Saturday, September 29, 2012

Mammoth Herding 101

Sheep herder: shepherd
Mammoth herder: mahout (also Indian elephant herder)

Mammoths are most closely related to Indian elephants, then to African elephants, then to manatees (tusked sea cows), then to hyraxes (hooved squirrel like animals), all Afrotherian descendants.

In central Asia, mammoths ate fruits from natural orchards (apple/apricots/plums/cherries/pears/citrons), marshland sedges & reed stems & rhyzomes, steppe grasses, woodland tree mast & bast (especially fire-burnt carmelized inner bark), mosses, annual flowers & seed berries/pulses (buttercups, gorse). They travelled seasonally from northern siberia southerly to the Himalayan highlands.

Tamil: mamoti (man = earth, vetti = spade)
Yakut: mamma (earth) (story of earth-burrowing mole-like mammoths is derived from mammoths using their tusks as spades to unearth tubers/bundles of grasses and perhaps snow shovels to scrape off snow crust from food.
English: manatee (manatus = hand, Latin)
Hebrew: behemoth (giant beast, water related)
Nias Behu: megalithic elephant cf batu gajah
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nias megalithic stone elephant (3 heads = head & tusks, 4 pillars = ele legs)

In Memorium
Phillip Vallentine Tobias: October 14, 1925­June 7, 2012
Frederick E Grine & Peter S Ungar 2012
Evol Anthrop doi 10.1002/evan.21326

"If I have seen further it is by standing on ye sholders of giants." (mammoths)

This phrase, immortalized by Sir Isaac Newton in a letter to Robert Hooke
dated February 5, 1675, takes on a special and bitterly poignant meaning
in the context of the passing of Phillip Tobias.
Newton was, of course, paraphrasing, with considerable abbreviation, the
translation of the statement by John of Salisbury, Bishop of Chartres, who
wrote in his Metalogicon, or Defense of the Trivium (1159):
"Nos esse quasi nanos, gigantium humeris insidentes, ut possimus plura eis
et remotiora videre, non utique proprii visus acumine, aut eminentia
corporis, sed quia in altum subvenimur et extollimur magnitudine
Gigantea."
["We are like dwarfs on the shoulders of giants, so that we can see more
than they, and things at a greater distance, not by virtue of any
sharpness of sight on our part, or any physical distinction, but because
we are carried high and raised up by their giant size."]
We imagine that Phillip would probably have appreciated not only the
fullness of John's prose, but also its melodiousness in the original
Latin.

1 comment:

carlos lascoutx said...

...vetti(Tamil)=spade,=eretes(Gk)=rower
=auictli(N)=oar(E)=ar(OE)=uictli(N)=
spade/shovel, uic(N/adv)=wick(E)=uica
(N)=vicar(E/verb)=Viking/Nike. note the
(c)of the root uictli(N)drops out.
...flash! the 40% blackbird/ravens
sacrificed at Goblekli Tepe means
the fields around Gobekli were cultivated. Gobelki was not just a
hunter-gathering place it was agriculture, as the rook/raven gathers at plowing/sowing, and entered into symbiosis with man
when he became farmer.