2/16/2010 Phrygian language, translation showing conjugation and declension patterns and vocabulary.



The Phrygian language
Translation of Phrygian scripts

 by Mel Copeland
(Based on a related work, Etruscan Phrases,
first published in 1981)



About the Translation
Phrygia's Neighbors: the Trojan Allies
The Inscriptions of Midas City's monuments
Inscriptions on shards and other monuments, including Gordion (Phrygian1.html)
Images of altars and facades, from Zabern's "Midasstadt in Phrigien." (Phrygian1a.html)
The Sennacherib (maruf.yeni) relief from Phrygia (Phrygian1b.html)
Records of Assyrian kings before Sennacherib: campaigns in Phrygia & eastern Anatolia (Phrygian1c.html)
Records of Assyrian kings before Sennacherib: campaigns in Phrygia & Near East (Phrygian1d.html)
The Bronze Age collapse: plagues, droughts and Sea Peoples (Phrygian1e.html)
Catalogue of Anatolian cities, lands and leaders from Assyrian records (Phrygian1f.html)
Catalogue of Anatolian cities, lands and leaders from Assyrian records - continued (Phrygian1g.html)
Catalogue of Anatolian cities, lands and leaders from Assyrian records - continued (Phrygian1h.html)
Catalogue of Anatolian cities, lands and leaders from Assyrian records - conclusions (Phrygian1j.html)
Extracts from ancient (Greek, Roman) records relating to the Etruscans & Phrygians (Phrygian1k.html
Extracts from ancient (Greek, Roman) on the origin of the Phrygians and Muski (Phrygian1L.html
Images of Altars, facades, artifacts and the tumuli of Gordion, from Kohler's "The Gordion Excavations." (Phrygian2.html)
The anthropological record (Phrygian3.html)
Burial customs and the Hittite records (Phrygian4.html)
Archeological reports (Phrygian5.html)

About the Translation

The Phrygian texts appear to carry a language similar to the Lydian language, both of which are close to the Etruscan language, based upon data developed so far. It appears that we are dealing with a common language base that is close to Latin, being represented in the Lydian, Phrygian and Etruscan scripts. The Ancient writers, such as Herodotus (See "Etruscan Phrases") attribute the source of the Etruscan civilization to Lydia. After the Trojan War which consumed the west coast of Anatolia over a period of ten years, according to the Iliad, several refugee groups fled the land. The Aenied of Virgil records a group from which the Romans owe their descent, led by Aeneas – who fled the ruins of Troy – and Herodotus records a group led by Tyrsenus, the son of king Atys, who led his people to a home among the Ombrici of northern and central Italy, after suffering a prolonged drought in Lydia and the Trojan War. The British also make their claim of being refugees from the Trojan War and the Parisians have a similar claim. Thus, about 1200 B.C., out of the chaos of war on the Lydian coast and the simultaneous defeat of the Hittites grew tales of colonies seeking refuge in western lands.

The Phrygians are believed to have emigrated from Thrace to Anatolia, settling north of the Lydians, covering an area that comprises the northern half of modern Turkey. Of interest is an acropolis called Midas City located near Eskisehir, Turkey, dating from the 7th Century B.C., which contains inscriptions in an alphabet similar to the Etruscan. This site is on the western border of Phrygia (More information can be gotten at ancientanatolia.com).

The most famous Phrygian is Midas, a son of King Gordius by Cybele, who founded the city of Ankara. Nearby Ankara is the ancient capital of the Hittite Empire, Hattusha, Bogazkale, that was destroyed about 1180 B.C. An excellent photographic essay of this city is at http://www.pbase.com/dosseman/bogazkale. More on the Hittite Empire can be read at ancientanatolia.com.

Midas is said to be the discoverer of both glack and white lead, but he is best known for his connections with another metal: gold. While Dionysus was on his expedition to India with his train, Old Seilenus wandered away and was captured by Phrygian peasants, who took him to the king. Some say that Midas caught him by mixing wine with the water in a spring, presumably in the hope of profiting from his prophetic powers. In either case, the king entertained Seilenus graciously and then gave him a guide to lead him back to Dionysus and his company. Dionysus was so grateful to Midas that he offered to grant any boon that he asked. Midas, who was fond of luxury, asked that all he touched might turn to gold. Reluctantly the god consented. Midas was at first delighted with the results, but he soon discovered that when he tried to eat the food turned to metal. Before long the ravenously hungry king was begging Dionysus to take back his miraculous gift. The god could not do that, but he advised Midas to wash in the river Pactolus. The king did so and his "golden touch" was transferred to the river, which forever after had gold-bearing sands.

Midas worshipped Pan as well as Dionysus. That woodland-god one day engaged in a musical contest with Apollo, with old King Tmolus as judge. Tmolus prudently awarded the prize to Apollo for his lyrre playing, but the rash Midas let it be known that he thought Pan the better musician. Apollo rewarded him by changing his ears to those of an ass.

Midas was acutely embarrassed. He wore a Phrygian cap pulled down over his ears, removing it only long enough to have his hair cut now and then. His barber, no doubt threatened with dire penalties if he revealed what he saw, was unusually discreet. In time, however, the strain of keepin the secret cecame too great for him. He dug a hole in a deserted meadow, whispered his extraordinary news into it, and filled it up again. All went well until the following spring, when reeds grew up on the spot. Passersby were astonished to hear them murmuring, "Midas has ass's ears" – and the king's secret was out.

Historically, Midas was one dynastic title of a succession of Phrygian kings who ruled in the valley of the Sangarius River; it alternated with the name Gordius. Some of these kings, ruling in Gordium, achieved considerable fame because of their wealth. One Midas sent rich offerings to Delphi. The Phrygians are believed to have entered Asia Minor from Europe. They may well have brought the name Midas with them from Macedonia, for the fertile valley that surrounds the ancient captial, Aegae (later Edessa), was known as the Gardens of Midas, and the story of the king's capture of Seilenus is sometimes located there. As for Midas' wealth, it seems to have been accidentally passed on to King Croesus of Lydia. That famous monarch found his rich supply of gold in the river Pactolus, near his captial of Sardis, where Midas had washed away his golden touch. [From Edward Tripp, "The Meridian Handbook of Classical Mythology.]

Like the Lydian language, the Phrigian texts appear to share a language common to Etruscan. Because of the correspondence, I have integrated the words in these texts into the "Etruscan Phrases" GlossaryA.xls. (Available as Google documents spreadsheet) The words identified as Phrygian carry the alpha code of "X," being external to the Italian peninsula. The Phrygian language is known from texts dating circa. 600 B.C.

Scholars believe that Lydian and Phrygian are distant relatives of Hittite and other Luwian languages. Accepting this as a fact I never inquired into the language – beyond correlating Lydian, Lycian and Hittite words in Etruscan Phrases Indo-European Table 1, of word relationships. I took at their word the experts' records of the languages. However, a small bilingual inscription in Greek and Lydian (Script J) resembled Etruscan writing / language patterns. My research on Lydian actually went quite quickly (until June 26, 2006), since it turns out that the Lydian language showed a stronger resemblance to Latin than the Etruscan language. Although Lydian used a few peculiar characters, the writing technique was similar to Etruscan.

I have given every word in the scripts an alpha-numeric locater, following the Etruscan Phrases work, which includes about 1,900 Etruscan words. Fundamental to the Etruscan decipherment and this work is the criteria that all languages have rules (grammar) and language presupposes repetition. Thus, to decipher a script one isolates repititious words and phrases. In the isolation process conjugation and declension patterns (a characteristic of grammar) are revealed. Without giving consideration to the meaning of any words in a language, at this stage – of isolating words, phrases and conjugation and declension patterns – one can be sure that a language has been isolated. Using the comparative process with the words, their conjugation and declension patterns, one may be able to ascertain close relationships to a known language.

In the case of Etruscan, for the past two thousand years since it became extinct, scholars – many charlatans among them – attempted to decipher that language. Only one Etruscan expert, Staccioli (2), succeeded in establishing for the scholastic world an Etruscan vocabulary, and that vocabulary entailed about 60 words – all of which were accepted as non-Indo-European. Staccioli's work was not correct, but his legacy continues to haunt accounts by scholars on the origin and language of the Etruscans. A Google search will demonstrate this easily enough.

This work is a work in progress, like "Etruscan Phrases," and will change as I work the site. I found over the years that the internet / html is the best way to analyze and present the decipherment and translation of Etruscan, Lydian and now Phrygian. The reason for this is that the data are easier to edit in html and one can color syllables and characters that represent a declension or conjugation pattern so to make them stand out. Also, as in Etruscan Phrases Indo-European Table 1 coloring shifts in words through the Indo-European language groups helped highlight linguistic connections and patterns more easily.

