Little My is a character in the Moomin series of books by Tove Jansson. The character first appeared in The Exploits of Moominpappa, she is a small and fiercely independent Mymble. Little My is brash, aggressive and disrespectful, but can be a good friend when she wants to, she is the Mymble's daughter. She was adopted by the Moomin family; the name originated from the twelfth letter of the Greek alphabet: μ – transliterated as my and pronounced in Swedish. In the metric system, lowercase μ, meaning "one-millionth", represents the prefix micro-, from the Greek μικρός, meaning "small". Little My is a abrasive person who always succeeds in persuading her listener or discussion partner, she is an unconventional debater who uses logic to win arguments. She makes a personal attack on the person she is having the discussion with or about, states her own undocumented conclusions, exaggerates her opponents' arguments to ridicule them, uses nonverbal effects to show her opponent's inferiority. Little My appears in the following books: The Exploits of Moominpappa – Little My is born on a Midsummer's Day during Moominpappa's youth, is referred to as the smallest and youngest of all the Mymble's children.
She doesn't play a large part in the book, but does on occasion display her fondness for mischief and cheerfully morbid fascination for disaster and destruction. Moominsummer Madness – In the fifth book, Little My has grown enough that she can take a more active part in the plot, though she is still small enough that Snufkin can carry her in his pocket, she is now in the care of her older sister, The Mymble's daughter, who tries unsuccessfully to teach her good behavior, but is separated from the others during the course of the plot and ends up being rescued by Snufkin, whom she accompanies for most of the rest of the book as he battles a rule-obsessed Park Keeper and ends up unwittingly "rescuing" a group of other children as well. Moominland Midwinter – Little My is the only character, apart from Moomintroll, who wakes from hibernation and gets to experience winter for the first time. Unlike him, she finds this "new, ice-cold world" to be great fun after she discovers winter sports. Tales from Moominvalley – This book consists of several short stories, three of which feature Little My: "A Tale of Horror", in which she tells tall tales of terror and doom to the Next-to-youngest-Whomper.
Moominpappa at Sea – Little My accompanies the Moomin family to the lighthouse island and is a constant presence in the book. Again, she is the only character who takes to the new life and remains cheerful throughout. In addition, Little My plays major roles in the picture-books The Book about Moomin and Little My and An Unwanted Guest, has a brief speaking role in The Dangerous Journey, makes a silent cameo in one of the illustrations in Who Will Comfort Toffle?. She is mentioned a number of times in Moominvalley in November, but since this book takes place at the same time as the trip to the lighthouse island in Moominpappa at Sea, she doesn't appear in person, she shows up as a major character in most Moomin-related media, movies, TV series. Mikkonen, Jukka. ""Believe you me, I know. I'm pretty sharp when i comes to things like that": Little My's argumentation and rhetoric". In McLoughlin, Kate. Tove Jansson Rediscovered. Cambridge Scolars Publishing. ISBN 978-1-84718-269-2. Jones, W. Glyn. Vägen från Muminsalen.
Hangö: Bonniers. P. 71. ISBN 91-0-046191-1
In modern English, the term cult has come to refer to a social group defined by its unusual religious, spiritual, or philosophical beliefs, or its common interest in a particular personality, object or goal. This sense of the term is controversial and it has divergent definitions in both popular culture and academia and it has been an ongoing source of contention among scholars across several fields of study, it is considered pejorative. In the sociological classifications of religious movements, a cult is a social group with deviant or novel beliefs and practices, although this is unclear. Other researchers present a less-organized picture of cults, saying that they arise spontaneously around novel beliefs and practices. Groups said to be cults range in size from local groups with a few members to international organizations with millions. An older sense of the word cult—covered in a different article—is a set of religious devotional practices that are conventional within their culture and related to a particular figure, associated with a particular place.
References to the "cult" of, for example, a particular Catholic saint, or the imperial cult of ancient Rome, use this sense of the word. Beginning in the 1930s, cults became the object of sociological study in the context of the study of religious behavior. From the 1940s the Christian countercult movement has opposed some sects and new religious movements, it labelled them as cults for their "un-Christian" unorthodox beliefs; the secular anti-cult movement began in the 1970s and it opposed certain groups charging them with mind control and motivated in reaction to acts of violence committed by some of their members. Some of the claims and actions of the anti-cult movement have been disputed by scholars and by the news media, leading to further public controversy; the term "new religious movement" refers to religions. Many, but not all of them, have been considered to be cults. Sub-categories of cults include: Doomsday cults, personality cults, political cults, destructive cults, racist cults, polygamist cults, terrorist cults.
