By Mehmet Kurtkaya, Published on November 6, 2018, Updated November 8, 2018
English words Ox, Cow and Latin Taurus and Bos derive from Sumerian Turkish
Click on the image for bigger picture
From Left to Right: Maikopskaya Culture. Middle of the 3rd millennium BC Hermitage Museum, Russia. Sumerian Bull Head UPenn Museum, USA. Altyn-depe: the centre of developed craft production and temple complex From the page of the Embassy of Turkmenistan, People's Republic of China.
Can you guess the Sumerian word for bull by looking at the picture above? English word "Ox" and Turkish word "Okuz" (öküz) sound the same, mean the same thing. This is not a coincidence!
Sumerians are the people who invented math, it would not be unreasonable to expect math/logic from their language.
History can best be analyzed using archaeology, mythology, genetics study results together, and building linguistic comparisons on top of the information provided in these fields. Deep connections between languages can only be revealed through comprehensive analysis. For more see Turkish - Sumerian - English relationship at Water, Father, and Mother: Indo-European Languages derive from Turkish and Original Homeland of the Indo-Europeans
As Sumerian Turkish is the first language with written records, they had a limited vocabulary and some basic words like "Ur" have many meanings, such as "man", "he", "dog", "servant", "fish", "that" etc., hence context is important. It is important to establish the concept and the main meaning the sound represents!
Moreover, as I have shown previously, their beliefs play a central role in their language, and this applies to the words for ox, cow, and taurus.
Parallel Development of Ancient Religions, Mythology and Language: Sun Language"Humanity's 250,000 years long journey can be seen as a transition from animal state to human, of which the last 50,000 years saw the most phenomenal changes." From my book Sumerian Turks: The Civilization's Journey from Siberia to Mesopotamia
Ancient humans were fascinated by animals and made animal shaped figurines and painted animal figures on cave walls.
The oldest example of figurative art is a lion-headed figurine found in Germany, dating to Aurignacian culture from about 35,000 years ago. Löwenmensch / Lion-man is the also the oldest animal-shaped sculpture in the world. It is thought to be a totemic symbol.
Part human-part animal figures appear in petroglyphs and cave paintings made during the Upper Paleolithic (Late Stone Age).
Animals were an integral part of shamanistic beliefs and rituals in Central Asia and Siberia, since animals were considered as their guardian spirits, and served as totems.
Shamanism was also central to Native American tribes. This should be expected because all Native Americans are the ancient people who migrated from Siberia to Americas some 22000-15000 years ago.
Bull, Horse, Wolf, Crow, and many other animals were worshipped.
Image from Wikimedia by Prof saxx.
Wild Aurochs painted on the walls of Lascaux Caves, France. 17000 years BP.
In Lascaux caves located in Southwest France, wild aurochs are painted on cave walls alongside horse and deer figures. The paintings date to 17000 years ago. Latest genetics research have revealed that there were migrations between Turkey and Europe some 15000 years ago.
Wild Aurochs on stone pillars of Gobeklitepe
Image from Wikimedia by Klaus-Peter Simon.
Wild Aurochs carved on Gobeklitepe stone pillars Southeastern Turkey. 12000 years BP.
In Gobeklitepe, the earliest known religious sanctuary in the world, wild aurochs were portrayed above other animals, on stone pillars reaching heights up to 6 meters and a weights up to 10 tons. The German archaeologist who discovered Gobeklitepe, and worked at the site for more than a decade, Klaus Schmidt, suggested that these were part of shamanistic beliefs, and represented cult of the dead.
Domestication of the Cattle from Wild AurochsCattle was first domesticated from wild aurochs in the Taurus mountains in Southeastern Turkey, not far from Gobeklitepe, some 10,500 years ago!
Aurochs were big animals weighing up to half a ton and with heights up to 180 cm. No wonder they inspired awe among the people of Gobeklitepe. Imagine how important it was for the people living in the region to have domesticated these big animals.
Domesticated cattle lose some of their weight and height as is the case with many other domesticated species.
Domestication of the cattle was a major breakthrough that provided the opportunity for people to rely less on game hunting. Cattle provided them milk, meat and blood. Their hides were used for clothing, their dungs as fuel, and their bones as tools.
