zondag 17 mei 2015

Zuilen 5

What did the classical authors know really about the straits of Gibraltar, which they called the columns of Heracles.

Calpe is the traditional name for the Rock of Gibraltar. Is it an original Greek name (Kalpe), or is it a hash of a Phoenician name? If it is a Greek name, it means something like rounded hill or mountain with a round top. Such storage is also present in Greece. If it is a distortion of a Phoenician name, we arrive at Qal = voice and Pe = mouth. Possibly Py = permission. Combined it has something to do with a voice that gives permission? Permission for what? We know that the Greeks many centuries needed the permission of the Phoenicians and Carthaginians to sail beyond the Pillars of Hercules. If then on closer inspection the Rock of Gibraltar did not show on such a rounded shape to have, I prefer the Phoenician solution. The fact remains that it perhaps could have an entirely different meaning.

The cape at Ceuta gets several names in antiquity, but they have all the same structure. This swith between the N and L occurs more often in other words. It could well be a distortion of the Phoenician name ‘B N = stone.

Several classical authors mention the islands near the capes. Were they the real small islands Perejil and Isla Cabrita? I suspect that the islands were in fact the capes itself, because from a distance they look like islands (Strabo!). It concerns Gibraltar and Mount Hacko.

These are to be found at Gadir at the isle Sancti Petri in front of the temple of Melqart. And that is exactly what the Iberians and Libyans say about it. The mountains at the beginning of the Straits the Phoenicians named simply ‘B N (stone) and Q L P ‘ (permission to continue).

The Greeks were for a long time not familiar with the Atlantic world, heard something about Pillars and concluded that it must concern the landmarks on the capes at the beginning of the Straits, Of course they used their own name for the god: HERACLES.  The Roman used the name HERCULES.