ALL THE GODS & GODDESSES, DEMI GODS, SEMI GODS, DEITIES

THE GODS OF AUSTRALIA
This is an extensive list of wonderful names. Some Gods have several names. This page lists 94 names in total

NAMES OF ABORIGINAL GODS
There are many gods/goddesses with the same function but different names, and stories, according to each tribe

NAMES OF AUSTRALIAN ABORIGINAL GODS
List of ancient and actual deities in the different religions, cultures and mythologies

AUSTRALIAN & NEW ZEALAND GODS
Aboriginal & Maori Gods names

OCEANIC PAGAN GODS & GODDESSES
A small list of names

OCEANIC PAGAN GODS & GODDESSES
List of names from Australia & the Pacific Islands

POLYNESIAN MYTHOLOGY
Rangi and Papa are the two most important gods. Also important are Maui, Atea. here is a huge list of some names to select from

HAWAIIAN GODS AND GODDESSES
Our own lovely list of exotic Gods, Goddesses and Deities names of the beautiful Hawaiian islands.

GODS AND GODDESSES OF HAWAII
List of Gods and Goddesses names revered throughout all the Islands, as well as many locally important Gods

HAWAIIAN GODS AND GODDESSES
Names of gods, goddesses and angels of the Hawaiian system

HAWAIIAN GODS
Short list of names

NAMES OF GODDESSES OF POLYNESIA
Only a few listed

GODDESSES OF SAMOA
Only two, but still two more than we had!

MICRONESIAN GODS
Names of South Pacific Mythology Gods

INDIA’S GODS & GODDESSES
Only a few, but excellent!

INDIAN GODDESSES
Here the old Indian goddesses shall dwell again

INDIAN GODS
List of non-Hindu Gods

HINDU GODS & GODDESSES
Excellent, comprehensive list

HINDU GODS
Long list, includes names of wives, children, grandchildren etc

HINDU GODDESSES
Durga, Parvati, Gauri, Kali, Devi, Rohini, Lakshmi, Rukmini, Sita, Sarasvati, Manasa, Sitaladevi – to name them

MAJOR HINDU DEITIES
God in Hindu Dharma and Temples, featuring many of the primary Hindu Gods

HINDU – MINOR DEITIES
Some less well-known Gods and Goddesses

HINDU RELIGIOUS AND MYTHICAL LEADERS
Many mythical and historical kings and princes are included in the central stock of names

GODDESSES OF INDIA
Huge alphabetical list of goddesses names with full descriptions & meanings!

NAMES OF HINDU DEMONS
A long list of names, including their offspring

THE ANIMAL DEITIES
Animals have a special place in Hindu mythology. These animals have been symbolic as the vehicles and carrier of various gods or one, which have helped the gods in various times.

SUMERIAN GODS & GODDESSES
Only a few, but excellent!

SOUTH-EAST ASIAN GODDESSES
Complete with full details

GODDESSES NAMES OF THE NEAR-EAST REALM
List of names with descriptions

ASIAN GODS
Buddhist, Chinese, Japanese, Shinto & other Asian Gods

ASIAN GODDESSES
List of names of old Asian goddesses of the far east

GODDESSES OF THE PHILIPPINES
A handful of wonderful names with full descriptions

CHINESE GODS & GODDESSES
Only a few, but excellent!

CHINESE GODS
The Chinese section of a comprehensive chart of Asian deities and their portfolios.

CHINESE PAGAN GODS & GODDESSES
A small list of names

CHINESE PAGAN GODS & GODDESSES
The Pagans borrowed deities from each other quite freely, and the various cults went in and out of fashion much the same way that rock groups go in and out of fashion in our own day.

NAMES OF CHINESE GODDESSES
All the names with descriptions

CHINESE DEITIES
Names of the god or goddess, or the variations thereof, and details about their abilities and/or attributes

GODDESSES OF CHINA
Large list of names with full descriptions & meanings!

THE GODS AND GODDESSES OF CHINA
This list is complete with descriptions

THE GODS OF CHINESE MYTHOLOGY
A huge list of Gods and Goddesses from Chinese Mythology

JAPANESE GODS AND GODDESSES
Small list with strong names

NAMES OF GODDESSES OF JAPAN
Four names, with descriptions

JAPANESE GODS & THEIR ASSOCIATES
The Japanese section of a comprehensive chart of Asian deities and their portfolios.

JAPANESE GODS NAMES
List of ancient and actual deities in the different religions, cultures and mythologies

JAPANESE PAGAN GODS & GODDESSES
Small list of names here

JAPANESE DEITIES
Names of the god or goddess, or the variations thereof, and details about their abilities and/or attributes

THE GODS AND GODDESSES OF JAPAN
Shinto (the Way of the Gods) was the original religion in Japan and had no written literature before the arrival of the Buddhists. All true Japanese mythology comes from this religion.

SHINTO GODS
List of the Japanese Shinto Gods.

GODDESSES OF JAPAN
Large list of goddesses names with full descriptions & meanings!

NAMES OF JAPANESE GODS
List of ancient and actual deities in the different religions, cultures and mythologies

NAMES FROM JAPANESE MYTHOLOGY
List of names of Gods with detailed descriptions

JAPANESE PAGAN GODS & GODDESSES
A small list of names

GODS OF JAPAN
Extensive list of detailed names

GODDESSES OF KOREA
List of names with full descriptions & meanings

FILIPINO GODS & GODDESSES
List of names of deities taken from various mythological sources

GODDESSES OF THE PHILIPPINES
A handful of wonderful names with full descriptions

NAMES OF GODDESSES OF THE MIDDLE EAST
Extensive list, with descriptions

NAMES OF GODDESSES OF INDIA/TIBET/NEPAL
All the names with descriptions

GODDESSES OF TIBET
A strong list of names with full descriptions

HIMALAYAN GODDESSES
Six names only, but they’re strong

SOUTH EAST ASIAN GODS & THEIR ASSOCIATES
A comprehensive chart of Asian deities and their portfolios.

CENTRAL WEST ASIAN GODS & THEIR ASSOCIATES
A comprehensive chart of Asian deities and their portfolios.

MIDDLE EASTERN DEITIES
Assyrian, Babylonian, Chaldean, Hittite, Persian, Phoenician, Armenian, Syrian, Semite, Sumerian, Zoraster names of Gods & Goddesses

NORSE GODS & GODDESSES
Only a few, but excellent!

NORSE GODS, GODDESSES, GIANTS, DWARVES & WIGHTS
The gods, goddesses, giants, dwarves and monsters of the mythology of northern Europe and Scandinavia

NORSE GODS AND MYTHOLOGICAL FIGURES
Names of Gods & figures from the early pre-Christian religion, beliefs and legends of the Scandinavian people

NORSE GODS & GODDESSES
Long details list of some of the Norse Gods and Goddesses

NORSE GODS & MYTHOLOGICAL FIGURES
Like that of the Celts, the ancient Norse and Germanic religions have left significant traces in modern society. Long list of names!

ENCYCLOPAEDIA OF THE GODS
Alphabetical list of gods, places, and things in Norse mythology

NORSE GODS & GODDESSES
Only a few

NORSE GODDESSES
Huge list of wonderful names with full descriptions

NORDIC/TEUTONIC GODS
Large list

LIST OF GODS AND GODDESSES FROM THE VIKINGS
The red-blooded, rip-roaring, gung-ho Gods beloved by the Vikings. 274 names in total

THE GODS AND GODDESSES OF AFRICA
Most African cultures, if not all, believe in a Supreme Creator in one form or another. A God behind the Gods, a Supreme God who created everything.

AFRICAN GODS & GODDESSES
Only a few, but excellent!

LIST OF GODS AND GODDESSES FROM AFRICA
168 African deities currently in database

AFRICAN GODDESSES
A few good ones

AFRICAN PAGAN GODS & GODDESSES
A small list of names

GODDESSES OF AFRICA
A wonderful list!

NAMES OF AFRICAN GODDESSES
A long list with descriptions

AFRICAN DEITIES
Names of the god or goddess, or the variations thereof, and details about their abilities and/or attributes

AFRICAN GODS
Names of African Gods & their associates

AFRICAN GODDESSES
List of African Goddesses with descriptions

AFRICAN GODS OF MYTHOLOGY
Names from Ashanti, Fon, Dinka, Yoruba, Khoikhoi, Ibo, Xhosa, Shongo, and Zulu mythologies

CENTRAL AMERICAN GODDESSES
Pretty but strong

CENTRAL AND SOUTH AMERICA GODDESSES
Good list, includes full descriptions

GODDESSES OF BRAZIL
Great list of names with full descriptions & meanings!

EGYPTIAN GOD NAMES
A great list of the main Gods and their primary place of worship.

EGYPTIAN GOD THEMES
With descriptions, from Colorado University

EGYPTIAN PAGAN GODS & GODDESSES
A small list of names

ANCIENT EGYPTIAN GODS & GODDESSES
Huge alphabetical list, with beliefs & religions

ANCIENT EGYPTIAN GODS AND GODDESSES
A Glossary of Gods and Goddesses

EGYPTIAN GODS & GODDESSES
Only a few, but excellent!

NAMES OF GODDESSES OF ANCIENT EGYPT
Extensive list, with descriptions

EGYPTIAN GODS
An excellent descriptive list

THE GODDESSES AND GODS OF ANCIENT EGYPT
Yet another comprehensive list

NAMES OF PHARAOHS
Pharaoh is a title used to refer to the kings (of godly status) in ancient Egypt

NAMES OF WOMEN IN GREEK MYTHS
Huge alphabetical list of major & minor goddesses, nymphs & monstresses

GREEK & ROMAN GODS AND GODDESSES
Only a few, but excellent!

GREEK GODS, SPIRITS & MONSTERS
This is a terrific resource!

ANCIENT GREEK GODS
Extensive list with history

GODDESSES OF ANCIENT GREECE
Huge alphabetical list of goddesses names with full descriptions & meanings!

GREEK PAGAN GODS & GODDESSES
A small list of names

LIST OF GODS AND GODDESSES FROM GREECE
Alphabetical list of 334 Greek deities in database

GREEK GODS & GODDESSES
List of Greek Gods & Goddesses with Roman names in parentheses

NAMES OF EGYPTIAN GODS
Brief Biographies of Egyptian Gods

GREEK GODS, SPIRITS & MONSTERS
Enormous alphabetical list. A guide to the Ancient Greek Pantheon of Gods (Theoi), Spirits (Daimones) and Monsters (Theres).

THE OLYMPIAN GODS AND GODDESSES
In Greek mythology, twelve gods and goddesses ruled the universe from atop Greece’s Mount Olympus. The Romans adopted most of these Greek gods and goddesses, but with new names.

NAMES OF MINOR ROMAN GODS & GODDESSES
List of Roman gods, goddesses and other beings not present in Greek mythology

ROMAN GODS
A large list of major Roman gods with a brief description of their roles

NAMES OF LATIN/ROMAN GODDESSES
Good list, includes full descriptions

ROMAN/ETRUSCAN GODS BY FUNCTION
Which God did what!

GRAECO-ROMAN GODDESSES
Fifteen super names with descriptions

GODS AND GODDESSES OF ROME
At the founding of Rome, the gods were numina, divine manifestations, faceless, formless, but no less powerful

ROMAN DEITIES
These gods were seen as objects that perform a task, such as a door. Or the god was a force of nature, that cause sky to the rain, involve in change of season, etc.

THE GODS AND GODDESSES OF THE STREGHE
The Gods and Goddesses of the Streghe have their basis in the deities of the Etruscians, who occupied Italy in BC times.

ROMAN GODS AND GODDESSES
Extensive list of names with miscellaneous data

ROMAN GODDESSES
List of names of the Goddesses with descriptions

GREEK AND ROMAN MYTHOLOGICAL GODS
Includes the Greek name, Roman /Latin name and description

CELTIC GODS AND GODDESSES OF EUROPE
Gods and Goddesses were often connected with sacred springs, rivers, groves, or tribal shrines in the outdoors.

CELTIC GODS & GODDESSES
Only a few, but excellent!

CELTIC GODS
Gods and Goddesses were worshiped and revered by societies and religions of old.

GODS AND GODDESSES OF THE CELTIC LANDS
Female were equal to males and held just as much power

CELTIC WALES – GODS AND HEROES
Celtic gods, goddesses, heroes, and heroines in ancient Wales are all here!

CELTIC IRELAND – GODS AND GODDESSES
Names of Celtic gods and goddesses in ancient Ireland such as Aine, Lugh, and Nuada

CELTIC GAUL – GODS AND GODDESSES
The Celtic gods and goddesses in Gaul are featured, including Cernunnos and Epona

CELTIC BRITAIN – GODS AND GODDESSES
Celtic gods and goddesses in ancient Britain – Sulis and Nodens, for example

CELTIC GODS, HEROES & CREATURES
Extensive list

CELTIC PAGAN GODS & GODDESSES
A small list of names

CELTIC GODDESSES
Huge alphabetical list of names with full descriptions & meanings!

NAMES OF CELTIC GODDESSES
A long list with descriptions

NAMES OF CELTIC DEITIES
The Celtic tribes, like most early pagans, worshipped Gods representing the forces of nature.

CELTIC GODS & GODDESSES
Excellent list, with complete detailed descriptions

BRITISH, SCOTTISH, IRISH, WELSH GODS & GODDESSES
Only a few, but excellent!

WELSH GODS AND GODDESSES
Terrific list, with descriptions

ANGLO-SAXON GODS AND GODDESSES
Names of Gods and Goddesses that the Anglo-Saxons worshipped

PAGAN GODS AND GODDESSES
A list of Celtic, Egyptian, Greek, Roman, & Norse Gods & Goddesses

GODS OF DEATH/UNDERWORLD
From different cultures

GODS AND SPIRITS OF THE UNDERWORLD
Names Of The Theoi & Daimones Khthonioi

THE GODS & GODDESSES OF FINNISH-UGRIAN PLACES
The Finno-Ugric races honoured ancestors, worshipped a variety of spirits and believed firmly in magic and sorcery.

THE GODS & GODDESSES OF THE INDO-EUROPEANS
Some of the Gods, Goddesses and saints of some of the varied peoples of the Indo-European world

MYTHOLOGY – GODS & GODDESSES
Search for ancient gods and goddesses in two ways, by culture or alphabetically, by the name of the specific god or goddess.

GODS & GODDESSES
Some of the major Gods and Goddesses from a number of different pantheons

GODS, GODDESSES, DEMONS AND MONSTERS
A great picture list with names and meanings

THE GODS OF NORTH AMERICAN MYTHOLOGY
A huge list of names of Gods from every tribe

NATIVE AMERICAN PAGAN GODS & GODDESSES
Names of Gods of North America

THE GODS OF THE NORTH
Regarded as living beings who are involved in human life; friendly, practical, dependable and approachable

ARABIC AND ISLAMIC GODDESSES
Unusual names with full descriptions & meanings!

GODDESSES AND GODS LOVE AND SEXUALITY
There are countless deities associated with love and/or sexuality in every culture throughout history, here are some..

THE GODS AND GODDESSES OF ODINISM
The Primal Gods, The Earth, the Old Gods, Giants and the reliability of received mythology 
The Æsir Yggdrasil, Nature Spirits, Elves and the Fylgie

HEATHENRY ARCHANGEL GODS AND GODDESSES
A list of detailed names

GODS OF THE MIERCINGA RÍCE
Detailed information on the Gods of the pantheons of the Jutes, Saxons, and Angles is forever lost.

