast (horse) or the sun', cf. Russian hod 'motion; movement', German heiЯ 'hot', English hot, heat. The name Uorsar can be divided into the two words, Uor sar, cf. Russian vor zari 'thief of the dawn'.

    Moreover, the name Zeigut or Zeikuth of a Circassian pagan god (the patron of horsemen) is comparable with Greek zygios 'involved (by horses)', cf. also Russian zagon 'driving in; enclosure (for cattle)' and Greek Zygopolis, Zihia 'Zihia'. Hakustash, the name of a Circassian pagan god, the patron of arable oxen, compares with Russian gustoy 'thick'. Emish', the name of a Circassian pagan god, the patron of sheep, compares with the name of the Indo-Aryan sun god Mitra.

    In summary I should like to stress that the data obtained hereabove witness that the Proto-Slavonic culture existed at least in 5th century B.C., when Herodotus had written the History. The region Gerros and the river of the same name (the branch of the river Dnieper) are mentioned in this work (Book IV). The river Gerros divided the land of the nomad Scythians from the land of Royal Scythians. I believe that the term Gerros means Ge Ros 'The country Ros' (cf. Greek ge 'earth'), so that at least a part of the nomad Scythians belonged to the Proto-Slavs (cf. Russian Rus 'Rus', Rossiya 'Russia', and russky 'Russian').

    NOTES

    1. The forms of deities' names are presented as they sound in modern Russian.

    2. The Greek letter beta correlates with sing 72 pe/be of the Linear B (Linear A), and the Greek letter eta - with sign 38 e of the same system.

    3. The word t- (or ta) compares with Russian to 'that' and eto 'this' (Dagmar 1998a: 19, 22).

    4. See (Rybakov 1987: 48).

    5. See (Belyakova 1995: 197-228).

    6. Cf. also Russian kazak 'Cossack'.

    7. Cf. also Old Indian ksayati 'he owns, predominates' (Vasmer 1987b: 271).

    8. See also (Rybakov 1994: 434).

    9. Cf. also the interpretation of the word cherkes 'Circassian' as 'warrior' (Sakharov and Novosel'tsev 1997: 92).

    10. Notice that the real date of a folk fiest (the 16 - 17 c. A.D.) = the date presented in this article minus 3 days (Belyakova 1995: 193). Then, e.g., the day of Spiridon-Solntsevorot corresponds to December 22 (the winter solstice).

    11. So Circassian adyge 'Circassian' means lit. 'solar', cf. the Scythian name Kolaxais.

    12. It follows that the term kazak means 'bogatyr, hero' (cf. also -xa- 'people').

    BIBLIOGRAPHY

    Belyakova, G.S., 1995. Slavyanskaya mifologiya. Moscow: Prosveshchenie.

    Galanina L.K., Y.V. Domansky and G.I. Smirnova, 1981. Skify. Putevoditel' po vystavke otdela istorii pervobytnoy kul'tury Gosudarstvennogo Ermitazha. Leningrad: Iskusstvo.

    Ilarion, 1994. Slovo o Zakone i Blagodati. Moscow: Stolitsa, Skriptory.

    Kaloev, B.A., M.I. Mizhaev and S.H. Salakaya, 1992. Narty. In: S.A. Tokarev (ed.) Mify narodov mira. Vol. 2. Moscow: Sovetskaya Entsiklopediya, pp. 199-201.

    Leskov, A.M. and V.L. Lapushnian (eds.), 1987. Shedevry drevnego iskusstva Kubani. Art Treasures of Ancient Kuban. Moscow: Ministry of Culture of the USSR.

    Losev, A.F., 1992. Poseydon. In: S.A. Tokarev (ed.) Mify narodov mira. Vol. 2. Moscow: Sovetskaya Entsiklopediya, pp. 323-4.

    Mizhaev M.I., 1992. Sosruko. In: S.A. Tokarev (ed.) Mify narodov mira. Vol. 2. Moscow: Sovetskaya Entsiklopediya, p. 464.

    Raevsky, D.S., 1994. Skifsky panteon: semantika struktury. In: V.Y. Petrukhin (ed.) Istoriko-etnograficheskie issledovaniya po fol'kloru. Sbornik statey pamyati Sergeya Alexandrovicha Tokareva. Moscow: Vostochnaya Literatura, pp. 198-213.

    Reder, D.G., 1992. Osiris. In: S.A. Tokarev (ed.) Mify narodov mira. Vol. 2. Moscow: Sovetskaya Entsiklopediya, pp. 267-8.

    Dagmar, O., 1998a. Drevnie texty slavyan i adygov. Krasnodar: Torgovo-promyshlennaya palata Krasnodarskogo kraya.

    Dagmar, O., 1998b. Tainstvennaya Tmutarakan'. Krasnodar: Torgovo-promyshlennaya palata Krasnodarskogo kraya.

    Rybakov, B.A., 1987. Yazychestvo Drevney Rusi. Moscow: Nauka.

    Rybakov, B.A., 1994. Yazychestvo drevnikh slavyan. Moscow: Nauka.

    Sakharov, A.N. and A.P. Novosel'tsev (eds.), 1997. Istoriya Rossii s drevneyshikh vremen do kontsa XVII veka. Moscow: AST.

    Salakaya, S.H., 1992. Sasrykva. In: S.A. Tokarev (ed.) Mify narodov mira. Vol. 2. Moscow: Sovetskaya Entsiklopediya, p. 412.

    Shilov, Y.A., 1995. Prarodina Ariev: Istoriya, obryady i mify. Kiev: SINTO.

    Taho-Godi, A.A., 1991. Amazonki. In: S.A. Tokarev (ed.) Mify narodov mira. Vol. 1. Moscow: Sovetskaya Entsiklopediya, pp. 63-4.

    Tokarev, S.A. (ed.), 1992. Mify narodov mira. Vol. 2. Moscow: Sovetskaya Entsiklopediya, pp. 686-7.

    Toporov V.N., 1991a. Dadhikra. In: S.A. Tokarev (ed.) Mify narodov mira. Vol. 1. Moscow: Sovetskaya Entsiklopediya, p. 347.

    Toporov V.N., 1991b. Dadh'yanch. In: S.A. Tokarev (ed.) Mify narodov mira. Vol. 1. Moscow: Sovetskaya Entsiklopediya, p. 347.

    Toporov V.N., 1992a. Mitra. In: S.A. Tokarev (ed.) Mify narodov mira. Vol. 2. Moscow: Sovetskaya Entsiklopediya, pp. 154-7.

    Toporov V.N., 1992b. Sur'ya. In: S.A. Tokarev (ed.) Mify narodov mira. Vol. 2. Moscow: Sovetskaya Entsiklopediya, pp. 477-8.