The Etruscans are believed to have originated in Lydia. According to Herodotus and others they left the land as a result of a long drought following the Trojan War. If that myth were true, I concluded long ago – since the Etruscan language is most closely related to Latin – that the Lydians may have spoken a language similar to Latin. The Italic tribes may, in fact, have originated in Anatolia and spread into Italy at the time the Greeks spread into the Greek mainland.

To test this theory of an Etruscan-Lydian-Phrygian linguistic group (Let's call it Pan-Italic) one would have to address the Lydian and Phrygian languages. Also, since Lycian and Carian are language groups adjacent to Lydia in Anatolia, one might be tempted to reexamine those languages. However, my hunch is that Carian ought to be distinctly different from Lydian and Phrygian, based upon Homer's account in the Illiad, where he refers to the Carians as speaking a foreign language (as opposed to the Trojans and their other allies versus the Greeks).

Phrygia's neighbors: the Trojan allies

In the Catalogue of Ships invading Troy (Iliad Book II), in addition to listing the Greek allies – of many languages, he says – Homer lists the allies of Troy, many of whom can be located on the map on this page. They include Lydians (called Maeonians) and Phrygians, whom we can presume to have been "nations" in Anatolia about 1180 B.C. The may laid out by the Iliad tends to run from north to south, discussing the troops from as far away as Illyria (Modern Macedonia and Albania) and Thessaly, the Thracians - all those enclosed by the Hellespont -, the Pelasgians from Larissa, the Ciconian Spearmen (place unknown), the Paeonians of the river Axios (modern Vardar River), the Paphlagonians, the Alizones from Alybe (place unknown), the Mysians, the Trojans, Dardanians, Zeleians (the peoples around the Troad, Zeleians unknown), peoples on either side of the Hellespont, of Mysia and Sestos (modern Gallipoli), the Phrygians, Lydians (Meionians) homeland under Mount Tmolos, the Carians and the Lycians. For a discussion on Strabo's geography of the Troad see http://soltdm.com/sources/mss/strab/13.htm.

Hector Priamides commanded the Trojans. He had under his own hand much the larger division of armed spearmen, and the best men.

The Dardanians were led by Aineias son of Anchises. His mother was the divine Aphrodite, who lay with Anchises on the foothills of Mount Ida, goddess with mortal man. With Aineias were the two sons of Antenor, Archeolochos and Acamas, complete warriors both.
[Editorial note: Dardanus, the son of Zeus and Electra, daughter of Atlas, was either born in the region later known as Troy or came there from Samothrace or Crete. The Romans claimed that he was born in Italy and reached Troy by way of Samothrace. Whatever his origin, he was welcomed to the land by Teucer, its first king. Teucer gave him land and the hand of his daughter, Bateia. Dardanus founded a city, Dardania, and, on succeeding to Teucer's rule at the king's death, extended the name to the entire region. He was regarded as the first ancestor of the Trojans. Homer claimed that he was Zeus's favorite of all his sons by mortal women. (From the "Meridian Handbook of Classical Mythology")]

Those who came from Zeleia under the lowest foot of Ida, and drank the water of the Aisepos, wealthy men and Trojans, were led by Lycaon's son Pandaros, who received his bow from Apollo himself.
[Editor's note: See Granicus River Valley Survey Project, http://cat.une.edu.au/page/granicus%20valley which claims to include the ancient site of Zeleia. Zeleia, however, is listed "under the lowest foot of Mt. Ida, which would place it in the Troad.]

Those who came from Adresteia and the land of Apaisos, from Pityeia and the steep hill of Tereia, were led by Adrestos, and Amphios in his linen corselet, two sons of Percosian Merops. He understood divination beyond all others, and he forbade his sons to go to the war; but they disobeyed him, since the fate of black death drove them on.
[Editorial note: For an interesting geographical note, see "The Argonautica" by Apollonius Rhodius Chapter 48, Section VI. It places Pityeia before Corcyra. which is located in the Ionian Sea, off the coast of modern Albania. The book may be read at: http://www.worldwideschool.org/library/books/lit/epics/TheArgonautica/chap48.html: but far onward they sped starting from the Hyllean land, and they left behind all the islands that were beforetime thronged by the Colchians - the Liburnian isles, isle after isle, Issa, Dysceladus, and lovely Pityeia. Next after them they came to Corcyra, where Poseidon settled the daughter of Asopus, fair-haired Corcyra, far from the land of Phlius, whence he had carried her off through love; and sailors beholding it from the sea, all black with its sombre woods, call it Corcyra the Black. And next they passed Melite, rejoicing in the soft-blowing breeze, and steep Cerossus, and Nymphaea at a distance, where lady Calypso, daughter of Atlas, dwelt; and they deemed they saw the misty mountains of Thunder..] The "steep hill of Tereia" is an unknown place.

Those who came from Percote and Praction, from Sestos and Abydos and sunny Arisbe, were led by Asios Hyrtacos' son. He came from Arisbe besides the river Selleeis driving great chestnut horses.

Hippothoös led the bands of Pelasgian spearmen, those who are settled on the rich soil of Larisa: Hippothoös and Pylaios, that true sprig of Ares, the two sons of the Pelasgian Lethos Teutamos' son.

The Thracians were led by Acamas and Peiroös, all those enclosed by the strong-flowing Hellespont.

Euphemos was the leader of the Ciconian spearmen. He was a son of Prince Troizenos Ceades.

Pyraichmes led the Paeonians with curving bows. He brought them a long way, out of Amydon from the broad river Axios, from Axios, the finest water that runs over the earth.

The Paphlagonians were led by hairy Pylaimenes from the Enetai, where the wild she-mules are found. They were settled at Cytoros and Sesamos about the river Parthenios, at Cromna and Aigialos and lofty Erythinoi.

The Alizones were led by Odios and Epistrophos, from Alybe far away, where silver has its birth.

The Mysians were led by Chromis, and Eunomos the diviner of birds; but his birds did not save him from black death, for he was brought low by the hand of Achilles at the river, when Achilles despoiled other Trojans too.

Phorcys led the Phrygians, and noble Ascanios, from distant Ascania: they were eager to join in the fray. [Editorial note: see theoi.com for extracts of classical works that refer to the Phrygians and their mother goddess Kybele.

The Meionians were led by Mesthles and Aniphos, two sons of Talaimenes born beside the Gygaian lake; they brought the Meionians from their birthplace under Tmolos.

Nastes again led the Carians, men of barbarous speech, who came from Miletos, and the leafy mountain of Phthira, from the streams of Maiandros and the high peaks of Mycale. Amphimachos and Nastes were their leaders, Nastes and Amphimachos the fine sons of Nomion. One came to the war all over gold, like a poor girl. Poor fool! It did not save him from cruel death; but he was brought low by the hands of Achilles at the river, and prudent Achilles carried off the gold.

Sarpedon and the admirable Glaucos led the Lycians, out of far-off Lycia, from the eddying Xanthos.

For records of ancient poets and historians as relating to the Phrygians see Phrygian1k.html; the records of Assyrian kings as they relate to the Phrygians and eastern Anatolia are in Phrygian1b-1j. See also Hittite_Treaties.html for Hittite treaties that relate to the area. Ancient records are important to the understanding of the collapse of the Bronze Age civilizations about 1180 B.C., and in the wake of the collapse appeared the Phrygians, traditions of migrations of people (the Etruscans and the ancestors of the Romans) from Lydia / the Troad, fleeing the devestated and drought-ridden region.

The inscriptions of Midas City's monuments

Script XA, "The Midas Monument," located near Eskisehir and Afyon. (Drawings after Albert Gabriel, Phrygie II and IV – courtesy of Brian Rowbotham, www.izmirtourism.com.). Sources of other images are identified on photos. Translations are tentative pending reconciliation to other Phrygian texts. We may summarize the context of the monument as follows: Note: We have found two repetitious texts at XA-25 and XE-10.

