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Joerg

Those Red Planet deities

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Earlier this month, a side remark in a comment of mine over at the G+ Glorantha-group resulted in a discussion about the nature of Tolat:

https://plus.google.com/+GianniVacca/posts/VvnBKKFcEso?fscid=z13rjt2xqozljby5g04cftuzltqpt3oirls0k.1489396121390843

Like uncounted times before, the discussion quickly veered off, and Peter @metcalph suggested to carry the discussion over to this forum rather than cramping the G+ comments.

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It's about time we learn more about Tolat than the meagre Shargash data we have from Dara Happan sources, which don't begin to describe the deity of the Amazons, the blues of Teshnos, or the war god of the Artmali Lunar Empire. Given the many foes of the later Artmali, I doubt that e.g. the Doraddi see Tolat as anything but an enemy god, and plenty others who were in contact with the Artmali likewise.

Let's examine the sources.

The series of Gods and Goddesses of Glorantha articles in Wyrm's Footnotes remains silent about Umath's struggle with the sky gods and the cause of the tilt other than Umath pushing Ga and Aether apart.

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(Part 7 of the series, Gods of Storm, Introduction - taken from the Wyrm's Footprints compilation:)

It is often useful to arrange tales of the various deities inot the formalise (and often artificial) arrangements favoured by the god Learners of the Second Age. In this we see a gradual but resolute development of the atttributes of the Storm Gods from the wild and utterly untameable force of Umath, who must ultimately be chained into passivity, into the crude but acceptable chieftain Orlanth, whose primary function is as king of the gods of the universe.

The article goes on to tell us how Umath was born, but nothing about his demise or chaining.

Peter @metcalph wrote in the comment's to Gianni's G-thread about Lightbringers in the East:

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The earliest description of Tolat that we have in the Trowjang previous experience in book 3 of the Genertela: Crucible of the Hero Wars boxed set described him as a cross between Humakt and Uleria, which is pretty much far from being a hell god.

Not the most accurate description of the deity, either. Uleria in her role as fertility-bringer and provider of sexual ecstasy, I suppose - uxorial ecstasy is mentioned in the Trowjang or Amazon context, too - and Humakt in his role as a sword- and deathgod.

There are also first published mentions of other related topics in the Genertela box.

Alkoth was presented as one of the three Dara Happan metropolises in Genertela:Crucible of the Hero Wars, and mentions Alkor as the city god (keeping company with Raiba and Yuthu, IIRC). We also get the Thunder Delta as the location where Umath was dismembered.

The Glorantha Book detailing the history of Glorantha was the first time I recall to have read about the Loper People, but since I got access to the unabridged Wyrm's Footnotes only a lot later, I cannot say for sure whether these guys weren't mentioned in some of those sources.

 

Then there was the star and planets lore in Elder Secrets of Glorantha. That source presented the planet as Tolat and gave the Loper People connection.

The planets presented in that essay had been part of the Gloranthan lore since long before that publication - we get the Twin Stars as a Lunar spirit in the Dragon Pass board game. (Nomad Gods offered a few more stars, but the Bronze Treasure among the Lunar spirits in the French edition of Nomad Gods was a later addition, IIRC. The Red Planet as a Lunar spirit doesn't fit Shargash at all, but it works for the brother of the Blue Moon of the Veldang.) Other early texts about western heroes mention other planets like Artia the Bat, but those aren't accessible to the public.

 

Just to get this thread running, I am cutting off here.

 

 

 

 

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Red Planet Gods in the sequence they saw publication:

Tolat - RQ3 era Genertela Box (God of the Amazons) and Elder Secrets (revelation of there being a Red Planet) (1988 or so, and I have to check the Troll Gods Annilla cult for any mentions). I know that I saw Artia mentioned in some of Greg's early stories in the West when browsing through exclusive convention auction items at conventions, and I think Tolat was present in some of those documents, too, so this deity and his stellar role probably predates even the publication of White Bear and Red Moon in 1975. His only mention in the most recent edition of Glorious ReAscent of Yelm is quite interesting in light of his alliance with the Artmali.

Jagrekriand - enemy god in King of Sartar (1992) - probably different from Jajamokki, Harmast Barefoot's heroquesting nemesis, whose name suggests a Jajalaring and dog connection (Jajamokki was mentioned already 1983 in RQ Companion). Jagrekriand's only feat is to break the wheel of Mastakos' Chariot early in the Westfaring.

Shargash - god of Alkoth, son of Yelm, in Glorious ReAscent of Yelm (1994) - after a rather comical defeat against Nestentos, Shargash turns out to be a destructive war god, almost the Dara Happan version of Zorak Zoran. His biggest feat before destroying the last surviving bits of the world (according to Dara Happan myth), the slaying/chaining/dismemberment of Umath, was introduced only years later, possibly in a later edition of GRoY, possibly in Heortling Mythology - it is missing in the Plentonius text. While it appears in the current edition of the Glorious ReAscent, that version bears many similarities to the Orlanthi version of the story published in Heortling Mythology. The revised edition of King of Sartar mentions Shargash in the Dragonrise and in the Fazzur chapter, but I think all those mentions are part of the revisions.

