The Coat of Arms of Kharkov


The coat of arms of Kharkov bears caduceus and cornucopia.


Герб города Харькова

  What signifies the caduceus? What is the origin of the cornucopia?

And finally how can we explain their combination on the coat of arms of Kharkov city?

There are hypotheses to the effect that the ancient Greek mythology and symbolism are based on older myths that came to Hellas on the one hand from the Northern, Hyperborean land (that is from Southern Slavic territories), and on the other hand from the South, from Egypt, Egypt in its turn inherited the Eastern myths and symbols.

For example, the symbolical caduceus-scepter of Hermes deity has deep esoteric roots. Hermes although considered to belong among the gods of Olympus was always accepted to be an archaic god, that is one of the most ancient ones. He had a very important role as the messenger of gods, the helper of champions in their journeys, the guide to the kingdom of the dead. Hermes is the perpetual inventor, designer that would bequeath even to the gods various wise devices. He was honoured by representatives of different trades from merchants and craftsmen to swindlers and thieves. There is a myth telling of how Hermes once caught a gigantic turtle and made of it the first musical instrument - a lyre, which he then presented to Apollo together with a pipe. In exchange for that Apollo gave him golden sandals and the magical caduceus-scepter. However, only later Hermes became the god of trade and journeys. In most ancient times Hermes-Trismegist (that is three times as great) was equal to Egyptian Toth. He was the god of knowledge, light and holy writing, and was referred to as Godly Verb. Of course, caduceus is a typically Egyptian feature, we may consider the symbols of Pharaoh's power as example.

But what kind of power signifies caduceus? The fact that it was used by the main priest of Eleusinian mysteries, the hidden meaning of which was dedicated to the ascension of soul into the world of Light and Truth, tells us that this power was spiritual. Eagle's wings signify the flight of the soul into celestial sphere, and the serpent in ancient times was the symbol of the spirit's descent in matter, the symbol of vital energy (here we may consider kundalini-serpent in Indian mythology, Zarathustra's staff and the eagle and serpent following him according to ancient Persians).

The cornucopia in Greek mythology was a horn of the she-goat Amalthea, who nursed Zeus. It is analogous to cornucopia of the Slavic god Svetovid. The priest of Svetovid used to fill the sacred horn with new wine, that was a symbol of abundance of the coming harvest. The ancient Greeks must have acted in the same way. As Zeus's wife was Demetra, the goddess of fertility and abundance, who also united the sky and the earth as a guide of goodwill, light and knowledge. In her honor and in the honor of her daughter Porsephona were performed Eleusinian mysteries. The sacred cornucopia according to beliefs of the ancient Greeks, gave its possessor everything that one could wish and served as a symbol of riches and prosperity.

Now it turns out that the coat of arms of Kharkov remarkably carries in the shape of its first letter the two most ancient symbols. This combination signifies the noble tendency of the city - achieving prosperity through longing for light, kindness and knowledge.

  Мифологический словарь. Гл.ред. Е.М.Мелетинский. -М., "Советская энциклопедия", 1991.  
Э.Шюре. Великие посвященные. Репринтное воспроизведение издания 1914 г.  -М., Книга-Принтшоп, 1990.
Кайсаров А.С., Глинка Г.А., Рыбаков Б.А. Мифы древних славян. Саратов, "Надежда", 1993.

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