Do ancient names persist in modern culture?

  • Thread starter Klystron
  • Start date
  • #36
Klystron
Gold Member
1,047
1,572
Updated table of (Western) solar system object names in modern order. Names may be associated with a mythological figure but modern names in several languages appear to converge due to common usage. For instance Luna refers to Terra's satellite, the Moon, associated with mythological character Diana among many others. Sun, Sol, Helios, Solen associates with many dieties and characters including Ra, Horus and Apollo.

This incomplete table could be populated with female character names beyond Venus, Terra and Luna that may not have survived translation by male scholars. What names will survive in future cultures?

EnglishLatinGreekSwedishFrench
Sun
Mercury
Venus
Earth
Moon
Mars
Jupiter
Saturn
Sol
Mercury
Venera
Terra
Luna
Mars
Jupiter
Saturn
Helios
Hermes
Aphrodite
Gaea
Selene
Aris, Ares
Dios (Zeus)
Kronos
Solen
Merkurius
Venus
Jorden (Earth)
Månen
Mars
Jupiter
Saturnus
Soleil
Mercure
Vénus
Terre
Lune
Mars
Jupiter
Saturne
 
Last edited:
  • Like
Likes pinball1970 and DennisN
  • #37
DennisN
Gold Member
1,934
6,124
Updated table of (Western) solar system object names in modern order.
And in German the Sun is "die Sonne", the Earth is "die Erde" and the Moon is "der Mond". I don't know/remember the German names of the other planets, but I guess they are similar to the Latin names.
 
  • Like
Likes Klystron and pinball1970
  • #38
fresh_42
Mentor
Insights Author
2022 Award
17,645
18,309
And in German the Sun is "die Sonne", the Earth is "die Erde" and the Moon is "der Mond". I don't know/remember the German names of the other planets, but I guess they are similar to the Latin names.
More like the English names:

Merkur
Venus
Erde
Mars
Ceres
Jupiter
Saturn
Uranus
Neptun
Pluto
Eris
 
  • Like
  • Informative
Likes Klystron, pinball1970 and DennisN
  • #39
pinball1970
Gold Member
1,608
2,220
Physicist Xerxes Tata has a name that goes back 2500 years, as does the many Alexanders. And along Biblical lines, don't forget "Adam". 😉
The creation stories from the Bible were taken from earlier Sumerian, Babylonian and Egyptian myths. Moses is Egyptian and is still in use it means 'son of Mo'. The Adam /apple story would have been put to paper around the 6th century BCE so that is still pretty ancient, just not as ancient as claimed. 4000BCE.
 
  • Like
Likes Klystron, DennisN and fresh_42
  • #40
DennisN
Gold Member
1,934
6,124
The creation stories from the Bible were taken from earlier Sumerian, Babylonian and Egyptian myths
Yes, I learned that a couple of years ago, it is fascinating. There is also the concept of the flood myth (Noah in the Bible) which appears in the very early Epic of Gilgamesh (ca 2100 BCE). The Gilgamesh flood myth is very similar to the story in the Bible. It is about a great flood and a boat that is being built which later is loaded with animals.
 
  • Like
Likes Klystron, Michael Price and pinball1970
  • #41
Klystron
Gold Member
1,047
1,572
Voltaire once said that the Holy Roman Empire was neither holy, nor Roman, nor an Empire.
The rector of my first college, Reverend Peter Krieg, compared that famous quote with East Germany during the Soviet era. The German Democratic Republic was not a German idea, not a democracy, and a republic in name only; leading to historical comparisons to the old HRE and the Peace of Westphalia with the then-current USSR and Warsaw Pact.
 
  • #42
pinball1970
Gold Member
1,608
2,220
Yes, I learned that a couple of years ago, it is fascinating. There is also the concept of the flood myth (Noah in the Bible) which appears in the very early Epic of Gilgamesh (ca 2100 BCE). The Gilgamesh flood myth is very similar to the story in the Bible. It is about a great flood and a boat that is being built which later is loaded with animals.
Yes there are several flood stories that pre date the Bible by many centuries. Those stories were adapted and readapted by later cultures.
Noah is an old name and is prevalent southern states USA
This website gives the most popular by state Noah is number 1 in Louisiana
http://www.babynamewizard.com/the-most-popular-baby-names-in-louisiana
 
  • #43
fresh_42
Mentor
Insights Author
2022 Award
17,645
18,309
Yes, I learned that a couple of years ago, it is fascinating. There is also the concept of the flood myth (Noah in the Bible) which appears in the very early Epic of Gilgamesh (ca 2100 BCE). The Gilgamesh flood myth is very similar to the story in the Bible. It is about a great flood and a boat that is being built which later is loaded with animals.
Damnit. I always thought the flood would have been a description of the Santorini outbreak, but that was not as far in history. It might still explain the Minoan, if not directly, so maybe as a consequence, but it won't explain Noah anymore.
 
  • Like
Likes Klystron and Michael Price
  • #44
DennisN
Gold Member
1,934
6,124
Yes there are several flood stories that pre date the Bible by many centuries. Those stories were adapted and readapted by later cultures.
If you have details about other flood myths, please enlighten us! :smile: I don't know about other flood myths. Also, I am under the impression that the Sumerian myth is the oldest, but I am not sure about this.
 