Vorthan - war god of Jonatela, in Guide to Glorantha (2015)

I will exclude Balumbasta, also mentioned in the Guide to claim the Red Planet in Doraddi myth - while this makes the Pamaltelan fire god ore of a not-Lodril bent, the Doraddi had ample bad experience with the Artmali and their Loper allies to have had their taste of Tolat, and to know his association with that planet.

 

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1 hour ago, Joerg said:

The article goes on to tell us how Umath was born, but nothing about his demise or chaining.

There's a fairly long sequence in the Guide to Glorantha - the Heavens Corrupted illustrated sequence (pages 114-115) which includes:

6. The Pit, and Umath A flaw appears in the Dome, and from it comes Umath, who moves everything.

7. Umath’s Spiral of Destruction Rebelling against Yelm’s rules, Umath bursts into angry violence. Umath moves in a wide circle through the Middle Sky, provoking the other Sons of Yelm to respond. Several sons are destroyed, others corrupted by his movements.

8. Umath and Shargash Shargash is struck directly by Umath. The Red Planet thrusts the invader onward, and then follows after. Umath is fatally wounded and wobbles around the sky, sinking lower. Shargash moves inside of Umath’s path, protecting the City.

9. The Death of Umath Umath and Shargash fight with missiles; eventually Umath wavers, and then crashes down in the far north. One of the Sons of Yelm goes into the Pit and is never seen again. Instead, the first myriad of stars comes out. Fatally wounded by Shargash, Umath crashes upon North Camp. This starts the tilting north-south Dome Movement. It goes northward first, because the Pillar there is broken, until it is pushed back even harder by Kalikos. The rebellious Sons of Umath then rise out of the ruined North Camp, bearing the weapons of their dead father.

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4 hours ago, Joerg said:

(Nomad Gods offered a few more stars, but the Bronze Treasure among the Lunar spirits in the French edition of Nomad Gods was a later addition, IIRC. The Red Planet as a Lunar spirit doesn't fit Shargash at all, but it works for the brother of the Blue Moon of the Veldang.)

Bronze treasure's main reference is in Tales 16:

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This planet is one of the largest in the sky. and is home to a warlike spirit worshipped by the Praxians. It is the colour bronze. Because of its reddish colour. many of those who favour the Lunar Empire have begun calling it the Little Moon. though he remains a favourite of all the tribes. Bronze Treasure is associated with the runes of Sky and Death. Since the coming of the Lunars. many also associate him with the Lunar rune. Any time before a battle is an appropriate time to call upon Bronze Treasure. especially when he is visible in the sky. He provides the spell of Weaponmight to his worshipers. 

This is nearly canon :-) Drop the "many also associate him with the Lunar rune". The current Praxian version reads:

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(Sky) Bronze Treasure. Known by many foreigners as Tolat, this planet is one of the largest in the sky and is home to a fierce warrior spirit. It is the color of bronze, and because of this reddish color, the ignorant who favor the Lunar Empire call it Little Moon, although the Lunars call him Shargash. Bronze Treasure has no Holy places in the Wastes, those wishing his charms travel to the Sky to meet him or call him down to a ritually prepared area. This Sky spirit provides charms that help in battle. Sample charms include:

(Sky) Smash foe

(Sky) Red sword of Doom

I hope that clears things up :-) (Please note that Nomad Gods II and Drastic Prax are not considered canon).

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3 hours ago, Joerg said:

I know that I saw Artia mentioned in some of Greg's early stories in the West when browsing through exclusive convention auction items at conventions, and I think Tolat was present in some of those documents, too,

Yes. In the Snodal Miscellanea (don't ask) Tolat is a god of Frontem - "God of the Underworld". and in another related document "the judge of the Underworld, Tolath the Red, son of Yelm". Tolath appears to be another name not a spelling mistake - this is from Greg's early typewriter days.

Have you looked at Tolat's mention in the Xeotam Dialogues?

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So here's another spurious reference  - RQCon2 lore action transcript -

 

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46: Two or three years ago I posed a question to Greg about the source or nature of the god Tolat, who the amazons of Trojang Island worship. There are no men on this island, and once a year the god Tolat descends upon the island and has sex with all the women on the island. And they feel this is a good arrangement. My personal question to Greg was, was this some hedonistic God Learner who established this religion in order to have an island full of women who are all his and love only him, accepting no other men? He said, "No, no, I don't think that's the case. And you should remember that Tolat is a planet." I said, "Yeah, yeah, OK," and skulked off to think about this. I feel unsatisfied with that answer, and I'm paying now in order to hear some more about Tolat. Because, I still like my theory. (laughter)

GS: I believe that this is a separate divine act by the diety that's called Tolat, or Shargash in different parts of the world. The planet that we see traverse the sky in the south path, that's called Tolat, is called Shargash in the Dara Happan Empire. This is a deity, a separate entity in his own right, and he has other actions and activities that are unrecognized outside of, say, Dara Happa. But! believe that, in fact, is was that great deity of plenty and fertility that comes down to earth every year and consorts with the women of Trojang in a positive manner.

