Ophiolatreia

OPHIOLATREIA,
OR
SERPENT WORSHIP.

Ophiolatreia:

AN ACCOUNT OF

THE RITES AND MYSTERIES CONNECTED WITH
THE ORIGIN, RISE, AND DEVELOPMENT

OF

Serpent Worship

IN VARIOUS PARTS OF THE WORLD,

ENRICHED WITH INTERESTING TRADITIONS,

AND A FULL DESCRIPTION OF THE CELEBRATED

Serpent Mounds & Temples,

THE WHOLE FORMING AN EXPOSITION OF ONE
OF THE PHASES OF

Phallic, or Sex Worship.

PRIVATELY PRINTED.
1889.


Our words by way of preface and introduction need be but few. The following volume forms a companion to one already issued bearing the title “Phallism.” That work, though complete in itself, meets in this a further elucidation of its subject, since, in the opinion of many, Ophiolatreia, the worship of the Serpent, is of Phallic origin. Such a view, and others of a contrary nature, have been honestly set forth, and the best and most trustworthy authorities have been consulted for history, arguments, and illustrations by which they may be understood. No attempt has been made to insist upon any one method of interpretation as undoubtedly correct, but simple facts have been stated, and the reader has been left to form his own independent judgment.

PAGE.
Chapter I. 1

Ophiolatreia an extraordinary subject—Of mysterious origin—Of universal prevalence—The Serpent, a common symbol in mythology—Serpent Worship, natural but irrational—Bacchic orgies—Olympias, mother of Alexander, and the Serpent Emblem—Thermuthis, the sacred Serpent—Asps—Saturn and his children—Sacrifices at altar of Saturn—Abaddon—Ritual of Zoroaster—Vulcan—Theology of Ophion—The Cuthites—The Ophiogeneis—The Ophionians—Greek Traditions—Cecrops—Various Serpent worshippers.

Chapter II. 10

Supposed Phallic Origin of Serpent Worship—The idea of life—Adoration of the principle of generation—The Serpent as a symbol of the Phallus—Phallic Worship at Benares—The Serpent and Mahadeo—Festival of the “Nag panchami”—Snakes and Women—Traces of Phallic Worship in the Kumaon Rock Markings—The Northern Bulb-stones—Professor Stephens on the Snake as a Symbol of the Phallus—The “Dionysiak Myth”—Brown on the Serpent as a Phallic Emblem—Mythology of the Aryan Nations—Sir G. W. Cox and the Phallic theory—Athenian Mythology.

Chapter III. 17

Mythology of the Ancients—Characteristics of the Pagan Deities—Doctrine of the Reciprocal Principles of Nature—Creation and the Egg—Creation and the Phallus—The Lotus—Osiris as the active, dispensing, and originating energy—Hesiod and the generative powers—Growth of Phallic Worship.

Chapter IV. 21

Ancient Monuments of the West—The valley of the Mississippi—Numerous earth-works of the Western States—Theories as to the origin of the mounds—“The Defence” Theory—The Religious Theory—Earth-work of the “Great Serpent” on Bush Creek—The “Alligator,” Ohio—The “Cross,” Pickaway County—Structures of Wisconsin—Mr. Pigeon’s drawings—Significance of earth-mounds—The Egg and Man’s primitive ideas—The Egg as a symbol—Birth of Brahma—Aristophanes and his “Comedy of the Birds”—The hymn to Protogones—The Chinese and Creation—The Mundane or Orphic Egg—Kneph—Mr. Gliddon’s replies to certain inquiries—The Orphic Theogony and the Egg—The Great Unity.

Chapter V. 38

The Sun and Fire as emblems—The Serpent and the Sun—Taut and the Serpent—Horapollo and the Serpent Symbol—Sanchoniathon and the Serpent—Ancient Mysteries of Osiris, &c.—Rationale of the connection of Solar, Phallic, and Serpent Worship—The Aztec Pantheon—Mexican Gods—The Snake in Mexican Theology—The Great Father and Mother—Quetzalcoatl, the Feathered Serpent—Researches of Stephens and Catherwood—Discoveries of Mr. Stephens.

Chapter VI. 60

Mexican Temple of Montezuma—The Serpent emblem in Mexico—Pyramid of Cholula—Tradition of the giants of Auahuac—The temple of Quetzalcoatl—North American Indians and the Rattlesnake—Indian Tradition of a Great Serpent—Serpents in the Mounds of the West—Bigotry and folly of the Spanish Conquerors of the West—Wide prevalence of Mexican Ophiolatreia.

Chapter VII. 77

Egypt as the home of Serpent Worship—Thoth said to be the founder of Ophiolatreia—Cneph the architect of the universe—Mysteries of Isis—The Isiac table—Frequency of the Serpent symbol—Serapis—In the temples at Luxore, etc.—Discovery at Malta—The Egyptian Basilisk—Mummies—Bracelets—The Caduceus—Temple of Cneph at Elephantina—Thebes—Story of a priest—Painting in a tomb at Biban at Malook—Pococke at Raigny.

Chapter VIII. 84

Derivation of the name “Europe”—Greece colonized by Ophites—Numerous traces of the Serpent in Greece—Worship of Bacchus—Story of Ericthonias—Banquet of the Bacchantes—Minerva—Armour of Agamemnon—Serpents at Epidaurus—Story of the pestilence in Rome—Delphi—Mahomet at Atmeidan.

Chapter IX. 89

Ophiolatreia in Britain—The Druids—Adders—Poem of Taliessin—The goddess Ceridwen—A Bardic poem—Snake stones—The anguinum—Execution of a Roman Knight—Remains of the serpent temple at Abury—Serpent vestiges in Ireland of great rarity—St. Patrick.

Chapter X. 94

India conspicuous in the history of Serpent Worship—Nágpúr—Confessions of a snake worshipper—The gardeners of Guzerat—Cottages for snakes at Calicut—The Feast of the Serpents—The deity Hari—Garuda—The snake as an emblem of immortality.

Chapter XI. 99

Mr. Bullock’s exhibition of objects illustrating Serpent Worship.