Gobeklitepe was deliberately buried with dirt and stones some 10000 years ago. The reason is still unknown. I think it might have something to do with the domestication of the cattle, and the start of agriculture in the area, another first in the history of the world.
Why the bull cult?"Many animals have been totem animals for tens of thousands of years. These animals were representative of the group/tribe of people and their beliefs. Cult animals were symbols.
Even today, sports teams have animal mascots around the world and these mascots maybe remnants from ancient periods. At the very least, associating a team with an animal is a major coincidence with ancient practices." From Sumerian Turks: The Civilization's Journey from Siberia to Mesopotamia
Bull is the oldest and most prominent worship animal in early agricultural societies. Latest genetics research revealed that farming revolution has started in and around the Taurus mountains in Southeast Turkey and spread West to Europe and East to Iran from there. In fact, our modern wheat was first domesticated in Alacadag (Alaca mountain), near Gobeklitepe!
Image from Wikimedia by User Roweromaniak.
From Ankara Medeniyetler Müzesi. Bull Cult from Çatalhüyük, a famous pre-pottery neolithic archeological site in Central Turkey. 9500-6500 BP
We know that bulls are specially portrayed by the hunter gatherers of Gobeklitepe. Not too far from Gobeklitepe, neolithic site of Catalhoyuk had a bull cult about 8000 years ago. We find a bull cult in the indigenous Hatti civilization in Turkey (Anatolia) some 4500 years ago.
And in Sumer (starting around 5000 BC), bulls represented sun and sky gods, their highest gods. So, there is a continuity of bull cult for civilizations in Turkey and Mesopotamia for thousands of years.
Aurochs / Bulls are the biggest animals ever domesticated apart from the elephant. There is a dispute whether elephants are truely domesticated or not.
Bull cult is found in ancient Anatolia / Turkey, Sumer (Iraq), Transoxiana (Turkmenistan), Maykop (Russia), Indus Valley (India / Pakistan), Egypt, Levant, Greece, Rome (Italy), Celtic, Gaul mythologies in Austria, France, Ireland and beyond. It is the most important cult spanning thousands of years (probably 10,000) and a large part of Eurasia.
Moreover, cattle and ox was not only a symbol of richness, it meant richness.
Ancient people migrated with their cattles. Genetic tests done on Italian and Turkish cattle provide further evidence for the origins of the Etruscans.
Taurus Mountains, and Gobeklitepe: The Center of the Neolithic RevolutionThe region in and around the Taurus mountains in Southeastern Turkey was the center of the Neolithic revolution.
Gobeklitepe is the temple that marks the transition from hunter-gatherer subsistence living to settled Neolithic societies. It is now generally agreed that hunter gatherers settled because of religious reasons. Before the discovery of Gobeklitepe, it was thought that religious beliefs and hierarchical societies arose because people settled and produced surplus food. Gobeklitepe proved that it was the other way around.
Sacred Mountains from Siberia to Gobeklitepe, Taurus, and SumerThe fact that Gobeklitepe is located on a hill is an indication of a very important aspect of human beliefs some 12000 years ago: sky and sun worship. This is in line with the idea of sacred mountain found in Shamanistic beliefs from Siberia. In Sumer, we find Ekur, sacred mountain house where gods resided, very similar to Olympos Mountain in Ancient Greece.
Egyptian Pyramids are the representations of the same beliefs based on sacred mountains. In Sumerian, "E" means house and the word "kur" represents a cosmic mountain, in addition to being the term for mountain: e+kur=Ekur. Some of the highest Sumerian gods, Enlil and Enki, who resided in Ekur were thought to have brought agriculture and animal husbandry to humans.
In Turkey, Mesopotamia and the surrounding regions, the bull was commonly associated with sun and later storm gods. Ugur (Hurrian) religious mountain sanctuaries Musasir, Kumme, Ukku and Subria located along the Taurus mountains in Southeastern Turkey, were considered as the most important centers of the Hurrian whether god Teshub (similar to Hatti Taru). Hence, the name of the mountain ranges in Southern Turkey is the same as the word for Bull, symbol animal of the storm god:
Winged bull and half man-half bull deitiesThey were first found in Sumer, Akkadian, Assyrian, and other ancient Near Eastern societies including the later Urartu kingdom, and Persia, Iran. Winged animal deities continued to be used elsewhere, for example in Ancient Greeks such as the Pegasus, with horse instead of the bull.