    Trubachev, O.N., 1976. O sindakh i ikh yazyke. Voprosy yazykoznaniya, No 4: 39-63.

    Trubachev, O.N., 1978. Nekotorye dannye ob indoariyskom yazykovom substrate Severnogo Kavkaza v antichnoe vremya. Vestnik drevney istorii, No 4: 34-42.

    Trubachev, O.N., 1981. Indoarica v Severnom Prichernomor'e. Istochniki. Interpretatsiya. Rekonstruktsiya. Voprosy yazykoznaniya, No 2: 3-21.

    Vasmer, M., 1986. Etimologichesky slovar' russkogo yazyka. Vol. 2. Moscow: Progress.

    Vasmer, M., 1987a. Etimologichesky slovar' russkogo yazyka. Vol. 3. Moscow: Progress.

    Vasmer, M., 1987b. Etimologichesky slovar' russkogo yazyka. Vol. 4. Moscow: Progress.

    Vernadsky, G., 1948. Kievan Russia. New Haven: Yale University Press.

     



    IRANIAN PEOPLES

    THE INTERPRETATION OF SCYTHIAN, SARMATIAN & MEOTIAN-SARMATIAN MOTIFS & RECORDS


    By: Dr Olga Dagmar

    Please read the [ Public Notice ] regarding this article

    According to the History of Herodotus (Books III and IV), the Arimaspi, men with one eye, lived on the north near the gold-guarding griffins and the Hyperboreans

    Of course, this story is a reflex of the Scythian mythology. The name Arimasp- is Scythian; I read it as Ar ima (a)s pa 'An Aryan has [one] eye', cf. Scythian ar 'Aryan', ima 'he has', as 'bright; look; eye', pa 'to shine; to appear; to seem' or 'to protect', cf. also Old Indian arya 'excellent; respectable; dear; master; mistress', Russian imet' 'to have', imya 'name', yasny 'clear; bright; fine', Old Indian us 'to shine', bha 'to shine; to appear; to seem', pa 'to protect'. On the other hand, the name of the Argippaeans, the sacred and fair people (The History of Herodotus: Book IV), may be derived from Ar gipp- 'An Aryan is kept/is dead', cf. Russian gibnut' 'to perish; to be killed', gibel' 'death', gubit' 'to kill', Old Indian gup 'to keep; to preserve' (1). Obviously, this people symbolises the dead in the Scythian beliefs. Moreover, the country of Argippaeans is a symbol of the place of the dead in the Scythian religion. Greek Yperboreos 'Hyperborean, lit. 'Living behind Boreas, on the north'' is also a hint at the Scythian place of the dead, cf. Greek Boreas 'the god of the north wind' which comes from Scythian bor- 'to take', cf. Russian brat' 'to take', Old Indian bharati 'he carries, takes away' (2). Scythian eorpata signifies 'Amazon', lit. 'A killer of a husband', eor signigies 'husband', pata signifies 'to kill' (The History of Herodotus: Book IV). Really, eor is a variant of Scythian ar 'Aryan', and pata correlates with Old Indian pat 'to hew; to cut' (3). According to the History of Herodotus (IV), the source of the river Hypanis and the place where it rises is named Exampei 'The sacred ways'. I translate this name as 'The earth (A)pi', or 'The earth (goddess) (A)pi (associated with the water/rivers)' (4) , cf. Old Indian ksam 'earth', Russian zemlya 'earth', zemnoy 'earthly'. In fact, comparing Scythian myths included in the History of Herodotus (Book IV), I conclude that the earth goddess Api '(The goddess) drinks' corresponds to a daughter of the river Borysthenes (Dnieper). Let us examine several names of the Scythian kings (The History of Herodotus: Book IV). The name Ariant (Ari(a) ant) means 'The Aryan (royal) eagle', cf. the ancient term ant 'Slav', Etruscan antas 'eagle'. The name Ariapith (Aria pith) means 'The Aryan (royal) drink' (5), cf. Old Indian pita 'drunk', Russian pit'e 'drink'. The name Spargapith (Spa rga pith) means 'The abundance of the drink', cf. Old Indian sapat 'fullness; perfection; beauty', ruh 'growth; rising', Old Church Slavonic rog'' 'strength; advantage', Russian rog 'horn' (6). The name Idanthirs (Idan thyrs) means '(A person) passing the river Tanais, i.e. Don', cf. Scythian tan 'water', Old Indian danu 'trickling liquid' (7), Russian dno 'bottom (of river, etc.)', Old Indian tir 'to pass'. The name Sauly (Sa uly) means 'This is the shine', cf. Old Indian sa 'that; he', ullah 'to shine'. The name of the Scythian king Skilur (Dashevskaya 1991: 44) consists of two Scythian words, skil 'falcon' and ur 'bright; to shine', cf. Old Indian ullah 'to shine'. I believe that two virgins from the Hyperboreans, Arga and Opis (The History of Herodotus: Book IV), are indeed the Scythian goddesses. The goddess Opi(s) is Api, the Scythian goddess of the earth. The goddess Arga is either the goddess Argimpasa (cf. Scythian ar 'Aryan', Russian yary, yarostny 'furious', yarovoy sev 'spring sowing', bychok-yarovik 'bull', Old Indian go 'bull; cow') or the same goddess Api (in this case Arga is Ar ga 'The Aryan earth', cf. Greek ga, ge 'earth', Gaia 'the earth goddess', or A-rga 'The abundance', cf. Old Indian ruh 'growth; rising', Old Church Slavonic rog'' 'strength; advantage', Russian rog 'horn'). The name of the Scythian goddess Ditagoia (Dashevskaya 1991: 44) consists of two Scythian words, dita 'child' (cf. Russian ditya 'child') and goi associated with the fertility. One can try to translate four names of Scythians. The name Anahars signifies 'Without the joy', cf. Old Indian a 'not', na 'not', harsa 'joy'. The name Gnur signifies 'A killing (person)', cf. Old Indian ghna 'killing; destroying'. In this name there is the suffix r, cf. the corresponding Russian suffix ar. The name Lik signifies 'A face', cf. Russian lik, litso 'face'. The name Orik signifies 'An eagle', cf. Gothic ara, Hittite haras, Russian orel 'eagle', Greek ornis 'bird' (8).

    One can decode several Scythian, Sarmatian and Meotian-Sarmatian motifs and inscriptions. I use my own translation scheme for reading the Scythian (Proto-Slavonic) signs.

    1. Several signs are depicted on a wall of a building of the Scythian Naples, the Crimea, Ukraine (Dashevskaya 1991: 60, table 4, figure 1), see figure 1.

    Figure 1.