  • #45
Michael Price
344
90
The creation stories from the Bible were taken from earlier Sumerian, Babylonian and Egyptian myths. Moses is Egyptian and is still in use it means 'son of Mo'. The Adam /apple story would have been put to paper around the 6th century BCE so that is still pretty ancient, just not as ancient as claimed. 4000BCE.
No, moses means just "son of" or created by, as in Thutmoses = son of Thoth
 
  • #46
pinball1970
Gold Member
1,608
2,220
If you have details about other flood myths, please enlighten us! :smile: I don't know about other flood myths. Also, I am under the impression that the Sumerian myth is the oldest, but I am not sure about this.
I don't want to derail the thread, unless you know if Marduk and Utnapishtim is still in circulation as a name?
I'll check my sources, I read there were earlier stories that we know of and these may not be the earliest.
 
  • Like
Likes Klystron and DennisN
  • #47
Klystron
Gold Member
1,047
1,572
Expanded table of solar system objects known to the ancients to include German. Ordered columns alphabetically by language; rows by distance from the Sun.

EnglishFrenchGermanGreekLatinSwedish
Sun
Mercury
Venus
Earth
Moon
Mars
Jupiter
Saturn
Soleil
Mercure
Vénus
Terre
Lune
Mars
Jupiter
Saturne

Sonne
Merkur
Venus
Erde
Mond
Mars
Jupiter
Saturn

Helios
Hermes
Aphrodite
Gaea
Selene
Aris, Ares
Dios (Zeus)
Kronos

Sol
Mercury
Venera
Terra
Luna
Mars
Jupiter
Saturn

Solen
Merkurius
Venus
Jorden (Earth)
Månen
Mars
Jupiter
Saturnus


Interesting variations in modern names for the Sun and Earth. Yet notice with the exception of Greek identical names for planets Mars and Jupiter in the listed languages, possibly because neither name follows classical Latin form?
 
  • #48
fresh_42
Mentor
Insights Author
2022 Award
17,645
18,309
Interesting variations in modern names for the Sun and Earth.
We still have all ancient words in use:
Earth related is 'irdisch' or 'irden', but also 'terrestrisch' if in contrast to space. O.k. 'Gaia' isn't in use anymore.
Sun related is 'sonnig' (weather) but still 'solar' (technical), too, or 'helios' in terms like 'heliopause' or 'heliozentrisch'.
 
  • #49
pinball1970
Gold Member
1,608
2,220
No, moses means just "son of" or created by, as in Thutmoses = son of Thoth
[/QUOTE
I will check my source on that, History of the Bible lands BC, it's From 1977
 
  • #50
Michael Price
344
90
Expanded table of solar system objects known to the ancients to include German. Ordered columns alphabetically by language; rows by distance from the Sun.

EnglishFrenchGermanGreekLatinSwedish
Sun
Mercury
Venus
Earth
Moon
Mars
Jupiter
Saturn
Soleil
Mercure
Vénus
Terre
Lune
Mars
Jupiter
Saturne
Sonne
Merkur
Venus
Erde
Mond
Mars
Jupiter
Saturn
Helios
Hermes
Aphrodite
Gaea
Selene
Aris, Ares
Dios (Zeus)
Kronos
Sol
Mercury
Venera
Terra
Luna
Mars
Jupiter
Saturn
Solen
Merkurius
Venus
Jorden (Earth)
Månen
Mars
Jupiter
Saturnus

Interesting variations in modern names for the Sun and Earth. Yet notice with the exception of Greek identical names for planets Mars and Jupiter in the listed languages, possibly because neither name follows classical Latin form?
Before the Greeks realized the morning star and the evening star were the same planet they called them Phosphorus and Hesperus, respectively.
 
  • #51
Klystron
Gold Member
1,047
1,572
We still have all ancient words in use:
Earth related is 'irdisch' or 'irden', but also 'terrestrisch' if in contrast to space. O.k. 'Gaia' isn't in use anymore.
Sun related is still 'solar', or 'helios' in terms like 'heliopause' or 'heliozentrisch'.
Variations of 'Gaia' and 'Gaea' have made a comeback in literature and science. For example SF author John Varley published his 'Gaean Trilogy' -- "Titan", "Wizard", "Demon" -- named after a space artifact called Gaea who nurtures living creatures within a large torus habitat orbiting Saturn.

Variations of the name also appear in papers discussing, for instance, the role of life in atmosphere constituents and the Gaian Hypothesis.

Thanks for the German derivatives. I left English derivatives and modifiers off the revised tables as more languages were added but they really add value IMO showing how previous cultures influence proper names and modern culture.
 
Last edited:
  • Like
Likes Michael Price
  • #52
Klystron
Gold Member
1,047
1,572
More examples of ancient names in modern culture appear for example in a Hungarian television serial derived from a Finnish tele-novel originally broadcast in Suomi. Suomi and Magyar share cultural roots within Ugric languages; i.e., Finno-Ugric peoples. The Huns mixed with the Urgians producing modern English word Hungarian.

The television serial loosely translated as "Golden Life" or "Our Good Life" features a middle aged hustler and sometimes conman named "Attila" as in Attila the Hun, called Atti, whose name becomes a source of merriment and irony throughout the teleplay. Their Soviet general father named Attila's younger brother "Tamerlane", a name used only in official documents as everyone calls him Tibbi. To balance the names of famous Huns we have wealthy Family friend Uncle Erde. Note that "der Erde" is German for the Earth.
 

Suggested for: Do ancient names persist in modern culture?

  • Last Post
Replies
16
Views
988
Replies
1
Views
530
  • Last Post
Replies
9
Views
252
Replies
4
Views
1K
Replies
12
Views
499
Replies
41
Views
4K
Replies
1
Views
2K
Replies
4
Views
1K
Replies
17
Views
3K
Top