GODS AND GODDESSES OF VIRTUES AND PERSONIFICATIONS
Seems they had a God for everything. Only a few here

GODS AND GODDESSES OF CHILDREN AND CHILDBIRTH
More Roman God names

NAMES OF THE MOON GODDESSES
Powerful names to ponder on

MOON GODS AND MOON GODDESSES
The names of a dozen moon goddesses from around the world

SUN GODS
Thirteen sun gods from world mythology.

GODS AND GODDESSES OF FERTILITY
Even though certain deities were given the honor of protecting fertility and reproduction, many had other duties as well.

GODS AND GODDESSES OF AGRICULTURE
Wonderful Roman names!

NAMES OF GODS AND SPIRITS OF THE SEA
Names of the Theoi & Daimones Einalioi, the Dominion of Lord Poseidon

GODDESSES OF THE ISLANDS & OCEANS
List of old Pagan Goddess names with descriptions

SUN GODDESSES
As a means to reclaim the power of the Sun, let us honor Goddesses who come to us as the Sun

NAMES OF GODS & SPIRITS OF COUNTRYSIDE AND WILDERNESS
The Theoi & Daimones Nomioi were the gods and spirits of the Countryside and Wilderness (the joint Dominion of Lord Hermes, Lord Dionysos and the Lady Artemis)

NAMES OF DEMIGODS
A demigod, a "half-god," is a person whose one parent was a god and whose other parent was a human. The heroes of Greek mythology were often demigods

ONE HUNDRED BEAUTIFUL NAMES OF GOD
With English Translations

SUMERIAN GODS & GODDESSES
In giving their gods human characteristics, the Sumerians projected onto their gods the conflicts they found among themselves

LUSITANI (ANCIENT PORTUGUESE) GODS
The Lusitani people adopted the Celt and Roman cults and influenced them with theirs. Many Lusitani gods were adopted by the Romans.

GODDESSES OF BABYLON
Great list of names with full descriptions & meanings!

BABYLONIAN DEITIES
The minor and young Gods and their powers and purposes

FINNISH GODS
Some Gods have several names. List of Gods and Goddesses from Finland

FINNISH GODS
A list of Finnish gods, deities, & spirits

FINNISH RELIGION
List of names of Gods, Deities & Spirits

NAMES OF SCANDINAVIAN GODDESSES
Six names, with descriptions

NAMES OF GODS OF KRYNN
The gods who created and watch over the world

BASQUE GODS
Only a few here

GODS OF HAPPINESS
Who are the happy gods?

THE NAMES OF THE GODS
The Nibiruan Council Of Twelve & their names translated into 12 language groups

NAMES OF APOTHEOTHENAI (Deified Mortals)
The Theoi & Daimones Apotheothenai were those mortal men and women who were granted immortality by the gods

NAMES OF NORSE/TEUTONIC GODDESSES
Good list, includes full descriptions

GODDESSES OF LATVIA
List of names with full descriptions & meanings!

NAMES OF PREHISTORIC GODDESSES
A long list with descriptions

NAMES OF GODDESSES OF ANCIENT CRETE
Includes full descriptions

NAMES OF THE GODDESSES
Long list, includes full descriptions

JUDEO-CHRISTIAN-ISLAMIC LEGENDS
The names listed here occur in various Judeo – Christian – Islamic legends that are preserved outside of the Bible.

AKKADIAN GODDESSES
Unusual names with full descriptions & meanings

GODDESSES OF FIRST NATIONS
Large list of native goddesses names with full descriptions & meanings!

NAMES FROM NORTH AMERICAN INDIAN MYTHOLOGY
List of names of Gods with detailed descriptions

NATIVE AMERICAN GODS & GODDESSES
A wonderful list of names!

NATIVE AMERICAN PAGAN GODS & GODDESSES
A small list of names

NATIVE NORTH AMERICAN GODS
Lists of Gods from Algonquin, Cherokee, Iroquois, Navajo & Pawnee tribes

CENTRAL AMERICAN GODS
List of Aztec, Mayan & Inca Gods

NATIVE NORTH AMERICAN GODS
Lists of Gods of Inca and Maya

CENTRAL & STH AMER PAGAN GODS & GODDESSES
A small list of names

SOUTH AMERICAN GODDESSES
List of names of the Goddesses with descriptions

INCA GODS
List of South American Gods & their associates

THE GODS OF INCAN MYTHOLOGY
Once a mighty empire stretched over the central highlands of the Andes, way down South past Mexico. 53 Incan deities currently in database

AZTEC GODS
The Aztecs were not simple village people, but occupied a large City-State much like Greece and Rome. Extensive list of names here!.

AZTEC MYTHOLOGY
List of Gods of the Aztecs

AZTEC PAGAN GODS & GODDESSES
A small list of names

AZTEC GODS AND GODDESSES
While some deities were benevolent, others had terrifying characteristics

THE GODS AND GODDESSES OF THE AZTECS
The Aztecs thought that failure to honor the deities with blood sacrifices would cause the world to end at the end of their 52-year calendar (equal to our century).

AZTEC GODDESSES
A wonderful list of names!

AZTEC DEITIES
Names of the god or goddess, or the variations thereof, and details about their abilities and/or attributes

MAYAN GODS & GODDESSES
Several gods who played significant roles in the Post classic codices can be identified on earlier Maya monuments

MAYAN GODS
The gods ranged from a suicide goddess, to a god of maize, or corn.

AZTEC & MAYAN GODS
Good list with descriptions

GODS AND GODDESSES FROM THE MAYANS
A huge detailed alphabetical list – South of the border down Mexico way, reaching down as far as Guatamala, Honduras and El Salvador.

PHOENICIAN DEITIES
List of deities from Armenian, and Syrian Regions

PERSIAN GODDESSES
List of names with full descriptions

PERSIAN DEITIES
List of names of deities from Persia (Iran)

SLAVIC GODDESSES
A long list of names with full descriptions

GODDESSES OF SUMERIA
A strong list of names with full descriptions

THE GODS OF THE ANCIENT MEXICANS
A great list of names here

WORLD OF GODS AND GODDESSES
All goddesses of the world are manifestation of Shakti, the feminine aspect of creation, the mother of God and Universe.

LIST OF DEITIES
The whole list from around the world

ZORASTERIAN DEITIES
List of ancient deities

THE GODS OF THE DRAGON REALMS
List of Sky, Earth, Fire, Magic & War Gods

THE DEMI-GODS OF FARLAND
Names from the fantasy game

GODDESSES AND GODS
Long list of Greek, Roman, Egyptian, Japanese Gods & deities

DEITIES
List of ancient and actual deities in the different religions, cultures and mythologies of the world. It is sorted alphabetically

DEITIES OF TITAN
Members of the upper chamber of the Celestial Court who created the physical aspects of the world of Titan.

SUMERIAN GODS AND GODDESSES
List of excellent names

MINOR DEITIES
Hellenes believed that there was a deity for nearly everything, although many of these deities were essentially human traits or goals personified.

THE MINOR PHYSICAL GODS
Small list of names from The Shrine of Hamaskis

NAMES OF MYTHICAL CREATURES
Only a few, but excellent!

ESKIMO GODS
List of 16 Gods with definitions

SANTERIAN PAGAN GODS & GODDESSES
Names of eleven Gods

MESOPOTAMIAN PAGAN GODS & GODDESSES
Names of about 18 Gods, with full descriptions

NAMES FROM VOODOO
List of names of Gods with detailed descriptions

THE WONDROUS GODDESSES
Enter with an open heart and mind so that their seeds of wisdom, when planted, may take root.

DEITIES & DEMI-GODS
Large alphabetical list

CHRISTO-PAGAN GODS & GODDESSES
Very interesting list here

CRETIAN GODDESSES
Here the old Minoan Goddesses shall dwell again

ANGLO-SAXON GODS AND GODDESSES
Much in-depth information concerning the gods and goddesses that the Anglo-Saxons worshipped.

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Glossary of Egyptian Gods and Goddesses

Some images of ancient Egyptian gods and goddesses show them as if they were humans. Ptah of Memphis, for example, is usually shown as a man wrapped in mummy clothes, his hands outside the wrappings, grasping scepters. But other gods, such as Horus, Thoth and Sakhmet, are usually shown with a human body and the head of a bird or an animal. Egyptian gods can also appear in purely animal form, as Horus can be shown as a hawk.

From the earliest times in Egypt, some deities were honoured or worshipped in the form of animals.

In the distant past, particular animals may have been chosen to embody, to stand for, the powers of a god. A bull represented power, aggression, masculinity, fertility; these could be the attributes of kingship. A hawk, who soars high above the world of humans, seeming to expend no energy in his long hours aloft, and who – far seeing, -can swoop in an instant to capture his prey in sharp talons, became a symbol of kingship. The cow’s large eyes with long lashes, and her generally quiet demeanor suggested a gentle aspect of feminine beauty. Her gift of milk, which could sustain a human child, became of symbol of love and sustenance. The following section contains a survey of the more important animal manifestations of divine power.

ATEN

0 - Aten.svg

0 - Aten.svg1

Amun
Amun is mentioned in the Pyramid Texts, but was not a prominent god during the Age of the Pyramids. His name means ‘the hidden one’ and he was a god of the atmosphere. Later in Egyptian history, he would become the main god of the empire.

1 - Amun.svg

1 A- Amun.svg

Anty
Anty was a hawk god of Upper Egypt. He is shown as a hawk sitting on a crescent moon, or in a boat. He became associated with other hawk-gods, such as Sokar. King Merenre’s birth name, Anty-em-saf acknowledges ties between his mother’s family and the areas where Anty was a major deity. Anty’s name, which refers to his sharp claws, can also be read as Nemty.

Anubis
This jackal-headed god looked after the dead, and was in charge of the important task of mummification. Anubis can appear as either a black canine with long sharp ears, or as a man with a canine head. The black colour of Anubis is not natural to jackals or to the wild dogs of Egypt; it may refer to the discoloration of a body after death and during mummification. The black colour also refers to the rich dark soil of Egypt, from which new growth came every year; in similar manner, the dead would come to new life after burial. Dogs, as animal companions, were present in Egypt from the very beginning. Sometimes dogs were buried with their masters. It may have given the Egyptians comfort to think of such an animal as guarding the cemeteries, protecting the dead.

17 -Anubis_standing.svg 35 - Anubis

39 - Anubis_attending_the_mummy_of_Sennedjem 

49 - Anubis

17A -Anubis_standing.svg

Anuket

9 -Anuket.svg

Atum
Self-created creator of the Universe. Alone in Nun (nothingness) he created Shu and Tefnut, air and moisture. His name means ‘the complete one.’ Atum is usually shown as a king. He can symbolize the setting sun.

25 -Atum.svg  atum

25A -Atum.svg

Babi
Babi is a deity shown in Baboon form, and it’s from his name that we get our word for these animals. Babi is ferocious, even blood-thirsty, unlike the usually calm and reasonable Thoth who also appears as a baboon.

Bastet
Cats are very useful animals in a country that depends on grain. The cat’s hunting instincts were honoured by the Ancient Egyptians, but so was the cat’s gentler side as a warm and loving mother to her kittens. Bastet can be shown as a woman with a feline head. There are disagreements among zoologists as to when these animals first began to live with humans along the Nile, and about which feline became the Egyptian pet. Cats do not appear as household pets during the Age of the Pyramids, though they were very popular animal companions in later times. From about three thousand, two hundred years ago, there are cartoon-like images of cats and mice engaged in human activities; unfortunately we do not know the stories for these illustrations.

Bastet1

Bastet

Bat
Ancient goddess shown with the horns of a buffalo or cow. Her face appears on the Narmer palette, showing an early association with kingship. Her character and powers were absorbed by Hathor.

Bastet

Bastet1

Bastet

Bes

bes

bes1A

Geb
God of Earth, grandson of Atum, husband of Nut. He is often shown as a man reclining on the earth under a starry sky. The goose is his sacred animal.

geb

geb1A

Hapy
God of the annual Nile flood, the Inundation. Shown as a human man with a crown of plants, and heavy pendulous breasts and a paunch, he symbolized abundance and fertility.

hapy 32 -Hapy_tying.svg

hapy1A

Hathor
Hathor as the royal goddess. Her name means ‘House of Horus." Her image could take the form of a cow, a woman with a cow’s head, or a woman wearing the horns of a cow. As a motherly cow, she gave the king her divine milk, and protected him as a cow protects her calf. She was the goddess of love, music, singing, and dance. She was one of the most important deities in the Age of the Pyramids, and her popularity continued to the end of Egyptian civilization. In the early economy of Egypt, cows were wealth. A herd of cattle was a beautiful sight because it represented wealth in the form of food, milk, hides, and work, as oxen pulled the ploughs of farmers. Cattle dung was a valuable fertilizer and had many uses in building.

4 -Hathor.svg

4A -Hathor.svg

The Egyptians admired many qualities in cows, besides their economic benefits. The cow’s careful tending of her calf was a model for motherhood. In a time when many women died in childbirth, the ability of cow’s milk to sustain a human baby was deeply appreciated. Cows, like people, love music and will happily listen to a human singing, thus it made sense for Hathor to be goddess of music. The big, gentle brown eyes of cows set a standard for beauty; there are still cultures in the world where to say that a girl is as pretty as a heifer is a great compliment.

Heket
Frog-headed goddess of childbirth. Frogs, who produce vast numbers of tadpoles, were popular as amulets to ensure fertility.

33 - Heqet

Heh
Shown as a kneeling man grasping two palm ribs, Heh is the personification of eternity. His image was popular as an amulet, wishing the wearer ‘millions of years.’

28 -Heh_as_chaos.svg

Horus
This god is shown as a falcon, or as a man with the head of a falcon. In Egyptian, his name is Her – the distant one. Like the good king who sees everything in his kingdom, the hawk is noted for his sharp vision. The sudden stoop of the hawk, as he leaves the distant sky to attack and capture his prey, is like the quick and decisive action of a king in defense of his country.

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30 -Four_sons_of_Horus.svg 4 Sons of Horus

Horus is one of the oldest gods of the Egyptians. In the days when powerful leaders were fighting to make one nation out of smaller settlements, the early rulers were called Followers of Horus. On the Narmer palette, the King is shown with a falcon whose one human arm holds a rope that passes through the nose of a defeated rival. The earliest way of distinguishing the name of a king from the names of others was the serekh, which was a rectangle representing the palace of the king, with a hawk on the top.47 - Horus

Originally, there were at least two gods called Horus. One is the fifth child of Nut and Geb, Horus the Elder, and the other is the son of Isis and Osiris. Over time, their stories and attributes came together. An old story tells of how Osiris, king of Egypt, was murdered by his brother, Seth. Seth was very strong and powerful. He took over the country, and ruled well. Isis, the wife of Osiris, hid the child she had born, and raised him in secret. When Horus grew up, he claimed his father’s throne. Seth and Horus struggled for the kingship, but in the end Horus’ claim, as son of the previous king, was recognized court of all the gods, and Horus became king.

47 A - Horus

In Ancient Egypt, each king was Horus. When a king died, Egyptians said that the falcon had flown to Heaven and united with the Sun Disk. The next king then became Horus. Like the Hawk, the king was a fighter, a warrior. This is why Horus, when shown as a hawk-headed man, wears an armored breast-plate.

Isis
Sister and wife of Osiris, mother of Horus. Isis is the brightest star in the sky, Sirius, called Soped by the ancient Egyptians. This star disappears behind the sun for seventy days, then reappears to announce the annual Nile flood. Isis was thus identified with the waters of the Inundation that bring dry, dead land back to life. When her husband, king Osiris, was murdered, she found his decomposing body, bound it together with linen strips, and used her magic to bring him back to life in a limited way. Isis’ name in Egyptian is Ast which refers to the throne of the king, which she personifies.