46: Fertilizes.
GS: Yeah.
46: OK. I'll go with that.

GS: Of course, you know the rule is, "The Game Master is always right. Greg's wrong in times of conflict." So, if you want to be a Game Master, it's all right by me.

46: Yeah, but this is philosophy and mythology here. W e're reliant on you for the philosophical and mythological underpinnings of Glorantha.

SP: If you want to have someone be the Avatar of Tolat, that's up to you. Symbolically, it's still Tolat. 

 

 

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Thank you, Martin, for the reference, but I found those sidebar descriptions to be rather incomplete, compared with the versions in the most recent edition of Glorious ReAscent of Yelm and Heortling Mythology.

4 hours ago, M Helsdon said:

There's a fairly long sequence in the Guide to Glorantha - the Heavens Corrupted illustrated sequence (pages 114-115) which includes:

6. The Pit, and Umath A flaw appears in the Dome, and from it comes Umath, who moves everything.

7. Umath’s Spiral of Destruction Rebelling against Yelm’s rules, Umath bursts into angry violence. Umath moves in a wide circle through the Middle Sky, provoking the other Sons of Yelm to respond. Several sons are destroyed, others corrupted by his movements.

Both sources mentioned above go into more detail, but name different participants than the eight planetary sons of Yelm in the 5th plate. (GRoY p.74-75. Heortling Mythology p.28)

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A flaw appears in the Dome, and from it comes Umatum, who moves everything. Umatum moves in a wide circle through the Middle Sky, provoking the other Sons of Yelm to respond.

Makestina rushes towards with the news Yelm, and in his haste abandons all formality and is so embarrassed that he gives himself up, and is absorbed entirely by his Father. (Heortling mythology has: the Emperor is so angered he devours his son. Most likely maps to Ghevengus)

Jernedeus follows at a distance, but while watching Umatum ignores his own progress and crashes off the east end of world.

Derdurnus spins to watch, and goes spinning off the edge of the world.

Zatora follows Umatum at a great distance through his circle (later see Zator, below). (not among the planetary deities of the Gods Wall, which has Buserian instead)

Kargzant follows Umatum, circling behind and low. (Kargzant most likely maps to Reladivus, given the horse connection)

Shargash is struck directly by Umatum, and thrusts the invader onward and follows. Umatum is fatally wounded and wobbles around the sky, sinking lower. Shargash moves inside of Umatum’s path, protecting the City. They fight with missiles, and eventually Umatum wavers, then crashes down in the far north. (Heortling Mythology names Shargash Jagrekriand)

Therados (Zayteneras) dodges up and out of the way. (Neither Therados nor Zayteneras appear among the 8 planetary sons of Yelm. Zayteneras is among the 10 planetary deities of the Gods Wall, 1.2, but is not a son of Yelm. Falsoretus doesn't map to any of the other names, so this may be his presence, or replacement.)

Deumalos drops “like a rock” to dodge the coming Umatum, and is gone.

Zator goes into the Pit and is never seen again. Instead the first myriad of stars come out.

Umatum crashes upon North Camp. This starts the tilting north-south Dome Movement. It goes northward first, because the Pillar there is broken, until it is pushed back even harder by Arnstadum (identified now with Kalikos).

Sons of Umatum rise out of the ruined North Camp, bearing the weapons of their dead father. Unknown to them, a Dragon pursues.

Evidently only three planets survive the visit of Umath.

4 hours ago, M Helsdon said:

8. Umath and Shargash Shargash is struck directly by Umath. The Red Planet thrusts the invader onward, and then follows after. Umath is fatally wounded and wobbles around the sky, sinking lower. Shargash moves inside of Umath’s path, protecting the City.

9. The Death of Umath Umath and Shargash fight with missiles; eventually Umath wavers, and then crashes down in the far north. One of the Sons of Yelm goes into the Pit and is never seen again. Instead, the first myriad of stars comes out. Fatally wounded by Shargash, Umath crashes upon North Camp. This starts the tilting north-south Dome Movement. It goes northward first, because the Pillar there is broken, until it is pushed back even harder by Kalikos. The rebellious Sons of Umath then rise out of the ruined North Camp, bearing the weapons of their dead father.

Heortling Mythology p.35 goes into detail about the final fight between Umath and the Red Planet deity, and mentions the change into the Black Planet deity from hell, negating Umath's magic against the Red God.

