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Primarch Astrological Symbolism / The Solar War [?~spoilers]

Primarchs Zodiac Astrology Horus Heresy The Solar War Symbolism

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#1
Ryltar Thamior

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Right, so as many men and their dogs may recall from the initial Horus Heresy trilogy, in addition to the subsequent "Each Primarch represents a facet/aspect of The Emperor" line, there's *also* a statement by Horus that they all apparently embody one of the twenty Zodiac symbols. [Horus, for those unaware, being Sagitarius - here, reconstrued somewhat, albeit in rather understandable fashion, to be a horse-archer ... archetypal emblem of #GangSTEPPE, and not at all coincidentally, with a subtle hinted linkage to one of the Horsemen of the Apocalypse] 

This has been subject to much analysis over the past decade and a half, and some pretty insightful conclusions and suppositionals have been rendered in the course of things. However, I'm not aware of the idea having been picked up *too* terribly much by subsequent authors. 

Until, possibly, now. 

A comrade recently started reading French's "The Solar War", and sent me a few excerpts detailing some rather curious symbolism that appears like it *might* be a continuation of this rather nifty imagery-approach - and which may offer further clarification as to ... well, a few things, including *just which Zodiacal system has twenty symbols in it*. 

I don't *think* there's anything particularly spoilery here from what I'm about to quote , especially decontextualized .. but your mileage may vary. 

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

First up, there's these two lines. They're from a few paragraphs apart, but I am of the opinion that they are deliberately, as it were, "echoey": 

"Symbols crawl over the crystal: a half-man half-equine, water falling from a cup, a figure with the head of a bull.  [...] 
‘The others know,’ says Malcador at last. ‘The Khan, the Angel, the commanders… Rogal, in particular."

Now, there's three points of interest here. 

The first is, presuming that they're deliberately 1:1 coterminous, this gives us a further astrological association - Rogal Dorn as Taurus. Which, given the emblematic qualities of a Taurus, seems pretty logical indeed. 

The second is the bit about water falling from a cup, potentially linked to Sanguinius [i.e. "The Angel"]. Now while I initially thought "Aquarius", subsequent consideration suggests something *else* may perhaps be going on here - namely, that this is *actually* referring to the constellation of Crater. A quick check of the mythology and symbolism around Crater will show some potential relevancies and resonances with that of Sanguinius, although this could still go 'either way'. I mainly mention it because if it is in fact correct, it would strongly support the utilization of the 21-sign 'ecliptic zodiac' [at least, I think that's what it's called?] which somebody suggested many, many years ago as a potential resolution to the "where are the other eight signs coming from" problem. 

The third, however, is the "half-man half-equine" figure bit. Which is either Jaghatai Khan, for reasons which should be obvious .. or it's Horus again. If the former, this either means there are some 'double-ups' on astrological signs as Primarchs, in which case the 21 sign thing is redundant and we *can* get by on a standard 12/13 ... or it's a case of similar 're-interpretations' to how we got "armoured figure with big sword" out of "scorpio" , meaning that one of them 20/21 constellations has come to be a half-man, half-horse figure *in addition* to Sagitarius. 

Anyway, it goes further. 

"Golden rings gleam on his fingers: a ram’s head, a rayed sun, a grey opal. "

These're the rings The Emperor is wearing. There are a few possibilities as to what's going on here - including that each ring represents a Primarch [perhaps the opal as Vulkan due to fire effect?], or that each ring represents a part of the Imperium [perhaps the ram's head stands for Mars? Or the Imperial Army?], or that each ring represents ... well, something else [e.g. the opal perhaps representing the moon, therefore giving us a sun and moon - both important elements in astrological practice, when they wind up 'in' signs]. 

However, as applies the 'ram's head', I suspect that what's actually going on here, is The Emperor is wearing an Aries ring. Why is The Emperor wearing an Aries ring? Well, it's the First of the Zodiac, a leader, especially in the field of war, impetuous and imperious, and so on and so forth. If the 21 sign ecliptic zodiac *is* the one being used , and there are 20 Primarchs, that therefore logically entails that the 1 'remainder'/unassigned sign must go somewhere else ... and where better than Their Father. 

Now, I have a few other thoughts as to 'logical' placements for the other Primarchs based around this 21 sign Zodiac sequence (and more especially, the surrounding/underlying mythology, symbology, and some linguistics of several of these), but I might comment on those later - some of it's relatively obvious re-hashery of stuff that's been said in years past; others, rather less commonly held opinions [for example, I'm not huge on Gemini being Alpharius/Omegon - and instead believe that *Pisces* is probably the better ensign for Them]. 

But as a further note ... this line also stuck out to me. I have no especial facility with Tarot, although others [particularly this guy] have made some rather nifty insights in the previously. It is presented here for completeness, and in case it ties back into the astrological symbolism. 

"The man in gold begins to lay cards down on the stone bench between the bowls. The cards are old and the images on them faded: a figure in a dark cloak, its face turned away, climbing towards a high tower; a wolf-headed man with a bundle of swords hidden beneath a cloak; a wheel of stars turning around a darkening moon"

Thoughts?

And I'd be interested if anybody has any further instances of Zodiac etc. symbolism turning up in the HH novels for further cross-comparative analysis. 


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Vox Stellarum efforts:
The Unyielding Adamanticores [truescale Astartes, auxilia, and sectorial AdMech; M37/38]
The Haunting Harii of Hvergelmir [truescale Astartes ... and associates] 
The Unification Wars [truescale Thunder Warriors, (Proto-)Astartes, Army of Unification, Aegyptian-style Proto-Mechanicus raiders, etc.] 
Combat Archaeology [Tomb Raiding for Fun & Prophet] 
Horus Heresy [truescale loyalist IVth, VIIIth; Agents of the Sigillite; VIth; and so much more; and Umbral's amazing Traitors] 
The Worlds-Wide Webway [(Dark) Eldar, Imperial Inquisition, an a-maze-ing realmweave of fear and wondermeant]
Thorian Inquisition [some rather different Inquisitorial Storm Troopers, true-scale Fire Hawks, Black Dragon, Inquisitor and associates, etc.] 
For Whom The Great Bell Tolls Thrice [attempts to put the 'priest' back in 'tech-priest' with more-medieval mechanicus] 
InquisiNecronMunda [the log that incepted it all - at least two Inquisitors, truescale Deathwatch, local enforcers, cultists, etc.] 


#2
N1SB

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Very interesting findings, thank you for bringing it to your attention.  I happen to have some experience with Tarot, which I'll share here.

 

Tarot cards, I'd explain to friends, were basically Rorschach tests during the Age of Enlightenment; look at this card, does it make you feel something about your life?  They really were an earlier version of poker cards (minor arcana) for card games (there are 4 suits of 14 cards each, the extra 1 is a Knight), THEN someone added some extra cards for fortune telling (major arcana) as a gimmick, on the pretense that they were inspired by Egyptian mythology or something just as exotic and esoteric of that time.  And fortune telling with them was like therapy, just to get a person to open up and talk about his problems.