Various national governments have reacted to cult-related issues in different ways, this has sometimes led to controversy. English-speakers used the word "cult" not to describe a group of religionists, but to refer to the act of worship or to a religious ceremony; the English term originated in the early 17th century, borrowed via the French culte, from the Latin noun cultus. The word derived from the Latin adjective cultus, based on the verb colere. While the literal original sense of the word in English remains in use, a derived sense of "excessive devotion" arose in the 19th century; the terms cult and cultist came into use in medical literature in the United States in the 1930s for what would now be termed "faith healing" as practised in the US Holiness movement. This usage experienced a surge of popularity at the time, extended to other forms of alternative medicine as well. In the English-speaking world the word "cult" carries derogatory connotations, it has always been controversial because it is considered a subjective term, used as an ad hominem attack against groups with differing doctrines or practices.
In the 1970s, with the rise of secular anti-cult movements, scholars began abandoning the term "cult". According to The Oxford Handbook of Religious Movements, "by the end of the decade, the term'new religions' would replace'cult' to describe all of those leftover groups that did not fit under the label of church or sect."Sociologist Amy Ryan has argued for the need to differentiate those groups that may be dangerous from groups that are more benign. Ryan notes the sharp differences between definition from cult opponents, who tend to focus on negative characteristics, those of sociologists, who aim to create definitions that are value-free; the movements themselves may have different definitions of religion as well. George Chryssides cites a need to develop better definitions to allow for common ground in the debate. In Defining Religion in American Law, Bruce J. Casino presents the issue as crucial to international human rights laws. Limiting the definition of religion may interfere with freedom of religion, while too broad a definition may give some dangerous or abusive groups "a limitless excuse for avoiding all unwanted legal obligations".
Religion scholar Megan Goodwin defined the term cult when used by laymen as being a shorthand that means a "religion I don't like". A new religious movement is a religious community or spiritual group of modern origins, which has a peripheral place within its society's dominant religious culture. NRMs can be novel in origin or part of a wider religion, in which case they are distinct from pre-existing denominations. In 1999 Eileen Barker estimated that NRMs, of which some but not all have been labelled as cults, number in the tens of thousands worldwide, most of which originated in Asia or Africa. In 2007 the religious scholar Elijah Siegler commented that, although no NRM had become the dominant faith in any country, many of the concepts which they had first introduced have become part of worldwide mainstream culture. Sociologist Max Weber found that cults based on charismatic leadership follow the routinization of charisma; the concept of a "cult" as a sociological classification was introduced in 1932 by American sociologist Howard P. Becker as a
Moomintroll is the main protagonist in the Moomin books by Tove Jansson. He lives in the Moominhouse together with his father Moominpappa and his mother Moominmamma and has a keen spirit of adventure. Moomintroll is a "moomin" – a little white troll with a hippopotamus-like big round snout, his best friend is Snufkin. Other friends include Little My, it is hinted many times. The asteroid 58345 Moomintroll was named in his honour. Moomintroll appears in the following books: The Moomins and the Great Flood – A young and scared Moomintroll and his Moominmamma are traveling through a deep forest and sail the "ocean" in search of his Moominpappa. Comet in Moominland – A more adventurous Moomintroll and his scared friend Sniff dive for pearls, find a cave and travel to the observatory to ask questions about the comet, he gets a rare opportunity to comfort him. He sees, falls in love with and dances with the Snork Maiden. Finn Family Moomintroll The Exploits of Moominpappa – Moominpappa tells Moomintroll and some of his friends the story of his early life.
Moominsummer Madness Moominland Midwinter – Moomintroll wakes from his hibernation in the middle of winter. The winter world is a new and scary place for him, his mentor, Too-Ticky, guides him through the mysteries. In this new situation he has to leave his childhood paradise. Tales from Moominvalley Moomintroll appears in four of the nine short stories. "The Last Dragon In the World" in which he finds a small dragon that he wants to love him, but it does not like him. "The Invisible Child" in which he tries to play with the invisible girl, but when she don't know how to play, he leaves her alone. "The Secret of the Hattifatteners" in which he is just mentioned as a part of the family. "The Fir Tree" in which the whole family tries to comfort Christmas. Moominpappa at Sea – Whole new emotions awaken in Moomintroll, his sexuality begins to take form when he falls in love with one of the beautiful and unobtainable seahorses. He manages to get a form of relationship with The Groke. During a storm Moominpappa and Moomintroll have to save a fisherman, for the first time Moomintroll is respected as Moominpappa's equal.
