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Offline eik

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Re: Old Testament Heretics (and Saints)
« Reply #24 on: July 19, 2021, 08:57:15 PM »

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Ba'al Idolatry in the Bible (Nimrod and his descendants) (V)
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To those familiar with Alexander Hislop's "The two Babylons" the, triad (trinity) of Nirmrod, Tammuz or Dumuzid and Semiramis (Sammuramat, Assyrian queen of Shamshi-Adad), will be very familiar. Whether the Greeks invented this triad is hardly to point. We have enough archaelogical information to separate the three historical persons into different epochs. Doubtless the Greeks afterwards conflated them.

Some have attacked Hislop (https://www.followintruth.com/nimrod-semiramis-and-tammuz) for his confusion, but it is really that of those who preceeded him, and of the difficulty of identifying the historical origins of these cults and wicked persons where, by the time they reach us, the original wicked persons on whom they were based have first been made into legends, and then turned into gods, and then syncretized one with another down the ages, making the identification of them difficult.

As to the cult of Tammuz or Dumuzid mentioned in the bible: it was primarily a religion for females, who wept and rent their clothes on Tammuz' death. He appears to have been a god of the spring, and the myth regarding him told of his early death and of the descent of Istar (i.e. Inanna) his bride into the underworld in search of him. The death of Tammuz symbolised the destruction of the spring vegetation by the heat of summer, and it was celebrated annually by seven days of women's mourning in the 4th month (June-July), which was called Tammuz. This superstition was later introduced into Jerusalem.

In fact there is a historical character, Dumuzid (the Fisherman), (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dumuzid_the_Fisherman) who is listed in the Sumerian King List as being the king after Lugalbanda who succeeded Nimrod. So does this provide a genuine connection to the Tammuz - Nimrod - Semiramis triad? No, but it might have served as an excuse for later generations to make a false connection.

Perhaps that his name was Dumuzid, and that he was certainly of the cult of Inanna, as Nimrod also was, served as a reason to later associate Nimrod with Tammuz (Dumuzid). Yet Dumuzid (the Fisherman) was clearly not the original character on whom the Tammuz cult was based on. That (dis)honour belongs to Dumuzid the Shepherd (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dumuzid) of the city of Bad-tibira (not Uruk which was Nimrod's home).

The following info is abridged from wiki, and does suggest the cult was wicked enough for God to want to destroy Sumer in the flood:

Unlike Nimrod, this Dumuzid (i.e. Tammuz) was an ante-diluvian king, said to be the god of shepherds, Dumuzid was also an agricultural deity associated with the growth of plants. Ancient Near Eastern peoples associated Dumuzid with the springtime, when the land was fertile and abundant, but, during the summer months, when the land was dry and barren, it was thought that Dumuzid had "died". During the month of Dumuzid, which fell in the middle of summer, people all across Sumer would mourn over his death. This seems to have been the primary aspect of his cult. His cult emphasized the fear and exhaustion of the community after surviving the devastating summer.

According to the scholar Samuel Noah Kramer, towards the end of the third millennium BC, kings of Uruk may have established their legitimacy by taking on the role of Dumuzid as part of a "sacred marriage" ceremony. This ritual lasted for one night on the tenth day of the Akitu, the Sumerian new year festival, which was celebrated annually at the spring equinox. As part of the ritual, it was thought that the king would engage in ritualized sexual intercourse with the high priestess of Inanna, who took on the role of the goddess. In the late twentieth century, the historicity of the sacred marriage ritual was treated by scholars as more-or-less an established fact, but in recent years, largely due to the writings of Pirjo Lapinkivi, some scholars have rejected the notion of an actual sex ritual, instead seeing "sacred marriage" as a symbolic rather than a physical union.

Nonetheless a vast number of erotic love poems celebrating the consummation of Inanna and Dumuzid have survived which suggests a physical act. 

Samuel Noah Kramer compares the myth to the Biblical story of Cain and Abel because both accounts center around a farmer and a shepherd competing for divine favor and, in both stories, the deity in question ultimately chooses the shepherd.