Since these texts are written on extraordinary monuments located in highlands that are described as uncomfortably cold in the winter and unbearable in the heat of summer, we can conclude that the Midas Monument was a very special place to the ancients of Anatolia. It is obvious from the size of the Midas Monument and its orientation to the rising sun that it records an equinox. Since we can suspect that the monument has to do with Attis (The name ATES appears in the Glossary at N462, R359, XA-1) the context of the inscriptions should take into account the following, as described by Edward Tripp:

Top: The "Three Kalas" from Yazihkaya. Bottom: The "Midas Monument," approach from the East. This is without a doubt a solar temple complex and probably the "burial site" of Attis who was reborn again at the Vernal Equinox. It is the time in March when the sun passes the equator moving from the southern to the northern hemisphere. Day and night have approximately the same length. The date is near 20 March. The niche in the "Midas Monument" seen here should align perfectly with the Vernal Equinox. Note the small ridge in front of the niche which should control the moment when the sun's rays reach the idol (of Attis) that would have been placed in the niche. The Emperor Claudius introduced a new cycle of holidays that were celebrated from March 15th to March 27th, the beginning of spring at the time of the revival of vegetation, personified in Attis. For a topographical map of Midas City click here: Midas.city.plan.jpg.

Attis or Atys was the young consort of the Phrygian goddess Cybele. Attis was a son of Nana, a daughter of the river-god Sangarius who had been impregnated by an almond fallen from a tree that had sprung from the severed male genitals of Agdistis (Cybele). Suckled by a he-goat, he grew to handsome manhood and was loved from afar by Cybele, who jealously drove him mad when he planned marriage. He castrated himself and died; according to some, he was then changed by the goddess into a pine tree.

Cybele was a Phrygian mother-goddess. Cybele was often referred to as the Mother of the Gods. She was also called Dindymene or Dindymenian Mother because of her association with Mount Dindymus. There grew up on this spot a strange creature with both male and female organs. The other gods, alarmed at the thought of what such an offspring of Zeus might do on reaching full size, cut off the male genitals. The castrated creature grew to be the goddess Agdistis, or Cybele.

From the severed genitals an almond tree grew. One day Nana, daughter of the river-god Sangarius, placed one of the fruits of the tree in her lap. It vanished and Nana found herself pregnant. In time she gave birth to a boty, whom she exposed. This child, Attis, was somehow suckled by a he-goat and grew up to be a handsome young man. Agdistis saw him one day and fell in love with him, but the youth, apparently unaware of this fact, prepared to marry a daughter of the king of Pessinus, a city at the foot of Dindymus. Madly jealous, Agdistis drove both Attis and the king mad. They castrated themselves in their frenzy and Attis died. Agdistis, regretting her fury too late, asked Zeus to grant that Attis' corpse never decay. He was buried at Pessinus, below Agdus, the rocky outcropping of Dindymus that gave Agdistis her name. Some say that Attis was transformed into the evergreen pine; this tree was at least sacred to him.

Cybele does not often appear in Greek literature, except as she is identified with Rhea, the mother of most of the Olympian gods. In this guise she is said to have purified the young Dionysus and taught him his rites ast Cybela, in Phrygia. She also taught prophecy to Oenone. As the mother-goddess of Mount Tmolus, she was the mother by Gordius of Midas. Because Aeneas' ships were made of her sacred pine trees on Mount Ida, Cybele is said to have prevented them from being burned by Turnus and to have changed them into sea-nymphs.

Cybele was represented in art wearing a crown shaped like a turreted city wall and riding in a chariot drawn by lions. She was attended by maenads like those of Dionysus and, more particularly, by the Corybantes. These were young male divinities who danced in armor, clashing their shields and spears. The Greeks identified the Corybantes with the Curetes, who behaved similarly while attending the child Zeus in Crete. Cybele's male worshipers accompanied their own dancing with the music of shrill flutes, drums, rattles and cymbals. Her priests castrated themselves in honor of Attis.

Although a foreign goddess with no place in the Greek pantheon, Cybele had shrines in many parts of Greece. She was perhaps the leading representative known to the Greeks of the Classical Age of a universal type of mother-goddess that had been worshiped in the Mediterranean region since prehistoric times. Such a goddess personified teh regenerative forces of nature, of animals as well as vegetation. She usually had as a consort a younger god, such as Attis, who was subordinate to her [Apollodorus 3.12.6; Apollonius Rhodius 1.1092-1152; Ovid, Metamorphoses, 10.102-105, 10.686-704, 14.535-555; Homeric Hymn to the Mother of the Gods 14; Hyginius, Fabulae, 191; Virgil, Ciris, 163-167]

The place called "Three Kalas" of "Midas City" is not any of the following locations that are revered sanctuaries of Cybele and Attis:

1) Burial place of Attis: Pessinus, below Agdus, the rocky outcropping of Dindymust that gave Agdistis her name. The place is also called DIDYMI, or BRANCHIDAE, the ancient sanctuary and seat of an oracle of Apollo, located south of Miletus in modern Turkey. Mt. Dindymus is the place where Zeus ejaculated on the ground while sleeping. There grew up on this spot a strange creature with both male and female organs which became the goddess Agdistis or Cybele.
2) Mount Ida, where Aeneas collected the wood for his ships from Cybele's sacred pine-trees.
3)Cybela, Phrygia, the place from which the name Cybele was derived. A Thracian royal city, Cabyle, near Edirne, Turkey – where the borders of Bulgaria, Greece and Turkey meet – claims to be that site.
4) Mount Berecyntus, of the perinneal pines, associated with Mount Ida. There is no conclusive evidence where the place was located, based upon my Google search.

What do the people of Yazihkaya believe the place was called? What kind of myths do they have connected with the place?

Short of having a precise answer to the origin and name the Phrygians gave to the site now called the Three Kalas, we can refer to the following:

...Like the Kizil-Bash peasants of today, the ancient inhabitants of the peninsula met on the summits of mountains covered with woods no ax had desecrated, and celebrated their festal days. 3_1 They believed that Cybele resided on the high summits of Ida and Berecyntus, and the perennial pines, in conjunction with the prolific and early maturing almond tree, were the sacred trees of Attis. Besides trees, the country people worshiped stones, rocks or meteors that had fallen from the sky like the one taken from Pessinus to Pergamum and thence to Rome. They also venerated certain animals, especially the most powerful of them all, the lion, who may at one time have been the totem of savage tribes. 3_2 In mythology as well as in art the lion remained the riding or driving animal of the Great Mother. Their conception of the divinity was indistinct and impersonal. A goddess of the earth, called Mi or Cybele, was revered as the fecund mother of all things, the "mistress of the wild beasts" 3_3 that inhabit the woods. A god Attis, or Papas, was regarded as her husband, but the first place in this divine household belonged to the woman, a reminiscence of the period of matriarchy. 3_4

When the Phrygians at a very early period came from Thrace and inserted themselves like a wedge in the old Anatolian races, they adopted the vague deities of their new country by identifying them with their own, after the habit of pagan nations. Thus Attis became one with the Dionysus-Sabazius of the conquerors, or at least assumed some of his characteristics. This Thracian Dionysus was a god of vegetation. Foucart has thus admirably pictured his savage nature: "Wooded summits, deep oak and pine forests, ivy-clad caverns were at all times his favorite haunts. Mortals who were anxious to know the powerful divinity ruling these solitudes had to observe the life of his kingdom, and to guess the god's nature from the phenomena through which he manifested his power. Seeing the creeks descend in noisy foaming cascades, or hearing the roaring of steers in the uplands and the strange sounds of the wind-beaten forests, the Thracians thought they heard the voice and the calls of the lord of that empire, and imagined a god who was fond of extravagant leaps and of wild roaming over the wooded mountains. This conception inspired their religion, for the surest way for mortals to ingratiate themselves with a divinity was to imitate him, and as far as possible to make their lives resemble his. For this reason the Thracians endeavored to attain the divine delirium that transported their Dionysus, and hoped to realize their purpose by following their invisible yet ever-present lord in his chase over the mountains." 3_5

In the Phrygian religion we find the same beliefs and rites, scarcely modified at all, with the one difference that Attis, the god of vegetation, was united to the goddess of the earth instead of living "in sullen loneliness." When the tempest was beating the forests of the Berecyntus or Ida, it was Cybele traveling about in her car drawn by roaring lions mourning her lover's death. A crowd of worshipers followed her through woods and thickets, mingling their shouts with the shrill sound of flutes, with the dull beat of tambourines, with the rattling of castanets and the dissonance of brass cymbals. Intoxicated with shouting and with uproar of the instruments, excited by their impetuous advance, breathless and panting, they surrendered to the raptures of a sacred enthusiasm. Catullus has left us a dramatic description of this divine ecstasy. 3_6

The religion of Phrygia was perhaps even more violent than that of Thrace. The climate of the Anatolian uplands is one of extremes. Its winters are rough, long and cold, the spring rains suddenly develop a vigorous vegetation that is scorched by the hot summer sun. The abrupt contrasts of a nature generous and sterile, radiant and bleak in turn, caused excesses of sadness and joy that were unknown in temperate and smiling regions, where the ground was never buried under snow nor scorched by the sun. The Phrygians mourned the long agony and death of the vegetation, but when the verdure reappeared in March they surrendered to the excitement of a tumultuous joy. In Asia savage rites that had been unknown in Thrace or practiced in milder form expressed the vehemence of those opposing feelings. In the midst of their orgies, and after wild dances, some of the worshipers voluntarily wounded themselves and, becoming intoxicated with the view of the blood, with which they besprinkled their altars, they believed they were uniting themselves with their divinity. Or else, arriving at a paroxysm of frenzy, they sacrificed their virility to the gods as certain Russian dissenters still do to-day. These men became priests of Cybele and were called Galli. Violent ecstasis was always an endemic disease in Phrygia. As late as the Antonines, montanist prophets that arose in that country attempted to introduce it into Christianity.