Moomintroll is now a teenager. Moominvalley in November – Moomintroll does not appear directly in the book, but while the rest of the moomin family is mentioned, Moomintroll is not mentioned until the end of the book when Snufkin returns to the Moominvalley. Moomintroll was called snork. Jansson described him as her alter ego; the character has a positive reception from critics. List of Moomin characters Jones, W. Glyn. Vägen från Muminsalen. Hangö: Bonniers. ISBN 978-91-0-046191-1. Westin, Boel. "A painter's reflection: The self-representational art of Tove Jansson". In McLoughlin, Kate. Tove Jansson Rediscovered. Cambridge Scholars Publishing. ISBN 978-1-84718-269-2
Bathing is the washing of the body with a liquid water or an aqueous solution, or the immersion of the body in water. It may be practiced for religious ritual or therapeutic purposes. By analogy as a recreational activity, the term is applied to sun bathing and sea bathing. Bathing can take place in any situation, it can take place in a bathtub or shower, or it can be in a river, water hole, pool or the sea, or any other water receptacle. The term for the act can vary. For example, a ritual religious bath is sometimes referred to as immersion, the use of water for therapeutic purposes can be called a water treatment or hydrotherapy, two recreational water activities are known as swimming and paddling. Throughout history, societies devised systems to enable water to be brought to population centres. Ancient Indians used elaborate practices for personal hygiene with washing; these are in practice today in some communities. Ancient Greece utilized small bathtubs, wash basins, foot baths for personal cleanliness.
The earliest findings of baths date from the mid-2nd millennium BC in the palace complex at Knossos and the luxurious alabaster bathtubs excavated in Akrotiri, Santorini. The Greeks established public baths and showers within gymnasiums for relaxation and personal hygiene; the word gymnasium comes from the Greek word gymnos. Ancient Rome developed a network of aqueducts to supply water to all large towns and population centres and had indoor plumbing, with pipes that terminated in homes and at public wells and fountains; the Roman public baths were called thermae. The thermae were not baths, but important public works that provided facilities for many kinds of physical exercise and ablutions, with cold and hot baths, rooms for instruction and debate, one Greek and one Latin library, they were provided for the public by a benefactor the Emperor. Other empires of the time didn't show such an affinity for public works, but this Roman practice spread their culture to places where there may have been more resistance to foreign mores.
Unusually for the time, the thermae were not class-stratified. With the fall of the Roman Empire, the aqueduct system fell into disuse, but before that, during the Christianization of the Empire, changing ideas about public morals led the baths into disfavor. Before the 7th century, the Japanese bathed in the many springs in the open, as there is no evidence of closed rooms. In the 6th to 8th centuries the Japanese absorbed the religion of Buddhism from China, which had a strong impact on the culture of the entire country. Buddhist temples traditionally included a bathhouse for the monks. Due to the principle of purity espoused by Buddhism these baths were opened to the public. Only the wealthy had private baths; the first public bathhouse was mentioned in 1266. In Edo, the first sentō was established in 1591; the early steam baths were called kamaburo. These were built into natural caves or stone vaults. In iwaburo along the coast, the rocks were heated by burning wood sea water was poured over the rocks, producing steam.
The entrances to these "bath houses" were small to slow the escape of the heat and steam. There were no windows, so it was dark inside and the user coughed or cleared their throats in order to signal to new entrants which seats were occupied; the darkness could be used to cover sexual contact. Because there was no gender distinction, these baths came into disrepute, they were abolished in 1870 on hygienic and moral grounds. Author John Gallagher says bathing "was segregated in the 1870s as a concession to outraged Western tourists". At the beginning of the Edo period there were two different types of baths. In Edo, hot-water baths were common. At that time shared bathrooms for men and women were the rule; these bathhouses were popular for men. "Bathing girls" were employed to wash their hair, etc.. In 1841, the employment of yuna was prohibited, as well as mixed bathing; the segregation of the sexes, was ignored by operators of bathhouses, or areas for men and women were separated only by a symbolic line.
Today, sento baths have separate rooms for women. Spanish chronicles describe the bathing habits of the peoples of Mesoamerica during and after the conquest. Bernal Díaz del Castillo describes Moctezuma in his Historia verdadera de la conquista de la Nueva España as being "... Neat and cleanly, bathing every day each afternoon...". Bathing was practised by all people.
