Religious Groups in Literature

34,420 citations from literature (mostly science fiction and fantasy) referring to real churches, religious groups, tribes, etc. [This database is for literary research only. It is not intended as a source of information about religion.]


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polytheism, continued...

Group Where Year Source Quote/
polytheism USA 1954 Dick, Philip K. "Upon the Dull Earth " in The Preserving Machine. New York: Ace Books (1969; c. 1954); pg. 32. -
polytheism USA 1981 Crowley, John. Little, Big. New York: Bantam (1981); pg. 28. "'Are you religious?' Mrs. Drinkwater asked Smoky.

'He's not,' Cloud said. 'Of course there was August.'

'I didn't have a religious childhood,' Smoky said. He grinned. 'I guess I was sort of a polytheist.'

'What?' said Mrs. Drinkwater.

'The Pantheon. I had a classical education.'

'You have to start somewhere,' she replied... "

polytheism USA 1997 Byrne, John. Wonder Woman: Gods and Goddesses. Rocklin, CA: Prima Publishing (1997); pg. 22-23. "Diana may be Wonder Woman, may be a living Amazon, but she's still naive in so many ways, still ill prepared for the way the world, this world works. 'Rebecca Chandler [an Evangelical] has a lot of followers. Two year ago no one had heard of her; now she claims to have millions of followers. Even Cassie watches her, just so she can make fun of her. But that's the way her message gets through. People hear it, maybe begin to believe it.'

Diana frowned... 'I do not understand why this Chandler woman should be so offended by my very existence. I have said nothing about her faith. I understand there are many gods and goddesses, many faiths.'

Helena nodded. 'But it's not that simple. Rebecca Chandler would be the first, I'm sure, to say they're all the same god, all manifestations of the one true god, but she does not really believe it. Behind closed doors I'll be she thinks her own particular interpretation of scripture is the only one that has any merit...' "

polytheism Washington 1995 Chalker, Jack L. The Cybernetic Walrus (Book One of The Wonderland Gambit). New York: Ballantine (1995); pg. 10. Pg. 9: "I took some deep breaths, checked my weapons, and I went forward. I was a god, not an oyster, and, like all gods, I, too, was insane. "; Pg. 10: "...and particularly on the vision of Mount Rainier that always hovered like some strange home of the gods over the southeastern sky... " [Other refs. not in DB.]
polytheism Women's Country 1988 Tepper, Sheri S. The Gate to Women's Country. New York: Doubleday (1988); pg. 231. "ACHILLES: But I--I am an immortal! The poets say I am. Destined to walk among the Gods!

IPHIGENIA: Are the Gods then dead?

ACHILLES: They live!

IPHIGENIA: And when you lived, you walked among them.

ACHILLES: I did? " [More.]

polytheism world -10000 B.C.E. Tolkien, J. R. R. The Silmarillion. Boston, MA: Houghton Mifflin (1977); pg. 25. "The Great among these spirits the Elves named the Valar, the Powers of Arda, and Men have often called them gods. The Lords of the Valar are seven; and the Valier, the Queens of the Valar are seven also. " [Many refs. to gods, not in DB.]
polytheism world -5000 B.C.E. Weis, Margaret & Tracy Hickman. Dragon Wing. New York: Bantam (1990); pg. 211. "...the froman thought long and hard about gods and decided that he hadn't much use for them. First, instead of neatly getting rid of Mad Limbeck, the gods had actually had the audacity to send him back alive. Not only that, but they came with him! Well, one of them did--a god who called himself Haplo. And though confused reports had reached the ears of the high froman that the god didn't consider himself a god, Darral Longshoreman didn't believe it for a flicker. "
polytheism world -5000 B.C.E. Weis, Margaret & Tracy Hickman. Dragon Wing. New York: Bantam (1990); pg. 214. "Turning to the god, he bowed so low his long beard dragged the wet ground. 'Your Wurship,' said the high froman humbly, 'we welcome you to our realm. Have you come for the Judgment?'

The god stared at him, then turned to another god ( many of these were there?)... In that instant, Darral Longshoreman realized that Mad Limbeck wasn't mad after all. These weren't gods. Gods would have understood him. These were mortal men. they had come in a dragonship, which meant that the Welves in their dragonships were most likely mortal... There would be no Judgment!... Glowering at the gods and at their wrecked ship, Darral realized that the gods themselves couldn't even get off Drevlin!