Anton Moortgat has interpreted (ante-diluvian) Dumuzid as the antithesis of (post-diluvian) Gilgamesh (the next king after Dumuzid (the Fisherman) and subject of an epic legend): Gilgamesh refuses Ishtar's demand for him to become her lover, seeks immortality, and fails to find it; Dumuzid, by contrast, accepts Ishtar's offer and, as a result of her love, is able to spend half the year in Heaven, even though he is condemned to the Underworld for the other half. Mehmet-Ali Ata further argues that the "Tammuz model" of immortality was far more prevalent in the ancient Near East than the "Gilgamesh model".


[So Inanna the fertility deity was worshipped as a direct substitute for God, even through sexual immorality, and is an additional reason why any cult involving Inanna/Ishtar/Queen of Heaven was particularly detestable]

The myth of Inanna and Dumuzid later became the basis for the Greek myth of Aphrodite and Adonis. Adonis is derived from the Canaanite word ʼadōn, meaning "lord".

https://www.followintruth.com/nimrod-semiramis-and-tammuz
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dumuzid_the_Fisherman

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Offline eik

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Re: Old Testament Heretics (and Saints)
« Reply #25 on: July 20, 2021, 02:09:38 PM »
Ba'al Idolatry in the Bible (Nimrod and his descendants) (VI)
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Before proceeding further with the Assyrian / Babylonian conception of Nimrod known to history and also to the Greeks, it is instructive to become acquainted with the overall thesis of Alexander Hislop's "The two Babylons" in slightly more detail (extracted from pages 20-24). He posits that it is the "mother and the son" (or by extension, Lord and Lady, or fertility goddess and fertility god) that is symptomatic of ba'al worship the world over.

However his outlook in respect of Mesopotamian civilization is largely limited to Babylon and Assyria where he is mostly ignorant of the ante-diluvian Sumerian civilization, or believes it can be conveniently assimilated to the post-diluvian Assyrian & Babylonian empires.


THE MOTHER GODDESS (based on Inanna/Ishtar)

"The Babylonians, in their popular religion, supremely worshipped a Goddess Mother and a Son, who was represented in pictures and in images as an infant or child in his mother's arms. From Babylon, this worship of the Mother and the Child spread to the ends of the earth. In Egypt, the Mother and the Child were worshipped under the names of Isis and Osiris.

In India, even to this day, as Isa and Iswara; in Asia, as Cybele and Deoius; in Pagan Rome, as Fortuna and Jupiter-puer, or Jupiter, the boy ; in Greece, as Ceres, the great Mother, with the babe at her breast, or as Irene, the goddess of Peace, with the boy Plutus in her arms ; and even in Thibet, in China, and Japan, the Jesuit missionaries were astonished to find the counterpart of Madonna and her child as devoutly worshipped as in Papal Rome itself; Shing Moo, the Holy Mother in China, being represented with a child in her arms, and a glory around her, exactly as if a Roman Catholic artist had been employed to set her up."

The very name by which the Italians commonly designate the Virgin, is just the translation of one of the titles of the Babylonian goddess. As Baal or Belus was the name of the great male divinity of Babylon, so the female divinity was called Beltis (Hestchtus, Lexicon, p. 188). This name has been found in Nineveh applied to the "Mother of the gods" (Vaux's Nineveh and Persepolis, p. 459); and in a speech attributed to Nebuchadnezzar (preserved in Eusebii Prceparatio Evangelii, lib. ix. cap. 41), both titles, "Belus and Beltis," are conjoined as the titles of the great Babylonian god and goddess. The Greek Belus, as representing the highest title of the Babylonian god, was undoubtedly Baal, "The Lord." Beltis, therefore, as the title of the female divinity, was equivalent to " Baalti," which, in English, is "My Lady," in Latin,"Mea Domina," and, in Italian, is corrupted into the well-known "Madonna." In connection with this, it may be observed, that the name of Juno, the classical "Queen of Heaven," in Greek, was Hera, also signified "The Lady;" and that the peculiar ... Cybele or Rhea at Rome, was Domina or "The Lady."? (Ovid, Fasti, lib. v. 340.)