A part of the discussion over on G+ was about our disagreement whether Tolat (the deity of the Zaranistangi) had an origin in Hell or not. I wonder whether the fight between Umath and Shargash saw Shargash entering the Underworld, or being replaced by an Underworld deity. I note that plate 8 doesn't show Shargash any more.

Plate 10 shows no planets other than Entekos, Shargash and Orlanth - the rest are the fragments of Yelm (including the successor to Ghevengus/Makestina).

Peter argued that these are Shargash myths, not Tolat myths, though.

 

The Guide does offer a few Tolat myths, and perhaps more about his sword. Otherwise, the name appears only in old Western sources (thanks for corroborating that, @David Scott) and in the snippets of Pamaltelan and Eastern myths in Revealed Mythologies.

I am preparing a collection of references from that source and a few peripheral ones from e.g. Middle Sea Empire. (BTW - are the current editions of the pdf searchable? Mine isn't.)

 

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Shargash appears in a few rarefied myths as a self-annihilating war god (you might see hell connections there) and as an enemy of rising waters. I'll pass over the references once I check the daunting western sources available to me.

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2 hours ago, David Scott said:

Bronze treasure's main reference is in Tales 16:

This is nearly canon :-) Drop the "many also associate him with the Lunar rune". 

I am still curious how Shargash get's associated with bronze, though - he probably did produce lots of it by slaying/dismembering/chaining Umath, but it shouldn't be part of his make-up. Brass (the Lodril-spawned combination of Sky and Earth) is identical to bronze in metallurgical terms, but shouldn't apply to Shargash either. If an alloy at all, it would have to be one of the Underworld (lead) and sky (tin -> pewter, or silver -> an alloy best known for falsified coins),

2 hours ago, David Scott said:

The current Praxian version reads:

I hope that clears things up :-) (Please note that Nomad Gods II and Drastic Prax are not considered canon).

I am fully aware of the fact that the Red Planet and Sedenya aren't allied at all times - sibling relations can be hard. There is a significant snippet in the GRoY pdf, p.74 (10, Pre-Dawn Risings):

Quote

Sedenya, The moon goddess, when “Tolat was not yet on her trail”.

 

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6 minutes ago, scott-martin said:

Shargash appears in a few rarefied myths as a self-annihilating war god (you might see hell connections there) and as an enemy of rising waters. I'll pass over the references once I check the daunting western sources available to me.

Heortling Mythologies has the Heler myth about his defeat as a forerunner of Lorion in the sky invasion of the seas on p.64 and Jagrekriand's victory over the water gods as an aside on p.71 in the Niskis vs Venebain myth (I heard elsewhere that Heler being lost to the Seas was the consequence of a defeat against Vadrus or Umath).

Later, Tolat became an in-law of Lorion through his Lunar sister Veldara, mother of Artmal. (Possibly twin sister if the Vorthan myth has any bearing on his Pamaltelan myths, although Veldara's sibling is Chermata, who is usually identified as Lokarnos as hell-born child of Black Entekos, aka Enjata Mo, the wife of Cronisper who followed her slain son into the Underworld.)

If Tolat was as inimical to Lorian's rise as Jagrekriand (and presumably Shargash) was, then Artmal helping him against Bredjeg might have changed that, for a while. His alliance with the children of Emilla/Mastakos, the Zaranistangi, is another case of his overcoming the dislike for water-related deities, or at least their descendants.

I don't think that any version of the Red Planet god was obsessed with the purity of the sky. The reason for his enmity might have been a bitter memory of his Yelmsson persona's defeat against Sshorg/Oslir/Nestentos where the less martial brother solved the problem (directing the river to go around the city rather than over it, possibly in the sky as well as around Raibanth).

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1 minute ago, Joerg said:

his Yelmsson persona's defeat against Sshorg/Oslir/Nestentos 

This is the one I'm thinking about -- preserved here. A more obscure parallel version attributes the events to the reign of "Khorventos," so this may be at the very cusp of Alkoth's integration into the DH system as two archaic dynastic lists converge. 

That Xeotam reference to me is a smoking gun. Scattered Fronelan fragments agree that Tolat[h] had a sun for his father and hell for his mother. Do we know Shargash's mother?

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Obscure Red Planet mention in Revealed Mythology p.103 (Celestial Deities of the East):

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Unvoreth, the Guard.40 For 14 days the Guard patrols actively, and spends the next 14 in prayer and magic casting.

Footnote; 40 Shargash/Tolat.

I wonder whether this is an East Isles version. Kralorela was mentioned as being aware of Tolat, although in Kralorela that may be limited to his function as god and husband of the Marazi amazons and not extend to the planetary being.

Anyway, another Red Planet deity name for the collection, still refusing Balumbasta.

 

Back to the Artmali and Pamaltelan period Zaranistangi myths.