 

As a result, part of their designs do draw from constellations, because constellations are often related to mythology, but fact is Tarot drew from all sorts of mythology.  It's kind of like how 40k also draws from all sorts of mythology and history and fantasy.  In the same way it's hard draw a 1-to-1 comparison with a 40k character/Chapter/element to a specific source (like Sanguinius and Blood Angels draw inspiration from Renaissance art of angels, but also from vampires), it's a little like that with Tarot as well.

 

For example, I know the major arcana card, The Emperor...happens to exactly be associated with Aries.  Not a coincidence.

 

In thinking about your question, I pulled out my Tarot deck.  I don't know the context of these passages you kindly typed out for us, but I was flipping through my Tarot cards and noticed the following related ones.  Because there's ambiguities in a.) Tarot cards themselves, b.) how 40k authours actually interpret them, c.) to the point they probably just invented new cards for the Emperor's Tarot, I had to select a few and it just depends on which ones that particularly meant to reference.

 

(Sidenote: Tarot cards can be drawn upside down, in which case they have either the opposite or a twisted meaning, but I won't go into that here because in fiction, it's seldom mentioned and it's a little complicated.)

 

"Symbols crawl over the crystal: a half-man half-equine, water falling from a cup, a figure with the head of a bull.  [...] 
‘The others know,’ says Malcador at last. ‘The Khan, the Angel, the commanders… Rogal, in particular."

 

Brother Ryltar, I know you're thinking of constellations 1st, but let me show you that the Tarot cards that might be related to this.  The significance of these should immediately be self-evident imho, and the details that leapt out at me were those that I'd associate with Sanguinius and Dorn:

 

gallery_57329_13636_211045.jpg

 

Death (major arcana) and the 4 Knights (minor arcana): many who've heard of Tarot know that Death doesn't actually mean death; instead, Death refers to change, endings and beginnings, and moving on.  The 4 Knights of the suits all refer to speed, passion, aggressiveness, energy.  These are all the horse-related cards, any of those meanings easily refer to Khan.  Constellation-wise, iirc Death is actually Scorpio, and the 4 Knights...it's really complicated and I won't get into their astrology counterparts.

 

Temperance (major arcana): means actually temperance, patience, but also self-control.  He carries 2 cups to signify balance in life.  But...a golden haired angel with blood-red wings holding grails...that's literally Sanguinius.  Notice what's in the 2 cups...water fall from a cup (into another cup), as your passage describes.  Constellation-wise, Temperance is actually associated with Sagittarius actually, I don't know why.

 

King of Pentacles (minor arcana): denotes the peak of wealth, business, but also industry or industriousness.  Furthermore, the sign of pentacles and its King in particular is associated with the element of Earth; it is the builder's card.  This is one of a few cards that could obviously be associated with Dorn, but look at his throne.  Notice the 4 bull heads?  Not a coincidence, this card's constellation is indeed Taurus.

 

I don't know the context of them describing these symbols, but just flipping through my Tarot cards, it was pretty easy to identify their corresponding cards with the images.  Of course, like I said a few of those descriptions could refer to multiple cards, like water falling from a cup could also be the Ace of Cups, but Temperance above is so obviously Sanguinius when you look at the traditional art for it that it's clearly the best choice.

 

Now onto the next set, this time you told us it's actual Tarot cards:

 

"The man in gold begins to lay cards down on the stone bench between the bowls. The cards are old and the images on them faded: a figure in a dark cloak, its face turned away, climbing towards a high tower; a wolf-headed man with a bundle of swords hidden beneath a cloak; a wheel of stars turning around a darkening moon"

 

I won't do a reading.  I'll tell you the meanings of the card, and YOU can do your own reading yes.gif .  But because they could refer to multiple things, I listed some different options.  You describe 4 cards here, there's some different possibilities, so I laid some out top and bottom on potential cards each description may refer to.

 

gallery_57329_13636_78883.jpg

 

 

+++ a figure in a dark cloak, its face turned away +++

 

That could be either the 5 of Cups or The Hermit imho.

 

5 of Cups: this is one of the more complicated cards, but it means sadness, regret, "the cup is half-full" pessimism.  The numbers all mean something consistent across the different suits of the Tarot.  For example, 4 is a good number representing stability; a table has 4 legs, beasts have 4 legs, it's natural.  5...is chaotic, like a table with 5 legs, that's weird, the Babylonian sphinxes have 5 legs.  Cups represent life (because they contain water), joy (because they can also be filled with wine), etc.  5 of Cups is a disturbance to those concepts.  You notice the dark cloaked figure is looking down at the toppled 3 cups, like "crying over spilled milk".  Well, the 3 of Cups happen to refer to family (2 parents having their 1st child), friendship (3 mates getting together for drinks...if it's just 2 they may be more intimate than just friends, know what I mean?), creation.  5 of Cups literally overturn those, a loss of those concepts.

 

The Hermit: is the wise man, and it is because he contemplates alone, because the answers to the hardest questions are found within.

 

 

+++ climbing towards a high tower +++

 

There's a single clear choice here.

 

The Tower: is the obvious choice and it means all the bad things, disaster, destruction, chaos.  Above I mentioned the Death card doesn't mean death, because it's actually The Tower that means death.

 

 

+++ a wolf-headed man holding a bundle of swords under a cloak +++

 

Nothing in the traditional (i.e. Waite) Tarot deck has a "wolf-headed man", or even a beast-headed man.  The closest is The Devil but it's really just a Baphomet satyr.  There are a few options for a "man holding a bundle of swords".

 

7 of Swords: is another tricky number card, because it means cunning, but that could be positive like cleverness, or a pejorative like treachery.  The 7 cards are like "lucky 7s", it's like a random chance, things could go either way.  But because the suit of Swords represent aggressiveness, military, etc., you don't want things to be based on chance there.

 

5 of Swords: another 5 card with negative connotations, it refers to conflict, war, but also defeat, surrender.

 

 

+++ wheel of stars turning around a darkening moon +++

 

The description itself refers to 2 cards: Wheel of Fortune or The Moon

 

Wheel of Fortune: refers to luck obviously, but also fate, like "the circle of life" will always turn, so "this too shall pass".

 

The Moon: is fear, but also feelings in general, not just emotions but you sense something like a "woman's intuition".  

 

 

+++++

 

 

I share this knowing full well that the authour may have just intended a more literal interpretation of the Emperor's Tarot.  The "wolf-headed man" and the "moon" probably just refers to the Luna Wolves, for example.  But you already know all that, so I just supplied things you might not be aware of.  Moreover, I gave the traditional interpretation of these cards as I understand and remember them (like there's memory tricks, like each number means something across all suits and there's details on the card to remind you), but I've seen people way better than me pick up on all sorts of details that I never realised.

 

But have fun reading the Tarot from those passages with this context!  As I said, I'm not doing the fortune reading, so that you may do your own.


Edited by N1SB, 03 June 2019 - 12:45 AM.

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#3
RikuEru

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This as a whole is such an interesting and flavourful concept...
But man...

N1SB, does your wisdom and knowledge know no bounds?
As always a very deep and insightful post from you.
Without you, I feel, we would all die as the stupid cavemen we are... ;)
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ETL_2016_Banner_03_Custos_Fidei01.jpgETL_2016_Badge_08_Badge_of_the_Hero.jpg


#4
Ryltar Thamior

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Man, that's an amazing and well-considered response, N1SB. I'm thoroughly impressed. Hell, I should get you looking over various of the official-fluff explications/discursions and Inq28 efforts we're working on, to add value. But I digress. 