Further, there is strong reason to believe, that Athena, the well-known name of Minerva at Athens, had the very same meaning. The Hebrew Adon, "The Lord," is, with the points, pronounced Athon. We have evidence that this name was known to the Asiatic Greeks, from whom idolatry, in a large measure, came into European Greece, as a name of God, under the form of "Athan." Enstathius, in a note on the Periergesis of Dionysius (v. 915, apud Bktant, vol. iii. p. 140), speaking of local names in the district of Laodicea, says that " Athan is god. " The feminine of Athan, "The Lord," is Athana, "The Lady,'' which in the Attic dialect, is Athena. No doubt, Minerva is commonly represented as a virgin ; but, for all that, we learn from Strabo (Lib. x. cap. 3, p. 405. Paris, 1853), that at Hierapytna in Crete (the coins of which city, says Muller, Dorians, vol. i. p. 413, have the Athenian symbols of Minerva upon them), she was said to be the mother of the Corybantes by Helius, or " The Sun." It is certain that the Egyptian Minerva, who was the prototype of the Athenian goddess, was a mother, and was styled "Goddess Mother," or " Mother of the Gods." - See Wilkinson, vol. iv. p. 285.


Hislop then goes on to discourse upon his Semiramis-Tammuz-Nimrod theory, which incorporates the idea that the son becomes or replaces the husband of the goddess who dies, after the order of the cyclic seasons of the earth. However in regard to persons, he descends into ahistorical speculation based on his near complete ignorance or disregard for the earlier Sumerian civilization and its having originated the Tammuz-Inanna cult long before Nimrod or Semiramis were born; and also the tower of Babel being in Eridu, and linked to Sumer, and not in the much later city of Babylon:

"The original of that mother, so widely worshipped, there is reason to believe, was Semiramis, already referred to, who, it is well known, was worshipped by the Babylonians, and other eastern nations,  and that under the name of Rhea, the great "Goddess Mother." It was from the son, however, that she derived all her glory and her claims to deification. That son, though represented as a child in his mother's arms, was a person of great stature and immense bodily powers, as well as most fascinating manners."


THE SON (based on Nimrod)

Now, this Ninus, or "Son," borne in the arms of the Babylonian Madonna, is so described as very clearly to identify him with Nimrod. " Ninus, king of the Assyrians," (cf. the name "Assyrians," as has a wide latitude of meaning among the classic authors, taking in the Babylonians as well as the Assyrians proper) says Trogus Pompeius, epitomised by Justin (in Justin's Trogus Pompeius, Hist. Rom. Script., vol. ii. p. 615), "first of all changed the contented moderation of the ancient manners, incited by a new passion, the desire of conquest. He was the first who carried on war against his neighbours, and he conquered all nations from Assyria to "Lybia, as they were yet unacquainted with the arts of war."

This account points directly to Nimrod, and can apply to no other. The account of Diodorus Siculus (Diodorus, Bibliotheca, lib. ii. p. 63) entirely agrees with it, and adds another trait that goes still further to determine the identity. That account is as follows :?" Ninus, the most ancient of the Assyrian kings mentioned in history, performed great actions. Being naturally of a warlike disposition, and ambitious of glory that results from valour, he armed a considerable number of young men that were brave and vigorous like himself, trained them up a long time in laborious exercises and hardships, and by that means accustomed them to bear the fatigues of war, and to face dangers with intrepidity."

As Diodorus makes Ninus "the most ancient of the Assyrian / kings," and represents him as beginning those wars which raised his power to an extraordinary height by bringing the people of Babylonia under subjection to him, while as yet the city of Babylon was not in existence, this shows that he occupied the very position of Nimrod, of whom the Scriptural account is, that he first " began to be mighty on the earth," and that the " beginning of his kingdom was Babylon."

As the Babel builders, when their speech was confounded, were scattered abroad on the face of the earth, and therefore deserted both the city and the tower which they had commenced to build, Babylon as a city, could not properly be said to exist till, Nimrod, by establishing his power there, made it the foundation and starting-point of his greatness. In this respect, then, the 'story of Ninus and of Nimrod exactly harmonise. The way, too, in which Ninus gained his power is the very way in which Nimrod erected his. There can be no doubt that it was by inuring his followers to the toils and dangers of the chase, that he gradually formed them to the use of arms, and so prepared them for aiding him in establishing his dominion ; just as Ninus, by training his companions for a long time " in laborious exercises and hardships," qualified them for making him the first of the Assyrian kings.