A low rumble of thunder warned the high roman that he and these 'gods' didn't have time to stand around and stare at one another. Disillusioned, angry, needing time to think, the high froman turned his back on the 'gods' and started to head for his city. " [More, pg. 214-215, etc.]

polytheism world -5000 B.C.E. Weis, Margaret & Tracy Hickman. Dragons of a Fallen Sun. Renton, WA: Wizards of the Coast (2000); pg. 2. [Fantasy novel. Actual year indeterminate or immaterial.] "Nonsense!' Talon Leader Ernst Magit swung around in his saddle at his scout and second-in-command, who walked behind him. 'Superstitious claptrap! But then you minotaurs are noted for clinging to old, outmoded ways and ideas. It is time you entered the modern era. The gods are gone, and good riddance, I say. We humans rule the world.' " [Other refs., not in DB.]
polytheism world -5000 B.C.E. Weis, Margaret & Tracy Hickman. Dragons of a Fallen Sun. Renton, WA: Wizards of the Coast (2000); pg. 5. "At first sight of the black crystals rising from the ground, he had lowered his eyes, and he kept them lowered out of reverence and respect. Call it superstition, as Ernst Magit most certainly would. The gods themselves were not in this valley. Galdar knew that to be impossible; the gods had been driven from Krynn more than thirty years ago. But the ghosts of the gods lingered here, of that Galdar was certain. "
polytheism world -5000 B.C.E. Weis, Margaret & Tracy Hickman. Dragons of a Fallen Sun. Renton, WA: Wizards of the Coast (2000); pg. 22. "The Citadel was a beacon of hopes in Krynn's dark night. Trying to fill the void left by the absence of the gods, Goldmoon had discovered the mystical power of the heart, had brought healing back to the world. She was living proof that although Paladine and Mishakal were gone, their power for good lived on in the hearts of those who had loved them.

Yet Goldmoon was growing old. The memories of the gods were fading. And so, it seemed, was the power of the heart. One after another, the mystics felt their power recede, a tide that went out but never returned. Still the mystics of the Citadel were glad to open their doors and their hearts to the storm's victims, provide shelter and succor, and work to heal the injured as best they could. "

polytheism world -5000 B.C.E. Weis, Margaret & Tracy Hickman. Dragons of a Fallen Sun. Renton, WA: Wizards of the Coast (2000); pg. 34. "Ogres hate all other races on Krynn, but their hatred for elves goes back to the beginning of time, when the ogres were once beautiful, the favored of the gods. When the ogres fell, the elves became the favored, the pampered. The ogres had never forgiven them. "
polytheism world -5000 B.C.E. Weis, Margaret & Tracy Hickman. Dragons of a Lost Star. Renton, WA: Wizards of the Coast (2001); pg. 37. "'Say that the timing is fortuitous, Mother,' urged Gilthas. 'The shield falls when we most need it to fall. If there were gods, I would suppose they watch over us.'

'yet there are no gods,' Laurana replied, wrapping her dressing gown around her. 'The gods have left us. So I do not know what to say to this news except be cautious and do not build your hopes upon it.' " [Other refs., not in DB.]

polytheism world -5000 B.C.E. Weis, Margaret & Tracy Hickman. Dragons of a Lost Star. Renton, WA: Wizards of the Coast (2001); pg. 158. "Silvanoshei did not even know how to pray to a god. His parents had never spoken of the old religion. The subject was a painful one for them. They were hurt, but they were also angry. The gods, with their departure, had betrayed those who had put their faith in them.

But how did he know for certain that the One God cared forhim? How did he know what he was truly one of the Chosen? "

polytheism world -3003 B.C.E. Gaskell, Jane. Atlan. New York: St. Martin's Press (1977; c. 1965); pg. 38. Pg. 38: "I hoped to my Gods he hadn't already heard rumours... "; Pg. 57: "I flurried to him and knelt. 'Oh, Gods,' I said. 'Oh, I'm sorry, I'm sorry. I had to.' "; Pg. 59: "'Juzd,' I muttered. 'Holy Gods, what are you doing behind bars?...' " [Other refs., not in DB.]
polytheism world -3002 B.C.E. Gaskell, Jane. Some Summer Lands. New York: St. Martin's Press (1979; c. 1977); pg. 57. "The Dictatress snorted. 'Is there truth in the 'vague rumour' that you and I, Cija, and our grandmothers are cousins of the Gods? The Moon was a fat round star which used to accompany us, warming herself at our light and our speed and our general emotional flashpoints.' " [Other refs., not in DB.]
polytheism world -1500 B.C.E. Brust, Steven. Five Hundred Years After. New York: Tor (1994); pg. 28. Pg. 28: "'...But, as an Imperial matter, naturally the lorich charge heavily for their services, and--'

'The Gods!'

'Yes, Sire. Especially as the Vallista are adamant...' ";

Pg. 31: "'With what, Sire? The least of them is worth twenty thousands of imperials.'