    The deity holding two mirrors and radiating light (cf. the three rays above the head) is undoubtedly the Scythian supreme sun goddess Tabiti. Actually, this goddess is represented as a queen who is sitting on a throne and who is holding a mirror (Galanina, Domansky and Smirnova 1981: 50, photo; 67). Now one can study the signs inscribed near the figure of the goddess. They are the syllables 59-72-33 75 09 Tabera vese 'Knowing Tabiti', cf. Old Indian tap '(of the sun) to scorch; to heat; to warm', tapas 'heat', Old Church Slavonic toplo 'warm', Old Indian vid 'to know', veda '(she) knows', Old Church Slavonic veshchy 'wise; knowing'.

    Interestingly, the Russian fairy tales inform about a queen looking in a magic mirror (Propp 1998: 398). In my view, it is a reflex of the Scythian mythology.

    Furthermore, on the same wall near the examined fragment there is the drawing of a house and three syllables, 26 67 09 rukise. I suppose that this house is the symbol of a Scythian town; the word rukise compares with Indo-Arian ruksa- 'light-coloured' from which in O.N. Trubachev's opinion (9) Russian Rus 'Russia' came. So the Russian terms Rus 'Russia', russky 'Russian' have indeed the ancient origin.

    A fragment of an anthropoid statuette was discovered at the Scythian ancient settlement Belsk, the Poltava Territory, Ukraine (Shramko 1999: 44, figure 6, 17; 45). It is a female figurine decorated with the sign of the sun, see figure 2.

    Figure 2.

    It is the designation of the sun goddess Tabiti.

    2. A treated fragment of a sheep's bone was discovered at the Scythian ancient settlement Belsk (Shramko 1999: 44, figure 6, 25; 46). It is decorated with sign 04 te, see figure 3.

    Figure 3.

    This word may be compared with Old Indian tejas 'fire; heat; intense heat; brightness', Greek teko 'to smelt', Russian tayat' 'to thaw'. I think that this artifact is connected with the cult of the Indo-Arian god Agni 'Fire'. In fact, the sheep are associated with Agni in the Indo-Arian beliefs (Shilov 1995: 216). Interestingly, some Scythian stands of hearths discovered in different places, the Crimea, Ukraine (Dashevskaya 1991: 60, table 8, figures 1 - 8), are decorated with the sheep's heads. So the sheep is a symbol of the Scythian fire god.

    3. The design of a dog and signs are presented on a wall of a crypt of the of the Scythian Naples (Dashevskaya 1991: 95, table 39, figure 6), see figure 4.

    Figure 4.

    I read the words 12 75 sove 'dog' (cf. spaka 'dog', svaka 'wolf' mentioned in the Avesta and Rigveda (10), Russian sobaka 'dog') and 23 26 m(u)ru connected with Old Indian mr 'to die; to kill', Russian umirat' 'to die', mertvyy 'dead'. It is known that skeletons or bones of sacrificed dogs were found in the Indo-Arian graves (Shilov 1995: 228-36). In Y.A Shilov's opinion (1995: 233), bones of dogs from Indo-Arian graves are signs of resurrection. Besides, two dogs accompanying the dead are presented in some Indo-Arian motifs (Shilov 1995: 231-2). It is possible that the dog depicted in figure 1 corresponds to the Iranian mythological dog-bird Semurv (11); in this instance signs read 75 26 veru and 12 23 somu. The expression veru Somu means 'to the fire of (the deity) Somu', cf. Russian varit' 'to boil', Etruscan verse 'fire' (12).

    4. A picture is presented on a wall of a crypt of the Scythian Naples (Dashevskaya 1991: 95, table 39, figure 8). A boar is surrounded by two dogs; a horseman and a singer are depicted near a hole. The plot may be decoded using the data of the Indo-Arian mythology. The two dogs belong to Yama, the king of the dead (13). The hole denotes this personage, the wordplay is quite possible: cf. Old Indian Yama 'king of the dead', Russian yama 'hole'. The horseman is the god Indra, the king of gods (the sun is his eye) (14), an inspirer of singers; he killed the demon Emusa incarnated in the boar by an arrow (15). The name Emusa is comparable with Old Indian mus 'to obscure light; thief; to steal, to rob; to break or to cut in pieces; to destroy'. Arrows are depicted on the picture, too. The wordplay is quite possible: cf. Old Indian bana 'arrow' and bhanu 'the sun'.

    The same crypt contains another picture (Dashevskaya 1991: 95, table 39, figure 1). A pair of the heads of horses is represented on the top of the roof of a house; arrows are presented around this sacred building. These two heads correspond to figures and images of a pair of the heads of horses as well as solar symbols of the Indo-Europeans (16). Apparently, the Scythian signs of horses have the same meaning. They may also signify asvattha, the axis of the world in the Indo-Arian beliefs. The arrows are in my opinion the solar signs.

    5. A Scythian silver tip of a gold-incrusted lying boar is from the Ulyap barrow No 1, near the Ulyap village, Republic of Adygea, Russia. Now it is in the State Museum of Oriental Art, Moscow, Russia (Anfimov 1987: 142; Leskov and Lapushnian 1987: 35, figure XXIII; 54). It is the incarnation of a deity, as the boar's body ends with a stylised griffin beak. I suppose that it is a design of the Indo-Arian god Rudra incarnated in the boar (17). Signs are depicted on it, see figure 5.

    Figure 5.

    Signs 23 33 read mura, cf. Old Indian mura 'rushing; impetuous'.

    The same barrow contained the Scythian tip of a gold head of a deer with silver antlers. Now it is in the State Museum of Oriental Art (Anfimov 1987: 142-3). An eye of this deer has a form of sign 14 do, cf. Old Indian dyo- 'day; the sky', Dyaus 'the sky god'. The wordplay is quite possible taking into account the variation of the sounds r/l: cf. Old Indian harina 'deer; the sun; white colour; having rays', Old Russian elen' 'deer', Greek elios 'the sun'. The Russian female name Svetlana may be divided into parts svet 'light' and (a)lan(a) 'fallow deer; deer', cf. also Old Indian sveta 'white'. Besides, an eye of the Indo-Aryan god Indra is the sun.

    A sign and several designs are depicted on a badge discovered in the mausoleum of the Scythian Naples (Dashevskaya 1991: 122, table 66, figure 25), see figure 6.

    Figure 6.

    The mask of the god Papai/Dyaus is united with a deer (it is his incarnation) and sign 15 mo 'the sun'.

    6. The design of two trees and several signs are presented on a wall of a Scythian crypt from the village Ozernoe, the Crimea, Ukraine (Dashevskaya 1991: 95, table 39, figure 7), see figure 7.

    Figure 7.