All these excessive and degrading demonstrations of an extreme worship must not cause us to slight the power of the feeling that inspired it. The sacred ecstasy, the voluntary mutilations and the eagerly sought sufferings manifested an ardent longing for deliverance from subjection to carnal instincts, and a fervent desire to free the soul from the bonds of matter. The ascetic tendencies went so far as to create a kind of begging monachism--the métragyrtes. They also harmonized with some of the ideas of renunciation taught by Greek philosophy, and at an early period Hellenic theologians took an interest in this devotion that attracted and repelled them at the same time. Timotheus the Eumolpid, who was one of the founders of the Alexandrian religion of Serapis, derived the inspiration for his essays on religious reform, among other sources, from the ancient Phrygian myths. Those thinkers undoubtedly succeeded in making the priests of Pessinus themselves admit many speculations quite foreign to the old Anatolian nature worship. The votaries of Cybele began at a very remote period to practise "mysteries" 3_7 in which the initiates were made acquainted, by degrees, with a wisdom that was always considered divine, but underwent peculiar variations in the course of time.

Such is the religion which the rough Romans of the Punic wars accepted and adopted. Hidden under theological and cosmological doctrines it contained an ancient stock of very primitive and coarse religious ideas, such as the worship of trees, stones and animals. Besides this superstitious fetichism it involved ceremonies that were both sensual and ribald, including all the wild and mystic rites of the bacchanalia which the public authorities were to prohibit a few years later.
[Full article>>sacred-texts.com]

The Midas Monument, facade

The Midas Monument, side view

The Midas Monument, facade top inscription

XA -1 ATES: ARKIA EFAIS AKENANO TAFOS: MIDAI: PAFAPa TAEI: FANA Ki TEI: EDAES [Translation: To Attys or father, ates, (Etr. ATES) the archon (Etr. ARCIA, Gr. archon) he spoke out (L. effor-fari; Etr. EFA, EFAN, EFAS, EFE) of Akenano, name : Akenanos, another form of Cernnunos? or Ascanios of Taphos? alternatively, of the tomb (Gk. taphi [taΦη], burial, internment; taphos [taΦoς], grave, tomb): Midas or alternatively, Media (L. Medi-orum, the Medes), or the middle (L. media, subst. i.e., media via, middle way) or, as a verb, he healed (L. medeor-eri): he feared (L. paveo, pavere; It. paura, fear; Fr. peur, dread; Etr. PAF, PAFA) the pine-wood (L. taeda-a, pine-wood, a torch, esp. as used at weddings): Taei; the holy place, temple grounds (L. fanum-i; Etr. FANI) who, which, what, that, wherefore, whereby (L. qui, quae, quod; It. chi; Fr. qui; Etr. KI, Ki) of the god (L. deus, divus, di, divi, dea, diva; It. dio, dia; Fr. dieu, dieux, deese; Etr. TEI, TEIS, TEIFA) you will produce, bring out (L. edo-edere-didi-ditum, fut. edes; Etr. ETA, ETES, ETO); alternatively it could be Hades, Hell. Hades' name in Etruscan, as seen in the Tomb of Orcos, is ATAI.]

Note: See Phrygiank.html a comment of Strabo who lists a place called Midaeieum in a location that approximates the present Midas City. His description of Pesinnus may apply to the reality of Midas City. It is difficult to believe that the historians would have focused so much on the story of Cybele and not listed the site known now as Midas City. The suffix, AI, of MIDAI, in the "Etruscan Phrases" Grammar corresponds to the suffix of proper names, accusative singular, as in the Etruscan name of Hades: ATAI. Thus, with the accusative case corresponding to the Greek and Latin usage, the name Midas would be the direct object of the verb. He speaks to or of Midas.

EFAIS carries a suffix "IS" that suggests a noun (See "Etruscan Phrases" Grammar-4). It is possible that the word could refer to Efes, the location of the Temple of Artemis, but the position of the word calls for a verb. A question posed by Rowbotham in an email, whether the word referred to Efes (Ancient Epheseus), is pertinent, since we have associated with the verb, effor-fari, to speak out, the Greek word, Ephor, a Spartan magistrate. Efes was the place of the oracle of Artemis. We conclude this, since her brother, Apollo, had his oracle, called the Pythia, at Delphi and no doubt Efes was the site of Artemis' oracle. We can speculate as to the source of the name of Efes being related to the verb "to speak out." Also we can note that the suffix of EFAIS and MIDAI seem to follow the same declension. As will be seen in the "Etruscan Phrases" Grammar the suffix referring to proper names was IA, IE, IAS, IES. ARKIA, for instance, corresponds with the Etruscan word for archon. Compare this to the "EI" suffix of TAEI and TEI and XA-20, TIES.

Since Efes was such an important place in the world – considered by the ancients to be the location of one of the Seven Wonders of the World – a citation referring to the place would be expected in these texts, since Midas City is relatively close by. XA-4 carries the word EFIA. The suffix connotes a name of a place and we read this word to mean Efes.

The name AKENANO is interesting, since it is repeated three times on this monument. In attempting to reconcile the name it occured to me that there is a resemblance in the suffix of the names Cernunnos and Akenano (Akenanos). While Attis is known as the [grand]son and consort of Cybele, we do not know who the progeny of the couple are in the role of patriarchs of the gods. Since Cybele, as Agdistis, emerged from the seed of Zeus, we might wonder whether the name Zeus is respresented in another form in the Phrygian scripts; i.e., as seen in the shift to the Latin Jupitor and Etruscan Tinia. Cernunnos is a supreme diety among the Celts, identifiable with Pluto as a god of the Underworld and of wealth and prosperity. The Thracians worshipped a god of the Underworld named Zalmoxis. The Thracians, like the Celts, believed in the immortality of the soul. Of interest is that Cernunnos is identified with the solar bull on the Gundestrop Cauldron and may be related to other myths that celebrate a god's conquest of the solar bull. Zalmoxis is shown wielding an axe or hammer, suggesting that he is a weather god, like Thor, Indra, Jupiter and Zeus.

Recognizing that the "EI" suffix also connotes a noun, as in TEI (god, L. deus, divus, di, divi, dea-ae, diva; It. dio, dia; Fr. dieu, dieux, deese) TAEI may be goddesses (L. dea-ae). How the suffix EI works is still not entirely clear. For instance, the name of Helen of Troy, as seen on Etruscan mirrors, is spelled both as ELINAI and ELENEI (See Etruscan GlossaryA.xls) We can compare this to the name of Persephone seen in a tomb mural: PHERSIPNEI ("EI,"gen. suffix, singular?).

Keeping the Midas Monument in the context of a sanctuary of Cybele and her consort, Attis, another word comes to mind: the pine. The pine is the symbol of Attis. Thus, TAEI may be pine-wood (L. taeda-a, pine-wood, a torch, esp. as used at weddings). This would present the following translation of PAFAPa TAEI: he feared the pine-wood or torch [of the wedding].

The name AGNANO is interestingly a name of a volcanic lake in the
Phlegrean Fields, near mount Vesuvius. Located on the bay of the fields - which form a volcanic caldera about 12 km in diameter - is the city of Pozzuoli, known in ancient times as Dicaearchia. Near lake Annano were volcanic caves, one of which was known as the Cave of the Dogs. Since ancient times the cave released poisonous fumes and it was believed (usually demonstrated by throwing dogs into the cave) that anything thrown into the cave, except frogs or snakes, would instantly die. But the dogs and even people could be resurrected by throwing them into the lake nearby. Jean D'Amato Thomas, nsula.edu, presents an interesting history of the place. This is the place the ancients believed to be the entrance of Hades, also called Lake Avernus. The religion of Cybele (MATER) was one of rebirth and healing which is what the Phlegrean Fields were also known for.

