Thanks! Yes, indeed, and not just pagans — some of it has survived to modern times. That landmark paper I drew on for Part 6, “Bear Ceremonialism in the Northern Hemisphere,” has much about the Finns, and I included at least one Finnish hunters’ euphemism, “honey paws.” (I think a couple of the others are also pretty close to translations of Finnish terms, but were actually taken from different cultures.) The author’s conclusion is that the bear cult is a circumpolar remnant of very ancient Paleolithic belief and ceremony. What’s interesting too is that the ways in which this ancient belief system adapted to more recent, farming cultures had strong parallels on both sides of the Atlantic. I wrote about the straw bear midwinter festivals of northern Europe (which still survive), but the Lenape Indians of what is now Pennsylvania, New Jersey and New York also had a renewal-of-the-world midwinter ceremony in which a bear hunt was essential to the continued fertility of crops.