Tag Archives: mythology

Through the Sapphire Sky: The protector of cedar forests

Lady English Blogger, Sapphire Sky, living in Japan, writes about cedar trees and a famous Western myth called Gilgamesh:

Whenever I walk through cedar forests or come across giant cedar trees, I find myself thinking of Humbaba

( who is also known as Huwawa ), the monstrous guardian spirit of the Cedar Forest where the gods lived. Humbaba is featured in the Epic of Gilgamesh in Sumerian/ Babylonian mythologies which contain the well known flood myths.

I have been a big fan of Humbaba since childhood. I think one of the most enjoyable things about reading myths is coming across interesting mythological figures. I suppose you too have your favorite gods, goddesses, heroes, heroines, or spirits in mythology.

In one of the myths, Gilgamesh, hero and god, king of Uruk…

Continue reading at  Through the Sapphire Sky: The protector of cedar forests.

Writing Strategies 1, session 4: May 20th, 2011

Marble sarcophagus with the myth of Endymion
Marble sarcophagus with the myth of Endymion. Photo by peterjr1961 on Flickr. Click image to visit


  1. Quiz on LWW chapters 3
  2. Check Study Guide answers for Vocabulary and 1-4 (on pages 15 + 16)
  3. Personal interviews


  1. Study Guide questions for chapters 3 and 4, questions 5-10 (pages 16-17). (“For discussion” and “Optional Writing Project” are both options. You get extra points if you do them, but you don’t have to.)
  2. By next (Friday May 27th): are there any publications in Japanese like the Spark Notes for “The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe”? (see handout). If so, where can they be found and/or bought? What are the contents like? Are they useful?
  3. By next (Friday May 27th), find 10 customer reviews in Japanese about “The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe” (for example on Amazon Japan), and choose the best one (in your opinion).
    1. The reviews can be about the original English book or the  Japanese translation, it doesn’t matter. Reviews of this book are OK, too.
    2. The 10 customer reviews should include both positive and negative reviews.
    3. Print out the best one and bring it to class.
    4. Be prepared to explain to the class why you think it is a good review.
  4. By the Friday after next (June 3rd): read a Greek, or Roman myth and summarise it
    1. in English (200-300 words).
    2. And write a short paragraph about the similarities to the Japanese myth you wrote about. What are the common characteristics?
    3. Please think about the following questions:
      1. What is a myth? Is a myth the same as a folk-tale (昔話)? Are they different? How are they different?
      2. Is a myth different from a fairy-story, or is it the same? How are they different? How are they the same?
      3. What is the difference between a myth and an epic poem such as Heike Monogatari?
      4. What is the difference between a myth and a novel such as the Tale of Genji?
      5. What is the difference between a myth and a legend, such as The One Inch Boy?