Where the gods are killed/overthrown. Ragnarok sort of applies, though there's no replacement of the previous gods.

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Succession myths are probably as old as religion itself. The oldest surviving written religious myths we know are of Mesopotamia and Egypt.

In Mesopotamian mythology, the god [Anu] is overthrown by his son Kumarbi.

In Ancient Egyptian mythology, Seth is overthrown by his nephew Horus

As for the cyclic mythologies that @fifthviolet mentions, I can only give some idea of how this is perceived by its practitioners for Hinduism. In the Trimuti cycle of creation (Brahma), Maintaining (Vishnu) and destruction (Shiva), these 3 deities are not really thought of as in succession of each other, but more as Avatars of one and the same manifestation. In certain branches of Hinduism, these 3 can actually manifest together in one "person" called Dattatreya


There is a theory that over the course of the evolution of Norse mythology this has actually happened - Tyr, god of justice, is theorized to have been the previous head of the pantheon, and had Christianity not interrupted, the same thing may have happened again. There is a mention on Ragnarok that Heimdall becomes head of a 'new' pantheon, or at least the principle god, however taking that at face value is tricky due to the source being filtered through a Christian worldview (ie. compiled by a monk). This does make some sense since all these gods are the ones missing a part of them- eye, hand and ear iirc.

There is a paper I found written about cyclical vs. linear mythologies, which cites several cultures, however it's more in reference to humanity ending rather than gods. The author cites Hopi, Mayan and Hindu mythology, but I don't know enough about those to really discuss them. I found the paper by searching 'cyclical mythology', you may find more with a variation on that. Most of the results do seem to relate to Norse or Greek mythology though.

  • Snorri was not a monk. Heimdallr does not become head of the pantheon after Ragnarok. Dec 17, 2021 at 17:15

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