The lexicalic entry among the Pamaltelan deities has the two younger Sky Witches born in Hell (p.61):

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Enjata Mo. One of the Pamaltelan Three Sky Witches. (footnote 48)
She rose into the sky after Kendamalar fell, when Cronisper lay ill. Enjata Mo was Cronisper’s wife in a widow’s veil and robe. She hobbled across the Sky and Underworld in the Artmali Period, taking morsels of meat that she found to her husband. In the Underworld she became pregnant, and bore Chermata and Veldara, the other two Sky Witches. She got darker and darker, and one day was no longer visible.

This makes Veldara an Underworld deity at the very least by conception. The slightly more verbose myth on p.46 states that she had been married to whatever the Pamaltelan name for dead Kendamalar in the Underworld was (my edition has an asterisked Bijiif as place-holder).

The Artmal receives the Red Sword myth claims Tolat as his uncle, elsewhere he is explicitely named as the brother of Veldara. (Tolat as a brother of Lorion would have been very very strange...)

Later, Artmal's heir Durpal passes the sword on to his ally Zemendarn, king of the Zaranistangi, when Zemendarn saved his life. This might be a flaw for every owner of the Red Sword - if he receives life-saving aid in battle, he has to pass on the sword.

For some unexplained reason, the Zaranistangi migrate north to Sechkaul, and establish themselves in Teshnos, next to Genert's Garden. There they proselytize Tolat worship until the ruler of Sechkaul abolishes it in most of his realm, taking away the Red God's protection against Sshorg. (The same Red God who failed so sillily in Dara Happa?)

But enough about that sword (Middle Sea Empire adds the Jrusteli impression of how Ordanal "conquered" Melib, opening the sluices for the eastern conquests of the GLs, expanding the Guide info on p.428 slightly).

 

The main worshippers of Tolat (under that name) are the Marazi and the Zaranistangi on the islands before Teshnos, the Pujaleg in Laskal and likely quite a number of Fonritians. In continental Teshnos Tolat appears to have left a lasting impression even outside the Zaranistangi, if the strange cult names in the Heroquest 1st edition Teshnos homeland are an indication (combining Calyz' and Solf's names with Tolat's for weird martial arts cults).

I suppose that Tolat is an antigod in Kralorela, Vormain and the Isles. (Shargash's Greater Darkness underworld minions in Alkoth, the Shadzorings, bear a certain similarity to the Andins...)

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16 minutes ago, scott-martin said:

This is the one I'm thinking about -- preserved here. A more obscure parallel version attributes the events to the reign of "Khorventos," so this may be at the very cusp of Alkoth's integration into the DH system as two archaic dynastic lists converge.

I am not really convinced that the name Shargash applies to the original planetary son. We have Alkor in the Genertela Box for the city god of Alkoth, a son of Yelm. The silly display of drums and drummers nearly drowned by Nestentos doesn't rhime with the later war god, either.

16 minutes ago, scott-martin said:

That Xeotam reference to me is a smoking gun. Scattered Fronelan fragments agree that Tolat[h] had a sun for his father and hell for his mother. Do we know Shargash's mother?

There is a genealogy of Gloranthan deities somewhere on the web which also places Ralian deities like Ehilm in relation with Yelm.

Murharzarm probably is a product of the Wedding Contest which resulted in Dendara (not the entire Entekos, only the chaste aspect) as Yelm's wife, and presumed mother of his legitimate sons (and daughters). If so, his brothers would be as well, includign the original form of Shargash.

I am convinced that the Shargash we learn to fear for the period after Yelm's disintegration was formed by a bad merger in the course of the defense against Umath's visit to his brother's court. We get an underworld sky deity involved in the upper sky activities. (All planets on the Southpath have strong underworld connections. The Sunpath leads through the Underworld, too, when all is said and done, and all the current planets and suns rose from the Underworld, except Mastakos/Uleria/Emilla.)

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1 hour ago, Joerg said:

Thank you, Martin, for the reference, but I found those sidebar descriptions to be rather incomplete, compared with the versions in the most recent edition of Glorious ReAscent of Yelm and Heortling Mythology.

Neither source is likely to be an 'objective' truth. For that matter, the Guide gives two distinct lists of Yelm's Sons: one including Zator and the other, Buserian.

Regarding Shargash's Underworld nature, it is probably significant that his planet follows the Southpath (which is taken to include Underworld entities in the Sky in central Genertela). not the Sunpath (Sky entities). [Didn't see your post prior to posting this.]

 
Edited by M Helsdon

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1 hour ago, Joerg said:

I am still curious how Shargash get's associated with bronze, though - he probably did produce lots of it by slaying/dismembering/chaining Umath, but it shouldn't be part of his make-up. Brass (the Lodril-spawned combination of Sky and Earth) is identical to bronze in metallurgical terms, but shouldn't apply to Shargash either. If an alloy at all, it would have to be one of the Underworld (lead) and sky (tin -> pewter, or silver -> an alloy best known for falsified coins),

Possibly two false associations? Similarity in colour does not denote similarity in nature; as bronze is the metal most used in (human) warfare, it would become associated with a war god?