Offline eik

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Re: Old Testament Heretics (and Saints)
« Reply #26 on: July 21, 2021, 12:10:10 PM »
Ba'al Idolatry in the Bible (Nimrod deified) (I)
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So, to sum up so far, we have Nimrod, who is identfied with the post-flood Sumerian king of Uruk, Enmer-kar, "Enmer the hunter," just after the flood in circa 3400BC-3100BC, who exercised dominion over the whole territory of the plain of Shinar, and beyond, over the Zagros mountains to the land of Aratta in Edin, adjacent to the garden of Eden, south of lake Urmia. King Enmerkar is attested to in a Sumerian epic, as well as in the Sumerian King List. We have the further archaeological and annecdotal evidence from such disparate places as Egypt, India and China, of the widespread dispersal of Sumerian civilization techniques throughout the world, just before the start of the 3rd millennium BC, roughly coinciding with the tower of Babel fiasco in Eridu and the confusion of languages.

The sundry cults of ba'al (Nimrod worship) eventually found their way from Sumer into heart of the successor dynasties of Sumer, these being principally Assyria, where it became established in the form of pantheons, the particular gods of Assyria relating to Nimrod being "Asshur" and "Ninurta," and also in Babylon, where Nimrod worship became established in the form of the chief Babylonian god "Marduk."

The association of Sumer city states ruled by kings were eventually followed by the short-lived Akkadian empire (c. 2270 BC - c. 2083 BC - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Akkadian_Empire) in Mestopotamia, which was followed by two empires: in the north, the Assyrian Empire (Old Assyrian Empire (2025?1378 BC), Middle Assyrian Empire (1392?934 BC) and Neo-Assyrian Empire (911?609 BC), and by the Babylonian empires in the south: a veritable series of Babylonian dynasties (1894?1595 BC - Amorite, 1595?1155 BC - Kassite, 1155?1026 BC - Native rule or second dynasty of Isin,  1026?911 BC - period of chaos, 911?619 BC - Assyrian rule, 619 -539 BC Neo-Babylonian Empire (Chaldean Empire), 539 BC onward - Persian Empire when Cyrus the Mede conquers Babylon).

To trace the cults of Nimrod into Assyria and Babylon, we start with what the bible tells us about Nimrod's further building activities.

Gen 10:8 "And Cush begat Nimrod: he began to be a mighty one in the earth."
Gen 10:9 "He was a mighty hunter before the LORD: wherefore it is said, Even as Nimrod the mighty hunter before the LORD."
Gen 10:10 "And the beginning of his kingdom was Babel, and Erech, and Accad, and Calneh, in the land of Shinar."
Gen 10:11 "Out of that land went forth Asshur, and builded Nineveh, and the city Rehoboth, and Calah."
Gen 10:12 "And Resen between Nineveh and Calah: the same is a great city."


The identity of some of these "cities" is mysterious. Whilst there are various traditions and theories (such as linking Calneh with Nippur), a most convincing explanation is that the bible translation is wrong. An alternative biblical translation, according to Rohl, is this:

Gen 10:8 "And Cush begat Nimrod: he began to be a mighty one in the earth."
Gen 10:9 "He was a mighty hunter before the LORD: wherefore it is said, Even as Nimrod the mighty hunter before the LORD."
Gen 10:10 "And the beginning of his kingdom was Babel, and Erech, and Accad, all of them in theland of Shinar."
Gen 10:11 "From that land, he went forth to Asshur (Assyria), and builded Nineveh, that great city, and Calah, which is also a great city"
Gen 10:12 "And the canal between Nineveh and Calah."


Here I will deal with the name Asshur and its likely origin from a god of Eridu, Asar "son of Enki," who is just one representation of Nimrod deified.