XA-13 (Lower left inscription )
XA13-1 NISAE: ESVRM (ESYRM) : UTIN (FTIN) [Translation: Nisae or sustained, rested (L. nissus-a-um; nitor, to sustain) I went out (It. escire [uscire]; L. exeo-ire-li [ivi]-itum; exirem, 1st. pers. conj. imperf.) they employ, use, enjoy (L. utor, uti, usus); possibly a name, Utin? ] Note: See also XB-4 for UTIN.

(Inscription on right side, running vertically on the wall) Note: BaBA MEM EFAIS PROITA FO is a phrase repeated on an altar, Script XE!


[Translation: Papa (Attis, also called Papas, husband of Cybele, Mater) of the breast, mammary? (L. mamma-ae; It. mammella; Fr. mamelle);

alternatively, to the mother (It. mamma)? or the self, same (Fr. même) he spoke out (L. effor-fari; Etr. EFA, EFAN, EFAS, EFE): therefore, consequently (L. proinde and proin) of the stock, trunk, shaft (L. fossa-ae; It. fusto; Fr. fut; Sanskrit, yasti; stick, club, L. fustis-is, Etr. 8VST) of the model, figure on a wall, type (L. typus-i; It. tipo; Fr. type; Gr. typos, Polish, typ; Etr. TIPE, TIPES) indeed, truly (L. ne [nae]; Etr. NA) of the epic poem (L. epos): Skenem? (re: L. scio, scire, to know, understand; Etr. SCIS) I love, like (L. amo-are; Etr. AM, AMA, AMaPa, AMaPEN, AMAR, AME, AMEM, AMI, AMIE, AMO): the olives? (Gr. elaia) or alternatively, her (L. eius, illius; It. ella; Fr. elle, elles) bronze, metal (L. aes, aeris)]
Note: See XE-12, E LAES in the context suggesting, "from Laius."

Altar that may be for two statues; or possibly the two-faced Janus, the Etr. / Roman god of doors and beginnings.

(Inscription on a throne / altar overlooking the Midas Monument in Midas City.)

XA-18 AKENANO: A FAN TIES [Translation: Arcanania? or Ascanios they long for (L. aveo-ere) or alternatively, they carry away, sail off (L. aveho-vehere; Etr. AFEF); or at (L. a) the temple (holy place, temple grounds (L. fanum-i)?) a day (L. dies-ei, day; diu, by day; diutiuus, longer; Welsh, dydd; Scot, di; Etr. TIE, TIES). Note: Because of the repeated use of AKENANO (See Etruscan Glossarya.xls) we conclude it is a proper name. Thus, we could have this translation: "Akenano: to the holy place of the days." In the context of a holy place of the days, the mount would be oriented to the calendar. To be such a place the many altars, idols and monuments would have to be oriented to the sunrise and sunset, the positions of the moon , particularly at the new year, and heavenly dieties (constellations).

XA-21 NOA POPLA Ki: ATANA or APA NA (1) [Translation: he renews (L. novo-are) the people? people, a nation (L. populus-i; It. popolo; Fr. populo; Etr. PVPvLV, PVPvLVM) or alternatively, the priest (L. popa-ae, jr. priest; Gr. papas, It. prete; Fr. prêtre) that of (L. qui, quae, quod; It. chi; Fr. qui; Etr. KI, Ki) of Ectabana? (Agbatana in Aeschylus, written Agámtanu by Nabonidos, and Agamatanu at Behistun) (literally: the place of gathering) is supposed to be the capital of Astyages (Istuvegü), which was taken by the Persian emperor Cyrus the Great in the sixth year of Nabonidos (549 BC). The Greeks supposed it to be the capital of Media..) or possibly the goddess Anahita (Gr. Anaitis). Note: ATANA appears to be a person or place, possibly the river Don. The Greek name of the river Don, which flows southward into the Sea of Azov, is the Tanaïs. Another name of the Greeks comes from the patriarch, Danaüs, who, with his brother, Aegyptus, were sons of the Egyptian king Belus. The duality of this throne / altar may point to Anahita.

If the word is APANA it may be APA
, priest (Italian, abate; Fr. Abbé) indeed, truly (L. ne [nae])

ATANA may be the Avestan / Persian Anahita, a two phased goddess combining the traits of Ishtar and Artemis. Phoenicia.org describes her as a form of the Phonecian Anat, Egyptian Sekhmet, Assyrian Ishtar and Anatolian Cybele: "Artemis: The virgin goddess Artemis, who is probably identifiable from Linear B, has stronger Anatolian connections than Levantine. Her cults,72 especially that of Taurian Artemis, display certain traits that are also seen in the worship of Phoenician gods. Primarily she is associated with human sacrifice, making her a mistress of cruel and bloody rites. She is sometimes identified with the Phoenician warrior goddess Anat, though her major associations are with the goddess Kybele, mistress of animals. Anat, the goddess daughter of Baal, was likewise a virgin. She revelled in battle, paralleling the Egyptian lioness goddess Sekhmet, and was a female Ares rather than an Athena. The Sekhmet connection is further enhanced by depictions of Artemis with Eastern lions in her train. In the Iliad Artemis, like Aphrodite, retains Eastern warrior goddess origins, but Homer reduces this aspect of her and when she is beaten by Hera, she flees to father Zeus. There is a connection between Artemis and Aphrodite that can be seen in the cult of the Ephesian Artemis, who was a motherly Eastern fertility goddess."

Script XC, Altar # 46 to Rhea / Cybele

XC-1 RIFUN (RIFYN) AFIA PITE EL [ Translation: Rivun (Rhea?) grandmother (L. avia-ae) the pious, piety (L. pietas-atis; It. pieta; Fr. pitié) to her (L. eius, illius; It. ella; Fr. elle, elles)

XC-5 LUIT (LFIT) TIMAM [Translation: she expiates, atones for (L. luo, luere; luit) the timid, fearful (L. timens-entis; Etr. 4th – accusative case "am")]

Note: Rhea or Rheia was a Titaness who married her brother Cronos. He overthrew their father Uranus and reigned over the other Titans, but was warned by his parents that he was destined to be overthrown in turn by one of his children. In order to prevent this Cronos ate his children one by one as they were born to Rhea. Rhea, or her mother Ge, hid her youngest baby, Zeus, in Crete and gave Cronos in his place a stone wrapped in swaddling clothes. When Zeus grew to manhood his first wife, Metis, gave Cronos an emetic so that he vomited up his children. They joined Zeus in deposing Cronos and certain of his fellow Titans. Rhea was often identified by the Greeks with the Phrygian goddess Cybele, the Mother of the Gods. In this role she is said to have taught Dionysus many of his rites. The Curetes who helped protect the infant Zeus in Crete are confused with the Phrygian Corybntes, who were companions of Cybele.

Script XD, Midas Monument, altar (Image: "Phrygie Exploration Archéologique," Tome II and IV, by Albert Gabriel, Institute Francais D'archéologie de Stanboul, Pars E. de Boccard, 1952)

XD-1 BIRI PARMI [Translation: man (L. vir, viri; It. verile, Fr. veril, veril; Welsh, gwr; Persian, viro, Sanskrit, vira) of small shields (L. parma-ae)

Script XE Midas Monument, altar at the base of the plateau (Image: "Phrygie Exploration Archéologique," Tome II and IV, by Albert Gabriel, Institute Francais D'archéologie de Stanboul, Pars E. de Boccard, 1952). This is identified in "Midasstadt in Phrigien" as Inscription # 71.