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19 minutes ago, M Helsdon said:

Neither source is likely to be an 'objective' truth.

Myth isn't, as a general rule. Having almost the same text in opposing media does give a strong hint for a great degree of objectiveness, though.

19 minutes ago, M Helsdon said:

For that matter, the Guide gives two distinct lists of Yelm's Sons: one including Zator and the other, Buserian.

Planetary sons of Yelm, to be a little more precise. But the Umath myth gives an exit option for Zator, and an entry option for the otherwise earth-bound sibling of Murharzarm, Buserian.

Plentonius' Decapolis list of protector deities in the ReAscent (as a Gloranthan document, not referring to the pdf or print publication of the Stafford Library here) gives at least two names he doesn't repeat in either The Perfect Sky or his interpretations of the Gods Wall.

19 minutes ago, M Helsdon said:

Regarding Shargash's Underworld nature, it is probably significant that his planet follows the Southpath (which is taken to include Underworld entities in the Sky in central Genertela). not the Sunpath (Sky entities).

My thinking, too, but one that Peter might classify as post-canonical. But then, the Sunpath planet Chermata (Lokarnos) gets an Underworld origin, too, and he is as light-oriented as a planet can wish to be.

I am inclined to make Shargash as we meet him during the Darkness and as lord of the Shadzorings as a merger of a nasty sky god with an even nastier underworld deity, and quite remote from the eight planetary sons or early Alkoth defender one. Shargash is as impure as one can get in the sky after returning from his execution of Umath in the ruins of the White Overseer's camp, more so than Umath or Orlanth ever were. Artia is practically pure and celestial in comparison.

Prince of Sartar depicts four rebel gods instrumental in slaying Yelm - Orlanth/Rebellus Terminus, Verithurusa/Sedenya/Shepelkirt, Shargash/Tolat/Jagrekriand, and Artia/Mahaqata/Quatanara.

29 minutes ago, M Helsdon said:

Possibly two false associations? Similarity in colour does not denote similarity in nature; as bronze is the metal most used in (human) warfare, it would become associated with a war god?

Hmm. Praxians know bronze items as treasure, and have limited access to it. Given the color, I would have associated the planet with copper rather than bronze.

Mostali and Pelorians call the metal brass, and it is linked to Turos/Lodril in its Carmanian deposits.

I notice a lot of craters in the context of the Copper Plates - Lodril's impact crater (nowadays probably Lake Oronin), Umath's in the Thunder Delta (nowadays flooded/submerged, too), and I seem to recall another impact Crater from the Godtime, all long before the Rufelzan Crater transformed much of Naveria into the Red Moon.

 

Bonus speculation: Could the Red King of the Naveria myth in Entekosiad be related to Shargash or the planet?

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53 minutes ago, Joerg said:

Tolat as his uncle

Not so disturbing in the Artmalite context because they have Anellha to mediate the relationship between Hell/Sky and Sea/Sky. Actually Shargash has a sister too now, when we think about it. I wonder if things would go differently if he had to fight a flood again. Either way, it's striking that Tolat (or at least the sword, which some sources identify as a gift to the family from otherwise fugitive "Promalti smiths" of the cardinal south) is associated with buoyancy and so resists Sshorg where his Pelorian analogue fails. 

(Trimming a whole lot of false leads to keep this iteration of the thread a little more robust.)

Looking back at the lore, I can't help but notice that as Melib looms larger Trowjang recedes. Tolat in Trowjang seems to be the obvious "love and war" Amazon cult and I'm sure they have a story of how they came to live without men. Tolat in Melib, on the other hand, is explicitly a Loper People survival -- brought with the sword by refugees from the disintegrating Artmalite civilization -- and that's also a place where they remember Blue Moon worship as bifurcated along gender lines. 

Maybe Trowjang is the place where the gendered mysteries (a) broke down (b) developed to support only Tolat without his twin, only female worshippers and no men. But this is probably one of the deepest enigmas of the southpath, waiting to get us into trouble.

But Tolat worship was definitely imported to Melib at least, so if the archaic Abzeredites knew the red god by that name before the floods and Loper People incursions, I'd be surprised. Maybe they recognized him as something like Shargash as part of that Avalon Hill era pan-solar cultural belt that has now receded. Or maybe they acknowledged him as the nebulous Unvoreth.

When the proto-Brithini went roving, they apparently met the red god first as Tolat[h]. You know, it's funny but with so many Blue Peoples to choose from I never thought of Artmalites marrying into the West, but there's a reference to Cathora as "the daughter of the king of the Fralari nation," which may well be some slight garble of Froalar and his line. It would definitely explain how people like Xeotam learned what little they know about this mythos and why Tolat[h] is acknowledged (as judge of the underworld) in that weird Hrestolite story. 

