|Deities of the ancient Near East|
|Religions of the ancient Near East|
Kothar-wa-Khasis (Ugaritic: 𐎋𐎘𐎗𐎆𐎃𐎒𐎒 Kothar-wa-Khasis Hebrew : כושר וחסיס ) is an Ugaritic god whose name means "Skillful-and-Wise" or "Adroit-and-Perceptive" or "Deft-and-Clever". Another of his names, "Hayyan hrs yd" means "Deft-with-both-hands" or "of skillful hands . Kothar is smith, craftsman, engineer, architect, and inventor.[ citation needed ] He is also a soothsayer and magician, creating sacred words and spells, in part because there is an association in many cultures of metalworking deities with magic. The god-name Ka-sha-lu [ citation needed ] in texts from Ebla suggests that he was known in Syria as early as the late third millennium BC.
Hebrew is a Northwest Semitic language native to Israel, the modern version of which is spoken by over nine million people worldwide. Historically, it is regarded as the language of the Israelites and their ancestors, although the language was not referred to by the name "Hebrew" in the Tanakh itself. The earliest examples of written Paleo-Hebrew date from the 10th century BCE. Hebrew belongs to the West Semitic branch of the Afroasiatic language family. Hebrew is the only Canaanite language still spoken, and the only truly successful example of a revived dead language.
Ugaritic is an extinct dialect of Amorite language known through the Ugaritic texts discovered by French archaeologists in 1929. It is known almost only in the Ugarit texts found in the ruined city of Ugarit. It has been used by scholars of the Hebrew Bible to clarify Biblical Hebrew texts and has revealed ways in which the cultures of ancient Israel and Judah found parallels in the neighboring cultures.
An artisan is a skilled craft worker who makes or creates material objects partly or entirely by hand. These objects may be functional or strictly decorative, for example furniture, decorative art, sculpture, clothing, jewellery, food items, household items and tools and mechanisms such as the handmade clockwork movement of a watchmaker. Artisans practice a craft and may through experience and aptitude reach the expressive levels of an artist.
Kothar aids Baʿal in his battles, as recounted in the Myth of Baʿal, by creating and naming two magic clubs (Yagrush and Ayamur) with which Baʿal defeats Yam. Kothar also creates beautiful furniture adorned with silver and gold as gifts for Athirat. And he builds Baʿal's palace of silver, gold, lapis lazuli, and fragrant cedar wood. One of his significant actions is as the opener of the window through which Baʿal's rains can come and go to fertilize the earth and provide for the continuance of life.
Yam is the god of the sea in the Canaanite pantheon. Yam takes the role of the adversary of Baal in the Ugaritic Baal Cycle.
Kothar's abode is Egypt, written in Ugaritic as HKPT (read perhaps as "hikaptah") and derived from the Egyptian ḥwt kꜣ ptḥ , "the house of the ka of Ptah", used in reference to Memphis and paralleled in a poem with KPTR, representing Caphtor. Memphis is the site of the temple of Ptah, the Egyptian god responsible for crafts, whose name means "the Opener".
In Egyptian mythology, Ptah is the demiurge of Memphis, god of craftsmen and architects. In the triad of Memphis, he is the husband of Sekhmet and the father of Nefertum. He was also regarded as the father of the sage Imhotep.
Memphis was the ancient capital of Inebu-hedj, the first nome of Lower Egypt. Its ruins are located near the town of Mit Rahina, 20 km (12 mi) south of Giza.
Caphtor is a locality mentioned in the Bible, in which its people are called Caphtorites or Caphtorim and are named as a division of the ancient Egyptians. Caphtor is also mentioned in ancient inscriptions from Egypt, Mari, and Ugarit. Jewish sources placed Caphtor in the region of Pelusium, though modern sources tend to associate it with localities such as Cilicia, Cyprus, or Crete.