'The Gods! Perhaps that war was a mistake, Jurabin.' " [Other refs., not in DB.]

polytheism world -1500 B.C.E. Brust, Steven. Five Hundred Years After. New York: Tor (1994); pg. 69. "And to those who say that such a birth is punishment from the gods for transgressions in a past life, we say that we will hope for only misfortunes for those who make such claims, thus taking upon themselves the duties of Gods; and we can assure them that, whatever evils plague the, there will be few who show any pity... Let no one claim to speak for the Gods who does not, in his own hand, hold the power to inflict and remedy that the Gods do. And such persons ought to consider, for their own good, if not from the kindness required of one human being to another, how the Gods will feel about those who dare to take on the attributes of Divine judgment by saying such things. " [May be other refs., not in DB, but not extensive.]
polytheism world -1000 B.C.E. Bradley, Marion Zimmer; Julian May & Andre Norton. Black Trillium. New York: Doubleday (1990); pg. 83. "Prince Antar's face was somber, lost in thought. 'I will remember my Royal Fathers in my prayers . . . And you should also most fervently commend our King to whatever exotic gods you acknowledge, sorcerer. For if Voltrik should die, the grief of Labornok will be profound. And who knows what brave plans may then be confounded?' " [Other refs., not in DB.]
polytheism world -1000 B.C.E. Martin, George R. R. A Storm of Swords. New York: Bantam (2000); pg. 8. [Fantasy: time/place immaterial or indeterminate.] Pg. 8: "He sighed. 'And we all know what follows fall. Gods, but I am cold. Shoot the last arrow, Samwell, I believe my tongue is freezing to the roof of my mouth.' "; Pg. 20: "Ser Cleos sat up and rubbed at his eyes. 'Gods, my arms are sore. I hope the wind lasts.' "; Pg. 110: "It is nothing, he told himself. Surely the gods did not bring me safe through fire and sea only to kill me with a flux. "; Pg. 140: "Gods be good, he thought wearily as he watched the candle burn down and begin to gutter, how could I let this happen again, after Tysha? "; Pg. 228: "Gods be good. Catelyn felt ill again... Lost by me. By me, may the gods forgive me. Catelyn did not need to be a soldier to grasp the trap Robb was in. "; Pg. 686: "The gods heard my prayer, she thought. She felt so numb and dreamy. My skin has turned to porcelain, to ivory, to steel. " [Many other refs., not in DB.]
polytheism world -1000 B.C.E. Martin, George R. R. A Storm of Swords. New York: Bantam (2000); pg. 197. "She can't hear me, no more than the Mother Above. The Mother was merciful, all the septons agreed, but the Seven had no power beyond the Wall. This was where the old gods ruled, the nameless gods of the trees and the wolves and the snows. 'Mercy,' he whispered then, to whatever might be listening, old gods or new, or demons too, 'oh, mercy, mercy me, mercy me.' "
polytheism world -1000 B.C.E. Martin, George R. R. A Storm of Swords. New York: Bantam (2000); pg. 232. "Lord Karstark knelt. 'The gods shall judge you, as you have judged me.' He laid his head upon the block.

'Rickard Karstark, Lord of Karhold.' Robb lifted the heavy axe with both hands. 'Here in the sight of gods and men, I judge you guilty of murder and high treason. In mine own name I condemn you. with mine own hand I take your life. Would you speak a final word.'

'Kill me, and be cursed. You are no king of mine.'

The axe crashed down... Gods forgive him, Catelyn prayed in silence. He is only a boy, and he had no other choice. "

polytheism world -500 B.C.E. Duncan, Dave. The Living God. New York: Ballantine (1994); pg. 5. Pg. 5: "It plodded doggedly, not even flickering its ears, stoically fulfilling the role the Gods had assigned it. "; Pg. 66: "'I tell you all,' the priest said, 'that the Good has been increased because he lived, and that the Gods will scarce need to use Their balance to judge Wo-pu-Al. He does go to the last weighing as we shall all go there in our time; we shall do well indeed f our souls increase the Evil no more than his does, or prosper the Good as much.'