The toothbrush is an oral hygiene instrument used to clean the teeth and tongue. It consists of a head of clustered bristle, atop of which toothpaste can be applied, mounted on a handle which facilitates the cleaning of hard-to-reach areas of the mouth. Toothbrushes are available with different bristle textures and forms. Most dentists recommend using a soft toothbrush since hard bristled toothbrushes can damage tooth enamel and irritate the gums. Although first made as an oral hygiene instrument, the toothbrush has seen other use as a precise cleaning tool as well, most in the military; this is because of the many small strands that allow it to clean in small places many conventional cleaning tools cannot reach. Before the invention of the toothbrush, a variety of oral hygiene measures had been used; this has been verified by excavations during which chew sticks, tree twigs, bird feathers, animal bones and porcupine quills were recovered. The predecessor of the toothbrush is the chew stick. Chew sticks were twigs with frayed ends used to brush the teeth while the other end was used as a toothpick.
The earliest chew sticks were discovered in Sumer Mesopotamia in 3500 BC, an Egyptian tomb dating from 3000 BC, mentioned in Chinese records dating from 1600 BC. The Greeks and Romans used toothpicks to clean their teeth, toothpick-like twigs have been excavated in Qin Dynasty tombs. Chew sticks remain common in Africa, the rural Southern United States, in the Islamic world the use of chewing stick Miswak is considered a pious action and has been prescribed to be used before every prayer five times a day. Miswaks have been used by Muslims since 7th century; the first bristle toothbrush resembling the modern one was found in China. Used during the Tang Dynasty, it consisted of hog bristles; the bristles were sourced from hogs living in Siberia and northern China because the colder temperatures provided firmer bristles. They were attached to a handle manufactured from bone, forming a toothbrush. In 1223, Japanese Zen master Dōgen Kigen recorded on Shōbōgenzō that he saw monks in China clean their teeth with brushes made of horsetail hairs attached to an oxbone handle.
The bristle toothbrush spread to Europe, brought from China to Europe by travellers. It was adopted in Europe during the 17th century; the earliest identified use of the word toothbrush in English was in the autobiography of Anthony Wood who wrote in 1690 that he had bought a toothbrush from J. Barret. Europeans found the hog bristle toothbrushes imported from China too firm and preferred softer bristle toothbrushes made from horsehair. Mass-produced toothbrushes made with horse or boar bristle continued to be imported to England from China until the mid 20th century. In Europe, William Addis of England is believed to have produced the first mass-produced toothbrush in 1780. In 1770, he had been jailed for causing a riot. While in prison he decided that using a rag with soot and salt on the teeth was ineffective and could be improved. After saving a small bone from a meal, he drilled small holes into the bone and tied into the bone tufts of bristles that he had obtained from one of the guards, passed the tufts of bristle through the holes in the bone and sealed the holes with glue.
After his release, he became wealthy after starting a business manufacturing toothbrushes. He died in 1808, it remained within family ownership until 1996. Under the name Wisdom Toothbrushes, the company now manufactures 70 million toothbrushes per year in the UK. By 1840 toothbrushes were being mass-produced in England, France and Japan. Pig bristles were used for cheaper badger hair for the more expensive ones; the first patent for a toothbrush was granted to H. N. Wadsworth in 1857 in the United States, but mass production in the United States did not start until 1885; the improved design had a bone handle with holes bored into it. Animal bristle was not an ideal material as it retained bacteria, did not dry efficiently and the bristles fell out. In addition to bone, handles were made of ivory. In the United States, brushing teeth did not become routine until after World War II, when American soldiers had to clean their teeth daily. During the 1900s, celluloid replaced bone handles. Natural animal bristles were replaced by synthetic fibers nylon, by DuPont in 1938.
