In my post "Ram and Bull" i asked this question:
"Have you ever wondered why Aries (Ram) and Taurus (Bull) astrological signs are where they are on a solar circle?"
Most people would answer this question by: "Because the constellations in the sky at that time look like ram and bull"!
But it turned out that these two astrological signs mark the lambing season of wild European sheep and the calving season of wild European cattle. These were extremely important events which occurred every year at the same time.
In my post "Fishes" I wrote about another zodiac sign which was originally used to mark another extremely important seasonal event in Europe. This sign is Pisces (fishes) and was originally used to mark the beginning of the Salmon fishing season in continental Europe.
In this post I will continue my exploration of the possibility that original zodiac signs were markers for important cyclical natural events which occurred every year at the same time in Europe.
I have to give special thanks to my friend Chilam Balam who, after reading my posts about Aries, Taurus and Pisces, told me to look at the behavior of Ibex mountain goats...And here is what I have discovered:
This is Alpine ibex, also known as the steinbock or bouquetin.
Alpine ibex is a species of wild goat that lives in the mountains of the European Alps. It is a sexually dimorphic species with large males who carry large, curved horns and saller females with small horns which are not curved. The coat colour is typically brownish grey.
Alpine ibex is an excellent climber. Its preferred habitat is the rocky region along the snow line above alpine forests, where it occupies steep, rough terrain at elevations of 1,800 to 3,300 metres. For most of the year, males and females occupy different habitat. Females rely on steep terrain more so than males. Males use lowland meadows during the spring, which is when snow melts and green grass appears. They then climb to alpine meadows during the summer. When winter arrives, both sexes move to steep rocky slopes that amass little snow and spend the winter there.
100 000 years ago, the Alpine Ibex lived in all the rocky regions of Central Europe. It was also a source of inspiration for the people who drew the Paleolithic caves in which they lived as it appears in the mural paintings of the Lascaux cave and Chauvet cave.
The Chauvet-Pont-d'Arc Cave in the Ardèche department of southern France is a cave that contains the earliest known and best preserved figurative cave paintings in the world, as well as other evidence of Upper Paleolithic life. As recently as spring 2016, an additional 88 radiocarbon dates indicate two periods of habitation. One from 37,000 to 35,000 years ago and another from 31,000 to 28,000. Here is the representation of ibex goat from Chauvet cave:
Lascaux (Lascaux Caves) is the setting of a complex of caves in southwestern France famous for its Paleolithic cave paintings. The original caves are located near the village of Montignac, in the department of Dordogne. They contain some of the best-known Upper Paleolithic art. These paintings are estimated to be circa 17,300 years old. Here is the representation of ibex goat from Lascaux cave:
This is Bezoar ibex, a cousin of Alpine ibex. It is found in the mountains of Asia Minor and across the Middle East. It is also found on some Aegean Islands and in Crete.
Why am I talking about Ibex wild goats? Because they have a very very interesting mating habits.
As I said already, when winter arrives, both sexes of the Alpine Ibex move to steep rocky slopes that amass little snow. Once they are all together on high rocky mountain slopes, the are finally in position to start mating. During this time, male herds break up into smaller groups that search for females. The rut takes place in two phases. In the first phase, the male groups interact with the females who are all in oestrous. The higher the male's rank, the closer he can get to a female. Males perform courtship displays. In the second phase of the rut, one male separates from his group to follow an individual female. He displays to her and guards her from other males. Before copulation, the female moves her tail and courtship becomes more intensive. They copulate and then he rejoins his group and reverts to the first phase.
Now here is the important bit:
Alpine ibex mating season starts in December, and ends in January typically lasting around six weeks.
Bezoar Ibex mating season starts in November and ends in January.
Right in the middle of the mating periods of both Alpine and Bezoar ibex is Winter Solstice, 21st of December. And the day after the winter solstice is the beginning of the Capricorn (goat) period, which last from December 22 – January 20...
Do you think that this is a coincidence? Do you think that our henge building ancestors, who used Winter solstice to mark the beginning of the solar year, didn't notice that just before the Winter solstice mountain goats gather together and start their mating rituals? Don't you think that they would then use the symbol of a goat to mark this important cyclical yearly event?
I think that this is absolutely amazing. So far I have shown that four zodiac signs, Aries (ram), Taurus (bull), Pisces (fishes) and Capricorn (goat) mark important cyclical natural events related to animals who live in Europe. These events occur every year at the same time, during the time period marked by the images of these animals. And there is at least another one, that I know at the moment. I will write about it soon.
Knowing all this there is no doubt in my mind any more that Chaldeans, who are currently credited with the invention of the zodiac, actually based their star zodiac on circular solar calendar which came to Mesopotamia from Europe.
But the discovery of the true meaning of Capricorn is particularly important. This is the key that unlocks the mystery of the association of goats with Christmas and Winter solstice...Now it all makes sense. I will dedicate next few post to this subject. Until then, stay happy.