From Jericho to Argeș, Deva, Dynas Emrys, and Surami: the myth of construction between curse and sacrifice
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The present article aims at a comparative analysis amongst four legends constructed around the same myth i.e. the myth of construction that requires a sacrifice: the Romanian ballad about the construction of the monastery in Argeș, Wallachia; the Hungarian ballad about the construction of the fortress of Deva in Transylvania, Romania; the Welsh legend of Dynas Emrys; and the Georgian legend about the construction of the Surami fortress. The legends represent the sacrifice in different ways. In the Romanian ballad, a woman and her child are walled in a church; in the Hungarian version, a woman is burnt, and her ashes are walled in; in the Welsh legend, the sacrifice is avoided, and in the Georgian one, it is transformed into self-sacrifice. Moreover, through a comparative analysis of different versions of the Bible, we shall emphasise the importance of the building of the city of Jericho, the significance of curse and sacrifice in both the beginning and the proliferation of the myth. For our research, we shall use the methodology devised by Mircea Eliade in his book about the myth of sacrifice ("Meșterul manole. Studii de etnologie și mitologie"), as well as the works of Professor Trumbull, "The threshold covenant" and "The blood covenant". One of the main conclusions of our article is that nothing that is human-made has a soul, and it can only last if it only acquires a soul. Hence the need for sacrifice that has been part of human history since times immemorial. Any revisitation of this myth can only bring people together and thus emphasise the things people and peoples have in common, and that can only lead to a better understanding of the Other.
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