    I think that the figures of both trees represent respectively the Tree of Life and the Tree of Knowledge or vice versa known in the Bible (Genesis 2: 8), in the Egyptian and Babylonian mythologies (Tokarev 1991). The signs of rhombi may be read ai, cf. Hittite eia 'the World Tree', Old Indian ayus 'life; vitality; vigour; long life' (18), Russian yaytso 'egg', German Ei 'egg'. The whole text on the wall reads THE TREE WITH SIX BRANCHES, Ai; Ai, THE TREE WITH FOUR BRANCHES; Ai, sign 14 = Do, cf. Old Indian dyo- 'day; the sky'. It may be the designation of the Indo-Arian sky god Dyaus. On the other hand, the trees with the two and three pairs of branches may denote the interval between the second and third months, or February-March. The World Tree with three pairs of branches and the sign of the rhomb (ai) are depicted on a Scythian silver rhyton with a ram's head of its tip from the Karagodeuashkh barrow, Republic of Adygea, Russia. It was dated to 4th century B.C., now it is in the Hermitage, St. Petersburg, Russia (Anfimov 1987: 162-3). I believe that the ram's head denotes the constellation of Aries (the Ram) associated with April. A Scythian silver rhyton tipped with a Capricorn's head was discovered in the Seven Brothers barrow No 4, near the Varenikovskaya village, the Anapa district, the Krasnodar Territory, Russia (Anfimov 1987: 106-7). Scythian gold rhytons tipped with a dog's head and a ram's one (Anfimov 1987: 112-3) were discovered in this barrow as well. They were dated to 5th century B.C., now they are in the Hermitage. I think that the three designs denote the constellations of Capricornus (the Sea Goat), Canis Major (the Greater Dog) or Canis Minor (the Lesser Dog), and Aries (the Ram) respectively.

    Now one can try to decipher the motif of a Scythian gold plate which covered a vessel. This artifact was also discovered in the Seven Brothers barrow No 4; now it is in the Hermitage (Anfimov 1987: 115). Here an eagle tears a lamb to pieces. Three petals are depicted near the eagle. Seven petals and sign 12 so are depicted under the figure of the lamb, see figure 8.

    Figure 8.

    I translate the word (a)so as 'the sun; to shine; clear', cf. Scythian as 'bright; look; eye', Russian siyat' 'to shine', Old Church Slavonic siyati 'to shine', prisoe 'heat', Old Indian caya 'shine' (19). The seven petals denote the seventh month, or July. Therefore the three petals denote the third month, or March. Hence the lamb is a symbol of the constellation of Aries (the Ram) associated with April. I suppose that the eagle is a symbol of the sun: cf. Old Indian suparna 'eagle; (figuratively) the sun'. So this picture describes the transition from the spring to the summer.

    A Scythian inscription performed by the Greek letters contains in particular the names of Iamah and his father, Somah (Dashevskaya 1991: 27-8). One can suppose that the first name means 'The great vitality' (cf. Old Indian ayus 'life; vitality; vigour; long life', maha 'great; big', Russian moguchiy 'mighty'), and the second name means 'The great sun'.

    Several signs are depicted on a Scythian silver badge discovered in the Neizats burial ground, the Crimea, Ukraine (Dashevskaya 1991: 130, table 74, figure 11), see figure 9.

    Figure 9.

    Signs 12 05 76 read so jara, 'the old sun', cf. Scythian so 'bright; look; eye; heat; shine; to shine', Old Indian jara 'old age'. The one petal denotes the first month, or December. So it is a description of the death and the resurrection of the sun, i.e. the designation of the Scythian god Goitosir.

    Let us examine a Scythian brooch discovered in the Chernorechensky burial ground, the Crimea, Ukraine (Dashevskaya 1991: 121, table 65, figure 17). This artifact is divided into eight sections. It should be remembered that number four as well as number eight are connected with the symbols of the World Tree (Bessonova 1983: 82-3). Therefore no wonder that in the centre of this brooch there is the sign of the sun with some rays, see figure 10.

    Figure 10.

    Another Scythian brooch was also found in the same burial ground (Dashevskaya 1991: 121, table 65, figure 18). This artifact is divided into four sections; the rhomb ai is presented in its centre; the four signs of the sun denote the motion of the sun throughout a year.

    7. There are different motifs on a Scythian gold sword sheath and hilt from the Kelermes barrow No 1, near the Kelermesskaya village, the Giaginsky district, the Krasnodar Territory, Russia. They were dated to 7th - 6th century B.C., now they are in the Hermitage (Anfimov 1987: 58-9). First of all, two winged gods are disposed bilaterally along the World Tree decorated with the solar signs. Near them the signs of the Phaistos disk known as a decorative version of the writing of Linear A are engraved. Sign 35 ve of the Phaistos disk depicts a branch, cf. Old Indian vaya, Old Church Slavonic veya 'branch' (20). The word ve is comparable with Old Indian vah 'to blow', vata, vayu 'wind', Russian veyat' 'to blow', veter 'wind'; sign 38 of the Phaistos disk reads ho; the word ho is comparable with Old Indian ha 'the sun', hu 'to sacrifice (in the fire)'. I think that the winged gods denote Hyperboreans, and the whole plot denotes their country (the place of the dead). The linguistic verification is quite possible: cf. Russian sever 'north' which might originate from the expression se ver 'this is fire/top'. Griffins are depicted on the sheath, too. They are the gold-guarding griffins mentioned in the History of Herodotus (Book IV); the zigzag signs are engraved on the figures of some of them. Perhaps they are the symbols of the lightning. In the Indo-Arian beliefs, the zigzag denotes the god Dyaus (Shilov 1995: 452). Moreover, the zigzag may denote a dwelling, a palace, a mountain, a land (Shilov 1995: 455). On the tip of the sheath there is a vignette decorated with the twelve semicircles (they are symbols of the twelve months of a year divided into four seasons). On the upper part of the sheath there is the figure of a deer. It is a symbol of Papai, the Scythian god of the sky. Plenty of the rounds (solar signs) as well as the rhombi ai (Hittite eia 'the World Tree', Old Indian ayus 'life; vitality; vigour; long life', Russian yaytso 'egg', German Ei 'egg') are represented on the hilt. According to the Indo-Arian beliefs, the rhomb is a symbol of fertility (Shilov 1995: 189); this sign also denotes the goddess Aditi, the mother of deities (Shilov 1995: 452). Besides, the signs of rhombi are the signs of the growth of winter crops in some cases (Shilov 1995: 466).

    A deer and a tree with seven branches are presented on a Meotian-Sarmatian pitcher dated to 2nd century B.C. (Leskov and Lapushnian 1987: 143, photo 68). I think that this deer is the sky god Papai standing near the World Tree.

    8. Now one can interpret the inscription on a Scythian censer from the Belyaus burial ground, the Crimea, Ukraine (Dashevskaya 1980: 21, figure 3), see figure 11.

    Figure 11.

