The Griffin

7 Aug 2021

William sent in the link ... geomythology has produced some very interesting parallels between, shall we say, geology and legends. However, it can also be an excuse to stretch the imagination. In this piece from Marshall University we begin with the Greek legend of the Titans in which Zeus and the gods vanquish the older generation of immortals, as recorded by Hesiod. It goes on to suggest it had something to do with the eruption of the Thera volcano in the Aegean. This is mostly because the tale involves 'loud rumbles', the small earthquakes that precede eruptions, and the idea of 'wide heaven'[the sky] shaking during the battle [the clash of gods], inspiored, it is suggested, by shock waves caused by the volcanic eruption. This is a good catastrophic interpretation but it is not necessarily correct as atmospheric meteor explosions can also cause shock waves - and loud rumbles. The latter would have a more obvious association with wide heaven.

The piece is taken from a new book, 'Geomythology: how some stories reflect earth events' - and it continues by identifying the cyclopes, or one eyed ogres, with the discovery of elephant skulls. Large fossil cavities in the front of the skulls, once housing the trunk, look like giant eyes. Griffins, a composite creature of eagle and lion may have been inspired by fossil dinosaurs as occur in the Gobi desert.