Left to Right: Minotaur National Archaeological Museum, Athens, Greece.
Taurochtony, Roman Mithraism British Museum
Cretan Minotaur is the half man-half bull deity. It is a cross between animal and human shaped deities, and it shows evolution of human beliefs. See Sumerian Influence on Ancient Greece: Minoan, Mycenaean and Classical Greece
Gold and Lapis LazuliGold was the most important precious metal for the ancient people, and it still is, after many thousands of years.
Sumerians used gold and lapis lazuli not only as ornament but more so, for religious reasons. Gold represented the sun, and lapis lazuli the sky and the heavens.
However, there was no lapis lazuli nor gold mines in Sumer or in the immediate vicinity. While it is possible to import goods, it is impossible to import mythology unless the people also migrate en masse!
Moreover, their knowledge and their advanced workmanship of gold proves they worked with gold before migrating to Sumer. These are among the many evidences indicating the origins of the Sumerian people. For gold, Iran, Turkey, Indus Valley civilization are the potential sources but for lapis lazuli, there is only one source: Afghanistan! All of this clearly point at Northeast as the direction of migration.
Gold and Lapis Lazuli were not the only ones, they also imported silver which they used as money, as well as carnelian and chlorite.
Maykop bull sculpture is gold only, while Sumer and Turkmenistan sculptures, gold and Lapis Lazuli. This also points at the original homeland of the Sumerians, Central Asia: Original and ancestral homelands of Sumerians
Language and Ancient Religious RitualsSun Language Theory states that languages were born out of religious rituals, specifically sun/sky worship.
Taurus is the word used for bull in Latin and similar words are found in other Indo-European languages that prove a single origin for the word. Taurus is also the name of the constellation deriving from the word for bull. Moreover, Taurus is also the name of the mountain ranges extending from Southwest to Southeast Turkey!
From the chapter "Ğat (Ğut) / Hatti / Hittite civilizations" of my book on Sumerian Turks:
"How many people know that Taurus, the name of the zodiac sign, derives from a rather unknown civilization that lived in Turkey in ancient times?
The bull was commonly the symbol and depiction of ancient Near Eastern storm gods,
Taru/Taur is Ğat/Hatti bull cult from some 5000 years ago.
In Turkmenistan, Sumer, Anatolia, Ancient Greece and elsewhere in many corners of Eurasia we find: Taurus."
Taru was the name of the Hatti storm god and also the basis of Hittite Tarhunz, Etruscan Tarkan, similar in function to Greek Zeus, Indian Indra, Roman Jupiter and other Indo-European gods as well as Hurrian Teshub.
Bull worship in Greece, Rome, Egypt, Indian, Irish and Celtic mythologies
Image from Wikimedia
The Bull-Leaping Fresco from the Great Palace at Knossos, Crete
In Greek mythology, many deities had an animal form. They are called theriomorphic gods. Note the relation of the Ancient Greek word "Theri" meaning "wild beast" to the word for Hatti god Taru and the word for bull "Taurus".
In "Greek Religion: Archaic and Classical", late German Professor Walter Burkert explains bull god in Greek mythology and shows that major Greek gods, Zeus, Dionysus, and Poseidon among others were at times associated with the bull. In Kyzikos, founded by the Pelasgians / Etruscans, Dyonisus has a tauromorphic cult image. Poseidon, the god of the sea, was associated with either a horse or a bull. Zeus, in the form of a bull, abducted Europa and brought her to Crete.
It is very likely that the Latin word for sea "Mare" most derives from Sumerian word for bull "Amar" (more on that later under Sumerian Marduk section) and this is due to the role of bull in Greek mythology!
Indian god Nandi is associated with the bull. Indra also is often mentioned as a bull.
Image from Wikimedia Walters Museum, USA.
In Egypt, the bull was worshiped as Apis, and representative of the Sun god Ra.
Left to Right: from Wikimedia Le pilier des Nautes, France
From Wikimedia Museum Carnuntinum ( Lower Austria ). Bronze statue of Tarvus Trigaranus, symbol of the celtic god Esus
In Irish mythology, the hero Cú Chulainn appears in Ulster cycle and Scottish folklore. Donn Cúailnge the bull, appears in Táin Bó Cúailnge, a legendary tale from Early Irish mythology.