I showed your writeup to some of my associates, they had the following observations to make :
 

""Constellation-wise, Temperance is actually associated with Sagittarius actually, I don't know why."

Daily reminder that Alot of Primarchs, including Horus Lupercal, though Sanguinius was the better choice for Warmaster.
[...]
As for the Tarot reading, given the context i can guess at the intended meanings here. 

I am going to go with this suite: The Hermit, The Tower, 7 of Swords, Wheel of Fortune, The Moon. 

The Emperor is the Wise Man who contemplates alone, and he is climbing towards a confrontation with Chaos, the Tower personified. 

Leman Russ is the 7 of Swords, and interacts with the last 2. His gamble in Wolfsbane of attacking Horus to pierce him with Gungnir and instill in him mortal fear - explicitly stated as the Emperors Objective. 

Malcador is, on the eve of Horus's assault, reading the Tarot to determine if Russ has succeeded in his mission, and thus whether Horus is vulnerable.

[...]
Also, daily reminder that 40k has best fandom." 

 

-------------------------------------------------------------------

Personally, I'd thought that the man approaching tower was a single card [and therefore either an 'invention' or 'artistic license'], but it does seem to make more sense for it to be at least two. The phrasing by the author may be deliberate ambiguity. 

Other possibilities afforded by a profusion of 'Knights', might be either Knights Errant, or The Lion [of Caliban]. 

As applies the Cups symbolism - it is probably interesting to note that ... hold on, i'll provide a longer excerpt:
 

"The man in black rags and fur stops. 

Another man, swathed in golden robes, sits on one of the benches. He holds a staff in his hand, and a folded plait of laurel leaves and silver thread sits on his head. He looks young.

The two look at each other for a long moment. Then the old man in the frost-covered fur shakes himself, and pulls the cloak from his back. The black tunic beneath is tattered and stained by sweat. The muscles on his arms are withered cords, his shoulders hunched by age, his scalp bare of hair and liver-spotted. Golden rings gleam on his fingers: a ram’s head, a rayed sun, a grey opal. 

‘Hello, old friend,’ says the young man in gold. 

The old man in black rags nods, and comes forwards. For a second his step falters. His eyes shut with pain. The rock of the cave creaks. A spill of dust falls from the ceiling. The man in gold looks up, and then back at the man in black as he lowers himself onto the bench opposite. 
‘Here,’ says the young man, holding out a wooden bowl. ‘Bread and salt and meat.’

The old man takes the bowl with a nod and begins to eat. The man in gold lifts his own bowl, and takes small mouthfuls, never taking his eyes from his companion.
 

‘I am sorry to call you here,’ says the man in gold when there are only crumbs in the old man’s bowl, ‘but we need to speak.’ The man in black wipes the back of his hand across his mouth. His eyes are black depths in the weathered skin of his face. "

 

 


Or, as you have said - two men, closer than friends [indeed, at least one is not a Man, per se] , two cups - well, bowls. 

One chap in a black robe, also ;) 

Perhaps, the five 'going either way' is symbolic of the 'in the balance' prospects of the Siege. And the eventual fate(s) of the two figures talking: [goes nicely with what you've said about The Hermit, too] 
 

"The Emperors turns for the door.


‘Can we still win this?’ asks Malcador.

‘That is not the question you are really asking,’ says the Emperor, turning His head but still facing away. 

Malcador gives a sad smile, and nods to concede the point. 

‘Farewell,’ says the Emperor, pulling on His cloak of fur, and turning for the small door out into the night and winter.""

 


Now in terms of the wolf-headed figure ... my immediate own thought was that it recalled the Ulfhednar [there's quite a suite of Indo-European "wolf warriors", which i should totally post an academic writeup on for peoples' various inspirational purposes at some other time] ; and if there is one figure who would be a pretty ideal holder of *that* title, particularly given the Odinic [daily reminder - The Emperor is Space Odin-Rudra-Shiva [long story]] associations of the Ulfhednar, it would most certainly be Russ. 

Another perhaps interesting possibility would be to see if there is correlation between Legion numbers and other such things, and card numbers. 

As applies that Hermit art - it is an interesting situation here, because on the face of it ... it bears strong resemblance to Malcador. Yet, in this instance, probably because it's a meeting in/of the minds , it is The Emperor who may be closer in visage. 

When it comes to the wheel of stars around darkening moon ; i had wondered about a Virgo linkage - but that is ... not something that is solidly based, but more of an 'inclination' based in no small part around the underly8ing mythology of Astraea - namely, the departure of Her , leading to the onset of  the dark age. Which , given what happens to The Emperor .. [further supports on this being i) the notion of stars wheeling about a central point - an Imperium of a million worlds about an Axis Mundi that is both the Throne-World and its immanent incumbent ; ii) the rather under-known about linkages of the Indo-European Deific Figure we've linked to The Emperor, with The Moon - Shiva as ChandraSekhara , for instance, and i seem to recall an Odinic linkage as well] 

[Initially, i had wondered whether hte 'tower' angle was The Emperor's eventual 'ascent' to the Golden  Throne ] 


On a side-note, looking at the passage again, i just noticed this:
 



"That is what they are there to do,’ says the Emperor, picking up the furs from which the ice and frost has barely thawed. ‘To be tooth and claw, to fight and not to yield. The rest is yours to mind – to shield them so that they can be what they need to be.’"

 


Which, as it happens, seems to echo in a number of ways, the closing lines of Tennyson's Ulysses:
 



It may be that the gulfs will wash us down; 
It may be that we shall touch the Happy Isles, 
And see the great Achilles, whom we knew. 
Though much is taken, much abides; and though 
We are not now that strength which in old days 
Moved earth and heaven, that which we are, we are — 
One equal temper of heroic hearts, 
Made weak by time and fate, but strong in will 
To strive, to seek, to find, and not to yield.

 




 


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Vox Stellarum efforts:
The Unyielding Adamanticores [truescale Astartes, auxilia, and sectorial AdMech; M37/38]
The Haunting Harii of Hvergelmir [truescale Astartes ... and associates] 
The Unification Wars [truescale Thunder Warriors, (Proto-)Astartes, Army of Unification, Aegyptian-style Proto-Mechanicus raiders, etc.] 
Combat Archaeology [Tomb Raiding for Fun & Prophet] 
Horus Heresy [truescale loyalist IVth, VIIIth; Agents of the Sigillite; VIth; and so much more; and Umbral's amazing Traitors] 
The Worlds-Wide Webway [(Dark) Eldar, Imperial Inquisition, an a-maze-ing realmweave of fear and wondermeant]
Thorian Inquisition [some rather different Inquisitorial Storm Troopers, true-scale Fire Hawks, Black Dragon, Inquisitor and associates, etc.] 
For Whom The Great Bell Tolls Thrice [attempts to put the 'priest' back in 'tech-priest' with more-medieval mechanicus] 
InquisiNecronMunda [the log that incepted it all - at least two Inquisitors, truescale Deathwatch, local enforcers, cultists, etc.] 