    Five sections divided by vertical lines include sings as follows: 37; 77, THE TREE with eight pairs of branches, 77; 56 56 "rhomb"; 37; 77, THE TREE with night pairs of branches, 77. Sign 37 reads Ti, cf. the name Dyy of the Old Russian pagan god of the sky (21), cf. also Old Indian dyo- 'day; the sky', di 'to shine', Dyaus 'the sky god'. Both trees may denote the interval between the eighth and ninth months, or August-September. In this context signs 56 56 "rhomb" read Papai, and it is another name of the Scythian sky god. Sign 77 reads ga, cf. Old Indian go 'bull; cow'. Indeed, the bull is an incarnation of the god Dyaus in the Indo-Arian mythology (22). As has been shown earlier, the name Papai may correlate with Old Indian payate 'he gives to drink'. In fact, the rain of the Indo-Aryan god Dyaus is a semen to produce the new, in particular, the deities.

    9. Now one can decode the motif represented on a Scythian gold rhyton discovered in the village Merdzhany near the town Anapa, the Krasnodar Territory, Russia (Bessonova 1983: 111-2, figure 31; Anfimov 1987: 135-6). I have distinguished the following features: the World Tree with three pairs of branches (March 22, the vernal equinox); the goddess Tabiti sitting on a throne; the skull of a horse at a stake; the horseman Targitai (Tar gita 'The giving (god)') holding horn of plenty. The skull of a horse denotes December 22, the winter solstice, and the god Targitai denotes June 22, the summer solstice. Midway between these two dates the Tree (March 22) is situated.

    It is reasonably safe to suggest that the Scythian god Targitai corresponds to the Indo-Aryan god Indra. The latter deity has epithets 'Generous' and 'Donor'. Let us examine one of figures depicted on a Scythian bone plate from the Gayman's Grave dated to 4th century B.C. (Bessonova 1983: 19, figure 1). A hero kills a dragon. I believe that here the god Indra kills either the dragon (serpent) Vritra or the serpent Susna. According to the Indo-Arian beliefs, the god Indra associated with the sky and the sun as well as the god Agni 'Fire' are twin brothers. On the other hand, according to the Greek historian Diodorus, the brothers Pal and Nap are the forefathers of the Scythians (23). The name Pal is comparable with Russian palit' 'to burn; to scorch', Old Indian paridahyate 'is burning' (cf. also dah 'to burn'), and the name Nap is comparable with Old Indian nabhas 'sky', Russian nebo 'sky'. So the name Pal is another name of the god Agni, and the name Nap is another name of the god Indra. The latter character is the junior sun of Prajapati. It immediately follows that the name of the Greek god Apollon 'Apollo' having unclear etymology derived from Old Indian aparam 'junior'. It seems plausible that Greek Apollo is a reflex of the Indo-Arian god Indra. It is felt that Indra plays the role of the Scythian chthonic (sun) deity called Goitosir, and the role of the Scythian sun deity called Targitai. Scythian goi associated with the fertility is comparable with Old Indian gaya 'house; household; family; offspring; sky', Iranian (Avesta) gaya 'life'. The god Goitosir may be compared with Gaya Martan, the ancestor of mankind in the Iranian mythology (24). It is known that Indra is an inspirer of singers; the wordplay is quite possible: cf. Old Indian gaya 'house; household; family; offspring; sky' and gaya 'song'.

    According to the Indo-Arian beliefs, the god Indra kills his father. An interesting plot is presented on a Scythian gold plate from a barrow near village Gyunovka (Bessonova 1995: 117, figure 34). A horseman is situated near the World Tree identified by the rhombi ai presented above and under it; this personage kills a deer. I think that this picture depicts the god Indra killing his father, the sky god. The latter is identified by the sign of a club depicted under the design of the deer.

    According to the Indo-Arian beliefs, Saci, a mysterious character, is the wife of Indra (Neveleva 1975: 73). I believe that her name signifies 'The moon', cf. Old Indian sasi 'the moon'. Now one can decipher the design of an artifact discovered in the Kul-oba barrow, the Kerch Peninsula, the Crimea, Ukraine (Bessonova 1983: 117). A horseman kills a hare by a javelin. It is possible that the horseman is the sun god Indra, and the hare is an incarnation of the moon goddess Saci/Sasi: the wordplay is quite possible, cf. Old Indian sasi 'the moon', sasa 'rabbit'. This story is preserved in a Lithuanian legend: the goddess of sun cut her husband, the god of moon, by a sword (Afanasiev 1996: 313). In more ancient times, the sun was a male, and the moon was a female. A tip looking like a horse's head was discovered in the Ulyap barrow No 2 near the village Ulyap, Republic of Adygea, Russia (Anfimov 1987: 87). This artifact was dated to 6th - 5th century B.C., now it is in the Hermitage. The horse's head symbolises the sun god Indra, and two figures of hares located instead of the nostrils symbolyse the moon goddess. Now the meaning of another name of Indra's wife, Indrani, is clear: it is split into the name Indra and the word ni, cf. Old Indian ni 'down'.

    The sun deity Indra rules on the third sky (Neveleva 1975: 61, 65, 68). A pottery vessel was discovered in a Sarmatian burial, near the Donskoy village, the Rostov-on-Don Territory, Russia. Now it is in the Azov Museum of local lore (Maximenko 1998: 220, figure 37, 6). The three strips represented on the vessel demonstrate in my opinion the three skies. The sign of the sun located above them depicts the sun god Indra.

    Two riders and several signs are depicted on a Scythian grave-stone from Bakhchisaray, the Crimea, Ukraine (Dashevskaya 1991: 100, table 44, figure 6). The two signs are presented on the figure of a personage, depicted at the left, see figure 12.

    Figure 12.

    Signs 80 09 read mase 'the moon', cf. Old Indian mas 'the moon'. The signs may read as 07 09 Dise 'Dyaus, the sky god' as well.

    A column of the signs are presented under the figure of this personage, see figure 13.

    Figure 13.

    Signs 59 05 59 15 read tyaja tamo 'the disappearance of the darkness', cf. Old Indian tyaj 'to leave; to abandon', tamas 'darkness'.

    At last, a personage, depicted at the right, holds a horn, the two signs are presented under his figure, see figure 14.

    Figure 14.

    Signs 59 33 read Tar(a), cf. Old Indian da 'to give', Russian dar 'gift', Old Indian tara 'fire; horse; carrying across; saviour; protector; clean; clear'. The name Tar(a) is a variant of the name Targitai (25). Again, the figure of the horseman holding of horn of plenty is a symbol of this god. The decoded plot may describe the marriage of the sun and the moon (26). Interestingly, in A. Afanasiev's (1996: 317) opinion, the name of the Scythian moon goddess includes the words vaita 'hunt; pasture' and surus 'fast'.

    The words tamo and Tar compare with the name of the ancient Russian town Tamatarha.

