Among archaeologists, it is often studied that any society that flourishes will eventually seek out meaning and purpose in their existence. Ergo, it is often argued religion is a man-made concept spawned from such. Pertaining to the subject, archaeologists are often graced with artifacts showing how a society or culture would worship. Probably the most recognizable form of religion and idol worship in the western world associated with archaeology (or any anthropological study for that matter) are Greek and Roman mythology.
However, concentrating on religious history just because it is fictitiously popular is a limit. Other cultures have created many other idols and artifacts that truly amaze such as the Shigir Idol, the world’s oldest wooden sculpture which may have a “world’s creation” message. For this matter, the idol featured is the Zbruch Idol, a rare four-headed Slavic god statue pulled from a muddy river.
The Zbruch Idol was originally discovered back in 1848 when it was pulled from a muddy river in Ukraine, as reported by Ancient Origins. It is estimated said idol remained submerged in its exile for about 1,000 years. But it is worthwhile such an artifact was discovered because it is a sight to behold. The monolith pillar is inscribed with four stoic faces and enigmatic symbols. Carvings on all four sides have confounded researchers. Most interesting of all, the Zbruch Idol is currently one of the only existing monuments of Slavic belief before Christianity.
As for any more information about the Zbruch Idol, it is unfortunate to report such information is extremely limited. Once Christianity became the main faith of the Slavic area, state and church authorities did all they could to enforce the destruction of all Slavic idols and sanctuaries. They justified their cause as the desecration of false demonic relics. Ergo, archaeologists are still trying to find basic information on the religion, such as the names of the four gods who’s faces are etched into the Zbruch Idol, as reported by Russia IC.
Casting religious views aside, one can truly admire and appreciate the art and skill the ancient people of the Slavic region put into their idols. Today, such pieces are seen as beautiful artifacts of an ancient time. As for the Zbruch Idol, it now can be seen at the Krakow Archaeological Museum in Poland. As for the ones lost in time, they are replaced by replicas (one pictured above) until they are discovered.
[Images via Wikipedia Commons]