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12A -Isis.svg

Besides performing the first mummification, Isis was known for her ferocious dedication to her son, Horus. She upheld his right to rule Egypt against the claims of her powerful brother, Seth or Sutekh. With determination, cunning, and a little magic, she was able to ensure that her son succeeded to the throne of his father. The story of Isis and Osiris, a love story, a story of triumph over death, and the victory of good and right over brute force, became the most popular of Egyptian myths. Thousands of years after the last pyramids were built, Cleopatra VII, the last great queen of Egypt, identified herself with Isis, devoted wife and mother. The cult of Isis survived the annexation of Egypt by the Roman empire, and remained a powerful religion until the rise of Christianity and Islam.

Khepri

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Khnum
The full name of Khufu, builder of the Great Pyramid, was Khnum-khufu – the god Khnum protects him. Khnum, as god of the Nile cataract, controlled the annual inundation of Egypt. He is shown as a man with the head of a ram, or as a ram. He creates human life by moulding each of us on a potter’s wheel. His role as creator may reflect the procreative power and strength of the ram.

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Khonsu

11 -Khonsu_as_falcon.svg

Maat
Goddess of order, truth, justice, and balance. As the daughter of Atum or Re, she was one of the first forces in the created universe, and helped to bring order out of chaos. Each Egyptian king was duty bound to honour and promote order and justice.

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Meskhenet

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Meretseger

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Min
Male fertility god and protector of the mines in the Eastern desert. He is one of the oldest attested Egyptian gods. He is shown as an ithyphallic man with a crown of two plumes, his right arm raised to support the royal flagellum.

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Montu

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Neith
Goddess of the North of Egypt, protector of the king. One of the oldest attested Egyptian deities; her characteristic headgear became the ‘red crown’ of the kings of Egypt. From the dawn of history in Egypt, powerful women formed their names with hers: Neith-hotep (Neith is content) was the wife of Aha, first king of the First Dynasty; the wife of King Djet, and mother of King Den was named Meret-Neith (beloved of Neith). Neith may have been originally a goddess of hunting, but warfare was also in her sphere. She was a goddess of the living world, of power and politics. Her emblem appears to be two arrows crossed behind a shield. In early examples, though, the shield can clearly be seen to be two elaterid or ‘click’ beetles, end to end, with arrows crossed behind them. Long after the Pyramid Age, a story was written crediting her with the creation of the universe.

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Nekhbet
Vulture-goddess of Upper Egypt. Nekhbet is a mother goddess who protects the king. She represents the White Crown of Upper Egypt, which she sometimes wears. By the Fifth Dynasty, she became associated with royal women; the king’s great royal wife wears a vulture headdress.

Nephthys
Daughter of Nut and Geb, sister of Isis, Osiris and Seth. She joined Isis in her search for the body of Osiris, and mourned over his corpse with her. Her name means owner of the palace; she represents the palace itself. A late legend makes her the mother of Anubis.

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Nun

nun

nun1A

Nut
The personification of the sky. Nut is honoured as a mother goddess. She was the wife of Geb, and daughter of Shu and Tefnut. her five children are Osiris and Isis, Nephthys and Seth, and Horus the Elder.

Nut

Nut1A 

Ptah

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Osiris
God of the Dead. Osiris is almost always depicted as a man wrapped in mummy-cloths, his hands protruding from the wrappings to grasp scepters, and a crown on his head. His face can be green, black, or gold. He is a god of agriculture, for his death and resurrection are like those of a seed, cast in to the dark earth, motionless. New life breaks through its husk to push its way to the surface of the earth as a green shoot. Osiris came to prominence in the Fifth Dynasty. He became one of the most important of Egyptian gods because he symbolized the triumph of life over death. (For his story, see Horus and Isis.)

16 -Standing_Osiris.svg 40 A Osiris 40 - Osiris 40 B Osiris

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In early times, the dead King was associated with Osiris, but in later times in Egypt, every person could join Osiris in the Afterlife, where he ruled as King of the Underworld. He judged the dead, and let no evil person enjoy the pleasures of eternal life. Ptah: Ancient creator-god of Memphis. Ptah is shown as a man wearing a skull-cap, dressed in a tight-fitting robe that may be mummy-wrappings. His hands protrude from the wrappings to grasp scepters. He was the patron of craftsmen.

RA

RA

RA 1A

RE – Horakhty

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Sakhmet
The name of this goddess means the powerful one. She was the daughter of the sun-god, Re, and the wife of Ptah. She is shown with the head of a lioness and the body of a woman, suggesting her great force and power, and her sometimes dangerous nature. She could both bring plagues and protect people from them. In the Age of the Pyramids, Sakhmet was sometimes shown embracing the king, breathing divine life into his nostrils.

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Serket

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Seshat

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Seshat 1A

Seth
God of the desert, storm, and chaos. Seth is a strong god whose angry power is part of kingship. Later legends stress his murder of his brother Osiris and his struggle with his nephew Horus over who should be king. The ancient Egyptians believed that both the forces of Law and Order, represented by Horus, and the power of chaos symbolized by Seth, were necessary for kingship. Another way of spelling the name of this god is Sutekh.

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Sobek
Shown as a crocodile or a man with crocodile head, Sobek symbolized swift action and violence, and in these aspects could be a god of kingship. He was the son of Neith. Lakes, riverbanks, and swamps were his particular haunts. Ancient Egyptians travelled the Nile for trade, fished in it, and used its waters to irrigate their fields. The crocodiles who lived in the water were a constant presence and danger.

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Shu

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Tawaret

Tawaret

Tawaret1A

Tefnut
Goddess of moisture. Daughter of Atum, wife of Shu. She is one of the goddesses who can be called The Eye of Re. She can be shown as a woman with the head of a lion.

Tefnet1

Tefnet

Thoth
A moon god, who was also the god of scribes and writing. As god of scribes, he is associated with justice and truth, and with conciliation. As god of wisdom, he inspired scribes and priests, and presided over sacred, secret, knowledge. His name in Ancient Egyptian may have sounded something like Djehuty. He can be shown as a man with the head of an Ibis. The powerful wings of this bird could carry a king over the celestial river into the Afterlife. Thoth usually wears a crescent moon, supporting a full moon-disk on his head. Perhaps the long beak of the Ibis reminded the Egyptians of the crescent moon, and it’s white and black feathers made them think of the patterns on the moon. Two animals were especially sacred to Thoth: the Ibis, and the Baboon. A baboon, sitting up straight, can be an image of Thoth. In the Story of the Eye of Re, Thoth transformed himself into a baboon to follow an angry goddess into Nubia, and told her stories until she returned to Egypt.

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Wadjet
Cobra goddess of Lower Egypt. She is one of the king’s protectors. It is she who rears up over his brow on the royal crowns and headdresses. As the Uraeus, (iaretThursday, January 13, 2000 in Egyptian) she has the power to blast the enemies of the king.

 

Skerub of Air                                Skerub of earth

34 A -skerub of air 34 B -skerub of earth

Skerub of fire                                   Skerub of water

34 C -skerub of fire 34 D -skerub of water

37 - Osiris Isis Nephthys

38 A -Horus Isis Osirus

38 -Horus Isis Osirus

42 - Osiris Horus Seth

46 - Anubis Thoth

48 - Osiris Anubis

50 - Osiris Horus Thoth Anubis

50 A Osiris Horus Thoth Anubis

53 - Horus

54 - Osiris Horus

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Maya Gods and Goddesses

The ancient Mayans had a complex pantheon of deities whom they worshipped and offered human sacrifices. Rulers were believed to be descendants of the gods and their blood was the ideal sacrifice, either through personal bloodletting or the sacrifice of captives of royal blood. The Mayan vision of the universe is divided into multiple levels, above and below earth, positioned within the four directions of north, south, east and west. After death, the soul was believed to go to the Underworld, Xibalba (shee bal bah), a place of fright where sinister gods tested and tricked their unfortunate visitors.

As with all Myths about Gods and Goddesses – Mayan creational mythology discuss connections with being from other realms who came to Earth to seed the planet. Many people connect the story of the Popol Vuh with a story of extraterrestrial Gods who came to earth and made man in their own image. When they first created man, he was perfect, living as long as the gods and having all of their abilities. Fearing their ‘creation’, the gods destroyed them. In the next evolution, a lower form of entity was created, ‘human’, as he exists today. Within Mayan culture they have legends of visiting Gods from outer space. As in all creational myths, religions, and prophecies, the gods promise to return one day.

Kukulcan – Winged God – Feather Serpent

His pyramid was the Pyramid of the Sun in Teotihuacan

Kukulcan was identified to Atlantis [Tehuti] — Egypt [Thoth] — Sumer [Ea or Enki] — then later to Mesoamerica and Peru as Quetzalcoatl.

Quetzalcoatl ("feathered snake") is the Aztec name for the Feathered-Serpent deity of ancient Mesoamerica, one of the main gods of many Mexican and northern Central American civilizations.

The name "Quetzalcoatl" literally means quetzal-bird snake or serpent with feathers of the Quetzal (which implies something divine or precious) in the Nahuatl language. The meaning of his local name in other Mesoamerican languages is similar.

The Maya knew him as Kukulkna; the Quiche as Gukumatz. The Feathered Serpent deity was important in art and religion in most of Mesoamerica for close to 2,000 years, from the Pre-Classic era until the Spanish Conquest.

Gukumatz was a culture hero who taught the Toltecs, and later the Maya, the arts of civilization, including codes of law, agriculture, fishing and medicine. He came from an ocean, and eventually returned to it. According to Mayan legend, Gukumatz will return to the Earth during the End Times. He also represents the forces of good and evil, similar to the ying-yang paradigm of Oriental religions.

Gukumatz was a god of the four elements of fire, earth, air and water, and each element was associated with a divine animal or plant:

  • Air — Vulture
  • Earth — Maize
  • Fire — Lizard
  • Water — Fish

The worship of Quetzalcoatl sometimes included human sacrifices, although in other traditions Quetzalcoatl was said to oppose human sacrifice.

Mesoamerican priests and kings would sometimes take the name of a deity they were associated with, so Quetzalcoatl and Kukulcan are also the names of historical persons.

In the 10th century a ruler closely associated with Quetzalcoatl ruled the Toltecs; his name was Topiltzin Ce Acatl Quetzalcoatl. This ruler was said to be the son of either the great Chichimeca warror, Mixcoatl and the Colhuacano woman Chimalman, or of their descendant.

The Toltecs had a dualistic belief system. Quetzalcoatl’s opposite was Tezcatlipoca, who supposedly sent Quetzalcoatl into exile. Alternatively, he left willingly on a raft of snakes, promising to return. When the Aztecs adopted the culture of the Toltecs, they made twin gods of Tezcatlipoca and Quetalcoat, opposite and equal; Quetalcoatl was also called White Tezcatlipoca, to contrast him to the black Tezcatlipoca. Together, they created the world; Tezcatlipoca lost his foot in that process.

The Aztec Emperor Moctezuma II initially believed the landing of Cortez in 1519 was Quetzalcoatl’s return. Cortes played off this belief to aid in his conquest of Mexico. The exact significance and attributes of Quetzalcoatl varied somewhat between civilizations and through history. Quetzalcoatl was often considered the god of the morning star and his twin brother, Xolotl was the evening star (Venus). As the morning star he was known under the title Tlahuizcalpantecuhtli, which means literaly "the lord of the star of the dawn". He was known as the inventor of books and the calendar, the giver of maize corn to mankind, and sometime as a symbol of death and resurrection. Quetzalcoatl was also the patron of the priests and the title of the Aztec high priest.

Most Mesoamerican beliefs included cycles of worlds. Usually, our current time was considered the fifth world, the previous four having been destroyed by flood, fire and the like. Quetzalcoatl allegedly went to Mictlan, the underworld, and created fifth world-mankind from the bones of the previous races (with the help of Cihuacoatl), using his own blood to imbue the bones with new life.

His birth, along with his twin Xolotl, was unusual; it was a virgin birth, born to the goddess Coatlicue. Alternatively, he was a son of Xochiquetzal and Mixcoatl.

One Aztec story claims Quetzalcoatl was seduced by Tezcatlipoca but then burned himself to death out of remorse. His heart became the morning star.

Quetzalcoatl was a god of such importance and power that nearly no aspect of everyday life seemed to go untouched by him. Secondly, as a historical figure, his actions would nor could not be contained by the History and thus eventually evolved into myth. As a legend, he would signal the end of mortal kingship. An interesting phenomena that distinguished Quetzalcoatl is that despite the fact he is not the most powerful of gods within the Mesoamerican pantheon, or one of the eldest, he is nonetheless an integral part of the system. This was partially accomplished by his ability to integrate himself so securely to attributes of his fellow brethren, to such an extent that it is virtually impossible to tell if Quetzalcoatl was the true originator or vise versa. Hence, to establish a single definitive personality to a god is extremely difficult.

Other Mayan Gods and Goddesses

Chac

In Maya mythology, Chac (sometimes spelled "Chaac") was the god of rain and thunder, and important as a fertility and agriculture god. Like some other Maya gods, Chac was sometimes thought of as one god, and other times as 4 separate gods based in the four cardinal directions: "Chac Xib Chac", Red Chac of the East; "Sac Xib Chac", White North Chac; "Ek Xib Chac" Black West Chac", and "Kan Xib Chac", Yellow East Chac.

In art, he was sometimes depicted as an old man with some reptilian or amphibian features, with fangs and a long nose, sometimes tears coming from his eyes (symbolizing rain) and carrying an axe (which caused thunder). He was associated with the frog. Other Maya terms used to refer to Chac include Ah Tzenul, ("he who gives food away to other people"), Hopop Caan ("he who lights the sky"), and Ah Hoya ("he who urinates").Names for the Rain God in other Mesoamerican cultures include Cocijo (Zapotec) and Tlaloc (Aztec).

While most of the ancient Mesoamerican gods are long forgotten by the descendants of the original inhabitants today, prayers to the Chaacs, most generally as a routine and not in times of drought, are documented in Yucatán as continuing into the 21st century among nominal Christian Maya farmers. Anthropologists have documented other prayers still in use which are identical to pre-Columbian prayers to Chac except that the name Chac has been replaced by that of Saint Thomas.Chac should not be confused with the Maya-Toltec figure Chac Mool.


Another Sun God – Kinich Ahau or Ahaw Kin

Kinich Ahau was the Sun god. He was the patron god of the city Itzamal. Supposedly, he visited the city at noon everday. He would descend as a macaw and consume prepared offerings. Kinich Ahau is usually shown with jaguar-like features (ex. filed teeth). Kinich Ahau also wears the symbol of Kin, a Mayan day. Kinich Ahau was also know by the name Ah Xoc Kin, who was associated with poetry and music.


Yumil Kaxob

The Maize god is representative of the ripe grain which was the base of the Mayan agriculture. In certain areas of Mesoamerica, like Yucatan, the Maize god is combined with the god of flora, Yumil Kaxob. The Maize god is principally shown with a headdress of maize and a curved streak on his cheek. He is also noticeable from other gods throug his youth. Despite this youth, the Maize god was powerless by himself. His fortunes and misfortunes were decided by the control of rain and drought. The Rain god would protect him. However, he suffered when the Death god exercised drought and famine.


Yum Cimil

The death god was called Yum Cimil. He also could be called Ah Puch, the god of the Underworld. His body is predominantly skeletal. His adornments are likewise made of bones. Yum Cimil has also been represented with a body covered with black spots (decomposition). He also wears a collar with eyeless sockets. This adornment was the typical symbol for the Underworld.


Ixtab

The suicide goddess was called Ixtab. She is always represented with a rope around her neck. The Mayans believed that suicides would lead you to heaven. Hence, it was very common for suicides to happen because of depression or even for something trivial.