...'Farewell, brother,' Father Acopulo said loudly, in the last words of the Burial at Sea. 'Go to the Gods; we shall follow in our time.' " [Many refs. to the Gods, throughout novel, not in DB.]

polytheism world -500 B.C.E. Easton, M. Coleman. Spirits of Cavern and Hearth. New York: St. Martin's Press (1988); pg. 6. Pg. 6: "Beyond and above them all, shimmering in the impossible distance, lay the Peak-of-the-World where the gods held court. Chirudak gods. "; Pg. 203: "In that respect she was like Yarkol, doomed never to have a home. Yet it pleased her to imagine that the gods might release him and allow him to be an ordinary man again. " [Other refs. novel, not in DB.]
polytheism world -109 B.C.E. Leiber, Fritz. "Ill Met in Lankhmar " in Swords and Deviltry in The Three of Swords. Garden City, NY: Nelson Doubleday (1973; c. 1970); pg. 95. "The two thieves also had the relief of knowing that, with the satisfaction of a job well done, they were going straight home now, not to a wife, Aarth forbid!--or to parents and children, all gods forfend!--but to Thieves House... "
polytheism world -106 B.C.E. Leiber, Fritz. "Their Mistress, the Sea " in Swords in the Mist in The Three of Swords. Garden City, NY: Nelson Doubleday (1973; c. 1968); pg. 393. "The Mouser continued his calisthenics and read The Book of Aarth, The Book of Lesser Gods, The Management of Miracles, and a scroll titled Sea Monsters from the sloop's small but select library.

Nights they would lazily talk for hours, feeling nearest then to the stars, the sea, and each other. They argued as to whether the stars had existed forever or been launched by the gods from Nehwon's highest mountain--or whether, as current metaphysics asserted, the stars were vast firelit gems set in islands at the opposite end of the great bubble (in the waters of eternity) that was Nehwon. "

polytheism world -105 B.C.E. Leiber, Fritz. "Adept's Gambit " in Swords in the Mist in The Three of Swords. Garden City, NY: Nelson Doubleday (1973; c. 1947); pg. 426. "It was a laughter of the storm-lashed forest or the sea, a laughter that conjured up wide visions, that seemed to blow from a more primeval, heartier, lusher time. It was the laughter of the Elder Gods observing their creature man and noting their omissions, miscalculations and mistakes. " [Other refs., not in DB.]
polytheism world 875 C.E. Harrison, Harry & John Holm. King and Emperor. New York: Tor (1996); pg. 217. "...towards confrontation with the traitorous Jews and the polytheistic rabble of Northern pirates... "
polytheism world 1000 C.E. de Camp, L. Sprague. "Two Yards of Dragon " in Dragon Tales (Isaac Asimov, ed.) New York: Ballantine (1982; c. 1976); pg. 48. "'...Like that caitiff Rainmar, eh? What of the bad seasons we've had? The God and the Goddess know we need all the supernatural help we can get to keep us from penury...' " [Other refs., not in DB.]
polytheism world 1000 C.E. Eddings, David & Leigh Eddings. Belgarath the Sorcerer. New York: Ballantine (1995) [Book jacket] "The age-old war was ended at last, and Destiny once again rolled on in its proper course.

Only a single person remained to tell of the near-forgotten times when Gods still walked the lands, giving comfort and counsel to their mortal children. Only one man alive could speak with certain knowledge of how the Dark God Torak stole the Orb of Aldur and broke the very world apart, consigning the Gods themselves to the hell of war, along with hapless humanity... " [Refs. throughout novel, not in DB.]

polytheism world 1000 C.E. Eddings, David & Leigh Eddings. Polgara the Sorceress. New York: Ballantine (1997); pg. 57. Pg. 57: "'Mother says that it's more or less universal,' I told her, 'and it's not just humans. wolves are the same way, and so are rabbits. She says that all young males have what she calls 'urges.' The Gods arranged it that way, I guess--so that there'll always be a lot of puppies.' "; Pg. 74: "'At the exact moment that Beldaran and Riva are declared man and wife, you'll have to make a decision. The Gods have chosen you to be the instrument of their will, but you have to accept that.' "; Pg. 90: "The business of 'making things'--creation, if you will--was in some ways the culmination of my education, since, if looked at in a certain way, it encroaches on the province of the Gods. I started making flowers... Creation is closely related to beauty, so that might explain it... Transmutation isn't really creation, though... " [Many other refs., not in DB.]
polytheism world 1000 C.E. Eddings, David & Leigh Eddings. Polgara the Sorceress. New York: Ballantine (1997); pg. 100. "As he explained, the Gods of the West had departed, an we were now to receive our instructions through prophecy, so father definitely wanted to have a look at the two prophets who were currently holding forth... "
polytheism world 1000 C.E. Eddings, David. The Diamond Throne. New York: Ballantine (1989); pg. 3. [Fantasy. Actual year indeterminate or immaterial.] Pg. 3: "Ghwerig and the Bhelliom.
--From the Legends of the Troll-Gods.

