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English 426B Mythology
Syllabus Glossary
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The venuses of the Paleolithic period, with their greatly exaggerated sexual characteristics, continued into the Neolithic with increased vigor. In the Neolithic, in addition to carved figures, thousands of clay figures abound.


A new type of venus appeared. This was a figurine that combined human and bird features. The figure could also be phallic when viewed from certain perspectives.


Other female figures appeared. Some were associated with snakes; others were more inscrutable in their nature or affiliation. Male figures occured, but in far smaller numbers. In some instances the male divinity was realized theriomorphically, often as a bull.

Most scholars agree that these figurines indicate a worldview that emphasized the importance of female fertility. While some individuals have tried to go far beyond this general statement, there is no general acceptance of their interpretations.






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