The first nylon bristle toothbrush made with nylon yarn went on sale on February 24, 1938. The first electric toothbrush, the Broxodent, was invented in Switzerland in 1954. By the turn of the 21st century nylon had come to be used for the bristles and the handles were molded from thermoplastic materials. Johnson & Johnson, a leading medical supplies firm, introduced the "Reach" toothbrush in 1977, it differed from previous toothbrushes in three ways: it had an angled head, similar to dental instruments, to reach back teeth. Other manufacturers soon followed with other designs aimed at improving effectiveness. In spite of the changes with the number of tufts and the spacing, the handle form and design, the bristles were still straight and difficult to maneuver. In 1978 Dr. George C. Collis developed the Collis Curve toothbrush, the first toothbrush to have curved bristles; the curved bristles follow the curvature of the teeth and safely reach in between the teeth and into the sulcular areas. In January 2003, the toothbrush was selected as the number one invention Americans could not live without according to the Lemelson-MI
A troll is a class of being in Norse mythology and Scandinavian folklore. In Old Norse sources, beings described as trolls dwell in isolated rocks, mountains, or caves, live together in small family units, are helpful to human beings. In Scandinavian folklore, trolls became beings in their own right, where they live far from human habitation, are not Christianized, are considered dangerous to human beings. Depending on the source, their appearance varies greatly. Trolls are sometimes associated with particular landmarks, which at times may be explained as formed from a troll exposed to sunlight. Trolls are depicted in a variety of media in modern popular culture; the Old Norse nouns troll and tröll and Middle High German troll, trolle "fiend" developed from Proto-Germanic neuter noun *trullan. The origin of the Proto-Germanic word is unknown. Additionally, the Old Norse verb trylla'to enchant, to turn into a troll' and the Middle High German verb trüllen "to flutter" both developed from the Proto-Germanic verb *trulljanan, a derivative of *trullan.
In Norse mythology, like thurs, is a term applied to jötnar and is mentioned throughout the Old Norse corpus. In Old Norse sources, trolls are said to dwell in isolated mountains and caves, sometimes live together, are described as helpful or friendly; the Prose Edda book Skáldskaparmál describes an encounter between an unnamed troll woman and the 9th-century skald Bragi Boddason. According to the section, Bragi was driving through "a certain forest" late one evening when a troll woman aggressively asked him who he was, in the process describing herself: Bragi responds in turn, describing himself and his abilities as a skillful skald, before the scenario ends. There is much confusion and overlap in the use of Old Norse terms jötunn, troll, þurs, risi, which describe various beings. Lotte Motz theorized that these were four distinct classes of beings: lords of nature, mythical magicians, hostile monsters, heroic and courtly beings, the last class being the youngest addition. On the other hand, Ármann Jakobson is critical of Motz's interpretation and calls this theory "unsupported by any convincing evidence".
Ármann highlights that the term is used to denote various beings, such as a jötunn or mountain-dweller, a witch, an abnormally strong or large or ugly person, an evil spirit, a ghost, a blámaðr, a magical boar, a heathen demi-god, a demon, a brunnmigi, or a berserker. In Scandinavian folklore, trolls become defined as a particular type of being. Numerous tales are recorded about trolls in which they are described as being old strong, but slow and dim-witted, are at times described as man-eaters and as turning to stone upon contact with sunlight. However, trolls are attested as looking much the same as human beings, without any hideous appearance about them, but living far away from human habitation and having "some form of social organization"—unlike the rå and näck, who are attested as "solitary beings". According to John Lindow, what sets them apart is that they are not Christian, those who encounter them do not know them. Therefore, trolls were in the end dangerous, regardless of how well they might get along with Christian society, trolls display a habit of bergtagning and overrunning a farm or estate.
Lindow states that the etymology of the word "troll" remains uncertain, though he defines trolls in Swedish folklore as "nature beings" and as "all-purpose otherworldly being, for example, to fairies in Anglo-Celtic traditions". They "therefore appear in various migratory legends where collective nature-beings are called for". Lindow notes that trolls are sometimes swapped out for cats and "little people" in the folklore record. A Scandinavian folk belief that lightning frightens away trolls and jötnar appears in numerous Scandinavian folktales, may be a late reflection of the god Thor's role in fighting such beings. In connection, the lack of trolls and jötnar in modern Scandinavia is sometimes explained as a result of the "accuracy and efficiency of the lightning strokes". Additionally, the absence of trolls in regions of Scandinavia is described in folklore as being a "consequence of the constant din of the church-bells"; this ring caused the trolls to leave for other lands. Large local stones are sometimes described as the product of a troll's toss.