The identification of Asshur with the land of Assyria in Gen 10:11, rather than with a person Asshur, is contextually correct, because Asshur has not previously been introduced in the bible as a person, although later on in Gen 10, Asshur  is asserted to be a son of Shem. What we might therefore posit, as just one theory of several, is that Nimrod went into the territory of Shem's son Asshur, and started building cities there. There is also an Assyrian city called Ashur (also known as Assur), located on a plateau above the Tigris River in Mesopotamia (today known as Qalat Sherqat, northern Iraq). The city was an important center of trade, as it lay on a caravan trade route that ran through Mesopotamia to Anatolia and down through the Levant. It was founded c. 1900 BCE on the site of a pre-existing community that had been built by the Akkadians at some point during the reign of Sargon the Great (2334-2279 BCE) of Akkad.
https://www.worldhistory.org/ashur/

However Rohl posits "Asshur" as "just" the name of the deity of the city of Asshur, i.e. not the name of Shem's son Asshur, and moreover, derives from the deity from Eridu called Asar or Asaruludu / Asalluhi.  It seems to me that the grounds for Rohl's exclusivity are tenuous. There is scope for both theories to be correct. Asshur could well have been founded by Shem's son, who become later deified as Asshur, and was later further sycretized with the deity "Asar" from Sumer.

As to Rohl's theory, he derives it from the good evidence that there was an older deity known to the Sumerians as Asaruludu or Asalluhi, (a Sumerian Asshur, or Asar = Osiris), "son of Enki/Ea" who was syncretized in Eridu with a deified Nimrod" (per Rohl). Moreover this deity was no lesser deity, as it became the chief god of Babylon, and so no reason for it also not to become the chief god of Assyria too.

Here the land of Assur becomes the land of the deity of Asshur, or Nimrod deified as Asar or Asshur, or Asaruludu / Asalluhi. These names bears the epithets "son of Eridu" or the "son of Abzu," Enki/Ea's realm of subterranean waters in Eridu. The later Babylonia creation epic (Enuma Elish - dating from the reign of Nebuchadrezzar I (1119?1098 BC), seems to acknowledge the ancestral lineage of the Babylonian chief god Marduk from Asar in Eridu, and thus from Nimrod. Originally, he seems to have been a god of thunderstorms but became elevated to Lord of the Gods of Heaven and Earth in the Babylonian creation epic. All nature, including humanity, owed its existence to him; the destiny of kingdoms and subjects was in his hands.

Babylonia creation epic:

"
    After Eya (Enki) had vanquished and trampled his foes, had secured his triumph over his enemies, and had rested in profound peace within his sacred chamber which he named 'Abzu' ..., in that same place he founded his cultic shrine. Eya and Damkina, his wife, dwelled there in splendour. There in the chamber of fates, the abode of destinies, a god was born ? the most able and wisest of gods. In the heart of Abzu, Marduk was created. He who begat him was Eya, his father. She who bore him was Damkina, his mother. [Babylonian Creation Epic]

    At his names may the gods tremble and quake in their dwellings. Asar-luhi is his foremost name which his father Anu gave him. ... Asar, bestower of the cultivated land, who establishes its boundaries, the creator of grain and herbs who causes vegetation to sprout forth. [Babylonian Creation Epic]


The new god's Sumerian name 'Asar' was written with the sign for throne which was also one of the two hieroglyphs used to write the name Osiris. Of course, Osiris is the Greek vocalization for the Egyptian corn-god of the dead. The people of the Nile valley simply knew him as Asar."
http://www.redmoonrising.com/Giza/SpiritCiv5.htm

Again, from another source,

Tablet I
"78 And Ea and Damkina, his wife, sat in splendour.
79 In the chamber of the destinies, the room of the archetypes,
80 The wisest of the wise, the sage of the gods, Be-l was conceived.
81 In Aps? was Marduk born,
82 In pure Aps? was Marduk born.
83 Ea his father begat him,
84 Damkina his mother bore him.
85 He sucked the breasts of goddesses,
86 A nurse reared him and filled him with terror.
87 His figure was well developed, the glance of his eyes was dazzling,
88 His growth was manly, he was mighty from the beginning.
89 Anu, his father's begetter, saw him,
90 He exulted and smiled; his heart filled with joy.
91 Anu rendered him perfect: his divinity was remarkable,
92 And he became very lofty, excelling them in his attributes.