    Two signs are depicted on a pot discovered at the Scythian ancient settlement Tarpanchi, the Crimea, Ukraine (Dashevskaya 1991: 80, table 24, figure 4), see figure 15.

    Figure 15.

    I read the name 59 33 Tar(a) 'Targitai'. Perhaps this god is a donor of the new crops in the Scythian mythology. On the other hand, the god Indra is associated with the fertility, he brings the abundance and crops.

    10. Let us consider the designs and signs depicted on Scythian spindles discovered at different places of the Crimea, Ukraine (Dashevskaya 1991: 115, table 59, figures 1-5). A deer and a goat are depicted on the first spindle (Dashevskaya 1991: 115, table 59, figure 1). I think that the deer is an image of the sky god. The goat (cf. Old Indian aja 'goat', ajam, ajah 'unborn') may be an image of the Indo-Arian deity Aja Ekapad connected with the deities Pusan, Indra and Varuna (Toporov 1991d; Shilov 1995: 208-15). A pair of deer in different positions is represented on two spindles (Dashevskaya 1991: 115, table 59, figures 4 and 5). They demonstrate the movement of the sky or the sun, cf. Old Indian vartula 'spindle', vartulas 'round', Old Church Slavonic vreteno, Russian vereteno 'spindle', Old Church Slavonic var'' 'heat', Armenian varim 'I am kindling', German warm 'warm' (27). Old Indian vartula 'spindle' may be split into var (cf. Old Indian vartma 'path', vart 'to turn; to move', vardh 'to multiply; to increase; to grow', varsa 'year') and tula (cf. Old Indian tula 'balance, weighing scales', tur 'to pass').

    Several signs and designs are depicted on a spindle (Dashevskaya 1991: 115, table 59, figure 2), see figure 16.

    Figure 16.

    The word 75 33 33 verar(a) is associated with terms mentioned above. Several animals are gathered near the sitting deity. Since a she-deer is located in the immediate neighbourhood of this god, this is Dyaus/Papai. On the other side of the spindle there are the designs of clouds and sign 37 ti, see figure 17.

    Figure 17.

    The name Ti correlates with the name Dyy of the Old Russian pagan god of the sky, cf. also cf. Old Indian dyo- 'day; the sky', di 'to shine', Dyaus 'the sky god'.

    Interestingly, the Old Russian masterpiece The Song of Igor's Host contains the following passage: Svist zverin v''sta, zbisya Div, klichet vr''hu dreva, velit poslushati zemli neznaeme -- Vl''ze, i Pomoriyu, i Posuliyu, i Surozhu, i Korsunyu, i tebe, T'mutorokan'skyi bl''van. Here Div (cf. Old Indian div 'sky') is equal to Dyaus. He is on the sky (lit. 'above a tree'), besides, he is associated with animals.

    Two designs are inscribed on a spindle (Dashevskaya 1991: 115, table 59, figure 3), see figures 18 and 19.

    Figure 18.

    Figure 19.

    I have distinguished the stylised figure of a horse as well as signs 59 33 Tar(a) 'Targitai' in figure 18. Actually, the fiery horses correlate with the god Indra (Bessonova 1983: 65). A "hair" of the tail of Targitai's horse is separated; four hair are depicted in figure 19. According to the Indo-Arian beliefs, an incarnation of Indra is a horse-hair. Let us consider the Russian fairy tale Zolotoe vereteno (A gold spindle). A girl, Annushka, dropped a spindle into a well. Her step-mother demanded that she took it out. The girl went down to the well's bottom. She met a white old man, the master of the water of the well. He said that Baba-Yaga had got the spindle; he said how to go to her, too. The girl met horses that asked to take one hair from their tails. She did so. Then she came to the house of Baba-Yaga, and so on. At last, Annushka got a gold spindle and the gold. Interestingly, in some versions of this fairy tail, a girl got the cattle (Korepova 1992: 496). Thus the Scythian myth is reflected in the Russian fairy tail. One can realise the meaning of the component Yaga of the name Baba-Yaga (the Old woman Yaga). This personage tries to roast a hero in an oven according to several Russian fairy tales. Sometimes she gives him a horse. I believe that these events are a hint at the Indo-Arian sacrifices to the fire god Agni associated with horses as well. So I compare the name Yaga with Old Indian yagya 'sacrifice'. This personage (= Old Russian pagan goddess called Makosh'?) is closely related to the fire god Agni. Baba-Yaga personifies the winter condition of the earth (Shepping 1997: 154).

    11. Two silver bowls discovered in a Sarmatian barrow mound of the Zhutovo cemetery were dated to 2nd century B.C. - 1st century A.D. (Mordvintseva 2000: 146, figure 2; 151). Both vessels are decorated with the figures of eagles. One of the bowls contains sign 72 be, see figure 20.

    Figure 20.

    I compare the word be with Russian bit' (the root bi-) 'to beat', cf. also the name of the Russian pagan god thunderer Perun 'The one who beats' (Vasmer 1987: 246). It is a hint at the Scythian sky god Papai. Interestingly, eagles are associated with the Greek god Zeus and Roman god Jupiter who are the sky deities; besides, an eagle is carrying and throwing the arrow of thunder in the Russian folklore (Afanasiev 1996: 147). The wordplay is quite possible: cf. Old Russian Perun, Indo-European *Per(kw)unos 'god thunderer' (28), Russian berkut 'golden eagle'; Old Indian garuda 'eagle', garjh 'to thunder', garda 'dark shade', Russian grom 'thunder', groza 'thunderstorm', grohot 'crash; thunder', grad 'hail'.

    A silver plate discovered in the same barrow mound (Mordvintseva 2000: 145, figures 1 and 2) contains signs, see figures 21 - 23.

    Figure 21.

    Figure 22.

    Figure 23.

    The record presented in figure 21 reads 77 76 01 (cf. sign 18 of the Phaistos disk) garada, cf. Old Indian garuda 'eagle', garjh 'to thunder', garda 'dark shade', Russian grom 'thunder', groza 'thunderstorm', grohot 'crash; thunder', grad 'hail'. So this inscription is connected with the cult of the sky god, too. Both signs, 77 ga (cf. sign 18 of the Phaistos disk) and 76 ra, presented in figures 22 and 23 are the single word gara. This is a variant of the word garada.

    A silver goblet discovered in the same barrow mound (Mordvintseva 2000: 147, figure 3, 2) contains signs, see figures 24.

    Figure 24.

    Signs 33 33 read rar(a), cf. Slavonic Rarog 'fire bird', Czech raroh 'falcon' (29).

    So all the inscriptions written down on the artifacts from this barrow mound are referred to the sky god.

    12. A record is presented in the Neizats burial ground (Dashevskaya 1991: 94, table 38, figure 6, II - II), see figure 25.

    Figure 25.

