Mythology is a form of folklore of many places in the world. It is the sum of myths, tales, legends of a particular culture, nation, or region.
There are many kinds of mythology all around the world but some of the most known are Greek, Roman, and Nordic, or Norse. Though there are people that dedicate their lives to study these mythologies, most people don’t know the differences and similarities between them. So we are going to tell you some of them.
First of all, there is something called comparative mythology, which job is to compare the legends and myths in the different mythologies to find similarities between them. Some myths have comparable themes and characteristics that the subject has managed to relate to and show that the mythologies could have been interpreting the same things in their form. This means that even though the myths are different, they have a common starting point.
Period And Inspiration
Among the three of them, Greek mythology is the oldest one, it started somewhere around the year 700, and it isn’t really known how it originated, though some people believe it took some inspiration from the Egyptian gods and goddesses.
Meanwhile, most of the beliefs of Roman mythology were inspired by the Greek myths, so it was created about 1000 years after Greek mythology. Norse mythology is a little bit more ‘recent’ since its oldest data is from the 13th century, but it was inspired by North Germanic myths after Germanic and North Germanic people separated.
The three mythologies tell their interpretation of how the world started and all of them are pretty different. On one hand, we have the story of Romulus and Remus, who according to Roman mythology, were twin gods raised by a wolf who wanted to found a new city, after a few arguments Romulus killed his brother and founded Rome, and it originated many other myths regarding the city.
However, Greek myths say it was a punishment to Prometheus after he created man and woman and a great flood came. Lastly, Nordic mythology also talks about a flood but it was an accident after a giant fell from the sky and his death caused the flood where only two humans survived and the oceans were made.
Names And Characteristics Of The Gods
We know that the Greek and Roman gods have a lot of similarities that can be associated with them as the same power, such as Zeus and Jupiter, Cronus and Saturn, or Hermes and Mercury, but despite having comparable characteristics, they have some differences.
Greek gods inspired the Romans to describe their ones, but the Greek gods had human features and characteristics while Roman gods were related to objects, more like deities. Regarding Norse mythology, they are human-like entities with higher powers that even have family trees, making them more relatable to humans, whose names have different meanings according to their abilities and qualities.
Power Of The Gods
While in Roman and Greek mythology the gods are omnipotent figures who define the courses of our lives, Nordic gods are closer to the mortal land. The Greek and Roman gods live in unreachable places like the Olympus and the Pantheon respectively, they are born as gods and they reside there all eternity and only go down to Earth on specific occasions.
These gods have immense powers that depend on their temperamental moods, they can destroy cities in seconds if they want to or create anything from nothing, but in Nordic mythology, the gods are known for being more communicative, they like to go down to the mortal land and have to earn their place in the higher world while they have to interact and rely on humans.
The End Of The Myth
Greek mythology started as a religion and it is still relevant in its native country. There isn’t a particular tale that gives Greek mythology any type of ending, so basically it doesn’t have a definite end, though there is a myth about an epic battle between Zeus and his brothers, it is related to the origins more than the end of the world.
The same thing happens in Roman mythology, in the reduced information the modern world keeps about it, the gods never got a doomsday tale that predicted the end of the world. However, the myth of the battle of Ragnarok is the final battle that gives an end to all of the Nordic mythology’s timeline.
Next time you are at a party you can tell your friends you are an expert when it comes to mythology and you would blow their minds with all your new knowledge, but we don’t promise it is going to work with an actual expert.
Mythology isn’t the main subject in most people’s lives but it is actually pretty interesting and complex. Each one of the mythologies is full of awesome and creative myths that give us a fun point of view about the origin of daily things and nature.