Tablet VI
96 They exalted the destiny of Marduk and did obeisance.
97 They invoked a curse on themselves
98 And took an oath with water and oil, and put their hands to their throats.
99 They granted him the right to exercise kingship over the gods,
100 They confirmed him as lord of the gods of heaven and netherworld.
101 Ansar gave him his exalted name, Asalluhi
102 "At the mention of his name, let us show submission!
103 When he speaks, let the gods heed him,
104 Let his command be superior in upper and lower regions.
105 May the son, our avenger, be exalted.
https://www.worldhistory.org/article/225/enuma-elish---the-babylonian-epic-of-creation---fu/

As Asaruludu (i.e. Asar) is not attested until the Ur III period, and appears most frequently in Neo-Assyrian, Achaemenid, and Seleucid incantations, there is an evidential issue with Rohl's thesis of linking him directly to  Nimrod, many centuries earlier. Certainly his role as a "protector" god would support the Nimrod thesis, but as far as I am concerned, Rohl hasn't made a watertight case for linking Asar to Nimrod, because there is another god far more closely associated with Nimrod, called Ninurta, (see next time).

Thus I see the Asar - Nimrod connection between Asar the god, and Asshur the deity of Assyria, the "land of Nimrod," as circumstantial. However there may well be some syncretism between Asar and Asshur and Nimrod; but where is the evidence for a direct Nimrod link to Asar, given that the Ur III period is not until 22nd-21st centuries BC? Perhaps the Asar deity was based on an earlier Asshur deity, which is derived from the son of Shem?

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Asaruludu
https://religion.wikia.org/wiki/Asaruludu

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Akkadian_Empire
https://www.worldhistory.org/ashur/
http://www.redmoonrising.com/Giza/SpiritCiv5.htm
https://www.worldhistory.org/article/225/enuma-elish---the-babylonian-epic-of-creation---fu/
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Asaruludu
https://religion.wikia.org/wiki/Asaruludu

Offline eik

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Re: Old Testament Heretics (and Saints)
« Reply #27 on: July 22, 2021, 10:38:27 AM »
Ba'al Idolatry in the Bible (Nimrod deified) (II)
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ASHUR
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I have posited that whilst there may well be a  connection between Ashur, the deity of the city of Asshur, which eventually became the State deity of Assyria, and Asarluhi of Eridu ("son of Enki"), the connection, even if it denotes an origin connection, hasn't been proved to be specifically linked to Nimrod, as Asarluhi has only been attested as far back as Third Dynasty of Ur (22nd-21st century BC), well after the Nimrod era. Per wiki Ashur did not originally have a family, but as the cult came under southern Mesopotamian influence, he later came to be regarded as the Assyrian equivalent of Enlil, the chief god of Nippur.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ashur_(god)

NINEVEH
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There is continuing contention as to who actually founded Nineveh. (As I have earlier noted) in the Hebrew Bible, Nineveh is first mentioned in Genesis 10:11: "Ashur left that land, and built Nineveh". (As I have also earlier noted) some translations (including the NIV) now interpret "Ashur" in the Hebrew of this vere as the country "Assyria" rather than a person, thus making Nimrod, rather than Ashur, the founder of Nineveh, also per Sir Walter Raleigh's "History of the World." Yet the notion that Nimrod built Nineveh, and the cities in Genesis 10:11-12, has been refuted by some scholars, and by the discovery of the fifteen Jubilees texts found amongst the Dead Sea Scrolls, has since shown that, according to the Jewish sects of Qumran, Genesis 10:11 affirms the apportionment of Nineveh to Ashur. The attribution of Nineveh to Ashur is also supported by the Greek Septuagint, King James Bible, Geneva Bible, and by Historian Flavius Josephus in his Antiquities of the Jews (Antiquities, i, vi, 4) (says Wikipedia).
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nineveh#Ninevite_5_period

It seems that the principal ancient deity of Nineveh, which was likely in existence in some form, even before Nimrod arrived, was the goddess Nina, one of the Sumerian and Assyrian names of the goddess Ishtar of Nineveh, whose presence of Nineveh is from earliest antiquity. So it may be that Nineveh is actually named after the goddess (i.e. rather than the mythical man Ninus, the eponymous founder of Nineveh (per the Greek legends). Later Nina, i.e. Ishtar of Assyria (eponymous with Inanna of Sumer), was re-incarnated as the equally mythical Semiramis, Ninus's wife.