    A triangle is depicted near signs 80 72 20 ma peco, cf. Scythian ma 'the sun', Old Indian panca 'five', Russian pyat' 'five'. Besides, the triangle may represent a mountain (Shilov 1995: 477). I think that this record is devoted to the Scythian god Agni 'Fire' associated with number five. Perhaps the mountain symbolises a burning heap of brushwood dedicated to this god. In fact, the god Agni plays the main role in sacrifices according to the Indo-Arian mythology (Neveleva 1975: 85).

    13. A mirror was discovered in a Sarmatian burial, near the Vinogradny small village, the Rostov-on-Don Territory, Russia. Now it is in the Azov Museum of local lore (Maximenko 1998: 250, figure 67, 4; 281). The signs of the mirror apply to a calendar, it is a variant of the Meotian-Sarmatian calendar. The Sarmarian mirror contains the round (the sun) in the centre; the four groups consisting of three lines denote the four seasons. The signs referring to these seasons are presented in figure 26.

    Figure 26.

    All the four records contain the turned signs dividing each two signs and representing the motion of the sun. The first section (the winter) includes the sign of a trident and sign 56 pa, cf. Old Indian apa 'a quantity of water; to drink', pa 'to drink; drinking'. The sign of the trident reads kup- 'water'. The second section (the spring) includes the sign of a bull (cow) and signs 46 02 yero, cf. Russian yary, yarostny 'furious', yarovoy sev 'spring sowing', bychok-yarovik 'bull'. The third section (the summer) includes the sign an eagle above the sun as well as the sign of a trident together with sign 15 mo 'the sun'. In my opinion, they are the marks of the Semik feast devoted to the god Perun (June 4 or near the Orthodox feast of the Trinity) and of the Kupala feast (June 24) or of the day of slipping of reapers (August 15) (30). The forth section (the autumn) includes the signs of a serpent and a horse's head. The dates of a snake feast of the Slavs are September 12 - 14 (31).

    A round artifact was discovered at the Scythian ancient settlement Belsk (Shramko 1999: 45, figure 7, 10; 46). It is a calendar device. The twelve radial lines denote twelve months of a year. They denote four seasons (four months (the summer?); two months; three months; three months).

    14. Several signs are depicted on a wall of a building of the Scythian Naples (Dashevskaya 1991: 60, table 4, figure 1), see figure 27.

    Figure 27.

    This text has been partly deciphered. The text 12 10 76 reads surya 'the sun', cf. Old Indian surya 'the sun'. Near this word there is the sign of the solar horse. Sign 26 ru corresponds to Old Indian ru 'light', and the sign of an arrow denotes the sun, cf. Old Indian ban 'arrow' and bhanu 'the sun'. In the figure of the solar horse one can distinguish sign 33 ra 'the sun' (32). The same sign with the same meaning is attached to the figure of the solar horse's head of the Meotian-Sarmatian calendar, see figure 28.

    Figure 28.

    The word 12 "rectangle" (33) 33 67 s(o)var(a)gi 'sky', cf. Old Indian svarga 'sky', Old Russian Svarog'' 'the name of a pagan god'. The hatched segments are symbolic designations of the sky or clouds. Sign 05 reads ja, cf. Old Indian ja 'born', Russian dozhd' 'rain'. Signs 11 10 12 10 33 read b(o)u surya 'the deity/light Surya', cf. Old Indian bhut 'being; person; demon', bhaah 'light'.

    15. Several signs are represented on an early Scythian pottery vessel discovered at the Zaporozhye Territory, Ukraine; it was dated to the second half of 7th century B.C. (Leskov 1972: photo 10), see figures 29 - 31.

    Figure 29.

    Figure 30.

    Figure 31.

    I have distinguished sign 77 (cf. sign 18 of the Phaistos disk) ga (see figure 29), the three united triangles (see figure 30) and the sign of the water/rain (see figure 31; cf. the corresponding sign 66 ta of Linear B). One can offer several interpretations of this record. I translate the word ga as '(solar) bull; cow', cf. Old Indian go 'bull; cow'. Maybe, this text reports about the Indo-Arian god Trita 'Third', or about the third footstep of the Indo-Arian god Visnu, or about the Indo-Arian god Indra having the epithets tridivecvara 'the ruler of the third sky' and trilokeca 'the ruler of the three worlds', or about the three cosmic kingdoms of the Indo-Arian god Rudra (34).

    16. Several signs are depicted on the handle of a mirror discovered in the mausoleum of the Scythian Naples (Dashevskaya 1991: 129, table 73, figure 1), see figure 32.

    Figure 32.

    The handle ends with the stylised figure of a serpent. I have distinguished sign 33 ra 'the sun'; sign 16 ha of the Phaistos disk and sign 55 nu surround eight dots (a calendar symbol); they give the word han(u), cf. Old Indian han 'to kill'. Furthermore, above the serpent there is a crown. I suppose that this text and picture inform that the sun god Indra (Targitai) kills the serpent Vritra or Susna, cf. the name Vrtrahan 'The destroyer of Vritra' which is an epithet of the god Indra.

    17. A bronze cauldron was discovered in a Sarmatian burial, Mokry Chaltyr', the Rostov-on-Don Territory, Russia. It was dated to 1st century B.C. - 1st century A.D., now it is in the Azov Museum of local lore (Maximenko 1998: 232, figure 49, 4; 278). The cauldron is decorated with signs 76 80 rama, see figure 33.

    Figure 33.

    This word is comparable with Old Indian remi 'ram', ramb 'lamb'. The ram is an incarnation of the Scythian fire god. On the other hand, the signs may be read as 76 07 ra di 'the sun -- the shine/the sky', too, cf. Scythian ra 'the sun', Old Indian dyo- 'day; the sky', di 'to shine', Dyaus 'the sky god'.

    This vessel has the two handles that show up as parts of the sun disc with three rays. Under one of the handles there is sign 46 ye, see figure 34.

    Figure 34.

    I suppose that it is the word aya meaning 'vitality'.

    Besides, this artifact contains a sign represented in figure 35.

     

    Figure 35.

    This sign depicts the three suns, perhaps it is the sun located on the third sky where the sun deity Indra rules.

    Bronze cauldrons were discovered in Sarmatian burials, Verkhneyachenkov and Krasny (Kudinov), the Rostov-on-Don Territory, Russia. They were dated to 1st century B.C. - 1st century A.D., now it is in the Azov Museum of local lore (Maximenko 1998: 232, figures 49, 6; 278; 188, figure 5, 3). The handles of these vessels look like parts of the sun disc with three rays. On each artifact there is sign 46 ye, see figures 36 and 37.

    Figure 36.

    Figure 37.

    The same sign is inscribed on a Scythian pot discovered at Belyaus (Dashevskaya 1991: 74, table 18, figure 1), see figure 38.

    Figure 38.