Yum Kaax

In Maya mythology, Yum Caax ("lord of the woods") was the personification of maize and a god of agriculture and nature.Alternative names: Yum Kaax, God E.Perhaps having origins in ancient northern hunting tradition, Yum Ka’ax, also called U Kanin Ka’ax, is known to indigenous peoples of North America. The one invoked by hunters, he is owner of all the game. He can appear to hunters in an instant, and possesses songs that will allow a hunter success or allow his arrows to come back to him.


Ix Chel

Ix Chel, the Lady Rainbow – in Maya mythology, Ixchel or Ix Chel was an earth and moon goddess, patroness of weavers and pregnant women.One myth states that the sun was her "lover," but that her grandfather was very upset with this and he threw lightining at her out of jealousy which in turn killed Ix Chel.

In the story it stated that dragonflies sang over her for 183 days and then she awoke again only to follow the sun to his palace. But the sun soon after too started to become jealous of Ix Chel, thinking that she was having an affair with the morning star, who was the sun’s brother. The sun threw her out of heaven and then persuaded her back home, but soon after her return he became jealous again. It is said that Ix Chel became annoyed with the bahavior of the sun and so she went off into the night and remained invisible whenever the sun came around. At her new place in the night it is said that Ix Chel spent the nights nursing women of Earth through their labor (during the stint of their pregnancy and birth).

The story of Ix Chel and Itzamna shows both interesting similarities and differences with the Japanese myth of Izanagi and Izanami. The names and personalities are reversed in one version of the story as compared to the other. Izanami is the female, and she is the one who violently attacks her husband. Ix Chel was said to pay special attention to the pilgrims who visited Cozumel, which was her sacred island. Isla Mujeres was also devoted to her worship.


Ixbalanque

In Maya mythology, Ixbalanque or Xbalanque was originally a son of Hun Hunahpu and the virgin Blood Moon. His twin was Hunahpu. The two were the Maya Hero Twins and together their story forms a large part of the Popol Vuh, documenting the Mayan creation myth. Xbalanque and his brother Hunahpu were quite inseperable in their lives, together outwitting arrogant gods and the lords of the Mayan underworld, Xibalba. Although it is not explicitly stated in the Popol Vuh, Hunahpu seems to have been the dominant one among the brothers, often the one to do the talking and the planning, although Xbalanque was not merely a hapless sidekick. Xbalanque is credited with saving his older brother’s life at least once. Xbalanque ascended to the heavens after his death and became associated with the full moon. Xbalanque is sometimes referred to as the Mayan moon goddess, having switched genders in those versions of the myth.

Hunahpu – Hun-Apu

In Maya mythology, Hun-Apu or Hunahpu was a son of Hun Hunahpu and Blood Moon, and an older twin to Xbalanque; the two were the Maya Hero Twins. The story of Hunahpu and his brother are told in the Popol Vuh. The pair were apparently well favored by the greater Mayan gods, and over their lifetimes had a long career of defeating their enemies through trickery and great powers.

Hunahpu and his brother were conceived in an unusual fashion, when their mother Blood Moon spoke with the decapitated head of their father Hun Hunahpu. The skull spat upon the maiden’s hand, and it was this act that caused the twins to be conceived in her womb. Blood Moon sought out Hun Hunahpu’s mother, who begrudgingly took her in after setting up a number of trials to prove her identity.

Even after birth, Hunahpu and Xbalanque were not well treated by their grandmother or their older half-brothers One Monkey and One Artisan. Immediately after their births, their grandmother demanded they be removed from the house due to their crying, and their elder brothers obliged by placing them in unusual places to sleep; on an anthill and among the brambles. Their intent was to kill their younger half-brothers out of jealousy and spite, for the older pair had long been revered as fine artisans and thinkers, and feared the newcomers would steal from the attention they received.

The attempts to kill the young twins after birth were a failure, and the boys grew up without any obvious spite for their ill-natured older siblings. During their younger years, the twins were made to labor, going to hunt birds which they brought back for meals. The elder brothers were given their food to eat first, in spite of the fact they spend the day singing and playing while the younger twins were working.

Hunahpu and Xbalanque demonstrated their wit at a young age in dealing with their older half brothers. One day the pair returned from the field without any birds to eat, and were questioned by their older siblings. The younger boys claimed that they had indeed shot several birds but that they had gotten caught high in a tree and were unable to retrieve them. The older brothers were brought to the tree and climbed up to get the birds, when the tree suddenly began to grow even taller, and the older brothers were caught. This is also the first instance in which the twins demonstrate supernatural powers, or perhaps simply the blessings of the greater gods; the feats of power are often only indirectly attributed to the pair.

Hunahpu further humiliated his older brethren by instructing them to remove their pants and tie them about their waists in an attempt to climb down. The pants became tails, and the brothers were transformed into monkeys. When their grandmother was informed that the older boys had not been harmed, she demanded they be allowed to return. When they did come back to the home, their grandmother was unable to contain her laughter at their appearance, and the disfigured brothers ran away in shame.

At a point in their lives not specified in the Popol Vuh, the twins were approached by the god Huracan regarding an arrogant god named Seven Macaw (Vucub Caquix). Seven Macaw had built up a following of worshipers among some of the inhabitants of the Earth, making false claims to be either the sun or the moon. Seven Macaw was also extremely vain, adorning himself with metal ornaments in his wings and a set of false teeth made of gemstones.In a first attempt to dispatch the vain god, the twins attempted to sneak upon him as he was eating his meal in a tree, and shot at his jaw with a blowgun. Seven Macaw was knocked from his tree but only wounded, and as Hunahpu attempted to escape, his arm was grabbed by the god and torn off.

In spite of their initial failure, the twins again demonstrated their clever nature in formulating a plan for Seven Macaw’s defeat. Invoking a pair of gods disguised as grandparents, the twins instructed the invoked gods to approach Seven Macaw and negotiate for the return of Hunapuh’s arm. In doing so, the "grandparents" indicated they were but a poor family, making a living as doctors and dentists and attempting to care for their orphaned grandchildren. Upon hearing this Seven Macaw requested that his teeth be fixed since they had been shot and knocked loose by the blowgun, and his eyes cured (it is not specifically said what ailed his eyes). In doing so the grandparents replaced his jeweled teeth with white corn, and plucked the ornaments he had about his eyes, leaving the god destitute of his former greatness. Having fallen, Seven Macaw died, presumably of shame.

Seven Macaw’s sons, Zipacna and Cabrakan, inherited a large part of their father’s arrogance, claiming to be the creators and destroyers of mountains, respectively. The elder son Zipacna was destroyed when the twins tricked him with the lure of a fake crab, burying him beneath a mountain in the process. More detail regarding Zipacna’s deeds and his defeat can be found in the article about Zipacna.

The Mayan god Huracan again implored the young twins for help in dealing with Seven Macaw’s younger son, Cabrakan, the Earthquake. Again it was primarily through their cleverness that the pair were able to bring about the downfall of their enemy, having sought him out and then using his very arrogance against him; they told the story of a great mountain they had encountered that kept growing and growing. Cabrakan prided himself as the one to bring down the mountains, and upon hearing such a tale, he predictably demanded to be shown the mountain. Hunahpu and Xbalanque obliged, leading Cabrakan toward the non-existent mountain. Being skilled hunters, they shot down several birds along the way, roasting them over fires and playing upon Cabrakan’s hunger. When he asked for some meat, he was given a bird that had been prepared with plaster and gypsum, apparently a poison to the god. Upon eating it, he was weakened, and the boys were able to bind him and cast him into a hole in the earth, burying him forever.

Hunahpu and Xbalanque played ball in the same court that their father and his brother had played in long before them. When One Hunahpu and his brother had played, the noise had disturbed the Lords of Xibalba, rulers of the Mayan underworld. The Xibalbans summoned them to play ball in their own court. Doing so was a trap, however, as the Xibalbans used a bladed ball which was used to kill and decapitate the young men for disturbing their peace.When the twins began to play ball in the court, once again the Lords of Xibalba were disturbed by the racket, and sent summons to the boys to come to Xibalba and play in their court. Fearing they would suffer the same fate, their grandmother relayed the message only indirectly, telling it to a louse which was hidden in a toad’s mouth, which was in turn hidden in the belly of a falcon. Nevertheless the boys did receive the message, and much to their grandmother’s dismay, set off to Xibalba.

When their father had answered the summons, he and his brother were met with a number of challenges along the way which served to confuse and embarrass them before their arrival, but the younger twins would not fall victim to the same tricks. They sent a mosquito ahead of them to bite at the Lords and uncover which were real and which were simply mannequins, as well as uncovering their identities. When they arrived at Xibalba they were easily able to identify which were the real Lords of Xibalba and address them by name. They also turned down the Lords’ invitation to sit upon a bench for visitors, correctly identifying the bench as a heated stone for cooking. Frustrated by the twins’ ability to see through their traps, they sent the boys away to the Dark House, the first of several deadly tests devised by the Xibalbans.

Their father One Hunahpu and his brother had suffered embarrassing defeats in each of the tests, but again Hunahpu and Xbalanque demonstrated their prowess by outwitting the Xibalbans on the first of the tests, surviving the night in the pitch black house without using up their torch. Dismayed, the Xibalbans bypassed the remaining tests and invited the boys directly to the game. The twins knew that the Xibalbans used a special ball that had a blade with which to kill them, and instead of falling for the trick Hunahpu stopped the ball with a racket and spied the blades. Complaining that they had been summoned only to be killed, Hunahpu and Xbalanque threatened to leave the game.

As a compromise, the Lords of Xibalba allowed the boys to use their own rubber ball, and a long and proper game ensued. In the end the twins allowed the Xibalbans to win the game, but this was again a part of their ruse. They were sent to Razor House, the second deadly test of Xibalba, filled with knives that moved of their own accord. The twins however spoke to the knives and convinced them to stop, thereby ruining the test. They also sent leafcutting ants to retrieve petals from the gardens of Xibalba, a reward to be offered to the Lords for their victory. The Lords had intentionally chosen a reward they thought impossible, for the flowers were well guarded, but the guards did not take notice of the ants, and were killed for their inability to guard the flowers.

The twins played a rematch with the Xibalbans and lost by intent again, and were sent to Cold House, the next test. This test they defeated, as well. In turn, Hunahpu and Xbalanque by purpose lost their ball games so that they might be sent to the remaining tests, Jaguar House, Fire House, Bat House and in turn defeat the tests of the Xibalbans. The Lords of Xibalba were dismayed at the twins success, until the twins were placed in Bat House. Though they hid inside their blowguns from the deadly bats, Hunahpu peeked out to see if daylight had come, and was decapitated by a bat.The Xibalbans were overjoyed that Hunahpu had been defeated. Xbalanque summoned the beasts of the field, however, and fashioned a replacement head for Hunahpu. Though his original head was used as the ball for the next day’s game, the twins were able to surreptitiously substitute a squash or a gourd for the ball, retrieving Hunahpu’s real head and resulting in an embarrassing defeat for the Xibalbans.

Embarrassed by their defeat the Xibalbans still sought to destroy the twins. They had a great oven constructed and once again summoned the boys, intending to trick them into the oven and to their deaths. The twins realized that the Lords had intended this ruse to be the end of them, but nevertheless they allowed themselves to be burned in the oven, killed and ground into dust and bones. The Xibalbans were elated at the apparent demise of the twins, and cast their remnants into a river. This was, however, a part of the plan devised by the boys, and when cast into the river their bodies regenerated, first as a pair of catfish, and then as a pair of young boys again.Not recognizing them, the boys were allowed to remain among the Xibalbans.

Tales of their transformation from catfish spread, as well as tales of their dances and the way they entertained the people of Xibalba. They performed a number of miracles, setting fire to homes and then bringing them back whole from the ashes, sacrificing one another and rising from the dead. When the Lords of Xibalba heard the tale, they summoned the pair to their court to entertain them, demanding to see such miracles in action.The boys answered the summons, and volunteered to entertain the Lords at no cost. Their identities remained secret for the moment, claiming to be orphans and vagabonds, and the Lords were none the wiser. They went through their gamut of miracles, slaying a dog and bringing it back from the dead, causing the Lords’ house to burn around them while the inhabitants were unharmed, and then bringing the house back from the ashes. In a climactic performance, Xbalanque cut Hunahpu apart and offered him as a sacrifice, only to have the older brother rise once again from the dead.

Enthralled by the performance, One Death and Seven Death, the highest lords of Xibalba, demanded that the miracle be performed upon them. The twins obliged by killing and offering the lords as a sacrifice, but predictably did not bring them back from the dead. The twins then shocked the Xibalbans by revealing their identities as Hunahpu and Xbalanque, sons of One Hunahpu whom they had slain years ago along with their uncle Seven Hunahpu. The Xibalbans despaired, confessed to the crimes of killing the brothers years ago, and begged for mercy. As a punishment for their crimes, the realm of Xibalba was no longer to be a place of greatness, and the Xibalbans would no longer receive offerings from the people who walked on the Earth above. All of Xibalba had effectively been defeated.

With Xibalba defeated and the arrogant gods disposed of, Hunahpu and Xbalanque had one final act to accomplish. They returned to the Xibalban ball court and retrieved the buried remains of their father, One Hunahpu, and attempted to rebuild him. Although his body was made whole again he was not the same, and was unable to function as he once did. The twins left their father there in the ball court, but before doing so told him that he would be prayed to by those who sought hope, and this eased his heart.

Then finished, the pair departed Xibalba and climbed back up to the surface of the Earth. They did not stop there, however, and continued climbing straight on up into the sky. Hunahpu was immortalized as the Venus, the morning star, while Xbalanque became the full moon.

While not directly revered as gods themselves, Hunahpu and Xbalanque played an integral role in the Mayan creation story as being of superhuman stature, perhaps demigods or minor deities themselves, always favored by the greater gods. Although many of their acts and successes came about as a result of trickery and deceit, this was viewed more as cleverness than dishonesty, and their roles in defeating the vain and arrogant gods as well as the evil lords of the underworld Xibalba solidifies their characters as being that of good.

Ah Kinchil: the Sun god.

Ah Puch: the god of Death.

Ahau Chamahez: one of two gods of Medicine.

Ahmakiq: a god of Agriculture who locks up the wind when it threatens to destroy the crops.

Akhushtal: the goddess of Childbirth

Bacabs: the bacabs are the canopic gods, thought to be brothers, who, with upraised arms, supported the multilayered sky from their assigned positions at the four cardinal points of the compass. (The Bacabs may also have been four manifestations of a single deity.) The four brothers were probably the offspring of Itzamn·, the supreme deity, and Ixchel, the goddess of weaving, medicine, and childbirth. Each Bacab presided over one year of the four-year cycle. The Maya expected the Muluc years to be the greatest years, because the god presiding over these years was the greatest of the Bacab gods. The four directions and their corresponding colours (east, red; north, white; west, black; south, yellow) played an important part in the Mayan religious and calendrical systems.

Mayan god of rain, especially important in the Yucatan region of Mexico where he was depicted in Classic times with protruding fangs, large round eyes, and a proboscis-like nose. In post-Classic Mayan and Toltec ruins, reclining figures known as the Chacs Mool are thought to represent the rain god. Following the Spanish conquest, the Chacs were associated with Christian saints and were often depicted on horseback.

Cit Bolon Tum: a god of Medicine.

