What is Cornucopism?

The cornucopia originates from the Latin cornu copiae which means “horn of plenty” and was a large horn-shaped ship and represented many different types of products. In an attempt to explain the origin of the cornucopia, there are several ancient Latin and Greek myths with different approaches but the same focal point, without end. From this scenario, a cornucopist refers to a person who believes that, with the progress of science and technology, growth and development will continue forever because such progress will lead to the creation of new resources in addition to natural and human resources. Cornucopianism, therefore, refers to the school of thought that believes in this infinite abundance of described offerings.

Origin of Greek mythology

There are several Greek and Roman myths to explain the cornucopia, which revolve around the harvest, abundance, wealth, spiritual nourishment or prosperity.

Zeus (Roman equivalent of Jupiter)

One of the most well-known mythologies that explains the beginning of cornucopism refers to the mythical god of heaven and thunder, Zeus. According to the myth, the father of Zeus, Cronus, believed that one day his son would take the place on his throne. Because of this belief, he killed all his children at birth. However, during the birth of Zeus, his mother, Rea, hid him in a mountain cave. Fearing for the life of his child, Rhea did not stay with him, but left him in the care of a divine goat named Amalthea who fed Zeus with milk fed from a horn that had an endless supply of honey, fruit and wheat. One day, Zeus, with unusual abilities, accidentally broke one of the horns. The myth does not reveal much of what happened next, but later, Zeus sacrificed Amalthea,

Heracles (Roman equivalent of Hercules)

When Heracles, son of Zeus, wanted to marry his third wife Deianira, he fought against the river god and Deianira’s husband, Acheloo, and broke one of his horns. Being the origin of all the fresh water in the world, it is not clear why this horn was so important that Achelous had to trade with the horn of Amalthea to recover. Probably different sources suggest that the horn was responsible for the symbolic “fresh water”.

Modern representation of cornucopism


There is a general concern for the future of planet Earth as we know it today. From time to time, researchers remind people of the possible fate that the Earth is facing due to challenges like population growth, environmental pollution and other disasters. With this in mind, from some quarters there is an unexpressed fear that the world may not be sustainable in the future. On the opposite side, the number of modern cornucopians is increasing due to the computer and other technologies. Programmers believe that coding and technological progress will provide most of the answers to humanity’s challenges. Another set of people also believes that most of Earth’s future challenges are exaggerations and the Earth, along with all the organisms on it,


Canada, the United States and some Caribbean nations celebrate Thanksgiving which has its origins in the earliest Cornucopic traditions of celebrating after harvesting and sharing sizes. Other forms of modern cornucopia occur in Canadian food and wine festivals in Canada, and as a seal of the states of North Carolina and Idaho, as well as the arms court of Venezuela, Peru and Colombia, among others .

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