From Wikipedia article for "Cú Chulainn".
"Cú Chulainn shows striking similarities to the legendary Persian hero Rostam, as well as to the Germanic Lay of Hildebrand and the labours of the Greek epic hero Heracles, suggesting a common Indo-European origin, but lacking in linguistic, anthropological and archaeological material."
Lacking linguistic material, wrong! And there is quite a lot of groundbreaking genetic studies involving the peopling of Europe and the British Isles that supports the connection. It is unlikely that the proof will get through the heavy cencorship of Wikipedia!
As a side note, Rostam or Rustam is the legendary hero in Shahname and Iranian mythology.
Irish mythological hero Cú Chulainn sounds the same as Sumerian divine bull Gugalanna ! This is not a coincidence and points at the Sumerian Turkish origins of the Irish and English language and civilization.
Migrations to British Isles and Europe from Central Asia and TurkeyAbout 4500 years ago, Britain's Stonehenge era population was replaced by migrating Bell Beaker people whose roots were in Central Asian steppes (ancestral home of the Turks)!
Irish people descendants of Middle East Farmers Celtic DNA shows
Latest genetics information on migration waves of the last 10,000 years, from Turkey (Anatolia) to Greece, Italy, Spain, Central Europe and Ireland can be found in my other articles and books.
Sumerian, Indo-European, Turkish words for OxTurkish word "öküz" / "okuz" sounds and means exactly same thing as the English word "ox". It is possible to prove that this is not a coincidence. A rule-based etymology can be estabished by using Sumerian - English dictionary at University of Pennsylvania and Sun Language Theory.
First, let's look at the Wiktionary etymology for Ox
- From Middle English oxe, from Old English oxa, from Proto-Germanic *uhsô (compare West Frisian okse, Dutch os, German Ochse), from Proto-Indo-European *uksḗn. Cognate with Welsh ych (“ox”), Tocharian A ops, Tocharian B okso (“draft-ox”), Avestan (uxšan, “bull”), Sanskrit उक्षन् (ukṣán). -
And then Etymologyonline for Ox
- Old English oxa "ox" (plural oxan), from Proto-Germanic *ukhson (source also of Old Norse oxi, Old Frisian oxa, Middle Dutch osse, Old Saxon, Old High German ohso, German Ochse, Gothic auhsa), from PIE *uks-en- "male animal," (source also of Welsh ych "ox," Middle Irish oss "stag," Sanskrit uksa, Avestan uxshan- "ox, bull"), said to be from root *uks- "to sprinkle," related to *ugw- "wet, moist." The animal word, then, is literally "besprinkler." -
As you can see these words, especially, West Frisian, Tocharian B, Gothic, Sanskrit, Avestan, German, and Proto-Indo-European reconstruction seem quite similar to the Turkish word "okuz". And knowing the frequent z/s conversion, to "Okuz / Okus".
We observe the connection of the Turkish language to Proto-Indo-European which is thought to have arosen some time between 5000-2000 BC, goes way back in time by looking at the word for "ox". The proto-Indo-European root -uks is the Turkish word for ox!
In Hungarian, the word for "ox" is "ökör". (Tip by Hungarian-American computer scientist, and a researcher in ancient language studies, Peter Revesz, (author of Spatio-Temporal Data Mining of Major European River and Mountain Names Reveals their Near Eastern and African Origin, speaker in the Conference Video in Budapest)
It is very telling that Turkish "öküz" which is connected to the word "Oguz" Turkish has an "r" counterpart in Hungarian, as "ökör". There are currently two versions of Turkish one is Ogur Turkish the older one, and Oguz the newer one marked by an r-z conversion and some other features. This is additional evidence for Hungarian connection to ancient Ogur Turkish which includes Sumerian. That's why Hungarian matches Sumerian so well.
Now we should be looking at the Sumerian Turkish (4000 BC at least) word for "ox" and see if we can find an equivalent word and reconfirm our observation.
But before going further, we should make a guess about the word for "ox" using the mythological, archaeological, genetic and historic background of the bull cult and observe the oldest statues from Sumer, Maykop and Turkmenistan. We know "bull" is associated with the highest god, with sun/sky and gold.
