Online Encyclopedia

URANUS (Heaven)

Online Encyclopedia
Originally appearing in Volume V27, Page 789 of the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica.
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URANUS (Heaven), in Greek mythology, the husband of Gaea (Earth), and father of Cronus (Saturn) and other deities. As such he represents the generative power of the sky, which fructifies the earth with the warmth of the sun and the moisture of rain. For the legend of his treatment by Cronus and its meaning, see SATURN. Uranus and other Greek gods anterior to Zeus were probably deities worshipped by earlier barbarous inhabitants of the land. The Roman Caelus (or Caelum) is simply a translation of the Greek Oupavos, not the name of a distinct national divinity. There is no evidence of the existence of a cult of Caelus, the occurrence of the name in dedicatory inscriptions being due to Oriental influences, the worship of the sky being closely connected with that of Mithras. Caelus is sometimes associated with Terra, represented in plastic art as an old, bearded man holding a robe stretched out over his head in the form of an arch. See Wissowa, Religion der Romer (1902), p. 304, and his article in Pauly-Wissowa's Realencyclopadie, iii. pt. 1 (18997) ; also Steuding in Roscher's Lexikon der Mythologie and De Vies Onomasticon (suppt. to Forcellini's Lexicon). URA-TYUBE, or ORA-TEPE, a town of Russian Turkestan, in the province of Samarkand, lying 37 M. S.W. of Khojent, on the road from Ferghana to Jizak across the Zarafshan range. Pop. (1900) 22,088, chiefly Uzbegs. It is surrounded by a wall and has a citadel. The inhabitants carry on trade in horses and camel-wool cloth, and manufacture cottons, boots and shoes, oil, and camel's-hair shawls. Ura-tyube is sup-posed to have been founded by Cyrus under the name of Cyropol, and was taken in 329 B.C. by Alexander the Great of Macedon. Later it was the capital of an independent state, though often held by either Bokhara or Kokand. The Russians took it in 1866.
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