Jagekriand seems to be a native Orlanthite name for the planet, which is a god they don't like. I like the "Jaga" root pointing toward Saird, especially since Jajagappa loves dogs (bad dogs figure often in Heortling grudges) and rules a hell. Would not be terribly surprised if similar cults persist in Henjarl to this day.

42 minutes ago, Joerg said:

We get an underworld sky deity involved in the upper sky activities. (All planets on the Southpath have strong underworld connections. The Sunpath leads through the Underworld, too, when all is said and done, and all the current planets and suns rose from the Underworld, except Mastakos/Uleria/Emilla.)

"Hamstringing" and crippling imagery comes up a lot with Southpath entities -- Mastakos obviously, the broken family of Artmal, a fleeting First Age reference to "Orlanth's family" taking down Shargash [sic] by hamstringing him from behind -- so I want to look for an Elmal (I'd almost say "Emil" but that's another labyrinth) or other wounded little sun there also. 

On the other hand an extensive list of defeated enemies of Shargash studiously does not mention any time when he beat the bat or the blue moon. Maybe they're his sisters too.

Another strange thread running through a lot of these gods is their affinity for the cosmological scale of "giants." Isn't there a reference somewhere to Jagekriand as a rogue planet, or did I dream that?

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11 hours ago, Joerg said:

Peter @metcalph wrote in the comment's to Gianni's G-thread about Lightbringers in the East:

Quote

The earliest description of Tolat that we have in the Trowjang previous experience in book 3 of the Genertela: Crucible of the Hero Wars boxed set described him as a cross between Humakt and Uleria, which is pretty much far from being a hell god.

Not the most accurate description of the deity, either.

It is repeated a few times in the Guide "the God of Love and War" p427, "A God of War and Sex" p437, "A God of Love and War" p439.  It's what the Amazons see him as as opposed to being him as a god of the Underworld.

As I pointed out on Google+ (but the format of the comments necessitating terseness make it difficult to communicate such matters), just because the gods are associated with the same planet does not mean they share the same attributes.  A key case in point is the small blue planet which is viewed as Mastakos by the Orlanthi and Uleria by the Pelorians.  

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10 hours ago, Joerg said:

I will exclude Balumbasta, also mentioned in the Guide to claim the Red Planet in Doraddi myth - while this makes the Pamaltelan fire god ore of a not-Lodril bent, the Doraddi had ample bad experience with the Artmali and their Loper allies to have had their taste of Tolat, and to know his association with that planet.

If the Guide claim the Doraddi believe that Balumbasta comes from the Red Planet then the Guide is correct. That the Artmali claim that Tolat also comes from the Red Planet is neither here or there as the Artmali are degenerate tidal worshippers.  This is the Mastakos/Uleria difference all over again and should be embraced rather than being discarded. 

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3 hours ago, Joerg said:

Obscure Red Planet mention in Revealed Mythology p.103 (Celestial Deities of the East):

I wonder whether this is an East Isles version. Kralorela was mentioned as being aware of Tolat, although in Kralorela that may be limited to his function as god and husband of the Marazi amazons and not extend to the planetary being.

As I may have said on Google+ (I'm sure I intended to say it at the time but can't be arsed to go to the thread to check), I regard the Celestial Deities listed on p103 as misleading.  I think in the Good Old Days, they were regarded as the homes of the High Gods but since the Gods Wars, the Vithelans recognize the Gods have left the Nine Houses (shown in the published version of Revealed Mythologies p91 but not shown in the pdf).  The Nine Houses then are the Vithelan equivalent of the the Copper Plate: Yelm and the Ten Planets.

 

3 hours ago, Joerg said:

Back to the Artmali and Pamaltelan period Zaranistangi myths.

The lexicalic entry among the Pamaltelan deities has the two younger Sky Witches born in Hell (p.61):

This makes Veldara an Underworld deity at the very least by conception.

You are cutting and pasting between mythologies.  All you have here is what the Doraddi say about Veldara.  That's irrelevant to what the Artmali thought about Veldara.  It's like saying that the Kralori thought that Lightfore was the home of Daruda means that Lightfore as worshipped in Dara Happa would have draconic associations (a similar argument can also be constructed for Balumbasta and the Red Planet but you are rejecting that for some unknown reason).

Secondly the planets present different faces depending on the age at which they were worshipped.  Most of Glorantha worships the Sun as he was in the Storm Age (Yelmalio/Elmal/Cold Sun) while the Dara Happans worship the Sun as he was in the Golden Age.  If someone views a planet as being the home of an underworld or evil deity then that is the face that planet presented to some people in the Storm Age or Greater Darkness (for example the Blue Moon, the Black Dendara and Lokarnos would have been known to the Orlanthi as Malia, Thed and Ragnaglar).

 

3 hours ago, Joerg said:

The Artmal receives the Red Sword myth claims Tolat as his uncle, elsewhere he is explicitely named as the brother of Veldara. (Tolat as a brother of Lorion would have been very very strange...)