Pg. 4: "But though Bhelliom was filled with all the power of the Troll-Gods, it would not yield up that power unto its misshapen and ugly owner, and Ghwerig pounded his fists in rage upon the stone floor of his cavern. He consulted with his Gods and made offerings to them of heavy gold and bright silver, and his Gods revealed to him that there must be a key to unlock the power of Bhelliom, lest its might be unleashed by the whim of any who came upon it. Then the Troll-Gods told Ghwerig what he must do to gain mastery over the gem which he had wrought. " [Many other refs., not in DB.]

polytheism world 1000 C.E. Feist, Raymond E. Rise of a Merchant Prince. New York: William Morrow and Co. (1995); pg. 26. [Fantasy. Actual year immaterial or indeterminate.] Pg. 26: "'Men and gods, I've died and gone to paradise!' "; Pg. 175: "Shaking his head emphatically, he said, 'Truth of the gods!' Looking after the retreating back of the Knight-Marshal, he said, 'Think of what a horse healer he would have been.' "; Pg. 177: "On the other side of the bed stood a priest of Kilian, Goddess of Farmers, Foresters, and Sailors. As a deity of nature, her priests were reputed to be healers, though often as not the patient died. "; Pg. 180: "Karli wore the black veil of mourning and watched in silence as the priest of Lims-Kragma, Goddess of Death, pronounced the benediction and then lit the funeral pyre. The inner courtyard of the temple was busy that morning, for a half-dozen funerals were under way. Each was contained in a marked-off area of the temple park... "; Pg. 195: "'...and reclaim the 'lost goddess' Alma-Lodaka, the dragon Lord who created them.' " [Some other refs., not in DB.]
polytheism world 1000 C.E. Lucas, George & Chris Claremont. Shadow Moon. New York: Bantam (1995); pg. 316. [Fantasy novel] Pg. 316: "'Get below,' Morag said, as implacable in her own way as the seas, 'the lot o' y've any favors owed by the Powers Beyond, or better yet any Gods who'll answer when y' call, we could use the help.' "; Pg. 326: "'...Many's a rover cracked on those rocks in decent weather--by the Gods.' " [Other refs. not in DB.]
polytheism world 1000 C.E. Martin, George R. R. A Game of Thrones. New York: Bantam (1997; c. 1996); pg. 22. [Otherworldly fantasy.] "This was a place of deep silence and brooding shadows, and the gods who lived here had no names.

But she knew she would find her husband here tonight. Whenever he took a man's life, afterward he would seek the quiet of the godswood.

Catelyn had been anointed with the seven oils and named in the rainbow of light that filled the sept of Riverrun. She was of the Faith, like her father and grandfather and his father before him. Her gods had names, and their faces were as familiar as the faces of her parents. Worship was a septom with a censer, the smell of incense, a seven-sided crystal alive with light, voices raised in song. The Tullys kept a godswood, as all the great houses did, but it was only a place to walk or read or lie in the sun. Worship was for the sept. " [Many other refs., not in DB.]

polytheism world 1000 C.E. Williams, Tad. To Green Angel Tower: Part 1. New York: DAW Books (1993); pg. 144. Pg. 144: " leaving her crippled on a snowy mountain in the Grianspog--but Maegwin was giving her life back into the hands of the gods: what difference could it make if they decided to take her now rather than later? ";

Pg. 196: "'Why have you brought me back?' Her voice seemed slow and clumsy. 'I was with the gods.'

'You were about to fall, Lady... We have been searching for you three days.'

Three days! Maegwin shook her head and looked at the sky. From the indistinct gleam of the sun, it was only a little after dawn. Had she really been with the gods all that time? It had seemed scarcely an instant. If only these men had not come...

Maegwin had felt the messenger of the gods reaching out for her, a messenger in the form of a tall, red-haired youth. Although his features had been misted by the dream, she guessed that he was very beautiful. " [More. Some other refs., not in DB, e.g., pg. 566.]

polytheism world 1000 C.E. Williams, Tad. To Green Angel Tower: Part 1. New York: DAW Books (1993); pg. 292. "When I was older, I came to doubt them, and believed instead in the single god of the Aedonites--single, though He is dreadfully mixed up with Usires His son and Elysia the blessed mother. Later, in the first blossoming of my scholarship, I came to disbelieve in all gods, old and new. But a certain dread gripped my heart when I became a man, and now I believe in the gods once more . . . Ah, how I believe! . . . for I know myself to be cursed.' The monk quietly wiped his eyes and nose on his sleeve. " [More.]
polytheism world 1000 C.E. Williams, Tad. To Green Angel Tower: Part 1. New York: DAW Books (1993); pg. 361. "'No who,' Maegwin said, raising an admonitory finger. 'But for whom. The gods will fight for us.' She leaned forward, quelling the rising murmur of the crowd. 'They will destroy our enemies--but only if we give our hearts to them wholly.' "
polytheism world 1000 C.E. Williams, Tad. To Green Angel Tower: Part 2. New York: DAW Books (1993); pg. 312. "I am dead. I am no longer afraid, as I once was. I did my duty ad brought the gods to save my people--no one can say I did not... But where is my father? And where is Gwythinn? Didn't they both die heroes? Surely the gods have lifted them up and carried them away after their deaths, just as they did me. And surely they would have demanded to be allowed to fight here, at the side of the Masters of Heaven. Where are they?

