What are the origins of the grim reaper ?

Where does the idea for the grim reaper originate? How far back does it date?

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  • Elaine
    Lv 7
    1 month ago
    Favourite answer

    In ancient times a sickle was used to reap grain. Saturn, the Roman god of agriculture was often depicted holding a sickle.  At some point the scythe was used for the same purpose as the sickle. This image was transferred to representations of death but it originates with Saturn. During the Middle Ages the Grim Reaper became both the metaphor and the symbol for death as he was reaping souls as though they were grain. In other words the Grim Reaper was an indiscriminate  harvester who eventually came for one and all.  This  is why Death is portrayed as a hooded figure holding a scythe.  

  • 1 month ago

    The skeleton has always been a symbol of death, ever since someone discovered that the bones are the last part of our bodies to rot away into dust.  I have no idea when that was, but it was probably before the internet was invented.  

    The Grim Reaper we all know and love today was first drawn during the Black Death pandemic.  The scythe is a farming tool used to cut (or reap) large swaths of standing grain stems during harvest, and the Black Death cut down large numbers of people every day.  His hooded robe is the classic death shroud used to cover cadavers at that time.  

  • Anonymous
    1 month ago

    It appeared in the 14th century during the pandemic The Black Death. A skelteon is a sign of death

  • 1 month ago

    The Grim Reaper seems to have appeared in Europe during the 14th century. It was during this time that Europe was dealing with what was then the world’s worst pandemic, the Black Death, believed to be the result of the plague.  The Grim Reaper was seen as a collector of souls, the messenger of the dead and most important of every guide that came to all mortals. It was not the Grim Reaper's place to judge souls, nor was it the entity's role to aid or hinder mortal affairs. Put simply, the Grim Reaper's task was to appear to the dying and guide them to their final destination where they would be judged accordingly by higher powers.

    Source(s): Google
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  • Darla
    Lv 5
    1 month ago

    I'd be amazed if someone said Cain and Abel. 

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