Cizin (Kisin): "Stinking One"; Mayan earthquake god and god of death, ruler of the subterranean land of the dead. He lives beneath the earth in a purgatory where all souls except those of soldiers killed in battle and women who died in childbirth spend some time. Suicides are doomed to his realm for eternity. He may possibly have been one aspect of a malevolent underworld deity who manifested himself under several names and guises (e.g., Ah Puch, Xibalba, and Yum Cimil). In pre-Conquest codices, or manuscripts, the god of death is frequently depicted with the god of war in scenes of human sacrifice. One aspect of the dualistic nature of the Mayan religion is symbolically portrayed in the existing codices, which show Cizin uprooting or destroying trees planted by Chac, the rain god. Cizin is often depicted on pottery and illustrated in the codices in the form of a dancing skeleton, holding a smoking cigarette. He is also known by his death collar, the most prominent feature of which consists of disembodied eyes dangling by their nerve cords. After the Spanish Conquest, Cizin became merged with the Christian devil.

Ekahau: the god of Travellers and Merchants.

Itzamn: "Iguana House" – Principal pre-Columbian Mayan deity. The ruler of heaven, day, and night, he frequently appeared as four gods called Itzamn·s, who encased the world. Like some of the other Mesoamerican deities, the Itzamn·s were associated with the points of the compass and their colours (east, red; north, white; west, black; and south, yellow). Itzamn· was sometimes identified with the remote creator deity Hunab Ku and occasionally with Kinich Ahau, the sun-god. The moon goddess Ixchel, patroness of womanly crafts, was possibly a female manifestation of the god. Itzamn· was also a culture hero who gave humankind writing and the calendar and was patron deity of medicine.

Ixtab: the goddess of the Hanged. She receives their souls into paradise.

Kan-u-Uayeyab: the god who guarded cities.

Kinich Kakmo: the Sun god symbolised by the Macaw.

Kisin: see Cizin
Mitnal: Mitnal was the underworld hell where the wicked were tortured.
Nacon: Nacon was the god of War.

Tzultacaj (Tzuultaq’ah): For the Mayan Indians of central Guatemala, known as Kekchl, this was the god of the mountains and valleys.

Yaxche: Yaxche is the Tree of Heaven under which good souls rejoice.

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Gods and Goddesses

Information about Sumerian Gods and Goddesses is found on the Sumerian King List as well as Sumerian clay tablets and cylinder seals. The Sumerian King List records all the rulers of Earth back over 400,000 years. This huge stretch of time coupled with reigns into the thousands of years has caused most historians to reject its accuracy. However all the early rulers were allegedly gods – demi-gods or immortals.

These Gods were called the Nephilim Nefilim, Elohim, the Anunnaki – "Those who from Heaven to Earth came."

In Sumerian Mythology they were a pantheon of good and evil gods and goddesses who came to Earth to create the human race. According to the some resources, these gods came from Nibiru – ‘Planet of the Crossing.’ The Assyrians and Babylonians called it ‘Marduk’, after their chief god. Sumerians said one year on planet Nibiru, a sar, was equivalent in time to 3,600 Earth years. Anunnaki lifespans were 120 sars which is 120 x 3,600 or 432,000 years. According to the King List – 120 sars had passed from the time the Anunnaki arrived on Earth to the time of the Flood.


Gods With Water Buckets

The Sumerian Gods Create a Biogenetic Experiment Called Humans

The AnunnakiKing’s List are sometimes depicted as humanoid. At other times they are bird-headed with wings. Often they are Reptilian in appearance especially when depicted as warriors. Sometimes they are shown as a combination of several types of entities. All is myth, math, and metaphor, so look for the clues in every set of gods you read about, as they all follow the same patterns that repeat in cycles or loops called Time. The patterns of their battles reflect reality as duality and are found within every pantheon of gods – the same characters playing different roles.

A Sumerian tablet shows Enmeduranki, a prince in Sippar, who was well loved by Anu, Enlil and Ea. Shamash, a priest in the Bright Temple, appointed him then took him to the assembly of the gods. They showed him how to observe oil on water and many other secrets of Anu, Enlil and Ea. Then they gave him the Divine Tablet, the kibdu secret of Heaven and Earth. They taught him how to make calculations with numbers."

The Sumerians never called the Anunnaki, ‘gods.’ They were called din.gir, a two-syllable word. ‘Din’ meant ‘righteous, pure, bright;’ ‘gir’ was a term used to describe a sharp-edged object. As an epithet for the Anunnaki ‘dingir’ meant ‘righteous ones of the bright pointed objects.’

Sumerian texts break up history into two epochs divided by the Great Deluge – the Biblical Flood. After the waters receded the great Anunnaki who decree the fate decided that the gods were too lofty for mankind. The term used – ‘elu’ in Akkadian – means exactly that: ‘Lofty Ones;’ from it comes the Babylonian, Assyrian, Hebrew, and Ugaritic El – the term to which the Greeks gave the connotation ‘god’.

From Genesis:

After the sons of God took human wives there were giants in the Earth in those days; and also after that, when the sons of God came in unto the daughters of men, and they bare children to them, the same became the mighty men which were of old, men of renown. The Nefilim were upon the Earth, in those days and thereafter too, when the sons of the gods cohabitated with the daughters of the Adam, and they bore children unto them. They were the mighty ones of Eternity – the people of the shem.’ Nefilim stems from the Semitic root NFL, ‘to be cast down.’

The Sumerians believed in their gods and saw the intentions of their gods as good and powerful beings who controlled their world. The Sumerians explanation for their hardships and misfortunes were the result of human deeds that displeased the gods – in a word, sin. They believed that when someone displeased the gods, these gods let demons punish the offender with sickness, disease or environmental disasters.

The Sumerians experienced infrequent rains that sometimes created disastrous floods, and they believed that these floods were punishments created by a demon god that lived in the depths of the Gulf of Persia. And to explain the misfortunes and suffering of infants, the Sumerians believed that sin was inborn, that never was a child born without sin. Therefore, wrote a Sumerian, when one suffered it was best not to curse the gods but to glorify them, to appeal to them, and to wait patiently for their deliverance.

In giving their gods human characteristics, the Sumerians projected onto their gods the conflicts they found among themselves. Sumerian priests wrote of a dispute between the god of cattle, Lahar, and his sister Ashnan, the goddess of grain. Like some other gods, these gods were vain and wished to be praised. Each of the two sibling gods extolled his and her own achievements and belittled the achievements of the other.

The Sumerians ‘saw’ another dispute between the minor gods Emesh (summer) and his brother Enten (winter). Each of these brothers had specific duties in creation – like Cain the farmer and Able the herdsmen. The god Enlil put Emesh in charge of producing trees, building houses, temples, cities and other tasks. Enlil put Enten in charge of causing ewes to give birth to lambs, goats to give birth to kids, birds to build nests, fish to lay their eggs and trees to bear fruit. And the brothers quarreled violently as Emesh challenged Enten’s claim to be the farmer god.

A dispute existed also between the god Enki and a mother goddess, Ninhursag — perhaps originally the earth goddess Ki. Ninhursag made eight plants sprout in a divine garden, plants created from three generations of goddesses fathered by Enki.

These goddesses were described as having been born "without pain or travail." Then trouble came as Enki ate the plants that Ninhursag had grown. Ninhursag responded with rage, and she pronounced a curse of death on Enki, and Enki’s health began to fail. Eight parts of Enki’s body – one for each of the eight plants that he ate – became diseased, one of which was his rib.

The goddess Ninhursag then disappeared so as not let sympathy for Enki change her mind about her sentence of death upon him. But she finally relented and returned to heal Enki. She created eight healing deities – eight more goddesses – one for each of Enki’s ailing body parts. The goddess who healed Enki’s rib was Nin-ti, a name that in Sumerian meant "lady of the rib," which describes a character who was to appear in a different role in Hebrew writings centuries later, a character to be called Eve.


The Four Primary Gods

An – Anu

In Sumerian mythology and later for Assyrians and Babylonians, Anu was a sky-god, the god of heaven, lord of constellations, king of gods, spirits and demons, and dwelt in the highest heavenly regions. It was believed that he had the power to judge those who had committed crimes, and that he had created the stars as soldiers to destroy the wicked. He was the father of the Anunnaku (also spelled Anunnaki). In art he was sometimes depicted as a jackal. His attribute was the royal tiara, most times decorated with two pairs of bull horns.

He was also called An.

    In Sumerian mythology, An was the god whose name was synonymous with the sun’s zenith, or heaven. He was the oldest god in the Sumerian pantheon, and part of a triad including Enlil, god of the sky and Enki, god of water. He was called Anu by the Akkadians, rulers of Mesopotamia after the conquest of Sumer in 2334 BCE by King Sargon of Akkad.

    In Sumerian mythology and later for Assyrians and Babylonians, Anu was a sky-god, the god of heaven, lord of constellations, king of gods, spirits and demons, and dwelt in the highest heavenly regions. It was believed that he had the power to judge those who had committed crimes, and that he had created the stars as soldiers to destroy the wicked. He was the father of the Anunnaku (also spelled Anunnaki). In art he was sometimes depicted as a jackal. His attribute was the royal tiara, most times decorated with two pairs of bull horns.

By virtue of being the first figure in a triad consisting of Anu, Bel and Ea, Anu came to be regarded as the father and king of the gods. Anu is so prominently associated with the city of Erech in southern Babylonia that there are good reasons for believing this place to have been the original seat of the Anu cult. If this be correct, then the goddess Nana (or Ishtar) of Erech was presumably regarded as his consort.

The name of the god signifies the "high one" and he was probably a god of the atmospheric region above the earth–perhaps a storm god like Adad. However this may be, already in the old-Babylonian period, i.e. before Khammurabi, Anu was regarded as the god of the heavens and his name became in fact synonymous with the heavens, so that in some cases it is doubtful whether, under the term, the god or the heavens is meant.

It would seem from this that the grouping of the divine powers recognized in the universe into a triad symbolizing the three divisions, heavens, earth and the watery-deep, was a process of thought which had taken place before the third millennium.

To Anu was assigned the control of the heavens, to Bel the earth, and to Ea the waters.

The doctrine once established remained an inherent part of the Babylonian-Assyrian religion and led to the more or less complete disassociation of the three gods constituting the triad from their original local limitations.

An intermediate step between Anu viewed as the local deity of Erech (or some other centre), Bel as the god of Nippur, and Ea as the god of Eridu is represented by the prominence which each one of the centers associated with the three deities in question must have acquired, and which led to each one absorbing the qualities of other gods so as to give them a controlling position in an organized pantheon.

For Nippur we have the direct evidence that its chief deity, En-lil or Bel, was once regarded as the head of an extensive pantheon. The sanctity and, therefore, the importance of Eridu remained a fixed tradition in the minds of the people to the latest days, and analogy therefore justifies the conclusion that Anu was likewise worshipped in a centre which had acquired great prominence.

The summing-up of divine powers manifested in the universe in a threefold division represents an outcome of speculation in the schools attached to the temples of Babylonia, but the selection of Anu, Bel and Ea for the three representatives of the three spheres recognized, is due to the importance which, for one reason or the other, the centers in which Anu, Bel and Ea were worshipped had acquired in the popular mind.

Each of the three must have been regarded in his centre as the most important member in a larger or smaller group, so that their union in a triad marks also the combination of the three distinctive pantheons into a harmonious whole. In the astral theology of Babylonia and Assyria, Anu, Bel and Ea became the three zones of the ecliptic, the northern, middle and southern zone respectively.

The purely theoretical character of Anu is thus still further emphasized, and in the annals and votive inscriptions as well as in the incantations and hymns, he is rarely introduced as an active force to whom a personal appeal can be made. His name becomes little more than a synonym for the heavens in general and even his title as king or father of the gods has little of the personal element in it.

A consort Antum (or as some scholars prefer to read, Anatum) is assigned to him, on the theory that every deity must have a female associate, but Antum is a purely artificial product–a lifeless symbol playing even less of a part in what may be called the active pantheon than Anu.

In Hurrian mythology, Anu was the progenitor of all gods. His son Kumarbi bit off his genitals and spat out three deities, one of whom, Teshub, later deposed Kumarbi. He bit off the genitals of Anu and spat out three new gods. One of those, the storm god Teshub, later deposed Kumarbi. Scholars have pointed to the remarkable similarities between this Hurrian creation myth and the story of Ouranos, Kronos, and Zeus from Greek mythology. It’s all recycled in the loops of time with the same characters playing most of the roles – or one character playing them all.

According to the Earth Chronicles series by Zecharia Sitchin, the wife of Anu was a fertility goddess and the mother of the gods; her cult was centered in Munster. However, Anu was one of the Anunnaki who came from the planet Nibiru (Marduk).

According to Sitchin’s theories on Sumerian legend and lore, the Anunnaki arrived first on Earth probably 400,000 years ago, looking for minerals, especially gold, which they found and mined gold in Africa. Sitchin may have confused the Mesopotamian god Anu with the Irish goddess Anann – or are they the same?


Ninhursag- Ki


Milking scenes from the Temple of Ninhursag, – Tell al Ubaid, c. 2400 B.C.

Frieze with Lion-Headed Eagle (Ninhursag) and Stags, copper, Temple at Tell al-Ubaid, 2500 BCE, h: 1.07 from the Early Dynastic – Southern Mesopotamian Period, 2900 BCE – 2350 BCE – Found in Ubaid. This copper frieze was found in the temple at Ubaid, presumably to be placed over the doorway. It represents the storm-god Ninhursag (lady of the mountain), shown as a lion-headed eagle grasping two stags with her great talons. The panel has been cast in high relief, with the heads of the three beasts cast separately. Note that the head of the eagle breaks out of the border of the frieze.

In Sumerian mythology, Ninhursag (or Ki) was the earth and mother-goddess she usually appears as the sister of Enlil. Ninhursag means ‘Lady of the Foothills’. She had many other names: Nintur ‘Lady Birth’, Ninmah ‘Lady August’, Dingirmah, Aruru, and as wife of Enki was usually called Damgalnunna.

In Akkadian she was Belit-ili ‘Lady of the Gods’ and Mama and as wife to Ea, Enki’s Akkadian counterpart, she was called Damkina. Her prestige decreased as Ishtar’s increased, but her aspect as Damkina mother of Marduk, the supreme god of Babylonia, still held a secure place in the pantheon.

In union with Enki she also bore Ninsar, goddess of the pasture. She was the chief nurse, the one in charge of medical facilities. In that role that the Goddess was called NINTI (lady-life). She was considered the Mother Goddess. She was nicknamed ‘Mammu’ – now called ‘mother’ ‘mom’.

Ninhursag bore a male child to Enlil. His name was NIN.UR.TA (lord who completes the fountain). He was the son who to do battle for his father using bolts of lightening.

In Egypt she played the roles of several creational goddesses – Isis, Maat and Hathor.


Enki

Sumer the Initial Insert

The Sumerian biogenetic experiment begins.

Watering the Tree of Life – Creating a Bloodline


Ea stands in his watery home the Apsu.

Enki walks out of the water to the land attended by his messenger, Isimud

who is readily identifiable by his two faces looking in opposite directions (duality).
The Lion’s tail/tale – Age of Leo.

Enki stands with the Gods and the Initiate

Water of Life flowing into the laboratory glassware indicates alchemical circulations.

The creation of the first human

Laboratory vessels symbolize the bloodline and the Tree of Life.

Handing the water/liquid/blood of life

to a bio-genetically engineered human. Humans are a hybrid species.

Duality – Yin Yang

Male-female separation of Twin Soul Aspects – Reunion in 2012

Enki’s emblem was two serpents [twin human DNA] entwined on a staff – the basis for the winged caduceus symbol used by modern Western medicine and the rod of Hermes. Enki’s sacred number is 40. He was the leader of the first sons of Anu who came down to Earth, playing a pivotal role in saving humanity from the Deluge. He defied the Anunnaki ruling council and told Ziusudra (the Sumerian Noah) how to build a ship on which to save humanity from the blood. Ea would have been over 120 sars old at that time, yet his activity with humanity continued to be actively reported for thousands of years thereafter.