Maegwin stood, dumbfounded. She shivered again. It was wretchedly cold here. Were the gods playing some trick on her? Was there still some test she had yet to pass before she could be reunited with her father and brother, with her long-dead mother...?... Troubled, Maegwin turned and hurried back down the slope toward the lights of the other homeless souls. " [Some other refs., e.g., pg. 535.]

polytheism world 1002 C.E. Eddings, David. The Hidden City. New York: Ballantine (1994); pg. 9. [Otherwordly fantasy. Actual year/place indeterminate or immaterial.] "'...As you've noticed, the Trolls are real. They were lured to Tamuli from their home range in northern Thalesia by Cyrgon, who posed as one of their Gods. They real Troll-Gods have been imprisoned for eons, and Prince Sparhawk offered them an exchange--their freedom in return for their aid... Sparhawk's move seemed to play right into the hands of our enemies, but when Cyrgon an Zalasta unleashed the Trolls, Sparhawk called forth their Gods to reclaim them...' " [Other refs. throughout novel, not in DB.]
polytheism world 1002 C.E. Eddings, David. The Ruby Knight. New York: Ballantine (1990); pg. 30. Pg. 30: "'What we do puts us in conflict with the Elder Gods, and that is not lightly undertaken. Your Elene God forgives. The Elder Gods, however, demand absolute compliance with their whims. To counter the commands of an Elder God is to court worst than death. They obliterate those who defy them--in ways you cannot imagine. Do we really want to bring Bhellion back into the light again?' ";

Pg. 89: "'Beware of what you say, Sir Sparhawk,' Patriarch Ortzel said ominously. 'The Church does not recognize the existence of the Styric Gods. You are treading very close to the brink of heresy.' "

polytheism world 1002 C.E. Lucas, George & Chris Claremont. Shadow Dawn. New York: Bantam (1997); pg. 23. "'I swear! The gods' honest truth.' " [Some other refs. not in DB.]
polytheism world 1004 C.E. Eddings, David. The Secret of the Stone. New York: Ballantine (1991); pg. 4. "Since there were few Elene priests in the region to enforce the Church ban on consorting with the heathen Styrics, fraternization became common. As the simple Elene peasantry perceived that their Styric neighbors were able to reap significant benefits from the use of the arcane arts, it is perhaps only natural that apostasy became rampart. Whole Elenic villages in Zemoch were converted to Styric pantheism. Temples were openly erected in honor of this or that topical God, and the darker Styric cults flourished. Intermarriage between Elene and Styric became common, and by the end of the first millennium, Zemoch could no longer have been considered in any light a true Elenic nation. "
polytheism world 1004 C.E. Eddings, David. The Secret of the Stone. New York: Ballantine (1991); pg. 5. "'I am Azash, the most powerful of the Elder Gods, and if thou wilt be my servant and lead others to worship me, I will grant thee far more than thou hast asked...' " [Many other refs., not in DB.]
polytheism world 1200 C.E. Beagle, Peter S. The Innkeeper's Song. New York: Penguin Books (1993); pg. 14. [A fantasy novel. Year unknown.] "Contrast, you see; most people jump at it after that other one. Swear on your gods that you practice no such sleights, and that dinner's a gift, fair enough? "
polytheism world 1200 C.E. Hines, Jim. "Blade of the Bunny " in Writers of the Future: Volume XV (Algis Budrys, ed.). Los Angeles: Bridge Publications (1999); pg. 23. "Gods, I loved that woman " [Character's profanity is polytheistic.]
polytheism world 1500 C.E. Feist, Raymond E. & Janny Wurts. Servant of the Empire. New York: Doubleday (1990); pg. 25. "To all in the room he announced, 'And send word to the Grand Temple of Turakamu. I will build a prayer gate, so that each traveler who passes through will invoke the Red God's indulgence, that he will look favorably upon Minwanabi vengeance. To the god I vow: blood will flow freely until I have the Acoma bitch's head!'

