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OT Re: A question for zoonomenclaturists



Jocelyn Falconnet <j.falconnet@gmail.com> wrote:


> "Femur" stands for "thigh", "the upper part of the thigh", or "the loins",
> and, figuratively, the capacity to bear children (just like the expression
> "birthing hips"). This is supported by the close affinities of Latin words
> related to "femur" and "femina". This link is confirmed by the Ancient Greek
> root of the latter word, "φύω", which means "to produce", hence "to give
> birth".
>
> I suspect in fact that this is where originated the myth of the birth of
> Dionysos... a mere play on words!



I very much doubt this is the case.  There are deeper theological
reasons behind the birth of Dionysus from the thigh of the god Zeus,
his father.


Dionysus' mother was a mortal woman: Semele, a Theban princess,
according to the most common version of the myth.  However, Dionysus'
followers were uncomfortable with the idea that their god originally
had been born of a mere mortal rather than a goddess. The solution was
to 'upgrade' the birth of Dionysus by transplanting the embryonic god
from his dead mother's womb to his divine father's thigh.  He was
therefore 'born' from the body of Zeus.


The choice of the thigh was deliberate.  The birth of Dionysus from
the thigh of Zeus parallels the birth of the goddess Athena from the
head of Zeus.  Whereas Athena's attributes included wisdom, the wine
god Dionysus was closer to the raw forces of nature.  His birth from
the thigh had erotic implications, consistent with the orgiastic rites
associated with Dionysus.


Now back to dinosaurs...




Cheers

Tim