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Myth Maker: Modern Mythopoetics

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St George & The Uffington White Horse

Posted by on in Studies Blogs
The Uffington White Horse is a huge figure of a horse carved into the turf and filled in with white chalk.  People in the area have been doing this for at least 3000 years.  The figure needs consistent upkeep to remain visible, which was traditionally done every seven years.  Today it is done "as needed". (eye roll)    Not everyone agrees that the figure was originally intended to be a horse, although it has been consitently called horse since at least the 11th century.  Some scholars believe that Horse may have been the totem of a local tribe, while others believe it is a solar horse, that is, one that draws the chariot of the sun.  

For my part, I was more interested in the hill itself than the horse.  The horse lies on a large cliff, with numerous hills and valleys (more pics below).  If you are ever in the area, I very strongly recommend visiting, even if you just drive up "Dragon Hill Road" and back down. It is very, very lovely, even in December, and the winding road provides amazing views, even if (like me) you are not fit enough to trek up the hill on foot.  There is a disable parking lot near the top of the hill, which, in December, was nearly empty, but I assume "in season" it fills up and requires a permit. 

Even from the highway, the feature that most caught my attention wasn't the horse itself, but a small, flat topped hill next to it.  This, I came to find out, is "Dragon Hill" and is legendarily where St. George slew the dragon.  As you know, I have a strong connection to St George, and to his Phrygian counterpart, the Great Horseman of Thrace, Sabazios.  (you can read a story about St George here, and more about Sabazios here).

The energy of the hill was very powerful, and nearly intoxicating. I spent about an hour there, but it was very cold and windy, so I left eventually.  I may go back again before I leave.  It is quite close to my brother's house.   More pictures on my facebook page. 

Love to you all in these dark days,

Sara
Last modified on
Sara L. Mastros teaches Witchcraft, Greek and Near Eastern Mythology, Jewish Kabbalah, Pythagorean Mysticism, and Practical Sorcery in Pittsburgh, online, and at festivals all over the East Coast.  Check out her personal blog at http://mastroszealot.com/sara-s-blog or follow along with all her witchy shenanigans on facebooking by "liking" Mastros & Zealot: Witches for Hire" at https://www.facebook.com/mastroszealot/ . In addition to writing and teaching, Sara offers hand-compounded incenses and oils, as well as custom sorcery, hand-made magical tools and altar ware, consultations, divinations, and one-on-one teaching at www.MastrosZealot.com.

Comments

  • Anthony Gresham
    Anthony Gresham Thursday, 28 December 2017

    I remember reading mention of someone called the Thracian Rider. Could that be Sabazios? I think it might have been in a book on Dacia.

  • Sara Mastros
    Sara Mastros Friday, 29 December 2017

    The "Thracian Rider" is a name for a particular kind of iconography, that scholars aren't sure who it represents, maybe a god, maybe a hero, maybe both. I associate it with Sabazios, but I understand St. George to sometimes (but not always) be Sabazios "under cover". I also recently started leaning about a Georgian (Black Sea Georgia, not USA Georgia) St George type figure named Tigri Georgi.

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