I fear you are paying too much attention to the genealogical connections.  These should be regarded as how the worshippers view the mythical relationships between the planets as opposed to an objective assessment of the origin of these planets.  Shargash is the son of Yelm but Balumbasta is the father of Varama.  Trying to sort them out is like trying to decide which of the condition runes was the first one from the text in RQ2.

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3 hours ago, M Helsdon said:

Regarding Shargash's Underworld nature, it is probably significant that his planet follows the Southpath (which is taken to include Underworld entities in the Sky in central Genertela). not the Sunpath (Sky entities). [Didn't see your post prior to posting this.]

The Twin Stars are not underworld deities but the last remnants of the Twins (Wyrms Footprints p33, omitted from the Glorantha Sourcebook).  The Sunpath or Southpath interpretation may or may not be true (the source statements in the Glorantha: Intro was written by Greg) but the planets on the southpath were in the Sky in the Golden Age.

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It just occurred to me that a better formulation of the Sunpath/Southpath distinction might be that the Sunpath is travelled by the Planets of the Day while the Southpath is travelled by the Planets of the Night (the Night being different from the Underworld)

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7 minutes ago, Pentallion said:

I've never heard of Black Dendara, nor does my search come up with any such reference.  Where is she mentioned?

The reference is to the Entekosiad.

Quote

KataMoripi was one of those. We call her Black
Dendara. It was the ghost of the living goddess, haunting
the falling sky. She was horrible to behold.
KataMoripi rose alone at first, after the sun god failed,
then she rose and was with her children. The Ancestors
called her two children Derdo2 [Lokarnos - PHM] and Vendara3 [the Blue Moon - PHM]. They all
caused terrible trouble before the Red Destroyer4 [Shargash - PHM] drove
them away.

Entekosiad p53

 

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8 hours ago, scott-martin said:

Not so disturbing in the Artmalite context because they have Anellha to mediate the relationship between Hell/Sky and Sea/Sky. Actually Shargash has a sister too now, when we think about it. I wonder if things would go differently if he had to fight a flood again. Either way, it's striking that Tolat (or at least the sword, which some sources identify as a gift to the family from otherwise fugitive "Promalti smiths" of the cardinal south) is associated with buoyancy and so resists Sshorg where his Pelorian analogue fails. 

(Trimming a whole lot of false leads to keep this iteration of the thread a little more robust.)

Looking back at the lore, I can't help but notice that as Melib looms larger Trowjang recedes. Tolat in Trowjang seems to be the obvious "love and war" Amazon cult and I'm sure they have a story of how they came to live without men. Tolat in Melib, on the other hand, is explicitly a Loper People survival -- brought with the sword by refugees from the disintegrating Artmalite civilization -- and that's also a place where they remember Blue Moon worship as bifurcated along gender lines. 

Maybe Trowjang is the place where the gendered mysteries (a) broke down (b) developed to support only Tolat without his twin, only female worshippers and no men. But this is probably one of the deepest enigmas of the southpath, waiting to get us into trouble.

But Tolat worship was definitely imported to Melib at least, so if the archaic Abzeredites knew the red god by that name before the floods and Loper People incursions, I'd be surprised. Maybe they recognized him as something like Shargash as part of that Avalon Hill era pan-solar cultural belt that has now receded. Or maybe they acknowledged him as the nebulous Unvoreth.

When the proto-Brithini went roving, they apparently met the red god first as Tolat[h]. You know, it's funny but with so many Blue Peoples to choose from I never thought of Artmalites marrying into the West, but there's a reference to Cathora as "the daughter of the king of the Fralari nation," which may well be some slight garble of Froalar and his line. It would definitely explain how people like Xeotam learned what little they know about this mythos and why Tolat[h] is acknowledged (as judge of the underworld) in that weird Hrestolite story. 

Jagekriand seems to be a native Orlanthite name for the planet, which is a god they don't like. I like the "Jaga" root pointing toward Saird, especially since Jajagappa loves dogs (bad dogs figure often in Heortling grudges) and rules a hell. Would not be terribly surprised if similar cults persist in Henjarl to this day.

"Hamstringing" and crippling imagery comes up a lot with Southpath entities -- Mastakos obviously, the broken family of Artmal, a fleeting First Age reference to "Orlanth's family" taking down Shargash [sic] by hamstringing him from behind -- so I want to look for an Elmal (I'd almost say "Emil" but that's another labyrinth) or other wounded little sun there also. 

On the other hand an extensive list of defeated enemies of Shargash studiously does not mention any time when he beat the bat or the blue moon. Maybe they're his sisters too.

Another strange thread running through a lot of these gods is their affinity for the cosmological scale of "giants." Isn't there a reference somewhere to Jagekriand as a rogue planet, or did I dream that?

Is mastakos known to the praxians as Emilla? same powers? if so, mastakos is more complex than the orlanthi version of him/her. Did praxians know about him/her from the Loper People?

Edited by kalidor

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