#5
carlisimo

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Temperance (major arcana): means actually temperance, patience, but also self-control.  He carries 2 cups to signify balance in life.  But...a golden haired angel with blood-red wings holding grails...that's literally Sanguinius.  Notice what's in the 2 cups...water fall from a cup (into another cup), as your passage describes.  Constellation-wise, Temperance is actually associated with Sagittarius actually, I don't know why.

I love your post, and Ryltar's too.  I just read The Solar War and figured there were connections to be made to astrology and the Tarot, two things I know very little about.  I had seen that Menducia page before, though, the one that ties Temperance to the Khan (and the Hanged Man to Sanguinius).  Sagittarius works pretty well for the Khan, doesn't it?

 

But, yeah, it's also hard to argue that the image on the Temperance card isn't clearly Sanguinius.

 

I wonder when GW started thinking about all this.  The early lore feels rather... random, with primarchs indirectly named after an employee (Leman Russ) or, supposedly, a local bouncer (Angron).  But if they bolted it on afterward, it fit surprisingly well.


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#6
Ryltar Thamior

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Temperance (major arcana): means actually temperance, patience, but also self-control.  He carries 2 cups to signify balance in life.  But...a golden haired angel with blood-red wings holding grails...that's literally Sanguinius.  Notice what's in the 2 cups...water fall from a cup (into another cup), as your passage describes.  Constellation-wise, Temperance is actually associated with Sagittarius actually, I don't know why.

I love your post, and Ryltar's too.  I just read The Solar War and figured there were connections to be made to astrology and the Tarot, two things I know very little about.  I had seen that Menducia page before, though, the one that ties Temperance to the Khan (and the Hanged Man to Sanguinius).  Sagittarius works pretty well for the Khan, doesn't it?

 

But, yeah, it's also hard to argue that the image on the Temperance card isn't clearly Sanguinius.

 

I wonder when GW started thinking about all this.  The early lore feels rather... random, with primarchs indirectly named after an employee (Leman Russ) or, supposedly, a local bouncer (Angron).  But if they bolted it on afterward, it fit surprisingly well.

 

Churr. 

We've got a theory that the reason why a lot of it now 'works' , is because it's picking up on 'resonances', you might say, for things that actually exist. But, then, the "we" in question are religious fundamentalist zealots who've literally wound up utilizing 40k/30k fluff materials as supplementary elements for Hindu (and broader Indo-European) scriptural sources, in the course of our academic / theological research and writing. 

A less 'out there' but still vaguely metaphysical explanation would probably just run on Jungian archetypes and the collective unconscious. 

Or, less metaphysically again ... a lot of the fluff generation for the setting, even in the early phases, was done by some *seriously* "over-educated" bright young chaps who'd gone through some of the best public-system schooling that the world has ever seen - straight into a job-market and broader economy that uh .. probably didn't have much of a use for even a fraction of the archaeology and history grads who eventually wound up at GW (seriously - there appears to have been quite a few archaeologists working at GW in the 80s). 

What this means in practice is that they could, and did, put a *lot* of thought into even the fluff that was around waaay back in the early days of the setting ... overlain with various jokes and pop-cultural references that we may or may not get today [for example, look at the "The Book of Five Runes" mentioned briefly in a Rogue Trader era quote..; or Mag'Uruk Thraka ... who for some reason is re-enacting Operation Barbarossa against ... well, you get the idea]. 

Things have been haphazard right from the beginning, though [it still irrationally eye-twitches me the way you get modern Space Wolves codex art which mashes up three different eras of Nordic Runes , gets things probably unintentionally in Merkstave, etc. etc etc... but I digress], and it's only through later 'planing it out' efforts that a lot of the cohensive stuff has managed to emerge through broad consensus. Part of the brilliance of a 30 year development for a setting with a lot of bright minds working on it is that you can *do* that kind of thing. 

We've been living in a new golden age of the stuff, though, with Bligh in particular deserving significant kudos for putting in all these little 'linkages' that you can trace back if you've the knowledge for how to do so [which, in my case, means a passing knowledge of ecclesiastical Sanskrit, etc.] . And recent fluff developments via Black Library - wherein Russ now winds up with more Odinic archetypal elements going on as the character grows, develops and progresses through the Heresy are emblematic of exactly this kind of 'strengthening' of the 'resonances' that i've mentioned earlier. For example, taking the "Spear of Russ" bit from Bill King's Space Wolf novels like two decades ago, turning it into Gungnir ... as in, explicitly called that ... and then, to top it off, tying it to the 'Apollonian' spear [which nicely further goes with the Dionysus-Odin-Rudra axial we ... shall perhaps get into some other time :P ] 

Anyway, i've gotten rather distracted.

Where I was actually going with this, was the point that when it comes to the stuff fleshing out The Emperor in the context of the Heresy (and prior) - we've been frankly amazed at how much and how closely what we now know lines up with Shiva(-Odin). Particularly given an array of it's comprised of material that is ... frankly downright obscure outside of rather rarified academic or priestly circles, and which we've only *just* started lifting the lid on for a broader audience in writing through our research institute's published output. 

Although after running across ADB apparently cogently referencing the Anatolian Hypothesis of Proto-Indo-European linguistics, and quite possibly making a very, very apt Proto-Indo-European hiding-in-plain-sight naming device [if you're wondering/playing at home ... the Sakarya River is the *modern* name, which has been in-use for some centuries, yes ... but is Turkic, albeit derived/calqued from previous Classical [i.e. Indo-European] hydronomy. So the fact that The Emperor would be using it , in theory, six-to-eight thousand years ago , as the name of the river in question ... would look like a mistake, yes? Or a handwavium ease-of-convenience. EXCEPT ... if you run "Sakarya" through as a PIE construction .... I won't go all the way through what we did with it, we'll just point out that it effectively works out slightly figuratively as "Unity". 

Now ... it's *possible* that ADB is also running on Genius-Bonuses All The Way Down. And certainly, he does it often enough for it to be strikingly plausible. Yet I think it is something else. Namely, an ongoing series of ... well, a 'pattern' you might say, traceable out through the escalating mountain of such 'coterminities', 'coincidences', whatever it is you want to call them. 

If you get my drift.] 


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Vox Stellarum efforts:
The Unyielding Adamanticores [truescale Astartes, auxilia, and sectorial AdMech; M37/38]
The Haunting Harii of Hvergelmir [truescale Astartes ... and associates] 
The Unification Wars [truescale Thunder Warriors, (Proto-)Astartes, Army of Unification, Aegyptian-style Proto-Mechanicus raiders, etc.] 
Combat Archaeology [Tomb Raiding for Fun & Prophet] 
Horus Heresy [truescale loyalist IVth, VIIIth; Agents of the Sigillite; VIth; and so much more; and Umbral's amazing Traitors] 
The Worlds-Wide Webway [(Dark) Eldar, Imperial Inquisition, an a-maze-ing realmweave of fear and wondermeant]
Thorian Inquisition [some rather different Inquisitorial Storm Troopers, true-scale Fire Hawks, Black Dragon, Inquisitor and associates, etc.] 
For Whom The Great Bell Tolls Thrice [attempts to put the 'priest' back in 'tech-priest' with more-medieval mechanicus] 
InquisiNecronMunda [the log that incepted it all - at least two Inquisitors, truescale Deathwatch, local enforcers, cultists, etc.] 