Incomo bowed to conceal his sudden concern. To pledge so to Turakamu might bring fortune during conflict, but one did not vow lightly to the Death God; disaster could befall if vows went unfulfilled. The patience of the gods in such a matter was a fickle proposition. " [Many other refs., not in DB.]

polytheism world 1500 C.E. Moorcock, Michael. Gloriana. New York: Warner Books (1986; c 1978); pg. 4. "Gloriana the First, Queen of Albion [England]... is a Sovereign loved and worshipped as a goddess by many millions of subjects... To the theologian (save for the most radical) she is the only representative of the gods on Earth... " [Many refs. throughout novel to 'the gods', not all in DB.]
polytheism world 1953 Dick, Philip K. "Expendable " in The Best of Philip K. Dick. New York: Ballantine (1977; story c. 1953); pg. 150. "Tirmus waved his antennae excitedly... 'More reason for me to speak,' Tirmus gazed around at the assembled gods. 'The entire Hill is ready to march against the giant in question. Why? We know he can't communicate to his fellows-- It's out of the question. The type of vibration, the language they use makes it impossible...'

...One of the gods leaned toward another, antennae touching. 'This giant. He doesn't stand a chance. In a way, I feel sorry for him...' "

polytheism world 1953 Dick, Philip K. "Expendable " in The Best of Philip K. Dick. New York: Ballantine (1977; story c. 1953); pg. 153. "'What's that?'

'We have our problems. The gods--'


'Ants, as you call them. The leaders. They're beyond us. Very unfortunate. They have an awful taste--makes one sick. We have to leave them for the birds.' "

polytheism world 1985 Delany, Samuel R. "The Game of Time and Pain " in Return to Neveryon. Hanover, NH: Wesleyan University Press (1994); pg. 18. "'...If we were together, you'd protect me from monsters. Or ghosts. Or gods...' "
polytheism world 1986 Hubbard, L. Ron. Mission Earth Vol. 2: Black Genesis. Los Angeles, CA: Bridge Publications (1986); pg. 17. Pg. 17: "But not with an amphetamine: no, my Gods! That would be too cruel! "; Pg. 27: "My Gods, I had more than twenty-two hours yet to go... "; Pg. 423: "'Is this planet inhabited by a Godsless people? Has some strange idea poisoned them to make them think they have no souls? That there is no hereafter?' " [Other refs., not in DB.]
polytheism world 1987 de Lint, Charles Jack the Giant Killer. New York: Ace Books (1987); pg. 179. "'Do you know the actual meaning of that word? 'Divine Wind.' Perhaps you should call on the gods to help you.'

'I don't believe in God. At least I don't think I do,' she added, hedging.

'The desert god your people hung from a tree couldn't help you here anyway,' Kerevan replied. 'This is the land of the Manitou...' "

polytheism world 1992 Powers, Tim. Last Call. New York: William Morrow & Co. (1992); pg. 29. Pg. 25: "...his status as the modern avatar of Dionysus and Tammuz and Attis and Osiris and the Fisher King and every other god and king who died in the winter and was reborn in the spring... "; Pg. 29: "...and he tried to imagine being vitally connected to the eternal and terribly potent figures that secretly animated and drove humanity, the figures that the psychologist Carl Jung had called archetypes and that primitive peoples, in fear, had called gods. " [Other refs., not in DB.]
polytheism world 1997 Anthony, Patricia. "Two-Bag Goddess " in Eating Memories. Woburn, MA: First Books; Baltimore, MD: Old Earth Books (1997); pg. 328. "There wasn't any trick to calling up old gods. Gary'd done it enough. Conjuring had started off as a parlor game in the frat house, and later he'd used a little spell to help him pass the Bar...

Before She'd broken through the ring he'd cast in the secrecy of the forest, he'd seen Her for a moment -- not the snake Goddess he'd been expecting, but something else. Something older... like the ancient Neolithic Goddess and the Goddess Crete had known... Mama Astarte... Hecate... " [Other refs. not in DB.]

