I'm going to be looking here at the Minoan White Goddess and her female companions, the whiteness needs emphasis in that this is the primary mode of
recognition for these figures, in paintings were the general Minoan populace is seen as of a ruddy brown colouring...the Whiteness hence defines
It isn't simply the case that it was conventional to depict women paler, that this was cosmetic, or they didn't get outside much. As can be seen
below, expanding the above scene, the White Goddess takes centre stage, yet there is another white woman amongst a group of other women to the left,
differentiated in not only her colouring, but also hair style and dress.
Academic considerations on who these figures are, whether Priestesses or Goddesses are few and far between and sketchy, little is understood or worth
quoting, so i can only make my own proposals.
My general hypothesis is this, that these female figures are Goddesses, that they live and move amongst the people in a most hands on manner, that
their primary undertaking is that of ordering society, particularly with regards to the harvesting and manipulating of nature, to the extent of
administering breeding and cultivation programmes...and ruling through the power of her bared breasts, which is to say nurturing and nourishing the
populace, as well as affording sensual delights.
The background to this hypothesis is what i've previously considered for The Neolithic
, and how this was conceived as under the auspices of a Queen Bee type figure, and a hive mentality amongst the general
populace, the Minoan Goddess is very much a Bee Goddess.
Also i shall be suggesting a basis for the inter-relationship of the Goddess type figures, and their activities, along the lines of the Sumerian cult
of Inanna and Ninsubur, and their establishment of a central procreation establishment within the E-Anna at Uruk, as in
Uruk Rises Again
There is a good deal involved then, and i'll start by looking at the pictorial evidence of two close companions, as in Inanna and her Minister
Ninsubur, these would represent in Sumeria Venus the Evening star and Morning star respectively, from a time when these were given as two seperate
A first example then, these two companion Goddesses are seen collecting saffron;
A second example, the primary of the two (Inanna in Sumer) is seated upon her throne recieving a blue monkey, her first Minister is in attendance;
This is for those who want to see more of the monkeys...
In a third example the primary Goddess is preparing to sacrifice a bull, symbolic of all things masculine, her first Minister is doing the neccesary
auspicious offerings and oblutions.
So i think that pairing can be identified, the first Minister would be the other white woman seen on the first fresco. That these were stellar
Deities can be evidenced from illustrations such as these;
Were they are seen at opposite ends of a winding waterway, beneath the Heavenly stars, which are set into an idealized geometric pattern, that bears
comparison to hive iconography.
At this point we shall need to consider a third sister, as in Sumer with Inanna and Ninsubur, there was also an Underworld Goddess, Erishkagal, a
sister, who completed a triple Goddess package, a star of Morning and of Evening, and a sister that ruled Midnight.
This triple aspect is seen in the blue Ladies fresco;
And here, though this might represent the three becoming singular;
As would be the case here, were the Morning and Evening star are to the left, the Midnight sister to the right, the totality central.
Having established then that the female figures are very much Goddesses, lets return to their involvement within Minoan Society, below we see the
primary Goddess and her first Minister over seeing the herds, the city council, the army, the tree of Life, the Arc of the Heavens, pretty much
Here's another city scene were the game of spot the smiling white Goddess needs to be played;
Here she can be found in her double and triple aspects, at cultic sites within the city;
So she is seen as ever present and all important.
Having looked at the religious triple Goddess aspect through comparison with Sumer it will be interesting to elaborate upon that, and consider whether
there was also the same concern with star gates, celestial portals of the horizon, which the Goddesses emerged from and into.
The above pictorial evidence would suggest so, the two portals at either horizon, it also suggests there was a similar cult of the Male lover that is
taken into the Underworld as a replacement, as in the Dumuzi mythos, and the lamenting Goddess that facilitates seasonal return.
In short then it was seemingly the very same Goddess that ruled over the Minoans that ruled within the E-Anna of Uruk...
And it has to be said she ruled there very well and kept all Daimons on their best behaviour.
OOnsideration also needs to be given to the importance of their cultivation and collecting of Saffron,
Scented flowers have long scarlet stigmas and the female parts are handpicked from each flower, male parts of no culinary value. Each flower
has only three stigmas, over 14,000 of which are dried over charcoal fires to yield one ounce of saffron.
In the Bronze Age Minoan culture, saffron had religious associations and provided a flourishing trade. One of the first historic references of saffron
comes from Ancient Egypt and Rome where the stigmas, were used as hair and fabric dye, in perfumes, as a drug, as well as for culinary purposes. It
was used by Cleopatra and other Pharaons as an aromatic and seductive essence, and to make ablutions in temples. Ancient Egyptians sacrificed cakes of
saffron to their gods.
During the Renaissance, Venice was the most important commercial center for saffron. During that time saffron was worth its weight in gold, and till
today it is still
It is believed that saffron crocus originally grew nowhere but on the isle of Crete as a triploid sport of a Greek species Crocus cartwrightianus. The
triploid crocus is sterile & it reproduces only by offsets on the corms. It cannot spread naturally, but declines if not dug up ever other year or so
& the corms divided. That it even so spread throughout Europe & India & eventually into China was due to ancient routes of IndoEuropean traders. One
must suppose that the priestesses who grew it attempted to keep cultivation methods secret
When Demeter first saw spring's bright yellow crocuses, she was angered, demanding who had disobeyed her edict that nothing flourishes until
Persephone was restored to her side. The crocuses themselves replied, "But the Maid is coming!" Demeter in a dither of excitement dawned a mantle made
of white crocuses in order to greet her returning daughter, who rose out of the ground in the circle of sunny yellow blooms. These pure yellow
crocuses were probably the natural wild Golden Crocus
edit on 20-5-2013 by Kantzveldt because: (no reason given)