This would agree with Nimrod being the real founder of Nineveh, as Nimrod himself was a devotee of Inanna (Ishtar).


Deification of Nimrod in Alexander's Hislop's "The two Babylons"
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As a diversion it is worth seeing how these myths respecting Ninus (mythical Nimrod) and Semiramis (mythical wife of Ninus) developed, so as to understand the conceptual basis of Alexander's Hislop's "The two Babylons," where "his" "Nimrod" (i.e. Ninus) is to all intents a later Greek or Babylonian adaptation/deification of Nimrod. Hislop links Nimrod (the deity) with the son of the Babylonian ba'al god (Bel), (pages 28,29). He posits the historical "Bel" (if there ever was one) as Cush, the son of Ham. So Hislop is really only interested in Nimrod the (ex post facto) contrived ba'al deity, and his wife Semiramis.


NINUS (NIMROD)
_____________

Under the Greek hegemony, the mythical Greek "Ninus" was proposed as the founder of Nineveh, who became identified with the by-now unidentifiable historical Nimrod. Ninus was implicitly and retrospectively linked to one or more later Assyrian rulers by later Babylonian and Greek historians, largely one supposes on what the bible has to say of Nimrod.

"The name "Ninus" is not attested on the Assyrian King List or in any cuneiform literature; he does not seem to represent any one personage known to modern history, and is more likely a conflation of several real and/or fictional figures of antiquity, as seen to the Greeks through the mists of time. "
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ninus

By the age of the ascendant Assyrian empire of Tukulti-Ninurta 1243-1207 BC, the old historical Nimrod of Summer was too ancient to be knowable.  So the historians of that era invented "Ninus" as the founder of Nineveh and Calah (Gen 10:11), and identified him with the biblical Nimrod.

As Nimrod is identified as the founder of Calah in the bible, and as Calah (now called Nimrud) became ascendant in the 13th cent BC, which coincided with Assyria and Babylonia becoming unified once again, the (re-incarnated) Nimod is identifiable with the Assyrian emperor Tukulti-Ninurta (king of kings - 1243?1207 BC) Middle Assyrian Empire (1366?1050 BC), who conquered Babylon and was the first king to rule over the whole of Babylonia (preceded by Shalmaneser I).
https://www.jstor.org/stable/23612466?read-now=1&refreqid=excelsior%3A430b77fdb3d12a524cc3fcaca1630cd4#page_scan_tab_contents

(Another mooted contender for this "Ninus" had been the Akkadian emperor, Sargon of Akkad (24th to 23rd centuries BC), which conquered Sumer.
https://www.etsjets.org/files/JETS-PDFs/56/56-2/JETS_56-2_273-305_Petrovich.pdf)

The authorities for emperor Tukulti-Ninurta as the "Greek Nimrod" are the later historians Berossus and Diodorus Siculus, who say that Nimrod "was the first Assyrian to conquer Babylonia."
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Berossus

According to the "Nimrod is Tukulti-Ninurta" thesis mooted by Berossus and those who rely on him, Nineveh would still have to have had an earlier founder, as it was long in existence by the time of Tukulti-Ninurta. It is has been theorized by a few that Nineveh also owes its name to the eponymnous god Ninurta (Nimrod deified - see later) as also adopted in Assyria from the earliest times.

SEMIRAMIS
_________

The historical person on which "Semiramis," the legendary wife of the legendary Ninus in the Greek legends narrated by Diodorus Siculus (who drew from the works of Ctesias of Cnidus) is not however of the era of Tukulti-Ninurta. She is vaguely of the Tiglath-Pileser III (745?727BC) era, who merged the kingdoms of Assyria and Babylon once again.

The historical Semiramis (Shammuramat - the original Akkadian and Aramaic form of the name) was the Assyrian wife of Shamshi-Adad V (ruled 824 BC?811 BC), ruler of the Neo-Assyrian Empire, and its regent for five years until her son Adad-nirari III came of age and took the reins of power.

So mythical "Ninus" became conflated with several Assyrian kings of different epochs, and was assigned a  mythical wife extracted out of some convenient historical figure, but of another era to the builder of Calah, Tukulti-Ninurta, and of another era to the original Nimrod.

