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Orient and Occident
(1,016 words)

[German Version]

I. The Cliché – II. The Classical Paradigms

I. The Cliché


The words Orient and Occident (“the rising/setting sun”; Lat. ortus/occasus, Gk ἀνατολή/anatolē/ δύσις/dýsis) denote either (a) an East (cf. Matt 2:1: “Magi from the East”; also Anatolia/Turkey) or West (cf. the Hesperides), always relative, or (b) a geographical fiction, a construct of “mythic geography,” an ideological stereotype. The administrative language of the Roman Empire was clearer. After the reorganization of the Empire by Diocletian,…

Cite this page
Cancik, Hubert, “Orient and Occident”, in: Religion Past and Present. Consulted online on 19 July 2024 <>
First published online: 2011
First print edition: ISBN: 9789004146662, 2006-2013

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