    I believe that in all the cases this sign denotes the word aya 'vitality'.

    Another bronze cauldron was discovered in a Sarmatian burial, Krasny (Kudinov). It was dated to 1st century B.C. - 1st century A.D., now it is in the Azov Museum of local lore (Maximenko 1998: 232, figures 49, 1; 278). The handles of this vessel also look like parts of the sun disc with three rays. On this artifact there is sign 33 ra, see figures 39.

    Figure 39.

    It is the word ra 'the sun'.

    The specific shape of the handles -- the three solar rays -- may denote the sun on the third sky. Interestingly, the figure of the Scythian supreme sun goddess Tabiti discussed hereabove is also decorated with the three rays.

    A bronze cauldron with ordinary handles was discovered in a Sarmatian burial, Elanskaya, the Rostov-on-Don Territory, Russia. It was dated to 1st century B.C. - 1st century A.D., now it is in the Azov Museum of local lore (Maximenko 1998: 232, figure 49, 13; 278). On this artifact there is sign 43 ai, see figures 40.

    Figure 40.

    I think that this sign denotes the word aya 'vitality'.

    Two signs are presented on a Scythian statue, Zavetnoe, the Crimea, Ukraine (Dashevskaya 1991: 98, table 42, figure 10), see figure 41.

    Figure 41.

    Signs 46 05 read ya ja, i.e. aya 'vitality' and ja 'born', cf. Old Indian ja 'born'.

    18. A Scythian silver rhyton was discovered in the Karagodeuashkh barrow, Republic of Adygea, Russia. It was dated to 4th century B.C., now it is in the Hermitage (Anfimov 1987: 166-7). On this artifact there is the following motif: a panther is tearing a deer to pieces. On the figure of the panther I have distinguished the solar sign and sign 12 so, cf. Scythian so 'bright; look; eye; heat; shine; to shine', see figure 42.

    Figure 42.

    I think that the picture of the rhyton depicts the god Indra killing his father, the sky god Papai/Dyaus. It is a symbolic description of a solar eclipse. Interestingly, Old Indian sardula signifies 'panther; lion; leopard; tiger; best; excellent; pre-eminent', and Old Indian sura signifies 'panther; lion; tiger; strong; powerful; mighty or valiant man; warrior; hero', cf. also surya 'the sun'.

    19. There are different motifs on a Scythian silver mirror from the Kelermes barrow No 4, near the Kelermesskaya village. It was dated to 7th - 6th century B.C., now it is in the Hermitage (Anfimov 1987: 64-5). This mirror is divided into eight sections. The winged goddess holding two panthers is Tabiti, or Usas, or Api, the wife of the sky god Papai/Dyaus. I prefer to choose the third variant. Indeed, the sign of the rain is represented on her dress, see figure 43.

    Figure 43.

    Moreover, twelve "patterns" are represented on the dress; one of them is shown in figure 44.

    Figure 44.

    I read the "pattern" as signs 77 77 gaga (cf. sign 18 of the Phaistos disk), and this word is comparable with Old Indian gagana 'sky'. Each sky is a "specific" one connected with the earth in a certain month. The goddess Api holds two panthers, otherwise her sons, the twin brothers Indra and Agni. One can try to decode other motifs of this mirror. The drawing depicting a lion, a bull, and a boar reports about the deities Indra, Vala and Rudra. Personages of some sections may be constellations. A ram is an incarnation of the fire god Agni; a goat is an incarnation of the Indo-Arian deity Aja Ekapad connected with the deities Pusan, Indra and Varuna. A bear may be a symbol of some feasts celebrated on March 24, April 12, May 9 and September 14 in the Slavonic pagan beliefs (35). A griffin fighting with two persons symbolises the gold-guarding griffins and Hyperboreans. Two winged deities holding a column correspond to Atlas who, according to the Greek beliefs, supports the vault of heaven in the land of the Hyperboreans (36). Greek Atlas (Atlantos) 'Atlas' may come from Old Indian atulaniya 'incomparable' or ati 'extremely; very', Scythian (a)lan 'deer'.

    NOTES

    1. Cf. also Russian hranit' 'to keep; to preserve' and horonit' 'to bury'.

    2. See Vasmer 1986: 159.

    3. Cf. also Old Indian pat 'to fall; to go down into hell; to set (below the horizon)'.

    4. Cf. also Old Indian apa 'a quantity of water; to drink', pa 'to drink; drinking'.

    5. According to the Scythian beliefs, the rite of libations is associated with deities (Galanina, Domansky and Smirnova 1981: 67).

    6. It should be borne in mind that Scythian rhytons -- vessels for wine -- resemble horns. Cf. also Old Indian rohis 'kind of deer'.

    7. See Vasmer 1986: 528.

    8. See Vasmer 1987: 150-1.

    9. See Trubachev 1981: 11.

    10. See Shilov 1995: 228.

    11. See Shilov 1995: 234.

    12. Cf. also Old Indian soma 'elixir'.

    13. See Grintser 1992.

    14. I think that the name Indra signifies 'Man; Brave Person', cf. Greek andreios 'male; manly; brave'. See also (Shilov 1995: 529).

    15. See Toporov 1991c.

    16. See Ivanov and Toporov 1991: 529, figure.

    17. See Toporov 1992a. Besides, it may be the Indo-Arian god Prajapati or demon Emusa (Toporov 1992b: 71).

    18. See Toporov 1991a: 396.

    19. See Vasmer 1987: 629.

    20. See Vasmer 1986: 310.

    21. See Diachenko 1993: 972.

    22. See Toporov 1991b. The words Ga-Kolo of the Phaistos disk may be translated as 'The bull/cow -- the sun'.

    23. See Raevsky 1992: 446.

    24. See Lelekov 1991.

    25. Slavonic *jedr 'vigorous' connected with Indra (Toporov 1991c: 535) may be compared with the morpheme tar of Targitai.

    26. See Ivanov and Toporov 1991: 529.

    27. See Vasmer 1986: 297, 273.

    28. See Ivanov and Toporov 1992a.

    29. See Ivanov and Toporov 1992b.

    30. See Rybakov 1987: 177-90; Vlasov 1993: 129; Belyakova 1995: 215-6, 218-9.

    31. See Vlasov 1993: 111.

    32. This ancient Egyptian name of the sun god Ra is preserved in the Russian words raduga 'rainbow' < *ra duga 'arc of the sun' and zarya 'dawn' < *sa ra 'the sun (is shining)'. Cf. Old Indian ravi 'the sun', vi 'bird; horse'.

    33. See Dagmar 1998: 23.

    34. See Toporov 1992c; 1992d; Serebryany 1991; Shilov 1995: 201; Neveleva 1975: 109; Toporov 1992a.

    35. See Vlasov 1993: 110-1, 118.

    36. See Zaytsev 1991: 280.

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