XE-1 BRA:TEI EFAIS TROITAE [Translation: Bratei (name Bra + tei, L. god) he spoke out (L. effor-fari; Etr. EFA, EFAN, EFAS, EFE) of the Trojans? (L. Troes, Troia, Troiades, Tropicus; Tros, Trois, a king of Phrygia, after whom Troy was named; Troia-ae, the town of Troy beseiged and finally captured by the Greeks; adj. Trous, Troius, Troicus, Troianus-a-um, Trojan; subst. Tros, Trois, m., a Trojan; adj. and subst. Troas-ados, Trojan, a Trojan woman] This text has been corrected based on the "Midasstadt in Phrigien" reading. If we use it the phrase would be a repetion of Script XA -25:

XE-1 BaBA: MEM EFAIS: PROITA FO [Translation: Papa (Attis, also called Papas, husband of Cybele, Mater) of the breast, mammary? (L. mamma-ae; It. mammella; Fr. mamelle); alternatively, to the mother (It. mamma)? or the self, same (Fr. même) he spoke out (L. effor-fari; Etr. EFA, EFAN, EFAS, EFE): therefore, consequently (L. proinde and proin) I speak, speak of (L. for, fari, fatus; 1st pers. pres. fo)

XE-6 EFIA NAFE IOS (or YOS) : AY ARA PATYR [Translation: Efia, name, possibly Ephesus, modern Efes, Turkey; the ship, boat (L. navis-is; It. nave; Fr. navire) Eos, goddess of the dawn (L. Eos; adj. Eous & Eous-a-um, belonging to morning, eastern)
– oh! (L. au!) the altar (L. ara-ae) of the father (L. pater-tris)] Note: EFIA appears to be a name (See Grammar, 2nd Declension); the "Midasstadt in Phrigien" reading would be: CH (

XE-12 E LAES [Translation: from (L. e, ex) Laius, name (L. Laius-i, father of Oedipus)] Note: the last word at XA-25 is EL AES which could be "
the olives"? (Gr. elaia) or alternatively, her (L. eius, illius; It. ella; Fr. elle, elles) bronze, metal (L. aes, aeris)

Script XG, Midas Monument, altar (Image: "Phrygie Exploration Archéologique," Tome II and IV, by Albert Gabriel, Institute Francais D'archéologie de Stanboul, Pars E. de Boccard, 1952)

XG-1 PIATA PICUTO (PICYTO) [Translation: the pious, piety (L. pius-a-um; pietas-atis; It. pio, pious; Fr. pieux, pious) beast, animal, esp. a sheep (L. pecus-udis)] Note: picuto would follow a gen. sing. declension, as "us" in Latin shifts to Etruscan and Italian "o." (See Grammar). This would make piata singular, shifting from L. pietas to Etruscan piata.

The "o" suffix in PICUTO appears to designate a name. It may be Pittakos a king of Mitylene capital of the island of Lesbos, who lived about 650 B.C. and was criticized by the poet Alcaeus:

5. (Fr. 70)
This present anger may we put from our minds,

and let us relax from this factional strife that eats our hearts,

this civil warfare which some one of the Olympians

stirred up among us, bringing the people into ruin,

but to Pittakos giving delightful glory....

18. (Fr. 348)

. . . that base-born

Pittakos they have set up as tyrant of that spiritless

and ill-fated city, praising him loudly all together....

The time of Pittakos is consistent with the time of the Phrygians. Alcaeus refers to the Trojans in his poem as "Phrygians." Also we note in Alcaeus' poem a reference to a person whose name is similar to ONOMAN:

7. (Fr. 130b) an exile on the very edge of things, and like Onomakles

I have settled here alone amid the wolf-thickets

Script XF Broken Monument, facade No. 33, Midas City (Image: "Phrygian Rock Cut Shrines," Susanne Berndt-Ersöz, after Gabriel)

XF-1 APE PAN NEKAS TE FAN [Translation: you drink, water (L. beo-bere; It. bere; PIE *ap, hap, water) of Pan? (L. Pan, Panos, the god of flocks, woods and shepherds; Phrygian Pan was called Marsyus.) you deny, deny a request, refuse (L. nego-are) or alternatively, kill, slay, put to death (L. neco-are) yourself (L. te) of the temple precinct? (L. fanum-i)]

Note: Marsyas invented the double flute and was challenged one day to a contest with Apollo, as to who could play better upside down. Apollo tricked Pan / Marsyas, turning his lyre upside down, but Marsyas could not play the flute upside down. The winner was given the right to do anything he wished with the loser. Apollo flayed Marsyus and hung his hide on a tree at Celaenae, Phrygia, and gave the flayed corpse to Marsyas' pupil, Olympus. The satyr's blood, or else the tears of his many friends among the woodland deities, formed the river Marsyas.

Script XB, Areyastis Monument, Midas City, Yazikaya, Turkey (Drawing from Alexander Lubotsky, Areyastis.pdf; See original drawings "Phrygie Exploration Archéologique," Tome IV)

The Brixhe and Lejeune transription on this monument. (2)

XB-1 KE LOKES: FENA UTYN (FTYN): AFTAS (or possibly A UTAS [FTAS]): MATER ES [Translation: to us (It. ce) location, place (L. locus-i): he/ she comes, to arrive (L. venio, venita, veni, ventum; It. venire) they employ, use, enjoy (L. utor, uti, usus); possibly a name, Utin?: ancestral, of a grandfather (L. avitus-a-um)? possibly to (L. a) you use, enjoy (L. utor, uti, usus); mother (L. mater, matris) you are (L. sum, esse, fui, futurus; 2nd pers., es)] Note: Several words in the Phrygian texts on this page have an uncanny resemblance to Norse gods: UTYN = Odin? LOKES = Loki?; FREKYN (XB-27) = Frigg? See crystalinks.com. A possible connection to these gods could be through the Tectosages, a Celtic people from the Pyrenees who stock settled in Phrygia, according to Strabo 4.13: [penelope.uchicago.edu] "...The people who are called Tectosages closely approach the Pyrenees, though they also reach over small parts of the northern side of the Cemmenus; p205and the land they occupy is rich in gold. It appears that at one time they were so powerful and had so large a stock of strong men that, when a sedition broke out in their midst, they drove a considerable number of their own people out of the homeland; again, that other persons from other tribes made common lot with these exiles; and that among these are also those people who have taken possession of that part of Phrygia which has a common boundary with Cappadocia and the Paphlagonians.59 Now as proof of this we have the people who are still, even at the present time, called Tectosages; for, since there are three tribes, one of them — the one that lives about the city of Ancyra — is called "the tribe of the Tectosages," while the remaining two are the Trocmi and the Tolistobogii. As for these latter peoples, although the fact of their racial kinship with the Tectosages indicates that they emigrated from Celtica, I am unable to tell from what districts they set forth; for I have not learned of any Trocmi or Tolistobogii who now live beyond the Alps, or within them, or this side of them. But it is reasonable to suppose that nothing has been left of them in Celtica on account of their thoroughgoing migrations — just as is the case with several other peoples. For example, some say that the second Brennus60 who made an invasion against Delphi was a Prausan, but I am unable to say where on earth the Prausans formerly lived, either. And it is further said that the Tectosages shared in the expedition to Delphi; and even the treasures that were found among them in the city of Tolosa by p207 Caepio, a general of the Romans, were, it is said, a part of the valuables that were taken from Delphi, although the people, in trying to consecrate them and propitiate the god, added thereto out of their personal properties, and it was on account of having laid hands on them that Caepio ended his life in misfortunes — for he was cast out by his native land as a temple-robber, and he left behind as his heirs female children only, who, as it turned out, became prostitutes, as Timagenes has said, and therefore perished in disgrace. However, the account of Poseidonius is more plausible:.."

CHET (LAET): PA [Translation: the double? (L. duplex; It. sosia, suisare, to alter; Fr. double) you are (L. sum, esse, fui, futurus; 2nd pers., es) the summer (L. aestas-atis; It. estate; Fr. été )?: mother (L. mater, matris) you are (L. sum, esse, fui, futurus; 2nd pers., es); you speak out, expound (L. effor-fari) I cover, bury (L. tego, tegere) the seats, chairs, thrones (L. sedes-is): to the pellet, swelling (L. offa-ae; It. enfiare, Fr.enfier, to swell) I bind, limit, enclose, apppoint, end, finish by speaking, or die (L. finio-ire); they honor, respect (L. honore-are; It. onorare; Fr. honorer; Polish, honor); Lachet (unknown word) possibly, he relaxes, loosens, widens (L. laxo-are; 3rd pers. conj. laxet): throughout (L. per)] Note: See theoi.com for extracts relating to ancient reports of Cybele. Here we see a interesting quote from the Argonautica 1.1076, by
Apollonius Rhodius : "Titias and Kyllenos. For these two are singled out as dispensers of doom and assessors to the Meter Idaia (Mother of Mt Ida)." Here the phrase SOS ES AIT may say, "the double you are of [Mt.] Ida." Another site with ancient descriptions of Cybele, from the Dacian perspective, is pelasgians.bigpondhosting.com. One of her names is "Baba Dochia" and this site says that the first days of March (1-12) are called by the Romanian people “the days of Baba Dochia” or “the days of Babe” (Marianu, Ornitologia, I. p.2796; Albina Carpatilor, IV. 11). In addition it says:

While at north of the Lower Danube Caloian was the pampered son of “Deciana," or the Great Mother, he appears in Phrygian legends as a young shepherd extraordinarily handsome, called Attis, whose love was sought by the Great Mother, called by them Cybele. This Attis was, according to the legends of Asia Minor, the son of a Phrygian called Calaus (Pausanias, lib. VII. 17.9), and his mother’s name was Nana (Arnobius, adv. G. IX. 5.4).