#7
Closet Skeleton

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There's not going to be a 20 sign zodiac, its just not numerologically flexible enough, 20 has a similar number of factors (1, 2, 4, 5, 10, 20) to 12 (1, 2, 3, 4, 6, 12) but if you're already scaling up above 12 why not go for a square number like 16 or 25 or jump up to 32 or 36. Multiples of 10 are just pretty boring in general (your factors are going to be 1, 2, 5, yourself /10, 10 and yourself). The 12 sign Zodiac derives not from the constellations but from attempts to unify lunar and solar cycles for calendar computations, so the most likely way to get a 20 sign zodiac would be from terran colonization of a planet with a 20 month year, which to make sense of Horus Rising would probably be Cthonia.

 

Calling a magic spear Gungnir is the laziest option one could go for, if you've played any Japanese video game you've probably seen it used, if direct literary illusions are 'archetypal' then you're half way to falsifying the whole concept of archetypes in the first place. There's nothing obscure about Norse mythology, after Greek mythology its the most well known and is probably more represented in current pop culture than Greek thanks mostly to Marvel and Neil Gaiman. Third would be Egyptian despite there not really being such a thing as 'Egyptian mythology' (the old Ensemble Studios RTS game most clearly represents this but also look at the influences in the Warhammer ranges themselves).

 

Anachronistic runic alphabets sounds pretty in keeping with the general anachronism in the 40k aesthetic. Jes Goodwin on the official podcast said that he never intended Space Wolves to be Vikings and is generally disappointed at how later takes on them became increasingly direct in their borrowings. This happened all over the range with Thousand Sons going from a Norwegian name and a Iranian god alongisde the odd egyptianesque headdress to having Sekhmet, Scarab and Osiron as unit names.

 

There's a ton of submerged New Age themes in 40k that mostly just come from it ripping off 70s SF. SF and fantasy have always been written by nerds and Occultists have been stealing from fiction since at least the publication of Jean Terrasson's Sethos.



#8
Ryltar Thamior

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There's not going to be a 20 sign zodiac, its just not numerologically flexible enough, 20 has a similar number of factors (1, 2, 4, 5, 10, 20) to 12 (1, 2, 3, 4, 6, 12) but if you're already scaling up above 12 why not go for a square number like 16 or 25 or jump up to 32 or 36. Multiples of 10 are just pretty boring in general (your factors are going to be 1, 2, 5, yourself /10, 10 and yourself). The 12 sign Zodiac derives not from the constellations but from attempts to unify lunar and solar cycles for calendar computations, so the most likely way to get a 20 sign zodiac would be from terran colonization of a planet with a 20 month year, which to make sense of Horus Rising would probably be Cthonia.

 

 

 

 

Well, for a start, Horus's quote is explicitly that there's a twenty sign zodiac. Now it is true to state that nobody's yet produced a completely viable explanation for what zodiacal system that is, but it's quite clearly one that is substantively recognizable as being built out of the rather familiar post-Babylonian, post-Greek constellations we know today. We can tell this due to the signs Horus does explicitly identify - Leos, Skorpos, Tauromach, Arbitas, Dreadful Sagittary. It would seem rather curious for The Emperor, working on Earth, and apparently explicitly drawing inspiration from the associations of interpretations of these signs, which appear in His mind to go back millennia (hence the dating on the ring which He gives to Horus bearing the relevant ensign), to be for the skies of some other planet elsewhere in the galaxy. 

As I noted in the OP, there is actually at least one zodiac system which gets us 21 signs - as determined by which constellations the Sun makes an ecliptic pathway through in our own sky. This gives us : Aries, Taurus, Orion, Gemini, Cancer, Hydra, Leo, Sextans, Crater, Corvus, Virgo, Libra, Scorpio, Ophiuchus, Scutum, Sagittarius, Capricorn, Aquarius, Cetus, Pegasus, Pisces. 

Assuming that one sign is for the Emperor, as I suggested in the OP (hence the Ram's Head ring He's wearing), this leaves us with 20. We already know that five of the 20 which Horus has in mind, are represented in the above list (or, for that matter, the more conventional 12 sign list) - Leo, Scorpio, Taurus, Libra, and Sagittarius. My contention is that the three signs upon the cave wall in the 'meeting of the minds' between Malcador and the Emperor in the quote from The Solar War, represent an assignation of one of these five to a Primarch [which gives us 2/12 or 2/20 - or, including The Emperor as Aries, 3/12 or 3/21], as well as my strong suspicion that the Cup is to represent the aforementioned constellation of Crater, as well as Sanguinius; and, as has just occurred to me, that the half-man half-horse figure cited there, rather than potentially indicating Jaghatai Khan is a 'double up' on Sagitarius with Horus ... is in fact a bit of a twist on the constellation of Pegasus - and still represents Jaghatai Khan. [If I am correct in all particulars, then we have 5/21 with pretty good and supportable match-ups] 

Now I fully grant that this is a speculative exercise on my part; yet I am not sure that I have yet found a better explanation for i) the number of constellations of the Zodiac referred to by Horus (and yes, I do note that there's a bit of a difference between his saying 20, and my producing 21 - even if one of these is to be the Emperor.  There are potential explanations for this discrepancy, however), and ii) the seeming coterminity between one or both of the [non-Taurus] symbols on the cave wall, and elements from the suite of  'additional' constellations in that aforementioned list. 

It may also be relevant to note that the relevant passage from The Solar War makes explicit and repeated further references to Terra-centric astrology. 
 

 

 

Calling a magic spear Gungnir is the laziest option one could go for, if you've played any Japanese video game you've probably seen it used, if direct literary illusions are 'archetypal' then you're half way to falsifying the whole concept of archetypes in the first place. There's nothing obscure about Norse mythology, after Greek mythology its the most well known and is probably more represented in current pop culture than Greek thanks mostly to Marvel and Neil Gaiman. Third would be Egyptian despite there not really being such a thing as 'Egyptian mythology' (the old Ensemble Studios RTS game most clearly represents this but also look at the influences in the Warhammer ranges themselves).


Now as for your next paragraph, this is my fault for explaining things badly in the heat of enervated excitement earlier this evening, and not properly fleshing out some details to illustrate what I mean [like, for instance, I'm not saying "Gungnir *is* the Archetype; I'm pointing out that a) the 'Spear of the Divine' is an archetype, which b) tends to have further direct Archetypal associations in terms of both its potency (especially as a 'flash of insight' - which is exactly what Russ's Gungnir does when wielded against Horus) and its wielder(s) [for example, *both* Odin *and* Shiva, are spear-wielding Sky Father deities [well, deity singular, but another rant for another time] - and if we're going to start to get into the real 'depths' of the thing, Zeus [Zeus-Pitar, etymologically cognate with "Dyaus Pitar', 'Jupiter', etc.], Hades, and Poseidon, all wield spear-like weapons [with one point, two points, and three points, respectively - spot which one Alpharius/Omegon is carrying, incidentally :P ], and effectively represent a 'triple-aspect' of the same deity . Basically, if you don't want to run this as a theological or mythological paradigm, then it can still be approached as an Archetypal one. And I do maintain that it's not 'falsifying' the concept of an archetype (or, indeed, archetypes in general) to point out that a direct literary allusion is also running off one. ] 

Anyway, it's ten to five in the morning, here, so I'm going to take a bit of a breather before contemplating whether to write up something more detailed to explain/illustrate what I was getting at. 