We should also keep in mind that animals served as totems starting with Paleolithic societies and the people identified themselves with totemic animals!
This actually gives us a lot of linguistic information!
Let us also keep in mind three most basic words in Sumerian: Uğ = People (Note: the meanings lineage, kin, kind as in humankind must be added. If your browser cannot display the ğ character, it is a voiced g coming from the throat)
Before going further, we should also see that "ku-ud-ki" means gold. Literally "place-sun-place". We can confirm the association of "gold" and "sun" in Sumerian Turkish.
On a related note, Lapis Lazuli in Sumerian is "zagin", meaning mountain beads. "Gin" means "mountain" and "Gan" means gate (my note: also mountain in mythical sense) in Sumerian.
Let us now proceed with derivation of the words for bull in different languages.
There are a few words that mean "Ox" in Sumerian, among them three that are obviously related:
What does "Ugud" mean? Ug+ud=Ugud means People/Lineage + Sun hence People/Kin of the Sun! This is what we could have guessed by using Sun Language Theory with the evidence provided by archaeology, genetics and mythology including gold bull sculptures!
How does Turkish "ukus", basis for the proto-Indo-European root "uks" is formed:
Sumerian Turkish word for "ox", Agud or Ugud > Ugus by know D > S change as observed in Sumerian deity written as "Nidaba" or "Nisaba".
G becomes K, and this is too well known. Ugus > Ukus. Hence we obtain common Turkish from Sumerian Turkish. And this word is the root of all Indo-European words for "ox", -uks. And importantly, English word is closest to the Turkish one!
"Of all languages derived from Turkish, English may well be the closest to Turkish." From Sun Language Theory Proven: The Birth of Languages and Civilizations.
People - Bull word/concept connection holds in Turkish just like in Sumerian. "Oguz" the current main branch of Turkish is said to derive from "Okuz". Unfortunately, in Turkey there is no linguist/historian knowledgeable in Turkish language/history, certainly none interested in Sumerian Turkish. The correct etymology is that they do not derive from each other but they both derive from the same Turkish root words/sounds!
Latin word for cow, "Bos"
It is very easy to see that the Latin word "Bos" derives from "Ugus" by simply applying the Parpola G-B change rule Ugus = Ubus > bos
There is also another Sumerian word for "ox": "Ubu"!
Ubu + Indo-European marker "us" > Ubuus > Attic Greek Bous > Latin Bos !
Greek: βόδι (el) n (vódi) is formed from Sumerian "gud" with G - B - V change.
More on the Sumerian word for "ox":
"Gu" is derived from "Ug" by a change of consonant/vowel sound order called metathesis. This change is frequently observed in Mesopotamian records, such as King Ursa / Rusa. The change may have have also come from the three words for Ox: Agud > Gud > Gu, three words that have the same meaning. Moreover, it is also very probable that the derivation comes from Ugud as Ugud > Gud > Gu.
1. "Ag" and "Ug" are related, "a Ag" means command, "Ağa" father while "Uğ" means people, lineage, descent.
2. There is another word for "ox" and that is Sumerian "Ubu". Here we observe the initial vowel as "u".
3- Consonants "B" and "G alternate throughout Sumerian language as shown by Finnish scholar Simo Parpola. See Water, Father, and Mother: Indo-European Languages derive from Turkish for detailed study of the the word "Uğ" and Parpola rule.
Hence we can easily conclude that
"Ug" > "Gu"
either through Ugud or Agud or directly from Ubu = Ugu > Gu with initial vowel drop.
Sumerian, Indo-European, Turkish words for CowInterestingly, Wiktionary suggests derivation of the word "cow" from a different root than for "ox".
From Middle English cou, cu, from Old English cu (“cow”), from Proto-Germanic *kuz (“cow”), from Proto-Indo-European *g??ws (“cow”). Cognate with Sanskrit ?? (go), Ancient Greek ß??? (boûs), Persian ???? (gav)), Proto-Slavic *govedo (Serbo-Croatian govedo), Scots coo (“cow”), North Frisian ko, kø (“cow”), West Frisian ko (“cow”), Dutch koe (“cow”), Low German Koh, Koo, Kau (“cow”), German Kuh (“cow”), Swedish ko (“cow”), Norwegian ku (“cow”), Icelandic kyr (“cow”), Latin bos (“ox, bull, cow”), Armenian ??? (kov, “cow”).