Attis, the son of Calaus of the Phrygians, is identical with young Caloian from the religious legends and customs of the Romanian people, and the name Nana of his mother appears in Romanian carols as Nina Dochiana. As Attis is the son of Calaus in the neo-Phrygian legends, similarly the Great Mother or Cybele appears in Greek inscriptions with the epithet of Koilana, meaning Caloiana (Goehler, p.69 - C. I. G. 3886, D. 270).

The tradition is the same. The difference is only that, while the Romanian legend has preserved its primitive character, moral-religious, in the traditions of Asia Minor, influenced by the Greek erotic spirit, young Attis, the son of Calaus, appears as the favorite of Cybele or the Great Mother. And similarly, there existed in Asia Minor too, until the Roman epoch, the custom of celebrating the burial of Attis, the son of Calaus, when the earth suffered from drought.

Diodorus Siculus writes regarding this (III. 59.7): “In Phrygia, happening once an epidemic, and on another hand, the earth suffering of drought, the people consulted the oracle regarding the means by which to repel these calamities. The oracle told them to bury the body of Attis and to worship Cybele as a divinity. But because of the passing of time from the body of Attis nothing had remained, the Phrygians made the image of the youth, which they then buried with lamentations and funerary honors, and this custom they practice constantly to our days”.

This is an important document for the origin of the cult of Cybele or the Great Mother in Asia Minor. According to Diodorus, the oracle had ordered the Phrygians to bury the body of Attis and to worship the Great Mother, or Cybele, in order to be protected from epidemics and drought.

Or, in other words, the cult of Cybele was imported on the territory of Asia Minor from other Pelasgian lands, especially from the region of the Lower Danube, connected to Asia Minor through many ethnic, economic and religious ties.

Of interest is the fact that all of the ancients agree that the worship of Cybele originated in Phrygia (Some reports attribute the cult beginning in Samothrace and then moving to Phrygia) and her worship involved frenzied dances accompanied by noisy tamborines and kettledrums, self-castration and the slashing of the arms with knives. Her worship was in mountainous, natural rock structures, groomed with pine forests, with a cave nearby and springs. She is described as a terrible goddess that must be appeased and envisioned driving a chariot pulled by lions or seated on a rock holding grain, a poppy and a cornocopia, sybolizing abundance. She is also depicted as a water bearer. Within the natural rock niches were placed, along with her carved, stone image, wooden images of other gods. One of the original images made of her, by the Argonauts, was that carved from a large vine growing on a tree on Mt. Didymus. Her worship is described relative to her sacred places, where she was conceived by the sleeping Zeus, where her consort, Attis was conceived, and where Attis was buried. For instance [see thoi.com]:

"But the Skepsian again states, in opposition to the words of Euripides, that the rites of Rhea were not sanctioned or in vogue in Krete, but only in Phrygia and Troia." - Strabo, Geography 10.3.9

"As for the Berekyntes, a tribe of Phrygians, and the Phrygians in general, and those of the Trojans who live round Ida, they too hold Rhea in honor and worship her with Orgia (Orgies), calling her Meter Theon (Mother of the Gods) and Agdistis and Thea Megala Phrygia (Great Goddess of Phrygia), and also, from the places where she is worshipped, Idaia [of Mt Ida in Troia] and Dindymene [of Mt Dindymenos in Phrygia] and Sipylene [of Mt Sipylos in Lydia] and Pessinountis [of Pessinos city in Phrygia] and Kybele and Kybebe [of Mt Kybela in Phrygia]." - Strabo, Geography 10.3.12

“In one place the Phrygians, first-born of men, call me Pessinuntine Mother of the Gods." - Apuleius, The Golden Ass 11.5

The most famous of the Orgia of the Meter Theon was held on Mt Dindymenos (which was named the throne and residence of the goddess).

"Pessinos [in Phrygia] is the greatest of the emporiums in that part of the world, containing a temple of the Meter Theon (Mother of the Gods), which is an object of great veneration. They call her Agdistis. The priests were in ancient times potentates, I might call them, who reaped the fruits of a great priesthood, but at present the prerogatives of these have been much reduced, although the emporium still endures. The sacred precinct has been built up by the Attalic kings in a manner befitting a holy place, with a sanctuary and also with porticos of white marble. The Romans made the temple famous when, in accordance with oracles of the Sibylla, they sent for the statue of the goddess there, just as they did in the case of that of Asklepios at Epidauros. There is also a mountain situated above the city, Dindymon, after which the country Dindymene was named, just as Kybele was named after Kybela. Near by, also, flows the Sangarios River; and on this river are the ancient habitations of the Phrygians, of Midas, and of Gordios." - Strabo, Geography 12.5.3

"[The river] Hermos flows from the mountain sacred to the Meter Dindymene (Mother of Mt Dindymenos) and empties into the sea near the city of Phokaia." - Herodotus, Histories 1.80.1

"The Mother always loved Dindymus and Cybele [mountains in Phrygia]." - Ovid, Fasti 4.181

"There is also a mountain [in Phrygia] ... [the Meter Theon] Kybele was named after, Mt Kybela." - Strabo, Geography 12.5.3

"The Great Mother, the patron of Cybele, the cymbals of the Corybantes." - Virgil, Aeneid 3.111

“The Mother always loved Dindymus and Cybele [mountains in Phrygia]." - Ovid, Fasti 4.181

"Kybele: Rhea. [So named] from the Kybela mountains; for she is a mountain goddess; that is why she rides in a chariot drawn by a team of lions ... effeminates are present in the mysteries of Rhea." - Suidas "Kybele"

...‘But why do we call the self-castrated ‘Galli’, when the Gallic land is far from Phrygia?’ ‘Between,’ she says, ‘green Cybele and high Celaenae runs a stream of bad water named Gallus. Its taste causes madness. Keep away, if you want a healthy mind. Its taste causes madness.’ ‘Aren’t they ashamed,’ I said, ‘to place a herb salad before the Mistress? Or is there some cause?’ ‘The ancients are said to have dieted on pure milk and on herbs produced by the earth itself, White cheeses,’ she says, ‘are mingled with pounded herbs, so the primal goddess sees primal food." - Ovid, Fasti 4.181

Accounts of Cybele refer say that the name Cybele comes from the region from which she derived, variously called Cybela and Cybebe. In the texts of Midas City is the word BABA. Could the original name of the mount of Midas City have been Cybebe? We know that of all the locations from which Cybele's worship is attributed, the river Gallus and the Cybele mountains are associated together and yet not apparently identified, as to their current location. There is an interesting reference to the Gallus running through the city of Philomelium (modern Aksehir) :

[snible.org] Philomelium (Ak-Sheher), in the plain of Phrygia Paroreios, separated from central Phrygia by the lofty range of the Sultan Dagh, was probably a Pergamenian outpost on the high road to Iconium. A stream called the Gallus (?) flowed through the town northwards towards the Lake of the Forty Martyrs, some eight miles north. Philomelium struck auto- nomous coins [2] in the second century B.C., or perhaps rather later. Inscr., ΦΙΛΟΜΗΛΕΩΝ, obv. Bust of Mên with crescent at shoulders, rev. Zeus enthroned. The obv. of these coins bears a striking resemblance to that of some coins of Antioch, η προς τη Πισιδια (Strab. 577), about fifteen miles west of Philomelium, but cut off from easy communication with it by the long range of the Sultan Dagh. The influence of the great sanctuary of Mên ‘Ακραιος or ‘Ασκαηνος at Antioch would seem therefore to have extended across the mountains...

The Aeneid of Virgil offers the argument that the Romans descended from Troy, via Teucer. It says that the Trojans and their Mater Cybele originated in Crete. (See Phrygiank.html for these and other sources referring to Trojan ancestry.) The references in this text to Lemnos, Utin and Frekyn (XB-27) may also be a Phrygian statement on their origins. UTIN (FTIN) may be the Teutonic god Odin. Teutonic tradition credits the origin of Odin from Troy. Of interest here is the Teutonic tradition that Odin gave his eye for wisdom and gave to the Teutonic peoples the runes. The runes repesent a writing system that is patterned after the Etruscan alphabet and the earliest runes date from 150 A.D. Another writing system that is similar to the runes is that of the Serbs, a Slavic people. We have seen that the Phrygian and Lydian alphabets are similar to the Etruscan, and in the Zincirli (Sennacherib) stele the Phrygian writing has been mistaken for Aramaic. In truth these writing systems had their origin in Phoenician and Aramaic. Phoenician script , and to an extent, Aramaic, differ from Etruscan / Phrygian in the representation of the letter "A" and letters that flow well below the line. The Phoenician character, "A," is written sideways, resembling a "K."

