La naissance des monstres dans l'imaginaire proche-oriental

Virginie DANREY

fr Anthropozoologica 39 (1) - Pages 365-370

Published on 30 July 2004

This article is a part of the thematic issue Animal domestications: social and symbolic dimensions. Homage to Jacques Cauvin

The appearance of monsters in early Near Eastern imagination

This paper looks at the first monsters in Mesopotamian iconography and proposes an analysis of the context in which they appear. After an examination of the definition and the origin of the « monster », we will attempt to understand the mecanism of representation to which these figures refer. Then, the appearance of monsters will be related to the development of the socio-historical context and of human-animal relationships in the Near East soon after domestication.


Monster, hybrid, bestiary, mental representation, imaginary, symbol.

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