Additionally, into the 20th century, the origins of particular Scandinavian landmarks, such as particular stones, are ascribed to trolls who may, for example, have turned to stone upon exposure to sunlight. Lindow compares the trolls of the Swedish folk tradition to Grendel, the supernatural mead hall invader in the Old English poem Beowulf, notes that "just as the poem Beowulf emphasizes not the harrying of Grendel but the cleansing of the hall of Beowulf, so the modern tales stress the moment when the trolls are driven off."Smaller trolls are attested as living in burial mounds and in mountains in Scandinavian folk tradition. In Denmark, these creatures are recorded as troldfolk, bjergtrolde, or bjergfolk and in Norway as troldfolk and tusser. Trolls may be described as small, human-like beings or as tall
Giants are beings of human appearance, but of prodigious size and strength common in the mythology and legends of many different cultures. The word giant, first attested in 1297, was derived from the Gigantes of Greek mythology. In various Indo-European mythologies, gigantic peoples are featured as primeval creatures associated with chaos and the wild nature, they are in conflict with the gods, be they Olympian, Hindu or Norse. Giants often play similar roles in the mythologies and folklore of other, non Indo-European peoples, such as in the Nartian traditions. There are accounts of giants in the Old Testament; some of these are called Nephilim, a word translated as giant although this translation is not universally accepted. They include Og King of Bashan, the Nephilim, the Anakim, the giants of Egypt mentioned in 1 Chronicles 11:23; the first mention of the Nephilim is found in Genesis 6:4. Fairy tales such as "Jack the Giant Killer" have formed the modern perception of giants as stupid and violent monsters, sometimes said to eat humans, while other giants tend to eat the livestock.
The antagonist in "Jack and the Beanstalk" is described as a giant. In some more recent portrayals, like those of Jonathan Swift and Roald Dahl, some giants are both intelligent and friendly. Genesis tells of the Nephilim after Noah's Flood. According to Genesis 7:23, the Nephilim were destroyed in the Flood, but Nephilim are reported after the Flood, including: the Anakites the Emites the Amorites the RephaitesThe Book of Numbers includes the discouraging report by the spies which Moses sent into Canaan: “We can’t attack those people. All the people we saw. We saw the Nephilim there. We seemed like grasshoppers in our own eyes, we looked the same to them.” However, the Book of Joshua, describing the actual conquest of Canaan in a generation, makes no reference to such people living there. The Bible tells of Gog and Magog, who entered European folklore, of the famous battle between David and the Philistine Goliath. While Goliath is portrayed as a giant in retellings of the Biblical narrative, he is much smaller than other biblical giants.
The 1st-century Jewish historian Flavius Josephus, the 1st-2nd-century BC Dead Sea Scrolls give Goliath's height as "four cubits and a span," 2.00 m or about six feet seven inches. The King James translation of the Bible reports the giant Goliath as "six cubits and a span" in height—about nine feet nine inches tall, but the Septuagint, a Greek Bible, gives Goliath's height as "four cubits and a span". For comparison, the Anakites are described as making. See Gibborim. Josephus described the Amorites as giants in his Antiquities of the Jews, circa 93 AD, indicating that fossil evidence still remained at that time: "For which reason they removed their camp to Hebron. There were till left the race of giants, who had bodies so large, countenances so different from other men, that they were surprising to the sight, terrible to the hearing; the bones of these men are still shown to this day, unlike to any credible relations of other men."In Islam, giants known as jababirat or jabbirun such as Jalut are mentioned, as well as ‘Uj ibn Anaq.
The Book of Enoch describes giants as the offspring of Watchers and women in 7:2. Hayk was known as the founder of the Armenian state. Hayk was part of a race of giants. Ancient historian Movses Khorenatsi wrote, "Hayk was handsome and personable, with curly hair, sparkling eyes and strong arms. Among the giants he was the bravest and most famous, opponent of all who raised their hand to become absolute ruler over the giants and heroes."Mount Nemrut is known to have received its name from an Armenian tradition in which Nimrod was killed by an arrow shot by Hayk during a massive battle between two rival armies of giants to the south-east of Lake Van. According to Baltic mythology, the playing of a giantess named Neringa on the seashore formed the Curonian Spit; this character appears in other myths. "Neringa" is the name of a modern town on the spot. Giants are rough but righteous characters of formidable strength living up the hills of the Basque Country. Giants stand for the Basque people reluctant to convert to Christianity who decide to stick to the old life style and customs in the forest.
Sometimes they hold the secret of ancient techniques and wisdom unknown to the Christians, like in the legend of San Martin Txiki, while their most outstanding feature is their strength. It follows that in many legends all over the Basque territory the giants are held accountable for the creation of many stone formations and ages-old megalithic structures, with similar explanations provided in different spots. However, giants show different variants and forms, they are most referred to as jentilak and mairuak, while as individuals they can be represented as Basajaun, Errolan or Tartalo (a one-eyed giant akin