So in the mean-time, here's one of my associates from the research unit providing a brief response. His words, rather than mine, and I'd have phrased and emphasized things differently as I'm not as focused upon the Germanic area of expertise:

 

 

"

The Emperor is clearly space Odin, a wise and magically adept, foreseeing deity with a roster of sons who call him Father, born in Anatolia (see Thor Heyerdahls in Search of Odin), who once journeyed to the warp to gain power and knowledge (see Odins sacrifice to himself) and who resides upon a golden throne on the Himalayan mountains (Axis Mundi indian cognate of Yggdrasil and the home of Shiva) from which he sees all. 

The Emperor personally create a spear, which he gives to Russ, which is imbued with his own power and foresight. This spear is Gungnir and its intended purpose is to reveal the mortal truth to Horus and weaken his connection to the ruinous powers. A fair mission given that the real Gungnir is made form the roots of Yggdrasil and fed by the waters of Urðarbrunnr (the well of Fate, truth), a well of such holyness that it makes all things the waters touch white and pure and which the gods hold council at and pronounce judgements. 

And of course, Horus Lupercal is a Wolf that the Emperor once called his own, who grew in strength and ambition until it turned on him. Indeed Horus himself is first corrupted by the Anathame on the swamp moon of Davin, a place corrupted by Nurgle, and so The Lupercal is also the Fenris (swamp poison) Wolf in truth.

Now that was the work of about 10 minutes to write, and i suspect that very few people would have been able to piece together all those connections and conclusions because were not talking about surface level pop culture understandings of mythology."

[the main bits i'd perhaps have added upon a cursory reading, would be an especial 'army of the dead' [30k/40k: Legion of the Damned (potentially turn up in the War in the Webway iirc); Nordic: the Harii referred to by Tacitus, the Einherjar, etc.; Hindu: the BhutaGana ]; the 'Thunder Warriors' [a pretty good rendering for Rudras [plural], Maruts] ; the bit around creating/begetting Sons as (demigod) living weapons with defined purpose [particular examples including Vali, by Odin; Skanda, by Shiva] , the Web hanging out from Mt. Meru across the universe, the rather good rendering of the Shaivite theonym of "Ishvara" as "God-Emperor" (you could also do far worse than rendering the Odinic  theonym of 'Herjan' as 'Imperator') and ... and you know what? I said I was going to take a breather before actually writing up a full thing, so I'mma call a (temporary) halt there, get some sleep maybe, and go from there :P 

Again, my fault/bad for not being clearer in what I was getting at in my earlier post, I'm not sure if any/all of the above helps clarify things further, but figured I'd take a stab. 

I'm not at all disagreeing that there's a 'grab-bag-of-New-Agey-Stuff' going on in a lot of earlier 40k fluff; or that science fiction writers can take inspiration from quite a few sources and then turn things into more cohesive wholes than the sum of parts would otherwise suggest. But I do think that it can wind up being significantly 'deeper' than that, if the writers are sufficiently adroit in what they are doing. And as applies the ongoing development of the 30k setting, I *definitely* think that whatever it may have started as, all those years ago, it's headed off, for the most part, in that latter direction. ] 
 


  • RolandTHTG and N1SB like this

Vox Stellarum efforts:
The Unyielding Adamanticores [truescale Astartes, auxilia, and sectorial AdMech; M37/38]
The Haunting Harii of Hvergelmir [truescale Astartes ... and associates] 
The Unification Wars [truescale Thunder Warriors, (Proto-)Astartes, Army of Unification, Aegyptian-style Proto-Mechanicus raiders, etc.] 
Combat Archaeology [Tomb Raiding for Fun & Prophet] 
Horus Heresy [truescale loyalist IVth, VIIIth; Agents of the Sigillite; VIth; and so much more; and Umbral's amazing Traitors] 
The Worlds-Wide Webway [(Dark) Eldar, Imperial Inquisition, an a-maze-ing realmweave of fear and wondermeant]
Thorian Inquisition [some rather different Inquisitorial Storm Troopers, true-scale Fire Hawks, Black Dragon, Inquisitor and associates, etc.] 
For Whom The Great Bell Tolls Thrice [attempts to put the 'priest' back in 'tech-priest' with more-medieval mechanicus] 
InquisiNecronMunda [the log that incepted it all - at least two Inquisitors, truescale Deathwatch, local enforcers, cultists, etc.] 


#9
MegaVolt87

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Don't tell the BT guys this topic is here, they will spoil the conversation with noisy chainswords and smelly promethium. teehee.gif


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My Iron Warriors Project   Guns for the guns god!, Bullets for the Brass throne!


#10
bluntblade

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Maybe the ram's head is instead the Solar Auxilia, as their founding cohorts are the Saturnine Rams and they're prominent in the Solar War.
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#11
N1SB

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Hey Brother Ryltar, thx for continuing to provide context.  I'm with you, like on the Space Wolves and the Hermit usually representing Malcador.

 

N1SB, does your wisdom and knowledge know no bounds?

 

The Hobby and B&C, all you guys, have taught me far more than I can ever share back.  *folds hands to form cogs of the Omnissiah*

 

 

I love your post, and Ryltar's too.  I just read The Solar War and figured there were connections to be made to astrology and the Tarot, two things I know very little about.  I had seen that Menducia page before, though, the one that ties Temperance to the Khan (and the Hanged Man to Sanguinius).  Sagittarius works pretty well for the Khan, doesn't it?

 

I would also be open to those interpretations, plus regarding Sagittarius, I see him that symbol used for many people even in the books, right?  I think Horus had a ring with that symbol and the Emperor used it himself (...he might've given Horus that ring actually lol), because in his day the archer horseman was like the pinnacle of military technology.

 

Which is why I'm trying to avoid assigning exclusive associations with any particular figure, but when I was looking at Temperance, I lol'd.


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#12
Ryltar Thamior

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Part of the issue with where the Emperor's going with the Sagitarius connection, is that .. well .. the horse-archer idea is pretty emblematic of Indo-European conquest at the time that The Emperor was (relatively speaking) young. Hence why it turns up, in various forms, in an array of IE mythological contexts - and, as I noted above, even in the Book of Revelation [the First Horseman - with the Crown and Arrows and Bow, iirc on a white horse]. 

So there's an obvious multiplicity of places it can show up with the Primarchs. Indeed, if you're prepared to squint a bit, the Ravenwing are another emblematic 'refraction' of the concept. But I digress. 

Part of our IRL [broadly speaking] work has been tracing the development of this concept into 'less immediately obvious' places - so, for example, Skanda, Son of Shiva, riding a Peacock as His Vahana and wielding a Spear.

Where am I going with this? Bearing in mind the somewhat 'twisty' interpretation which The Emperor appears to be running on for HIs utilization of real-world constellations ... 

