> Hi Steve,
> The 'Dog' Star, the brightest star in the constellation Canis
> Major, is probably where the Dogon Tribes received their name.
Since dog is a word in English I very much doubt that the Dogon were named based on this word. They are reported to have migrated to their current location around the 10th century, when 'English' was still 'Aenglish' and still used the Germanic 'hund' for the animal called 'dog' today.
> The Dogon report that Sirius was once "red" in their stories.
> The ancient Egyptians called Sirius the 'dog star', after their
> god Osirus, whose head in pictograms resembled that of a dog.
> In Egypt, Sirius shines for most of the summer, and since it is
> such a bright star, the Egyptians actually believed that the
> additional light from this nearby star was responsible for the
> summer heat. This of course is not true. However the origin of
> the phrase 'the dog days of summer' comes from this ancient
> belief -- the 'dog star' being the root of this common saying.
The dog-headed god in the Egyptian pantheon is Anubis/Upuaut. (As with most polytheistic religions, it is often difficult to figure out if certain 'gods' are really alternate forms of each other). Osiris seems to be an oddity among Egyptian gods in being always human. Maybe someone else knows if Osiris has a 'theriomorphic' form or an animal which he is associated with? I've never seen one. Or is Osiris called Anubis when he has the head of a dog? :) Egyptian religion is so complicated... :p
Like ancient Rome, we today are once more importing every form of exotic superstition in the hope of finding the right remedy for our sickness.
-- C. G. Jung
Richard Wilhelm: In Memoriam (1930), CW 15: pg. 60