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I just posted a question over in the Mythology SE and used this sentence:

I'm tagging Greek and Roman mythology, but open to other mythologies as well.

I wanted to say:

I'm tagging Greek and Roman mythology, but open to other ____ of mythology as well.

I couldn't think of the proper word to go in the blank. 'Branches' didn't seem to fit because the different world mythologies don't really branch from each other. 'Types' didn't feel right either--there really aren't types of mythology. Same problem with 'varieties' and 'variations'.

What word would fit in that blank?

We're looking for long answers that provide some explanation and context. Don't just give a one-line answer; explain why your answer is right, ideally with citations. Answers that don't include explanations may be removed.

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    The sentence that you actually used ("... other mythologies ...") sounds perfectly fine to me. Why do you want to change it? (In fact, you can shorten it to "... others as well."). – alwayslearning Jan 2 '17 at 6:25

12 Answers 12

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Mythology is associated with a culture, religion, geographic region, etc. Merriam-Webster's sense 5b of culture is

the customary beliefs, social forms, and material traits of a racial, religious, or social group; also : the characteristic features of everyday existence (as diversions or a way of life) shared by people in a place or time.

So you could say

... but open to the mythology of different cultures as well.

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    I would say "...but open to the mythologies of different cultures as well" (plural); but otherwise, great answer! – Quuxplusone Jan 2 '17 at 6:05
  • @Quuxplusone, I was thinking about whether to use mythology or mythologies, but settled on the singular, since I would use the singular for poetry, literature, etc. – Katherine Lockwood Jan 3 '17 at 20:30
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    In all those cases (e.g. "the literatures of different cultures"), to me, the plural connotes exactness but maybe pedantry, whereas the singular runs the risk of casually implying that there's only one "literature of different cultures" (as opposed to, you know, normal literature). As a product of U.S. high schools, I've certainly been exposed to "the literature of different cultures" in that sense — there's the English literary tradition and then there's the literary tradition of Chinua Achebe and Gabriel García Márquez. ;) Using the plural makes it sound more, y'know, plural. – Quuxplusone Jan 3 '17 at 21:57
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I don't see any problem with the way you constructed your sentence, but if you want a different term you might try systems of mythology.

This term appears to be used in the way you want:

We would therefore invite the attention of the reader to a brief comparison between the Norse and Greek systems of mythology. (C.S. Griggs, Norse Mythology, 1884)

The similarities between the various systems of mythology could be explained, for Schelling, by reference to the schemata of his own Potenzenlehre, and not by empirical research into historical influences. (Robert Gascoigne, Religion, Rationality and Community, 2012)

Analyze and account for the relationships that obtain between mythology, religion, and philosophy in various systems of mythology, as well as mythology’s expressions in art, literature, and society. (Learning objective in syllabus for a 2016 World Mythology university course—link is a PDF download)

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    This fit my exact wording the best, but Katherine's answer better fit my intent. Have an upvote! – miltonaut Jan 2 '17 at 10:37
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How about "Pantheons"?

From the Oxford dictionary: "All the gods of a people or religion collectively: ‘the deities of the Hindu pantheon’"

https://en.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/pantheon

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    That's just the gods, though. It wouldn't necessarily include humans or non-human, non-deific (?) characters. – miltonaut Jan 2 '17 at 15:06
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    Ah yeah I see what you're saying... Heh, the word has been somewhat hijacked by Tolkien nerds, but Legendarium is probably closer to what you're thinking then. – Heroes182 Jan 2 '17 at 22:17
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Mythos would certainly work.

I'm tagging Greek and Roman mythology, but open to other mythoi as well.

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    That's just a synonym for 'mythologies', so this is no better than the first sentence in the question. – Michael Jan 3 '17 at 14:12
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    But mythoi sounds cooler and is also used more – bleh Jan 3 '17 at 16:10
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    @bleh Definitely not used more... – Chris Cirefice Jan 3 '17 at 16:39
  • Never mind then – bleh Jan 3 '17 at 16:40
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Bodies

As in:

I'm tagging Greek and Roman mythology, but open to other bodies of mythology as well.

This is using what Merriam-Webster gives as definition 3c:

3c: aggregate, quantity <a body of evidence>

and a Google search for the phrase returns many results, as does one for "bodies of myth". (Also see particularly Google Books searches 1, 2.

"Systems", as suggested in another answer, is also good (and reasonably common), but it implies a, well, systematicness that not all mythologies have. Many are collections of stories and tales with not much internal coherence (and are just fine with that). I think "body" better applies.

2

In the same strain as culture of mythology, I believe that tradition would work better, as it can also highlight differences between regional worship of the same faith.

1 a : an inherited, established, or customary pattern of thought, action, or behavior (such as a religious practice or a social custom)

https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/tradition

For example

open to other traditions of mythology as well.

or

open to other mythological traditions as well.

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    I like it. Now you are supposed to provide a definition and a link to a definition. Then copy the OP's example sentence and show how your word fits in. Let me know with a message containing @aparente001 if you need help. – aparente001 Jan 3 '17 at 2:49
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Milieu: the physical or social setting in which something occurs or develops

https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/milieu

  • But wouldn't that be more specifically for the originating culture rather than the mythology itself? "I'm ...open to other milieus of mythology" is awkward but correct? – miltonaut Jan 2 '17 at 4:39
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    You might be right, milieu wo uld refer to other cultures... you would be saying 'I'm open to other cultural standards of mythology.' Which is what I thought you were going for. Maybe you are looking for 'genre?' – J. Elek Jan 2 '17 at 4:47
  • But would Greek/Egyptian/Ainu be considered genres? – miltonaut Jan 2 '17 at 4:48
  • No I guess not. Context? "I'm open to other contexts....l" – J. Elek Jan 2 '17 at 4:51
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Instances would fit the bill:

Instance:

  1. a case or occurrence of anything - dictionary.com
0

If we consider mythology as a genre, then we are talking of Greek, Roman and other subgenres of mythology.

I'm tagging Greek and Roman mythology, but open to other subgenres of mythology as well.

ODO:

subgenre NOUN

A subdivision of a genre of literature, music, film, etc.

‘Some subgenres, such as the Gothic and science fiction, have until now made little headway in Arabic popular culture.’

genre NOUN

1 A style or category of art, music, or literature:
‘the science fiction genre’

  • Mythology is not a genre. Stories with mythic elements can be told in multiple genres. – mattdm Jan 3 '17 at 15:09
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Domains

A specified sphere of activity or knowledge:
‘the country's isolation in the domain of sport’

https://en.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/domain

Beware: gods and goddesses have their own domains too in which they rule; depending on the context that may confuse readers.

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Forms

Webster: : the essential nature of a thing as distinguished from its matter:

b : the component of a thing that determines its kind

"I am open to other forms of mythology"

  • This means something different — simple stories vs. complex structures, epic narratives vs allegorical parables, etc.. Different forms of mythology may be found across cultures – mattdm Jan 3 '17 at 15:06
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How about 'sources'?

Source: A point of origin. (Merriam-Webster.)

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    These bodies of mythology (heh, see what I did there?) may be sources for stories today, but taken as themselves, they're not sources, they just are (and in fact all have sources of their own). So this could work in some context, but I don't think makes a good choice in general. – mattdm Jan 3 '17 at 16:05

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