220px-British_Airborne_Units.svg.png

...Pegasus; which I suggested above *might* be the half-equine, half-man emblem on the cave-wall. And which would potentially suit Jaghatai Khan not simply due to the co-occurrence in the orders of the symbols of his name and this ensign ... but the fact that the "Warhawk", well, it's a *flying* mounted warrior we see here, yes?

Anyway, what I came to post, on a general astrological musing, is something I found on 1d4chan concerning Alpharius/Omegon - namely, the star Alphard , which apparently means "the solitary one" in Arabic, referred to as the "Heart of the Hydra" in Western astronomy (it is, predictably, in the constellation Hydra) ,and which reportedly has another star hiding behind it. Which is hilarious. Also given the rivalry between the snake and the Raven when it comes to the constellations of Hydra and Corvus ... 

Now, I still maintain that there's something worth exploration when it comes to Alpharius/Omegon and Pisces; not least because Hydra's ... a bit glaringly obvious, and also due to the underlying symbolism of both Pisces astrological symbol (two fish swimming in opposite directions, yet nevertheless bound together); and Pisces' 'energies'/representations when it comes to conventional astrology. But it's interesting. 

I forget whether I earlier ID'd this, but Libra seems like a logical linkage for the Night Haunter; the reasons for which ought be rather obvious - the concern with justice ... except when you actually look at the underlying linguistics of the relevant Ancient Greek, what you actually get it something wherein instead of the impartial concept of "Justice" as we'd perhaps think of it ... which is an abstract, kinda, and somewhat 'freestanding'; the actual "Dike" element works out far closer to the sense of an "Accusatory", or at best "pointing out" [showing] concept. Pretty apt for Curze , especially given the 'dual nature' approach. 

So, what's that got us so far?

Aries - The Emperor
Sagittarius - Horus
Taurus - Dorn

Libra - Night Haunter 
Crater - Sanguinius 
Pegasus - Jaghatai Khan 

These're listed in "pretty confident/outright confirmed" and "strongly/reasonably/contextually supported conjecture" groups, respectively. 

Now, in terms of *further* supposition on my part ... one of the most intriguing possibilities, I feel, is that of Orion as Russ. The logic underpinning this is pretty straightforward. But also rather twisty. After all, if we consider Orion's role as the Huntsman, the stalker and bringer down of the biggest and most threatening/frightening prey - that's not at all far from Russ's own designated role as The Executioner. Iconographically, the affixion makes further sense - as Russ, too, is accompanied by two hunting-canids; and there is a rather well-worn linkage between the spear and the bow, both as instruments of hunting and mythological armament; although interestingly, this occasionally also turns up as a rod or staff, which plays into the third element of association: that of Orion with The Emperor, in the same way that Orion links up with Odin and with Shiva-Rudra and with Yama ... as this helps to support a strong connective axial between Russ and The Emperor Himself. 

As a further side-point, one of my associates informs me of supposition that what Russ is *actually* doing out there these days in the 41st Millennium, is chasing after 'Yggdrasil' - a Tree of Life, in order to help sort out what ails His Father. This is interesting to me, because the somewhat tongue-in-cheek somewhat serious thought here, is that the 'Tree of Life' in question is actually the Eldar Goddess Isha. Which would make a certain sort of sense, I suppose [and would render Guilliman's resurrection at the hands of the Ynnead-worshipping Eldar a case of the ancient Alchemical maxim "as below, so above" [or vice versa - i forget which way around these things go ... ] ].

And as applies that being "interesting to me", it's because some of my *other* ongoing research in real-world Indo-European mytho-linguistics, has strongly linked "Tree" and "Mountain" [compare the Germanic terms like "Fjell" "Fell" etc. with the "Fir" in "Fir Tree", "Coniferous", etc. , although perhaps curiously, the linkage is more obvious in cross-linguistic comparison with the "Par" sound in "Parvat" [Sanskrit for 'Mountain']; see also, Hittite: Peruna] , which rather matters due to the repeated pattern of 'Mountain Goddess' as a development of 'Earth Mother' in pretty much all of the IE cultures I've named or otherwise drawn from thus far.

Where am I going with this? See my earlier rather direct identification of The Emperor with Dyaus Pitar - Sky Father ;) 

Now personally, the way I'd have been tempted to run the whole thing, would be with Terra being the er .. "Earth Mother" in question, but there is a certain interesting quality to the incorporation - potentially at least - of Isha in this way. 

Anyway, I have digressed rather wildly. There's a few perhaps interesting 'further thoughts' ; which may even have some tarot resonances about the place, as well. 


  • RolandTHTG likes this

Vox Stellarum efforts:
The Unyielding Adamanticores [truescale Astartes, auxilia, and sectorial AdMech; M37/38]
The Haunting Harii of Hvergelmir [truescale Astartes ... and associates] 
The Unification Wars [truescale Thunder Warriors, (Proto-)Astartes, Army of Unification, Aegyptian-style Proto-Mechanicus raiders, etc.] 
Combat Archaeology [Tomb Raiding for Fun & Prophet] 
Horus Heresy [truescale loyalist IVth, VIIIth; Agents of the Sigillite; VIth; and so much more; and Umbral's amazing Traitors] 
The Worlds-Wide Webway [(Dark) Eldar, Imperial Inquisition, an a-maze-ing realmweave of fear and wondermeant]
Thorian Inquisition [some rather different Inquisitorial Storm Troopers, true-scale Fire Hawks, Black Dragon, Inquisitor and associates, etc.] 
For Whom The Great Bell Tolls Thrice [attempts to put the 'priest' back in 'tech-priest' with more-medieval mechanicus] 
InquisiNecronMunda [the log that incepted it all - at least two Inquisitors, truescale Deathwatch, local enforcers, cultists, etc.] 


#13
Ryltar Thamior

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I COME BEARING UPDATES 

From a conversation between Menkaura and Ahriman :

"+ Each house aligns. The orbs of the heavens sing, but not all... Blood still remains to be shed. The Queen of Heaven wears a crown of growing fire. The Water Bearer pours his bloody cup into the night. But the Wolf Coin still shines clear. The wheel turns. The sands run... +
Images flowed over the connection with Menkaura's mind. Ahriman saw Pluto, its face and moons sliding from cold reality to silver coins set in the sockets of a skull." 

I'm ... not quite sure what to make of this, prima facie. I mean, it's possible to run the three signs in question, once more, as part of our 21 sign zodiac; although other than the middle one likely being Sanguinius, and potentially a prediction of ... spoilers ... his impending demise, it's rather difficult to precisely match things up with what's gone before. 

A 'Queen of Heaven' put my mind towards Virgo [although if it were planetary terms being referred to, i could see how 'Venus' might be gotten out of it; or, for that matter, the asteroid Juno; or even Luna] ; 

a Wolf Coin is even more curious, as I cannot think of any constellation that could be described as a 'Coin'. The closest I could come up with was Scutum (Shield), maybe Sextans (because this was also once upon a time a unit of Roman currency). If it were a 'coin' in the sense of something bright and lustrous, then I wondered about Sirius or something - as in, a 'star' in a Wolf constellation. But that is rather abstract. 