XB-19 NATERAN: ARES ASTIN [Translation: they were born (L. nascor-i): to Ares, Greek god of war (L. Ares-is); they stand by (L. adsto-stare)]

XB-22 BONO Ki: AKENANO PAUS Se (PAFS Se) [Translation: the good, good of its kind (L. bonus-a-um) who, which, what, that, wherefore, whereby (L. qui, quae, quod; It. chi; Fr. qui); Akenano, name, Akenanus? Arcanania? Pharoah Ankhkaenre Psamtik III (526-525 B.C)? ended (L. pausa-ae, cessation, end) iteself, herself, himself (L. se, sese)]

XB-27 FREKYN : TELATOS: SOS TUTU (TYTY) Te LEMNOS: AKENANO PAFOS AES [Translation: frequent (L. frequens-entis)? or, alternatively, they are cold (L. frigeo-ere): alternatively, Phrygian; Telatos, name? (Gr. Telieotis, finisher): the double (L. duplex; It. sosia, suisare, to alter; Fr. double) total, entire (L. tutus-a-um; totius, toti; It. totale, tutto; Fr. tout; Welsh, tuath) you, yours (L. te) of Lemnos, Lemnian (L. Lemnos [us]-i; adj. Lemnius-a-um, Lemnian): Akenano, name, Akenanus? Arcanania? Pharoah Ankhkaenre Psamtik III (526-525 B.C)? Pavos, Paphos, name (Grammar, 3rd. Decl. Nom.) Paphos, Cyriote city – Aphrodite's sanctuary; the bronze, metal (L. aes, aeris)] Note: the suffix "os" designates a name; as a noun it should have an "or" suffix, such as Latin pavor-oris, fear, panic, trembling, quaking. The word LEMNOS is interesting since
"The name 'of Lemnos' is said by Hecataeus to have been a title of Cybele among the Thracians, and the earliest inhabitants are said to have been a Thracian tribe, whom the Greeks called Sintians, 'the robbers.' " Of interest is a script found in Lemnos, believed to be Etruscan, that uses the three-dot colon as punctuation. The presence of the Lemnos script in relationship to the Phrygian scripts provides more interest in a Phrygian-Etruscan linguistic affinity. Ancient historians and poets, including Virgil, also referred to the Troad and the sea off its coast as "Phrygian." (See Phrygian1k.html) The story of the Aeneid presents the argument that the ancestors of the ancient Romans were from the Troad. The Aeneid refers to Latin tribes being in the area of Rome at the time of the arrival of Aeneas's [Trojan] ships. If the newly arrived settlers were "Trojans" or "Phrygians" and spoke a language now known as Latin, we can only wonder what language the indigenous population of Latins spoke. Dominating the region were the Etruscans and beside other Italic tribes was a colony among the Etruscans (north of Rome?) that was Greek. The Greeks had settled Sicily and southern Italy by the 8th century B.C., (see wikipedia.org) with its region being called Magna Graecia (Latin, “Greater Greece”).

XB-37 ATANIS EN: KURSAN E SON: TA NEPERTOS [Translation: Atana, name, Ectabana? behold! (L. en) they run hither and thither (L. curso-are) from, out of, after (L. e, ex) the sound (L. sonus-i): you (L. tuus, Fr. ta) name, Nepertos?]

Note: Compare the physical shape of this monument with that of the monument identified by Brixhe and Lejeune as W-

Phrygian1.html Phrygian1a.htmlPhrygian1b.htmlPhrygian1c.html


1) ATANA may be Anahiti, the Persian goddess. The Mittani, southeast of Anatolia, worshipped three gods common to the Aryan, Vedic, gods: Mithra, Varuna and Indra. In our work, "Banquet of the Gods," we record the following:

A treaty concluded about 1380 B.C. between the Hittite emperor and the king of the Mitanni, invokes a list of gods that recalls those addressed in the Rig Veda, namely: Mitra and Varuna, Indra and the two Nasatyas (2). Of these gods, only Mitra (Mithra) is invoked in the Avesta, "except that Indra and Nanhaithya appear in the Avesta as demons. Varuna may have survived under another name. Important changes, then, must have taken place on the Iranian side, not all of which can be attributed to the prophet.

"The Indo-Iranians appear to have distinguished, from among their gods, the daiva (Indo-Iranian and Old Persian equivalent of Avestan daeva and Sanskrit deva, related to the Latin deus), meaning 'heavenly,' and the asura , a special class with occult powers. This situation was reflected in Vedic India; later on, asura came to signify, in Sanskrit, a kind of demon, because of the baleful aspect of the asura's invisible power. In Iran the evolution must have been different: the ahuras were extolled, to the exclusion of the daevas, who were reduced to the rank of demons."

Principal Iranian Deities:


Beside Ahura Mazda, Mithra is the most important deity of the ancient Iranian pantheon and may have even occupied a position of near equality with him. In the Achaemenian inscriptions Mithra, together with Anahita, is the only other deity specifically mentioned. Although the ancient pantheon contained an individual sun god, Hvar Khshaita, in the eastern Iranian traditions reflected in the Avesta, Mithra has a hint of connection with the sun, more specifically with the first rays of dawn as he drives forth in his chariot. In western Iran the identification was complete, and the name Mithra became a common word for 'sun.' In spite of his connection with the sun, Mithra functioned preeminently in the ethical sphere. The word mithra was a common noun that meant 'covenant, contract, treaty' and, as such, Mithra was the god Covenant, the celestial deity who oversaw all solemn agreements that people made among themselves and who severely punished anyone who broke the terms of a covenant, whether it was between individuals or between countries or other sociopolitical entities. In his capacity to find out the covenant breaker, he is described as sleepless, ever-waking, having 1,000 ears, 10,000 eyes, and a wide outlook. He is portrayed as a great warrior brandishing his mace while driving in his chariot to battle, where he intervenes on behalf of those faithful to treaties by throwing the treaty-breakers (mithra-drug) into panic and defeat. As a sovereign deity, Mithra bore the standing epithet varu-gavyuti, meaning 'one who (presides over) wide pasture lands' — i.e., one who keeps under his protection (another of his epithets was payu, 'protector') the territories of those who worship him and abide by their covenants. It should be mentioned that Mithra gave his name to a mystery religion, Mithraism, which was popular throughout the Roman Empire, but whose Iranian origins are difficult to trace.


One of the longest Avestan Yashts is to the powerful goddess whose full name is given as Ardvi Sura Anahita, literally "the damp, strong, untainted." In fact, the long name seems to combine two originally separate names and, hence, two deities. First, Ardvi Sura is the Iranian name of the heavenly river goddess who in the Rigveda is called Sarasvati. In this role, she brings fresh water to the earth, filling streams, rivers, and seas as she flows from Mount Hukarya to the Varu-Karta sea. Second, Anahiti is a separate goddess of uncertain origin whose cult seems to have been popular originally in northeastern Iran. The name probably meant "untaintedness, purity (both moral and physical)." It is interesting that the Greek Anaitis preserves the Old Iranian form of the name, while Anahit(a), of the Avestan and Old Persian, shows a more recent linguistic form. Unlike any other Iranian deity, she is described in great detail in the Yashts, especially in respect to her clothing and ornamentation, to such an extent that one assumes a dressed cult image must be the source of the description. This is confirmed by thefact that Artaxerxes II mentions her. Then, too, the Babylonian historian Berosus reports that this king had many images of her made and distributed. Since the Iranians did not traditionally make images, it may be assumed that Anahiti's cult borrowed heavily from Mesopotamian models. The Mesopotamian goddess Ishtar probably provided the clearest model, though the details of Anahiti's dress, her beaver coat, for example—show significant differences. There were other striking similarities: Ishtar was the goddess of war and patroness of the palace, while the greater part of Anahiti's Yasht is devoted to her martial traits and her patronage of Iranian heroes and legendary rulers (in post-Achaemenian Iran Anahiti was intimately connected with kingship and the shah). In addition, both goddesses were important for fertility. (1)

2) "Corpus des Inscriptions Paléo-Phrygienne, Editions Recherche sur les Civilizations," by Claude Brixhe and Michel Lejeune, Institute Français D'etudes Anatoliennes, Paris 1984, Memoire # 45. See Phrygian1.html for more of their images of Phrygien inscriptions.


Etruscan Glossary with Phrygian words:

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