Enki’s youngest son, Ningizzida, was Lord of the Tree of Truth, in Mesopotamia. He played the role of Thoth in Egypt. The ancient Mystery School Teachings of Thoth were past down to his Initiates who became the priests. They hid the secret knowledge of creation, passing it down through the ages until the experiment was to end. Enki was the deity of water, intelligence and creation. The main temple of Enki was the so-called é-engur-ra, the "house of the water-deep" in Eridu, which was in the wetlands of the Euphrates valley at some distance from the Persian Gulf. This takes us to the Cradle of Civilization.


Kundalini


Caduceus Rod of Hermes, DNA

Alchemy


Lyra of Hermes

Using the Rod to Slay the Dragon

Omega Project, Ending the Human DNA Experiment, Leo, Lion


Ouroboros
2012

Enki was a deity in Sumerian mythology, later known as Ea in Babylonian mythology. The name Ea is of Sumerian origin and was written by means of two signs signifying "house" and "water". Enki was the deity of water, intelligence and creation. The main temple of Enki was the so-called é-engur-ra, the "house of the (water-)deep"; it was in Eridu, which was in the wetlands of the Euphrates valley at some distance from the Persian Gulf. He was the keeper of the holy powers called Me. The exact meaning of his name is not sure: the common translation is "Lord of the Earth": the Sumerian en is translated as "lord", ki as "earth"; but there are theories that ki in this name has another origin.He is the lord of the Apsu, the watery abyss. His name is possibly an epithet bestowed on him for the creation of the first man, [Adamu or Adapa. His symbols included a goat and a fish, which later combined into a single beast, the Capricorn, which became one of the signs of the zodiac. Enki had a penchant for beer and a string of incestuous affairs. First, he and his consort Ninhursag had a daughter Ninsar. He then had intercourse with Ninsar who gave birth to Ninkurra. Finally, he had intercourse with Ninkurra, who gave birth to Uttu.

According to Sumerian mythology, Enki allowed humanity to survive the Deluge designed to kill them. After Enlil, An and the rest of the apparent Council of Deities, decided that Man would suffer total annihilation, he covertly rescued the human man Ziusudra by either instructing him to build some kind of an boat for his family, or by bringing him into the heavens in a magic boat. This is apparently the oldest surviving source of the Noah’s Ark myth and other parallel Middle Eastern Deluge myths.

Enki was considered a god of life and replenishment, and was often depicted with streams of water emanating from his shoulders. Alongside him were trees symbolizing the male and female aspects of nature, each holding the male and female aspects of the ‘Life Essence’, which he, as apparent alchemist of the gods, would masterfully mix to create several beings that would live upon the face of the Earth.

Eridu, meaning "the good city", was one of the oldest settlements in the Euphrates valley, and is now represented by the mounds known as Abu Shahrein. In the absence of excavations on that site, we are dependent for our knowledge of Ea on material found elsewhere. This is, however, sufficient to enable us to state definitely that Ea was a water-deity, lord especially of the water under the earth, the Apsu. Whether Ea (or A-e as some scholars prefer) represents the real pronunciation of his name we do not know.

Older accounts sometimes suppose that by reason of the constant accumulation of soil in the Euphrates valley Eridu was formerly situated on the Persian Gulf itself (as indicated by mention in Sumerian texts of its being on the Apsu), but it is now known that the opposite is true, that the waters of the Persian Gulf have been eroding the land and that the Apsu must refer to the fresh water of the marshes surrounding the city.

Ea is figured as a man covered with the body of a fish, and this representation, as likewise the name of his temple E-apsu, "house of the watery deep", points decidedly to his character as a god of the waters. Of his cult at Eridu, which goes back to the oldest period of Babylonian history, nothing definite is known except that his temple was named Esaggila = "the lofty house", pointing to a staged tower (as with the temple of Enlil at Nippur, which was known as Ekur = "mountain house"), and that incantations, involving ceremonial rites, in which water as a sacred element played a prominent part, formed a feature of his worship.

Whether Eridu at one time also played an important political role is not certain, though not improbable. At all events, the prominence of the Ea cult led, as in the case of Nippur, to the survival of Eridu as a sacred city, long after it had ceased to have any significance as a political center. Myths in which Ea figures prominently have been found in Assurbanipal’s library, indicating that Ea was regarded as the protector and teacher of mankind. He is essentially a god of civilization, and it was natural that he was also looked upon as the creator of man, and of the world in general.

Traces of this view appear in the Marduk epic celebrating the achievements of this god, and the close connection between the Ea cult at Eridu and that of Marduk also follows from two considerations:

  • the name of Marduk’s sanctuary at Babylon bears the same name, Esaggila, as that of Ea in Eridu
  • Marduk is generally termed the son of Ea, who derives his powers from the voluntary abdication of the father in favor of his son.

Accordingly, the incantations originally composed for the Ea cult were re-edited by the priests of Babylon and adapted to the worship of Marduk, and, similarly, the hymns to Marduk betray traces of the transfer of attributes to Marduk which originally belonged to Ea.

It is, however, more particularly as the third figure in the triad, the two other members of which were Anu and Enlil, that Ea acquires his permanent place in the pantheon. To him was assigned the control of the watery element, and in this capacity he becomes the shar apsi, i.e. king of the Apsu or "the deep." The Apsu was figured as the abyss of water beneath the earth, and since the gathering place of the dead, known as Aralu, was situated near the confines of the Apsu, he was also designated as En-Ki, i.e. "lord of that which is below", in contrast to Anu, who was the lord of the "above" or the heavens.

The cult of Ea extended throughout Babylonia and Assyria. We find temples and shrines erected in his honor, e.g. at Nippur, Girsu, Ur, Babylon, Sippar and Nineveh, and the numerous epithets given to him, as well as the various forms under which the god appears, alike bear witness to the popularity which he enjoyed from the earliest to the latest period of Babylonian-Assyrian history.

The consort of Ea, known as Damkina, "lady of that which is below," or Damgalnunna, "great lady of the waters," represents a pale reflection of Ea and plays a part merely in association with her lord.


Enlil

Enlil was the name of a chief deity in Babylonian religion, perhaps pronounced and sometimes rendered in translations as Ellil in later Akkadian. The name is Sumerian and has been believed to mean ‘Lord Wind’ though a more literal interpretation is ‘Lord of the Command’.

Enlil was the god of wind, or the sky between earth and heaven. One story has him originate as the exhausted breath of An (God of the heavens) and Ki (goddess of the Earth) after sexual union. Another accounts is that he and his sister Ninhursag/Ninmah/Aruru were children of an obscure god Enki ‘Lord Earth’ (not the famous Enki) by Ninki ‘Lady Earth’.

When Enlil was a young god, he was banished from Dilmun, home of the gods, to Kur, the underworld for raping a young girl named Ninlil. Ninlil followed him to the underworld where she bore his first child, the moon god Sin. After fathering three more underworld deities, Enlil was allowed to return to Dilmun.

Enlil was also known as the inventor of the pickaxe/hoe (favorite tool of the Sumerians) and the cause of plants growing. He was in possession of the holy Me, until he gave them to Enki for safe keeping, who summarily lost them to Inanna in a drunken stupor.

Enlil’s relation to An ‘Sky’, in theory the supreme god of the Sumerian pantheon, was somewhat like that of a Frankish mayor of the palace compared to the king, or that of a Japanese shogun compared to the emperor, or to a prime minister in a modern constitutional monarchy compared to the supposed monarch. While An was in name ruler in the highest heavens, it was Enlil who mostly did the actual ruling over the world.

By his wife Ninlil or Sud, Enlil was father of the moon god Nanna (in Akkadian Sin) and of Ninurta (also called Ningirsu). Enlil is sometimes father of Nergal, of Nisaba the goddess of grain, of Pabilsag who is sometimes equated with Ninurta, and sometimes of Enbilulu. By Ereshkigal Enlil was father of Namtar.

Enlil is associated with the ancient city of Nippur, and since Enlu with the determinative for "land" or "district" is a common method of writing the name of the city, it follows, apart from other evidence, that Enlil was originally the patron deity of Nippur.

At a very early period – prior to 3000 BC – Nippur had become the centre of a political district of considerable extent. Inscriptions found at Nippur, where extensive excavations were carried on during 1888-1900 by Messrs Peters and Haynes, under the auspices of the University of Pennsylvania, show that Enlil was the head of an extensive pantheon. Among the titles accorded to him are "king of lands," "king of heaven and earth" and "father of the gods".

His chief temple at Nippur was known as Ekur, signifying ‘House of the mountain’, and such was the sanctity acquired by this edifice that Babylonian and Assyrian rulers, down to the latest days, vied with one another in embellishing and restoring Enlil’s seat of worship, and the name Ekur became the designation of a temple in general.

Grouped around the main sanctuary, there arose temples and chapels to the gods and goddesses who formed his court, so that Ekur became the name for an entire sacred precinct in the city of Nippur.

The name "mountain house" suggests a lofty structure and was perhaps the designation originally of the staged tower at Nippur, built in imitation of a mountain, with the sacred shrine of the god on the top.

When, with the political rise of Babylon as the centre of a great empire, Nippur yielded its prerogatives to the city over which Marduk presided, the attributes and the titles of Enlil were largely transferred to Marduk.

But Enlil did not, however, entirely lose his right to have any considerable political importance, while in addition the doctrine of a triad of gods symbolizing the three divisions – heavens, earth and water – assured to Enlil, to whom the earth was assigned as his province, his place in the religious system.

It was no doubt in part Enlil’s position as the second figure of the triad that enabled him to survive the political eclipse of Nippur and made his sanctuary a place of pilgrimage to which Assyrian kings down to the days of Assur-bani-pal paid their homage equally with Babylonian rulers.

The Sumerian ideogram for Enlil or Ellil was formerly incorrectly read as Bel by scholars, but in fact Enlil was not especially given the title Bel ‘Lord’ more than many other gods.

The Babylonian god Marduk is mostly the god persistently called Bel in late Assyrian and Babylonian inscriptions and it is Marduk that mostly appears in Greek and Latin texts as Belos or Belus. References in older literature to Enlil as the old Bel and Marduk as the young Bel derive from this error in reading.

Ziggurat of Enlil at Nippur


Anshar

In Akkadian mythology and Sumerian mythology, Anshar (also Anshur, Ashur, Asshur) is the sky god. He is the husband of his sister Kishar; they are the children of Lahmu and Lahamu, and the parents of Anu and Ea (and, in some traditions, Enlil). He is sometimes depicted as having Ninlil as a consort. As Anshar, he is progenitor of the Akkadian pantheon; as Ashur, he is the head of the Assyrian pantheon. Anshar led the gods in the war against Tiamat.


Winged Assur is portrayed looking like the Faravahar or Zoroaster (Z).

Sumerian Minor Gods and Goddesses

Ereshkigal

In Sumerian and Akkadian (Babylonian and Assyrian) mythology, Ereshkigal, wife of Nergal, was the goddess of Irkalla, the land of the dead. She managed the destiny of those who were beyond the grave, in the Underworld, where she was queen.

It was said that she had been stolen away by Kur and taken to the Underworld, where she was made queen unwillingly. She is actually the twin sister of Enki. Ereshkigal was the only one who could pass judgement and give laws in her kingdom, and her name means "Lady of the Great Place", "Lady of the Great Earth", or "Lady of the Great Below". Her main temples were at Kutha and Sippar.

Ereshkigal was also Inanna and Ishtar.


Inanna

The goddess Inanna (Innin, or Innini) was the patron and special god/goddess of the ancient Sumerian city of Erech (Uruk), the City of Gilgamesh. As Queen of heaven, she was associated with the Evening Star (the planet Venus), and sometimes with the Moon. She may also have been associated the brightest stars in the heavens, as she is sometimes symbolized by an eight-pointed star, a seven-pointed star, or a four pointed star. In the earliest traditions, Inanna was the daughter of An, the Sky, Ki, the Earth (both of Uruk, (Warka)). In later Sumerian traditions, she is the daughter of Nanna (Narrar), the Moon God and Ningal, the Moon Goddess (both of Ur).

On either side of her cult statue shown above is the ring-post, also known as Inanna’s knot. This was a sacred symbol of Inanna, associated exclusively with her. It represents a door-post made from a bundle of reeds, the upper ends, bent into a loop to hold a cross-pole. The ring-post is shown on many depictions of Inanna, including those of the famed Warka Vase.

Inanna
Owl – Eye Symbology

Wings – Evolution of Consciousness in the Alchemy of Time
Palms – Jesus – Holding Omega – Endings – Leo – Lion
Twin Lions – Breast of the Sphinx

Inanna was one of the most revered of goddesses among later Sumerian mythology.

Inanna’s Descent

A winged goddess wearing a multi-horned crown stands with her head in the realm of the deities and their devotees. Her bird-clawed feet rest in a place, likely the underworld, inhabited by strange and demonic creatures. This shows the duality of her nature – as well as our own – above and below. Some think her to be Lilith, but the crown shows her to be a great goddess, almost certainly Inanna. Mesopotamian cylinder seal. Hematite. 2000-1600 BCE.

She was said to descend from the ancient family of the creator goddess Nammu, who was her grandmother. Inanna held "full power of judgment and decision and the control of the law of heaven and earth." Her sacred planet was Venus, the evening star. She was often symbolized as a lioness in battle. Along the Tigris and Euphrates rivers were many shrines and temples dedicated to Inanna.

The temple of E Anna, Inanna’s House of Heaven, in Uruk, was the greatest of these. This temple was 5000 years old and had been built and rebuilt many times to hold a community of sacred women who cared for the temple lands. The high priestess of Inanna would choose for her bed one she would appoint as shepherd. He would represent Dumuzi, sacred son/lover of Inanna, if he could prove his worth.

In later times, Inanna’s lost some of her attributes, which were then said then to have been given her by Enki, rather than by her grandmother Nammu and her mother Ningal.

The myth states that Inanna traveled to Eridu and was given the one hundred Mes, which were the gifts of culture such as truth and justice, as well as practical skills such as weaving and pottery-making. Though Enki regretted his drunken decision to release the Mes to her and sent mighty sea monsters to stop her boat as it sailed the Euphrates, she was able to defeat them and bring the knowledge back to Uruk.

Inanna and Dumuzi


Dumuzi in net skirt (symbolizes grids) feeding sheep.
Inanna’s standards ("gateposts") that frame the image suggest
that the event is happening inside her temple grounds.
Mesopotamian cylinder seal. Marble. About 3200-3000 BCE.

Dumuzi

Today several versions of the Sumerian death of Dumuzi have been recovered, "Inanna’s Descent to the Underworld", "Dumuzi’s dream" and "Dumuzi and the galla", as well as a tablet separately recounting Dumuzi’s death, mourned by holy Inanna, and his noble sister Gestinanna, and even his dog and the lambs and kids in his fold; Dumuzi himself is weeping at the hard fate in store for him, after he had walked among men, and the cruel galla of the Underworld seize him.

A number of pastoral poems and songs relate the love affair of Inanna and Dumuzid the shepherd. A text recovered in 1963 recounts "The Courtship of Inanna and Dumuzi" in terms that are tender and frankly erotic.

According to the myth of Inanna’s descent to the underworld, represented in parallel Sumerian and Akkadian tablets, Inanna (Ishtar in the Akkadian texts) set off for the netherworld, or Kur, which was ruled by her sister Ereshkigal, perhaps to take it as her own. She passed through seven gates and at each one was required to leave a garment or an ornament so that when she had passed through the seventh gate she was entirely naked. Despite warnings about her presumption, she did not turn back but dared to sit herself down on Ereshkigal’s throne. Immediately the Anunnaki of the underworld judged her, gazed at her with the eyes of death, and she became a corpse, hung up on a nail.