The derivation of the word "cow" stems from the same Sumerian word "gud", as I have shown under the section for Ox. Gaus is a metathesis or Agud/Agus > Gaus and the Indo-European words for cow can also be traced back to Sumerian Turkish.
Cow derives from Sumerian word for Ox, Gu, but for some languages like English "Ağ" is added instead of "Us", hence "kuağ" > "cow". Note: I have shown that the w sound derive from uğ/ağ: Water, Father, and Mother: Indo-European Languages derive from Turkish
Sumerian divine bull Gugalanna, Marduk, Sankskrit Bull God Nandi, Egyptian Hapis - Ankh / ApisMarduk was a Sumerian deity and patron god of Babylon and means Solar Calf. It is written as "amar utu.k" but this is a late Afroasiatic spelling.
The Sumerian spelling would be syllabic, hence: "amar.ut.uk" and would mean Calf + Sun + Lineage. And "uk" is derived from "ug" (Uğ) and mean the same. ğ > g > k change is very well known. Note also the first vowel "a" is dropped.
Making this distinction is of critical importance for the correct understanding of history and ancient languages. The word is known to be Sumerian but a standalone consonant "k" is used which does not make sense in Sumerian! On the other hand using Sumerian spelling, both of these syllables "Ut" and "Uk" makes sense! And this applies to many other Sumerian words that needs correcting!
We may observe a similar situation in Egyptian words! The word "Uğ" (basis for Ug/Uk) is also used in Afroasiatic Egyptian words!
The most important example is the word "Ankh", symbol of life. This word can be easily explained using Sumerian Turkish: An+Uğ! "An" means the sky/heavens and "Uğ" people/kin/lineage. "Kin of Heavens/Sky" makes sense as the symbol of life, as the ancient people believed life was given to them by sky gods! Just like it was the case with Marduk, the spelling must be corrected to make sense.
The same is valid for Egyptian bull god written as "Apis" or "Hapis".
The Egyptian word "Apis" clearly derives from Sumerian word for "ox" = Agud = Abus > Apis. This can be reconfirmed by the dual use of the word as Apis or Hapis. The "h" in the beginning of the word can only make sense after making the correction "uğ" instead of "h". Uğ + Apis = Kin of Apis. The word Apis also is used as Hapi-ankh and that would be from Sumerian Uğ+Ubu (Kin of Ox) plus An+uğ (kin of sky=life).
Sumerian word Gugalanna is the basis for the Irish Cú Chulainn. Gu+gal+anna= bull+big+sky/heaven using additive (agglutinative) property of the Sumerian Turkish language.
Saknkrit Nandi, the divine bull, derives from another Sumerian word for bull: "ninda". Note the derivation involves the word for Sky god An as well. See Lapis Lazuli found in Turkmen bull and the connection of Turkmenistan to Indus Valley civilization.
TaurusTaurus has another derivation from Hatti god Taru but related to Sumerian Turkish as well!
English word steer derives from Taurus. The word Taurus whose variations are found in all Indo-European languages is not a Indo-European word!
Wiktinoary suggests that it ultimately derives from Afro-Asiatic (Semitic) origin because the word Taurus is very similar to its Afroasiatic counterparts in Proto-Semitic *θawr- and Arabic ثور. However, that's not the case.
Sun Language TheoryAfter Ataturk's death in 1938, Western propaganda arms told people in Turkey: "Nothing to see here, go find your written history records in Asia." And everyone in Turkey obeyed because, maybe except a few people out of tens of millions, there was no real Ataturkist in Turkey back then, just like today.
Amazon Kindle -
Amazon Kindle -
Amazon Kindle - Paperback
Discover groundbreaking revelations on the roots of modern civilization in one short book. How did we arrive to where we are? How ancient civilizations a world apart, Sumer and Maya were connected. An overview that covers a wide range of topics from human migrations 50000 years ago to Gobeklitepe, the first temple in history, the first matriarchal society with written records, Elam, and to the Sun Cult of the Hattis. Their origins and influence on other ancient civilizations including their neighbors, distant relatives: Ancient Egypt, Ancient Greece, Hurrian, Scythian, Oguz, Kassite, Gutian, Hyksos and more. (Many of my articles on this website included)