In his book on the Myth of Baʿal, Mark S. Smith notes that there is a possible pun involved in Kothar's epithet "The Opener". According to the Phoenician mythology related by Mochos of Sidon, as cited in Damascius's De principiis (Attridge and Oden 1981:102-03), Chusor, Kothar's name in Phoenician Greek[ citation needed ], was the first "opener." Assuming the West Semitic root *pth, "to open," Albright argues that this title represents word-play on the name of the Egyptian god Ptah.
Mark Stratton John Matthew Smith is an American biblical scholar, professor, and ancient historian.
Mochus, also known as Mochus of Sidon and Mochus the Phoenician, is listed by Diogenes Laërtius along with Zalmoxis the Thracian and Atlas of Mauretania, as a proto-philosopher. Athenaeus claimed that he authored a work on the history of Phoenicia. Strabo, on the authority of Posidonius, speaks of one Mochus or Moschus of Sidon as the author of the atomic theory and says that he was more ancient than the Trojan war. He is also referred to by Josephus, Tatian, and Eusebius.
Damascius, known as "the last of the Neoplatonists," was the last scholarch of the School of Athens. He was one of the pagan philosophers persecuted by Emperor Justinian I in the early 6th century AD, and was forced for a time to seek refuge in the Persian court, before being allowed back into the Empire. His surviving works consist of three commentaries on the works of Plato, and a metaphysical text entitled Difficulties and Solutions of First Principles.
Smith further explains Kothar's double abodes as reflexes of metal or craft trade both from Egypt and from the Mediterranean Sea to Ugarit, as Kothar is imputed to be the divine patron of these skills.
Kothar had a minor role in ancient Egyptian religion, as the mythological builder of chapels for Egypt's more important deities.
Ancient Egyptian religion was a complex system of polytheistic beliefs and rituals that formed an integral part of ancient Egyptian society. It centered on the Egyptians' interaction with many deities believed to be present in, and in control of, the world. Rituals such as prayer and offerings were provided to the gods to gain their favor. Formal religious practice centered on the pharaohs, the rulers of Egypt, believed to possess a divine power by virtue of their position. They acted as intermediaries between their people and the gods, and were obligated to sustain the gods through rituals and offerings so that they could maintain Ma'at, the order of the cosmos. The state dedicated enormous resources to religious rituals and to the construction of temples.
Baal, properly Baʿal, was a title and honorific meaning "owner," "lord" in the Northwest Semitic languages spoken in the Levant during antiquity. From its use among people, it came to be applied to gods. Scholars previously associated the theonym with solar cults and with a variety of unrelated patron deities, but inscriptions have shown that the name Baʿal was particularly associated with the storm and fertility god Hadad and his local manifestations.
ʼĒl is a Northwest Semitic word meaning "god" or "deity", or referring to any one of multiple major ancient Near Eastern deities. A rarer form, ʼila, represents the predicate form in Old Akkadian and in Amorite. The word is derived from the Proto-Semitic archaic biliteral ʼ‑l, meaning "god".
Hadad, Adad, Haddad or Iškur (Sumerian) was the storm and rain god in the Canaanite and ancient Mesopotamian religions.
Asherah, in ancient Semitic religion, is a mother goddess who appears in a number of ancient sources. She appears in Akkadian writings by the name of Ašratu(m) (Ashratum), and in Hittite as Aserdu(s) or Asertu(s). Asherah is generally considered identical with the Ugaritic goddess ʾAṯiratu (Athirat).
Tannin or Tunannu was a sea monster in Canaanite, Phoenician, and Hebrew mythology used as a symbol of chaos and evil.
Astarte is the Hellenized form of the Middle Eastern goddess Astoreth, a form of Ishtar, worshipped from the Bronze Age through classical antiquity. The name is particularly associated with her worship in the ancient Levant among the Canaanites and Phoenicians. She was also celebrated in Egypt following the importation of Levantine cults there. The name Astarte is sometimes also applied to her cults in Mesopotamian cultures like Assyria and Babylonia.
Anat, classically Anath is a major northwest Semitic goddess.
Mot was the ancient Canaanite god of death and the Underworld. He was worshipped by the people of Ugarit, by the Phoenicians, and also by the Hebrews of the Old Testament. The main source of information about his role in Canaanite mythology comes from the texts discovered at Ugarit, but he is also mentioned in the surviving fragments of Philo of Byblos's Greek translation of the writings of the Phoenician Sanchuniathon and also in various books of the Old Testament.