Based on the incomplete texts as first found, it was assumed that Ishtar/Inanna’s descent into Kur occurred after the death of Tammuz/Dumuzid rather than before and that her purpose was to rescue Tammuz/Dumuzid. This is the familiar form of the myth as it appeared in M. Jastrow’s Descent of the Goddess Ishtar into the Lower World 1915, widely available on the Internet. New texts uncovered in 1963 filled in the story in quite another fashion, showing that Dumuzi was in fact consigned to the Underworld himself, in order to secure Inanna’s release.

Inanna’s faithful servant attempted to get help from the other gods but only wise Enki/Ea responded. The details of Enki/Ea’s plan differ slightly in the two surviving accounts, but in the end, Inanna/Ishtar was resurrected. However, a "conservation of souls" law required her to find a replacement for herself in Kur. She went from one god to another, but each one pleaded with her and she had not the heart to go through with it until she found Dumuzid/Tammuz richly dressed and on her throne. Inanna/Ishtar immediately set her accompanying demons on Dumuzid/Tammuz. At this point the Akkadian text fails as Tammuz’ sister Belili, introduced for the first time, strips herself of her jewelry in mourning but claims that Tammuz and the dead will come back.

There is some confusion here. The name Belili occurs in one of the Sumerian texts also, but it is not the name of Dumuzid’s sister who is there named Geshtinana, but is the name of an old woman whom another text calls Bilulu.

In any case, the Sumerian texts relate how Dumuzid fled to his sister Geshtinana who attempted to hide him but who could not in the end stand up to the demons. Dumuzid has two close calls until the demons finally catch up with him under the supposed protection of this old woman called Bilulu or Belili and then they take him. However Inanna repents.

Inanna seeks vengeance on Bilulu, on Bilulu’s murderous son Gigrgire and on Girgire’s consort Shirru "of the haunted desert, no-one’s child and no-one’s friend". Inanna changes Bilulu into a waterskin and Girgire into a protective god of the desert while Shirru is assigned to watch always that the proper rites are performed for protection against the hazards of the desert.

Finally, Inanna relents and changes her decree thereby restoring her husband Dumuzi to life; an arrangement is made by which Geshtinana will take Dumuzid’s place in Kur for six months of the year: "You (Dumuzi), half the year. Your sister (Gestinanna), half the year!" This newly-recovered final line upset Samuel Noah Kramer’s former interpretation, as he allowed: "my conclusion that Dumuzi dies and "stays dead" forever (cf e.g. Mythologies of the Ancient World p. 10) was quite erroneous: Dumuzi according to the Sumerian mythographers rises from the dead annually and, after staying on earth for half the year, descends to the Nether World for the other half".

Aside from this extended epic "The Descent of Inanna," a previously unknown "Courtship of Inanna and Dumuzi" was first translated into English and annotated by Sumerian scholar Noah Kramer and folklorist Diane Wolkstein working in tandem, and published in 1983. In this tale Inanna’s lover, the shepherd-king Dumuzi, brought a wedding gift of milk in pails, yoked across his shoulders.

The name of Dumuzi/Tammuz was carried by Tammuzh, a Tamil Pandyan king in the Dravidian cultural realm of ancient South India, who held his capital at Kuadam. The language and cultural term Tamil is an anglicised form of the native name Tamizhi.


Inanna

Probably the most important Sumerian contribution to civilization was the invention and creation of a standard writing and literature; the Sumerians also had libraries. Their literary works reveal religious beliefs, ethical ideas, and the spiritual aspirations of the Sumerians. Among these works are the hymns and stories of Inanna — important here because they were recorded at a time when the patriarchy was beginning to take hold, and the position of the Goddess, although strong, was changing.

She presented the me by Enki. The me is the order out of chaos, the great attributes of civilization, the powers of the gods. The me were conferred by the gods on other gods or on the king-priests, who as the representatives of the gods on Earth, ensured the continuation of civilization.

The special powers, contained within the me allowed the holy plan or design (the gis-hur) to be implemented on Earth. The me were contained within special objects of great sacred value, such as the royal throne, the sacred bed, the temple drum, the scepter, the crown, and other special articles of clothing or jewelry to be worn, sat on, lied in, and so forth. These things were charmed like a talisman. Inanna got Enki drunk on beer and tricked him into giving her the me. They gave her many special gifts and powers. She became Goddess and Queen of Heaven and Earth, now able to descend into the Underworld and ascend once again.

Inanna was the Queen of Beasts

The Lion was her sacred animal

Inanna could be wily and cunning. She was a powerful warrior, who drove a war chariot, drawn by lions. In the duality of our reality she is portrayed as gentle and loving, a source of beauty and grace, a source of inspiration. She endowed the people of Sumer with gifts that inspired and insured their growth as a people and a culture. She is also depicted as a passionate, sensuous lover in The Courtship of Inanna and Damuzi, which established the principle of Sacred Marriage. Indeed, one aspect of Inanna is as the Goddess of Love, and it is in this aspect that she embodies creativity, procreativity, passion, raw sexual energy and power.

During the time the Goddess Inanna ruled the people of Sumer, they and their communities prospered and thrived. The urban culture, though agriculturally dependent, centered upon the reverence of the Goddess – a cella, or shrine, in her honor was the centerpiece of the cities. Inanna was the queen of seven temples throughout Sumer.

Erech or Uruk, near modern Warka was Inanna’s sacred city. It was one of the oldest cities of Sumer. The Bible said that King Nimrod founded it. Dumuzi, Inanna’s consort was a shepherd king of Uruk, as was Gilgamesh and his father Lugalbanda. The Temple of Inanna was in Erech. Also known as the E-ana or House of Heaven, this was her most important temple. The shrine of the Goddess was built on an artificial mound some forty feet above the ground level and was reached by a staircase. A statue of the Goddess was housed within the shrine.

Queen Shub-Ad reigned from the First Dynasty of Ur. Her grave was excavated by Sir Leonard Woolley of the British Museum in 1929. She was buried with her King in a vast tomb complex about 2900 BCE, with the accompaniment of what Woolley called "human sacrifice on a lavish scale," for along with the King and Queen, numerous male and female attendants, soldiers, grooms, handmaidens, ladies in waiting, etc. were also buried; even a harpist and her golden harp, inlayed with lapis. Chariots, carts, and their animals were also buried with them. The Queen wore the beautiful headdress of spirals of gold, terminating in lapis-centered gold flowers (or stars). The Queen also wore large golden earrings of lunate shape that hung to her shoulders; lapis amulets of a bull and a calf, and strands of lapis, agate, carnelian and gold beads. The Queen’s grave was much more elaborate than that of the King, perhaps indicating her equal or even greater importance.

Inanna was Ishtar.

Ishtar

Ishtar is the Akkadian counterpart to the Sumerian Inanna and to the cognate northwest Semitic goddess Astarte. Anunit, Astarte and Atarsamain are alternative names for Ishtar. Inanna, twin of Utu/Shamash, children of Nannar/Sin, first born on Earth of Enlil. The first names given are Sumerian, the second names derive from the Akkadians, who are a Semitic people who immigrated into Sumeria. Adding an [sh] to a name is typical Akkadian, as Anu to Anush.

The goddess represents the planet Venus. (A continent on Venus is named Ishtar Terra by astronomers today.) The double aspect of the goddess may correspond to the difference between Venus as a morning star and as an evening star. In Sumerian the planet is called "MUL.DILI.PAT" meaning "unique star".

The name Inanna (sometimes spelled Inana) means "Great Lady of An", where An is the god of heaven. The meaning of Ishtar is not known, though it is possible that the underlying stem is the same as that of Assur, which would thus make her the "leading one" or "chief". In any event, it is now generally recognized that the name is Semitic in origin.

The Sumerian Inanna was first worshiped at Uruk (Erech in the Bible, Unug in Sumerian) in the earliest period of Mesopotamian history. In incantations, hymns, myths, epics, votive inscriptions, and historical annals, Inanna/Ishtar was celebrated and invoked as the force of life. But there were two aspects to this goddess of life. She was the goddess of fertility and sexuality, and could also destroy the fields and make the earth’s creatures infertile. She was invoked as a goddess of war, battles, and the chase, particularly among the warlike Assyrians. Before the battle Ishtar would appear to the Assyrian army, clad in battle array and armed with bow and arrow. (compare Greek Athena.)

One of the most striking Sumerian myths describes Inanna passing through seven gates of hell into the underworld. At each gate some of her clothing and her ornaments are removed until at the last gate she is entirely naked. Ereshkigal, the queen of the underworld kills her and hangs her corpse on a hook on the wall. When Inanna returns from the underworld by intercession of the clever god, her uncle, Enki, according to the rules she must find someone to take her place. On her way home she encounters her friends prostrated with grief at her loss, but in Kulaba, her cult city, she finds her lover Dumuzi, a son of Enki, Tammuz seated in splendour on a throne, so she has him seized and dragged below. Later, missing him, she arranges for his sister to substitute for him during six months of the year.

In all the great centres Inanna and then Ishtar had her temples: E-anna, "house of An", in Uruk; E-makh, "great house", in Babylon; E-mash-mash, "house of offerings", in Nineveh. Inanna was the guardian of prostitutes, and probably had priestess-prostitutes to serve her. She was served by priests as well as by priestesses. The (later) votaries of Ishtar were virgins who, as long as they remained in her service, were not permitted to marry.

Inanna was also associated with beer, and was the patroness of tavern keepers, who were usually female in early Mesopotamia.

Ishtar is also an omnipresent figure in the epic of Gilgamesh. She appears also on the Uruk vase, one of the most famous ancient Mesopotamian artifacts. The relief on this vase seems to show Inanna conferring kingship on a supplicant. Various inscriptions and artifacts indicate that kingship was one of the gifts bestowed by Inanna on the ruler of Uruk.

On monuments and seal-cylinders Inanna/Ishtar appears frequently with bow and arrow, though also simply clad in long robes with a crown on her head and an eight-rayed star as her symbol. Statuettes have been found in large numbers representing her as naked with her arms folded across her breast or holding a child.

Together with the moon god Nanna or Suen (Sin in Akkadian), and the sun god Utu (Shamash in Akkadian), Inanna/Ishtar is the third figure in a triad deifying and personalizing the moon, the sun, and the earth: Moon (wisdom), Sun (justice) and Earth (life force). This triad overlies another: An, heaven; Enlil, earth; and Enki (Ea in Akkadian), the watery deep.

Symbol: an eight or sixteen-pointed star Sacred number: 15 Astrological region: Dibalt(Venus) and the Bowstar (Sirius) Sacred animal: lion, (dragon)

Ishtar Gate


Marduk

Marduk (Sumerian spelling in Akkadian AMAR.UTU "solar calf"; Biblical Merodach) was the name of a late generation god from ancient Mesopotamia and patron deity of the city of Babylon, who, when Babylon permanently became the political center of the Euphrates valley in the time of Hammurabi (18th century BC), started to slowly rise to the position of the head of the Babylonian pantheon, position he fully acquired by the second half of the second millennium BCE.

Marduk’s original character is obscure, but whatever special traits Marduk may have had were overshadowed by the reflex of the political development through which the Euphrates valley passed and which led to imbuing him with traits belonging to gods who at an earlier period were recognized as the heads of the pantheon.

There are more particularly two gods – Ea and Enlil – whose powers and attributes pass over to Marduk. In the case of Ea the transfer proceeds pacifically and without involving the effacement of the older god. Marduk is viewed as the son of Ea. The father voluntarily recognizes the superiority of the son and hands over to him the control of humanity. This association of Marduk and Ea, while indicating primarily the passing of the supremacy once enjoyed by Eridu to Babylon as a religious and political centre, may also reflect an early dependence of Babylon upon Eridu, not necessarily of a political character but, in view of the spread of culture in the Euphrates valley from the south to the north, the recognition of Eridu as the older centre on the part of the younger one.

While the relationship between Ea and Marduk is thus marked by harmony and an amicable abdication on the part of the father in favour of his son, Marduk’s absorption of the power and prerogatives of Enlil of Nippur was at the expense of the latter’s prestige. After the days of Hammurabi, the cult of Marduk eclipses that of Enlil, and although during the four centuries of Kassite control in Babylonia (c. 1570 BC-1157 BC), Nippur and the cult of Enlil enjoyed a period of renaissance, when the reaction ensued it marked the definite and permanent triumph of Marduk over Enlil until the end of the Babylonian empire. The only serious rival to Marduk after ca. 1000 BC is Anshar in Assyria. In the south Marduk reigns supreme. He is normally referred to as Bel "Lord".

When Babylon became the capital of Mesopotamia, the patron deity of Babylon was elevated to the level of supreme god. In order to explain how Marduk seized power, Enuma Elish was written, which tells the story of Marduk’s birth, heroic deeds, and becoming the ruler of the gods. This can be viewed as a form of Mesopotamian apologetics.

In Enuma Elish, a civil war between the gods was growing to a climatic battle. The Anunnaki gods gathered together to find one god who could defeat the gods rising against them. Marduk, a very young god, answered the call, and was promised the position of head god.When he killed his enemy he "wrested from him the Tablets of Destiny, wrongfully his" and assumed his new position. Under his reign humans were created to bear the burdens of life so the gods could be at leisure.

People were named after Marduk. For example, the Biblical personality Mordechai (Book of Esther) used this Gentile name in replacement of his Hebrew name Bilshan.Babylonian texts talk of the creation of Eridu by the god Marduk as the first city, ‘the holy city, the dwelling of their [the other gods] delight’.

Nabu, god of wisdom, is a son of Marduk.

Etemenanki, "The temple of the creation of heaven and earth", was the name of a ziggurat to Marduk in the city of Babylon of the 6th century BC Chaldean (Neo-Babylonian) dynasty. Originally seven stories in height, little remains of it now save ruins. Etemenanki was later popularly identified with the Tower of Babel.


Nammu – Namma

In Sumerian mythology, Nammu (more properly Namma) is the Sumerian creation goddess. If the Babylonian creation myth Enuma Elish is based on a Sumerian myth, which seems likely, Nammu/Namma is the Sumerian goddess of the primeval sea that gave birth to heaven and earth and the first gods. She was probably the first personification of the constellation which the Babylonians later called Tiamat and the Greeks called Cetus and represented the Apsu, the fresh water ocean which the Sumerians believed lay beneath the earth, the source of life-giving water and fertility in a country with almost no rainfall.

As Nammu/Namma is the goddess of the fertile waters, An is the god of the sky. Nammu/Namma and her son Enki created mankind as assistants for the gods. Enki is the god of human culture who also presides over the Absu.


Nergal

The name Nergal (or Nirgal, Nirgali) refers to a deity in Babylonia with the main seat of his cult at Cuthah (or Kutha) represented by the mound of Tell-Ibrahim. Nergal is mentioned in the Hebrew bible as the deity of the city of Cuth (Cuthah): "And the men of Babylon made Succoth-benoth, and the men of Cuth made Nergal" (2 Kings, 17:30).

Nergal actually seems to be in part a solar deity, sometimes identified with Shamash, but a representative of a certain phase only of the sun. Portrayed in hymns and myths as a god of war and pestilence, Nergal seems to represent the sun of noontime and of the summer solstice which brings destruction to mankind, high summer being the dead season in the Mesopotamian annual cycle.

Nergal was also the deity who presides over the nether-world, and who stands at the head of the special pantheon assigned to the government of the dead (supposed to be gathered in a large subterranean cave known as Aralu or Irkalla). In this capacity he has associated with him a goddess Allatu or Ereshkigal, though at one time Allatu may have functioned as the sole mistress of Aralu, ruling in her own person. In some texts the god Ninazu is the son of Nergal by Allatu/Ereshkigal.