polytheism world 1997 Byrne, John. Wonder Woman: Gods and Goddesses. Rocklin, CA: Prima Publishing (1997); pg. 19. "Helena shook her head... 'The early Christians accepted the existence of the gods their faith supplanted,' she said, lapsing for a moment into the tone of voice Cassie thought of as her mother's 'lecture mode.' As the chief curator of the Gateway City Museum of Cultural Antiquities, Helena had an unfortunate habit--in the eyes of her teenaged daughter--of turning everything into some reference to her work. 'They accepted the existence of the Greco-Roman gods,' Helena said. 'They simply chose not to worship them. Eventually, they even turned some of them into the prototypes for their images of demons and goblins. Pan in particular seemed to hold a special fear and fascination for them. He became the blueprint for less sophisticated pictures of the Devil, and even gave us the word panic.' "
polytheism world 1997 Sheffield, Charles. Tomorrow and Tomorrow. New York: Bantam (1998; c. 1997); pg. 247. [Frontispiece] "'When half-gods go,
The gods arrive.' "
polytheism world 2000 Cox, Greg. X-Men & the Avengers: Gamma Quest: Book 3: Friend or Foe?. New York: Berkley Boulevard (2000); pg. 115. Pg. 115: "Any agony was preferable, though, to the thought of being pulled once more into the tightly-packed mass of humanoid bodies, to being buried alive beneath that unliving multitude. 'Gods of earth and air,' she pleaded, 'let me be free!' "; Pg. 247: "She was eager to leave the moon behind and return to the warm embrace of Mother Earth. Claustrophobia, never far away, chafed at her nerves, reminding her just how cramped and precarious the moonbase truly was. Gods of earth and air, she entreated, your daughter is far from you green hills and fragrant skies. Pray do not forsake me in this dreadful place. "
polytheism world 2000 Haldeman, Joe. "Endangered Species " in Vanishing Acts (Ellen Datlow, ed.) New York: Tor (2000); pg. 379. "Men stop war to make gods
sometimes. Peace gods, who would make
Earth a haven. A place for men to
think and love and play. No war
to cloud their minds and hearts. Stop,
somehow, men from being men.

Gods make war to stop men
from becoming gods.
Without the beat of drums to stop
our ears, what heaven we could make
of Earth! The anchor that is war
left behind? Somehow free to
stop war? Gods make men to
be somewhat like them. So men
express their godliness in war.
To take life: this is what gods
do. Not the womanly urge to make
life. Nor the simple sense to stop. " [More.]

polytheism world 2030 Hogan, James P. Entoverse. New York: Ballantine (1991); pg. 30. "'Just think . . . nobody ever thought of Homer as a science writer before. The Iliad could all have been real--an authentic account of human contact with an alien race. Take Hesiod's account of the origins of the universe: First there was Chaos: just dark, empty space and protoelements. Then Gaea, the fusion of Earth and Life, and Uranus, the star-filled heavens, were born from Eros, the force of attraction that causes all things to come together. Expressed in those terms, it does come interestingly close to the real thing, doesn't it?... The gods that kept coming down and meddling in the Trojan War might actually have existed. Maybe the Biblical miracles really happened, and Velikovsky had a point after all. Is it any wonder that ideas of magic and the supernatural became so deeply rooted here? At one time, it really used to work.' "
polytheism world 2050 Aldiss, Brian. "A Whiter Mars " in Supertoys Last All Summer Long. New York: St. Martin's Griffin (2001; c. 1995); pg. 218. "You've forgotten about the gods and goddesses, the Greek gods who gave their names to the constellations, the Baals and Isises and Roman soldier gods, the vengeful Almighty of the Old Testament, Allah -- all imaginary super-beings which supposedly controlled mankind's behavior before humanity could control itself. "
polytheism world 2250 Zelazny, Roger & Jane Lindskold. Donnerjack. New York: Avon (1998; c.1997); pg. 14. [1] "Further ceremonies were conducted there, by a priest garbed similarly to themselves, save for the scapulary tablets and elaborate headgear of gold and semiprecious stones worn below his faint blue halo. He told them how all of the gods, along with everything else, survived in Virtu, and in this time of a turning back to religion it was appropriate that the earliest divine manifestations in Indo-European consciousness should be the focus of worship now, dwelling as they did in the deepest layers of the human psyche where description might still function. Ea, Shamash, Ninurta, Enki, Ninmah, Marduk, Azmuh, Inanna, Utu, Dumuzi, and all of the others--metaphors, yes, as were all who came after, for both the best and worst in humanity, but also the most potent of metaphors because of their primacy. And of course they were cosmomorphic as well, embodiments of the forces of nature, and as capable of evolution as everything else in Virtu and Verite. " [Many other refs., not in DB.]
polytheism Xenex 2353 David, Peter. House of Cards in Star Trek: New Frontier (omnibus). New York: Pocket Books (1998; c. 1997); pg. 28. "And finally M'k'n'zy, who had endured so much in silence, actually let out a howl of fury. How much was he supposed to take? After everything that had been inflicted upon him by the Danteri, now the gods were out to get him, too? Couldn't he be the recipient of the smallest crumb of luck?

And the gods answered him. The answer, unfortunately, was to try and make clear that he was something of an ingrate. He was, after all, still alive. The gods, if gods there were, had permitted him to survive, and if that was not sufficient for him... "

Ponca USA 1992 Simmons, Dan. "Sleeping with Teeth Women " in Lovedeath. New York: Warner Books (1993); pg. 122. "And there were the Pawnees and Poncas, whose land we were trying to steal in the days that Hoka Ushte knew. "

Ponca, continued


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