In any case, the immediate possibilities for its interpretation suggested something to do either with Russ - both because ... well ... the rather obvious reason, but also because of the 'still shines clear' bit indicating the Wolf King yet lives, is/has pursued his mission aforementioned against Horus. Or, of course, it *could* be something to do with Horus - the roundel utilized by the Luna Wolves is, after all, a circular shape bearing a rather prominent wolf's head upon it, biting down upon a moon. In which case, the still shining clear bit, could indicate that Horus's destiny is still in motion. 

A further possibility, in either 'direction', is supported by what's later said about Pluto. Now, I haven't gotten around to reading Praetorian of Dorn yet, so cannot comment directly upon matters transpiring on that planet earlier on ... but Pluto is, indeed, regarded as 'wealthy' [iirc that's a rather direct rendering of Pluto into English as-is; // oddly enough, on a brief Indo-European mytholinguistic trivia point, while the 'conventional' wisdom is that this refers either to the minerals and gems to be found deep in the Earth ... or the 'wealth' of souls which He Has in his Realm ... or, perhaps, glow-worms at the ceiling of the caves; the course of our IRL research has suggested that Pluto, as part of a triple-facing tri-aspect of Dyaus Pitar, would rather be *sky* correlated, with the 'wealth' in question potentially referring to the Stars Themselves [this has further currency, and again I am digressing within my digression while also making an unintentional but I like it enough to keep it pun .... with something I unearthed about the Chief of the Vratya in Hindu terms, having a cloak the colour of night with bright points of light, often translated as 'coins' sewn into it .. but again I digress!] ] ; and further, what we see here is perhaps a replication of the ancient Greek custom of placing two obols upon the eyes of the deceased as payment for the Ferryman. [as a point of, once again, mytholinguistic interest that may have a broader relevancy, 'Charon' itself may derive from a term for a flashing gaze - which may also link back to the concept of coins, shining, pon the eyes ... or perhaps, 'true seeing'.] [it may be worth noting, further, that another of the Moons of Pluto is Kerberus ... so if you were going to go for a 'Wolf-Coin', one of those moons which turns into a coin, could indeed be thus?]

There is an interesting question, no doubt, as to which of the Primarchs would be said to occupy a 'Psychopomp' role. I have argued elsewhere that as Odin is via Interpretatio Romana, equated with Hermes/Mercury , there is a 'fit' there - even if it's Valkyries ['Choosers of the Slain'] dispatched to carry out His portfolio responsibility in that area [interestingly, Odin *also* has a theonym that is rendered in similar terms [Valkjosandi] . And as we have seen earlier, while The Emperor is, functionally, Space Odin ... Russ is also taking on increasing elements of the 'Odinic' persona [as noted in earlier posts, and rather particularly with a certain spear...a spear, indeed, of *certainty*; which appears itself to exercise a bit of a vague psycho-pomp function in its manner and mechanism of action upon Horus.]

One possibility is, as aforementioned, with Pluto being an aspect of Dyaus Pitar , that the image which Ahriman has beheld, is in fact foretelling the ... spoilers ... impending Death of the Emperor. 

Or it could simply be that the fight at Pluto shall be where things 'begin' - the crossing of the threshold, the liminal zone, hence the paying of ferryman visual metaphor [and yes, one of Pluto's moons is in fact named Styx :P .. another is Charon] [I probably shouldn't read anything into the fact that Pluto crosses the ecliptic at Sagittarius and Gemini :P ] . 

Anyway, there's a few thoughts. I'll think upon it further later tonight. I'm sure others will have insight, particularly our resident tarot-master :D 


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Vox Stellarum efforts:
The Unyielding Adamanticores [truescale Astartes, auxilia, and sectorial AdMech; M37/38]
The Haunting Harii of Hvergelmir [truescale Astartes ... and associates] 
The Unification Wars [truescale Thunder Warriors, (Proto-)Astartes, Army of Unification, Aegyptian-style Proto-Mechanicus raiders, etc.] 
Combat Archaeology [Tomb Raiding for Fun & Prophet] 
Horus Heresy [truescale loyalist IVth, VIIIth; Agents of the Sigillite; VIth; and so much more; and Umbral's amazing Traitors] 
The Worlds-Wide Webway [(Dark) Eldar, Imperial Inquisition, an a-maze-ing realmweave of fear and wondermeant]
Thorian Inquisition [some rather different Inquisitorial Storm Troopers, true-scale Fire Hawks, Black Dragon, Inquisitor and associates, etc.] 
For Whom The Great Bell Tolls Thrice [attempts to put the 'priest' back in 'tech-priest' with more-medieval mechanicus] 
InquisiNecronMunda [the log that incepted it all - at least two Inquisitors, truescale Deathwatch, local enforcers, cultists, etc.] 


#14
Skalpynock

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The Wolf-Coin may be simply referring to the Luna Wolves, and their tradition of putting coins on the eyes of the dead. Coins that they bear on their armours as kill-tokens.
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tn_gallery_77459_12000_9810.pngtn_gallery_77459_12000_28699.png gallery_92945_11930_15891.jpeg tn_gallery_77459_12000_11946.pngtn_gallery_77459_12000_20864.png

Legio IX: the Warbringers Proto-Legio IX: the Steel Guard

Legio IV: the Void Eagles Proto-Legio IV: the Morning Stars

 


#15
bluntblade

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And which are handed over to signify a kill-mission. French has emphasised the coins a lot in this book and Slaves to Darkness.

Edited by bluntblade, 21 June 2019 - 02:02 PM.

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#16
Ryltar Thamior

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And which are handed over to signify a kill-mission. French has emphasised the coins a lot in this book and Slaves to Darkness.

Interesting. Two possibilities, therefore, would be an XVIth asset or force that's still 'in play' ; or alternatively, that the target of such an intervention yet lives. 

 


Vox Stellarum efforts:
The Unyielding Adamanticores [truescale Astartes, auxilia, and sectorial AdMech; M37/38]
The Haunting Harii of Hvergelmir [truescale Astartes ... and associates] 
The Unification Wars [truescale Thunder Warriors, (Proto-)Astartes, Army of Unification, Aegyptian-style Proto-Mechanicus raiders, etc.] 
Combat Archaeology [Tomb Raiding for Fun & Prophet] 
Horus Heresy [truescale loyalist IVth, VIIIth; Agents of the Sigillite; VIth; and so much more; and Umbral's amazing Traitors] 
The Worlds-Wide Webway [(Dark) Eldar, Imperial Inquisition, an a-maze-ing realmweave of fear and wondermeant]
Thorian Inquisition [some rather different Inquisitorial Storm Troopers, true-scale Fire Hawks, Black Dragon, Inquisitor and associates, etc.] 
For Whom The Great Bell Tolls Thrice [attempts to put the 'priest' back in 'tech-priest' with more-medieval mechanicus] 
InquisiNecronMunda [the log that incepted it all - at least two Inquisitors, truescale Deathwatch, local enforcers, cultists, etc.] 


#17
bluntblade

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In specific, I suspect it refers to Abaddon, who plays a key role in carrying out the ritual.
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#18
noigrim

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So if horus ia fenrir sangy is thor

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