Ordinarily Nergal pairs with his consort Laz. Standard iconography pictured Nergal as a lion, and boundary-stone monuments symbolise him with a mace surmounted by the head of a lion.

Nergal’s fiery aspect appears in names or epithets such as Lugalgira, Sharrapu ("the burner," perhaps a mere epithet), Erra, Gibil (though this name more properly belongs to Nusku), and Sibitti. A certain confusion exists in cuneiform literature between Ninurta and Nergal. Nergal has epithets such as the "raging king," the "furious one," and the like. A play upon his name separated into three elements as Ne-uru-gal (lord of the great dwelling) expresses his position at the head of the nether-world pantheon.

In the astral-theological system Nergal becomes the planet Mars, while in ecclesiastical art the great lion-headed colossi serving as guardians to the temples and palaces seem to symbolise Nergal, just as the bull-headed colossi probably typify Ninurta.

Nergal’s chief temple at Cuthah bore the name Meslam, from which the god receives the designation of Meslamtaeda or Meslamtaea, "the one that rises up from Meslam". The name Meslamtaeda/Meslamtaea indeed is found as early as the list of gods from Fara while the name Nergal only begins to appear in the Akkadian period.

The cult of Nergal does not appear to have spread as widely as that of Ninurta. Hymns and votive and other inscriptions of Babylonian and Assyrian rulers frequently invoke him, but we do not learn of many temples to him outside of Cuthah. Sennacherib speaks of one at Tarbisu to the north of Nineveh, but significantly, although Nebuchadnezzar II (606 BC 586 BC), the great temple-builder of the neo-Babylonian monarchy, alludes to his operations at Meslam in Cuthah, he makes no mention of a sanctuary to Nergal in Babylon. Local associations with his original seat Kutha and the conception formed of him as a god of the dead acted in making him feared rather than actively worshipped.

Text adapted from the 1911 .


Sama – Ahamash – Utu

Shamash or Sama, was the common Akkadian name of the sun-god in Babylonia and Assyria, corresponding to Sumerian Utu.

The name signifies perhaps "servitor," and would thus point to a secondary position occupied at one time by this deity. Both in early and in late inscriptions Sha-mash is designated as the "offspring of Nannar," i.e. of the moon-god, and since, in an enumeration of the pantheon, Sin generally takes precedence of Shamash, it is in relationship, presumably, to the moon-god that the sun-god appears as the dependent power.

Such a supposition would accord with the prominence acquired by the moon in the calendar and in astrological calculations, as well as with the fact that the moon-cult belongs to the nomadic and therefore earlier, stage of civilization, whereas the sun-god rises to full importance only after the agricultural stage has been reached.

The two chief centres of sun-worship in Babylonia were Sippar, represented by the mounds at Abu Habba, and Larsa, represented by the modern Senkerah. At both places the chief sanctuary bore the name E-barra (or E-babbara) "the shining house" a direct allusion to the brilliancy of the sun-god. Of the two temples, that at Sippara was the more famous, but temples to Shamash were erected in all large centres such as Babylon, Ur, Mari, Nippur and Nineveh.

The attribute most commonly associated with Shamash is justice. Just as the sun disperses darkness, so Shamash brings wrong and injustice to light. Hammurabi attributes to Shamash the inspiration that led him to gather the existing laws and legal procedures into a code, and in the design accompanying the code the king represents himself in an attitude of adoration before Shamash as the embodiment of the idea of justice.

Several centuries before Hammurabi, Ur-Engur of the Ur dynasty (c. 2600 BC) declared that he rendered decisions "according to the just laws of Shamash."

It was a logical consequence of this conception of the sun-god that he was regarded also as the one who released the sufferer from the grasp of the demons. The sick man, therefore, appeals to Shamash as the god who can be depended upon to help those who are suffering unjustly. This aspect of the sun-god is vividly brought out in the hymns addressed to him, which are, therefore, among the finest productions in the entire realm of Babylonian literature.

It is evident from the material at our disposal that the Shamash cults at Sippar and Larsa so overshadowed local sun-deities elsewhere as to lead to an absorption of the minor deities by the predominating one. In the systematized pantheon these minor sun-gods become attendants that do his service. Such are Bunene, spoken of as his chariot driver, whose consort is Atgi-makh, Kettu ("justice") and Mesharu ("right"), who are introduced as servitors of Shamash.

Other sun-deities, as Ninurta and Nergal, the patron deities of important centres, retained their independent existence as certain phases of the sun, Ninib becoming the sun-god of the morning and of the spring time, and Nergal the sun-god of the noon and of the summer solstice, while Shamash was viewed as the sun-god in general.

Together with Sin and Ishtar, Shamash forms a second triad by the side of Anu, Enlil and Ea. The three powers, Sin, Shamash and Ishtar, symbolized the three great forces of nature, the sun, the moon and the life-giving force of the earth.

At times, instead of Ishtar, we find Adad, the storm-god, associated with Sin and Shamash, and it may be that these two sets of triads represent the doctrines of two different schools of theological thought in Babylonia which were subsequently harmonized by the recognition of a group consisting of all four deities.

The consort of Shamash was known as A. She, however, is rarely mentioned in the inscriptions except in combination with Shamash.


Sin – Nanna

Nanna is a god in Sumerian mythology, god of the moon, son of Enlil and Ninlil. His sacred city was Ur. The name Nanna is Sumerian for "illuminater".

He was named Sin in Babylonia and Assyrian and was also worshipped by them in Harran. Sin had a beard made of lapis lazuli and he rode on a winged bull.

His wife was Ningal (‘Great Lady’) who bore him Utu ‘Sun’ and Inana and in some texts Ishkur.

His symbols are the crescent moon, the bull, and a tripod (which may be a lamp-stand).The two chief seats of Sin’s worship were Ur in the south, and Harran to the north. The cult of Sin spread to other centres, at an early period, and temples to the moon-god are found in all the large cities of Babylonia and Assyria.

He is commonly designated as En-zu = "lord of wisdom". This attribute clings to him through all periods. During the period (c. 2600-2400 BC) that Ur exercised a large measure of supremacy over the Euphrates valley, Sin was naturally regarded as the head of the pantheon. It is to this period that we must trace such designations of Sin as "father of the gods", "chief of the gods", "creator of all things", and the like. We are justified in supposing that the cult of the moon-god was brought into Babylonia by Semitic nomads from Arabia.

The moon-god is par excellence the god of nomadic peoples. The moon being their guide and protector at night when, during a great part of the year, they undertake their wanderings. This is just as the sun-god is the chief god of an agricultural people. The cult once introduced would tend to persevere, and the development of astrological science culminating in a calendar and in a system of interpretation of the movements and occurrences in the starry heavens would be an important factor in maintaining the position of Sin in the pantheon.

Sin’s chief sanctuary at Ur was named E-gish-shir-gal = "house of the great light". His sanctuary at Harran was named E-khul-khul = "house of joys". On seal-cylinders he is represented as an old man with flowing beard with the crescent as his symbol. In the astral-theological system he is represented by the number 30, and the planet Venus and his daughter by the number 15. This 30 probably refers to the average number of days (correctly around 29.53) in a lunar month as measured between successive new moons.

The "wisdom" personified by the moon-god is likewise an expression of the science of astrology in which the observation of the moon’s phases is so important a factor. The tendency to centralize the powers of the universe leads to the establishment of the doctrine of a triad consisting of Sin, Shamash and Ishtar, personifying the moon and the sun and the earth as the life-force.


Tiamat – Leviathan

Tiamat is a primeval monster/goddess in Babylonian and Sumerian mythology, and a central figure in the Enuma Elish creation epic. John C. L. Gibson, in the Ugaritic glossary of Canaanite Myths and Legends, notes that "tehom" appears in the Ugaritic texts, c. 1400-1200 BCE, simply meaning the "sea". Such a depersonalized Tiamat (the -at ending makes her feminine) is "The Deep" (Hebrew tehom), present at the beginning of the book of Genesis.

Apsu (or Abzu) fathered upon Tiamat the Elder gods Lahmu and Lahamu, the grandparents of Anu and Ea. Lahmu and Lahamu, in turn, were the parents of the heavens (Anshar) and the earth (Kishar). Tiamat was the "shining" goddess of salt water who roared and smote in the chaos of original creation. She and Apsu filled the cosmic abyss with the primeval waters. She is "Ummu-Hubur who formed all things".

The god Enki (later Ea), believing correctly that Apsu was planning to murder the younger gods, slew him. This angered Tiamat, whereupon she fashioned monsters to battle the gods. These were her own offspring, sea-serpents of terrifying size, storms and fish-men and scorpion-men.

Tiamat had the Tablets of Destiny, and in the primordial battle she gave them to Kingu, the god she had chosen for her lover. But Anu (replaced by Marduk, the son of Ea, in the late version that has survived) overcame Kingu and then her, armed with the winds and a net and an invincible spear.


Sumerian Demi-Gods

Enkidu

Enkidu appears in Sumerian mythology as a mythical wild-man raised by animals; his beast-like ways are finally tamed by a courtesan named Shamhat. Later he adventures with Gilgamesh until his death in the Epic of Gilgamesh. Older sources sometimes transliterate his name as Enkimdu, Eabani or Enkita.

Enkidu is the quintessential savage man in the beginning of the epic:

    "The whole of his body was hairy and his (uncut) locks were like a woman’s or the hair of the goddess of grain. Moreover, he knew nothing of settled fields or human beings and was clothed (in skins) like a deity of flocks."

Enkidu roamed with the beasts of the wilderness. He protected the animals, destroying the hunters’ traps, and lurked around the watering holes to protect the game. These actions were much to the chagrin of a local trapper. The trapper went to King Gilgamesh to ask for help. Gilgamesh offered the advice "Trapper, go back, take with you a harlot, a child of pleasure … he will embrace her and the game of the wilderness will surely reject him." The trapper did what he was told, and hired the harlot Shamhat to corrupt the wild man. Enkidu was immediately taken with the harlot and bedded her. Over six days of lust, Enkidu is tainted by the harlot. The animals begin to avoid him, the bond he once shared with them having been broken. Now "he scattered the wolves, he chased away the lions" and the herders could lie down in peace, for Enkidu was now their watchman.

After the abandonment of his animal brethren, Enkidu is introduced to a pastoralist way of life. He works for the trapper and shepherds, hunting and killing the animals he once served. Soon he grows restless, looking for a greater challenge.

Shamhat tells of a great king in the city Uruk (Gilgamesh) and says, too, that he would be a worthy challenge for Enkidu. Gilgamesh is surprised by Enkidu. The two wrestle fiercely for sometime, until suddenly Gilgamesh gains the upper hand and throws Enkidu to the ground. Knowing his defeat, Enkidu praises Gilgamesh and both swear an oath of friendship. For the remainder of the epic they cohabit, as lovers according to some interpretations.

Enkidu later in the Epic of Gilgamesh


Gilgamesh and Enkidu killing Humbaba

Enkidu assists Gilgamesh in his fight against Humbaba, the guardian monster of the Cedar forest. Contrary to Enkidu’s conscience, he cooperates in killing the defeated Humbaba. Afterwards, he again assists his companion Gilgamesh in slaying the Bull of Heaven, which the gods have sent as reprisal. The goddess Ishtar demands that the pair should pay for its destruction. Shamash argues to the other gods to spare both of them, but could only save Gilgamesh. The gods pass judgment that Enkidu had no justification for fighting the Bull of Heaven and was interfering with the will of the gods. Enkidu then is overcome by a severe illness. Near death, he has visions of a gloomy afterlife, and curses the trapper and the harlot for civilizing him, the act which lead him to this doom.

Gilgamesh mourns over the body of Enkidu for several desperate days. In a vivid line repeated in the epic, Gilgamesh only allows his friend to be buried after a maggot falls out of the corpse’s nose. Gilgamesh’s close observation of rigor mortis and the slow decomposition of Enkidu’s body provides the hero with the impetus for his quest for eternal life, and his visit to Utnapishtim.

There is another non-canonical tablet in which Enkidu journeys into the underworld, but many scholars consider the tablet to be a sequel or add-on to the original epic.

Historical Analysis

In many ways, Enkidu’s transformation may represent the seductive power of the Mesopotamian city-states. His origins upon the steppe and his life as a companion of the wild beast suggests the hunter-gatherers living on the fringes of the territory of southern Iraq’s early farmers. His subsequent transformation and acceptance of life in Uruk becomes a mythologized account of their slow approach to and assimilation within the boundaries of horticultural civilization.

On a more personal level, the taming of Enkidu by the harlot could be symbolic of the influence of the ego and material desires on the individual, leading them away from a natural, and into an artificial existence.


Gilgamesh

According to the Sumerian king list, Gilgamesh was the fifth king of Uruk (Early Dynastic II, first dynasty of Uruk), the son of Lugalbanda. Legend has it that his mother was Ninsun, a goddess.According to another document, the so-called History of Tummal, Gilgamesh, and eventually his son Urlugal, rebuilt the sanctuary of the goddess Ninlil, located in Tummal, a block of the Nippur city.

    Ninlil, first called Sud, is the daughter of Nammu and An in Sumerian mythology. She lived in Dilmun with her family. Raped by her brother and future husband Enlil, she conceived a boy, Nanna, the future moon god. After her death, she became the goddess of the air, like Enlil.

In the Epic of Gilgamesh it is often said that Gilgamesh ordered the creation of the legendary walls of Uruk. In historical age, Sargon of Akkad claimed to have destroyed these walls to prove his military force.

Fragments of an epic text found in Me-Turan (actual Tell Haddad) inform that Gilgamesh at the end of his life was buried under the waters of a river. The people of Uruk deviated the flow of the Euphrates, river crossing Uruk, with the purpose to bury the corpse of the dead king in the bed of the river.

Despite the lack of direct evidence, most scholars do not object to consideration of Gilgamesh as a historical figure, particularly after inscriptions were found confirming the historical existence of other figures associated with him: kings Enmebaragesi and Aga of Kish. If Gilgamesh was a historical king, he probably reigned in about the 26th century BC. Some of the earliest Sumerian texts spell his name as Bilgamesh.

In most texts, Gilgamesh is written with the determinative for divine beings (DINGIR), but there is no evidence for a contemporary cult, and the Sumerian Gilgamesh myths suggest the deification was a later development (unlike the case of the Akkadian god-kings). Historical or not, Gilgamesh became a legendary protagonist in the Epic of Gilgamesh.


Geshtinasnna

In sumerian mythology she is the daughter of Enki and Ninhursag. When her brother Dumuzi died, Geshtinanna lamentated days and nights. After his death, she visited him in the underworld with Inanna, and was allowed to take his place there for six months out of the year. Her time in the underworld and her periodic emergence from it are linked with her new divine authority over the autumn vines and wine.


Gugalanna

The Bull of Heaven, according to Kramer he is Ereshkigal’s husband. After Gilgamesh spurned Inanna, she sends the Bull of Heaven to terrorize Erech.


Huwawa

Guardian of the cedar of the heart in the the "Land of the living", Huwawa has dragon’s teeth, a lion’s face, a roar like rushing flood water, huge clawed feet and a thick mane. He lived there in a cedar house. He appears to have attacked Gilgamesh, Enkidu and company when they felled that cedar. They then come upon Huwawa and Gilgamesh distracts him with flatery, then puts a nose ring on him and binds his arms. Huwawa grovels to Gilgamesh and Enkidu and Gilgamesh almost releases him. Enkidu argues against it and when Huwawa protests, he decapitates Huwawa.