In Latter-day Saint theology, Egyptus is the name of two women in the Book of Abraham in the Pearl of Great Price. One is the wife of Ham, son of Noah, who bears his children. The other is their daughter, who discovered Egypt while "it was under water" (1:23). The younger Egyptus places her eldest son on the throne as Pharaoh, the first king of Egypt (1:25). Pharaoh was a descendant of the Canaanites (1:22), a race of people who had been cursed with black skin. Mormon leaders have taught that Egyptus passed black skin and the curse of Cain through the flood so that the devil might have representation upon the earth.
Khidr or al-Khidr (Arabic: الخضر al-Khiḍr; also transcribed as al-Khadir, Khader, Khadr, Khedher, Khizr, Khizir, Khyzer, Qeezr, Qhezr, Qhizyer, Qhezar, Khizar, Xızır, Hızır) is a name ascribed to a figure in the Quran as a righteous servant of God possessing great wisdom or mystic knowledge. In various Islamic and non-Islamic traditions, Khidr is described as a messenger, prophet, wali, slave and angel, who guards the sea, teaches secret knowledge and aids those in distress. The figure of al-Khidr has been syncretized over time with various other figures including but not limited to Sorūsh in Iran, Saint Sarkis the Warrior, Saint George in Asia Minor and the Levant, John the Baptist in Armenia, and Jhulelal in Sindh and Punjab in South Asia.
Ancient Semitic religion encompasses the polytheistic religions of the Semitic peoples from the ancient Near East and Northeast Africa. Since the term Semitic itself represents a rough category when referring to cultures, as opposed to languages, the definitive bounds of the term "ancient Semitic religion" are only approximate.
Canaanite religion refers to the group of ancient Semitic religions practiced by the Canaanites living in the ancient Levant from at least the early Bronze Age through the first centuries of the Common Era.
The Baal Cycle is an Ugaritic cycle of stories about the Canaanite god Baʿal, a storm god associated with fertility. It is one of the Ugarit texts.
Shapash, Shapsh, Shapshu or sometimes Shemesh was the Canaanite goddess of the sun, daughter of El and Asherah. She is known as "torch of the gods" and is considered an important deity in the Canaanite pantheon and among the Phoenicians. She is not to be confused with the Akkadian sun god, Shamash.
Tatenen was the god of the primordial mound in ancient Egyptian religion. His name means "risen land" or "exalted earth", as well as referring to the silt of the Nile. As a primeval chthonic deity, Tatenen was identified with creation. He was an androgynous protector of nature from the Memphis area, the ancient capital of the Inebu-hedj nome in Lower Egypt.
Lotan is a servant of the sea god Yam defeated by the storm god Hadad-Baʿal in the Ugaritic Baal Cycle. possibly with the help or by the hand of his sister ʿAnat. Lotan seems to have been prefigured by the serpent Têmtum represented in Syrian seals of the 18th–16th century BC, and finds a later reflex in the sea monster Leviathan, whose defeat at the hands of Yahweh is alluded to in the biblical Book of Job and in Isaiah 27:1. Lambert (2003) went as far as the claim that Isaiah 27:1 is a direct quote lifted from the Ugaritic text, correctly rendering Ugaritic bṯn "snake" as Hebrew nḥš "snake".
Phoenicia was a thalassocratic, ancient Semitic-speaking Mediterranean civilization that originated in the Levant, specifically Lebanon, in the west of the Fertile Crescent. Scholars generally agree that it was centered on the coastal areas of modern day Lebanon and included parts of what are now northern Israel and southern Syria reaching as far north as Arwad, but there is some dispute as to how far south it went, the furthest suggested area being Ashkelon. Its colonies later reached the Western Mediterranean, such as Carthage in North Africa, and even the Atlantic Ocean, such as Cádiz in Spain. The civilization spread across the Mediterranean between 1500 BC and 300 BC.