"While the achievements of Semiramis are clearly in the realm of mythical Persian, Armenian and Greek historiography, the historical Shammuramat certainly existed. After her husband's death, she served as regent from 811 to 806 BC for her son, Adad-nirari III. Shammuramat would have thus been briefly in control of the vast Neo-Assyrian Empire (911-605 BC), which stretched from the Caucasus Mountains in the north to the Arabian Peninsula in the south, and western Iran in the east to Cyprus in the west. In the city of A??ur on the Tigris, she had an obelisk built and inscribed that read, "Stele of Shammuramat, queen of Shamshi-Adad, King of the Universe, King of Assyria, Mother of Adad Nirari, King of the Universe, King of Assyria, Daughter-in-Law of Shalmaneser, King of the Four Regions of the World." Georges Roux speculated that the later Greek and Iranian-flavoured myths surrounding Semiramis stem from successful campaigns she waged against these peoples and the novelty of a woman ruling such an empire."
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Semiramis

It has been speculated that ruling successfully as a woman may have made the Assyrians regard Semiramis with particular reverence, and that the achievements of her reign (including stabilizing and strengthening the empire after a destructive civil war) were retold over the generations until she was turned into a mythical figure, equally as mythical as "Ninus of Nineveh." She seems to have become conflated with Istar, becoming a byword for callousness and cruelty: hence the identification of this Semiramis by Hislop with Cybele the goddess cult; and undoubtedly she was turned into just such a wanton goddess. Linked with this cult, she is also credited with creating monumental works all over Assyria (which are probably not hers).

"The Greek historian Ctesias says that she was the daughter of a fish-goddess, raised by doves, who married the king of Assyria and gave birth to a son called Ninyas. When her husband died, Semiramis treacherously claimed his throne. The ancient story preserves an echo of Adad-Nirari's name in Ninyas, the son of the legendary queen; and it is not the only story to hint that Sammu-Ramat seized power in a manner not exactly aboveboard. Another Greek historian, Diodorus, tells us Semiramis convinced her husband to give her power just for five days, to see how well she could manage it. When he agreed, she had him executed and seized the crown for good."
Susan Wise Bauer from https://www.worldhistory.org/Semiramis/

Roman historian Ammianus Marcellinus credits her as the first person to castrate a male youth into eunuch-hood: "Semiramis, that ancient queen who was the first person to castrate male youths of tender age"
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Semiramis

"The name of Semiramis came to be applied to various monuments in Western Asia, the origin of which was forgotten or unknown. Ultimately every stupendous work of antiquity by the Euphrates or in Iran seems to have been ascribed to her, even the Behistun Inscription of Darius. Herodotus ascribes to her the artificial banks that confined the Euphrates  and knows her name as borne by a gate of Babylon. The Hanging Gardens of Babylon, one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World are also known as the Hanging Gardens of Semiramis. Various places in Assyria, Mesopotamia and Medea bore the name of Semiramis, but slightly changed, even in the Middle Ages, and an old name of the city of Van was Shamiramagerd. Assyrians still name female children Semiramis to this day,"
https://www.bible-history.com/links.php?cat=31&sub=3083&cat_name=People+in+History&subcat_name=Semiramis+(Assyrian+Sammu-Ramat)

"Armenian tradition portrays her as a homewrecker and a harlot. These facts are partly to be explained by observing that, according to the legends, in her birth as well as in her disappearance from earth, Semiramis appears as a goddess, the daughter of the fish-goddess Atargatis, and herself connected with the doves of Ishtar or Astarte. One of the most popular legends in Armenian tradition involves Semiramis and an Armenian king, Ara the Beautiful. In the 20th century, the poet Nairi Zarian retold the story of Ara the Beautiful and Shamiram, in a work considered to be a masterpiece of Armenian literary drama. According to the legend, Semiramis had heard about the fame of the handsome Armenian king Ara, and she lusted after his image. She asked Ara to marry her, but he refused; upon hearing this, she gathered the armies of Assyria and marched against Armenia. During the battle, which may have taken place in the Ararat valley, Ara was slain. In order to avoid continuous warfare with the Armenians, Semiramis, reputed to be a sorceress, took his body and prayed to the gods to raise Ara from the dead. When the Armenians advanced to avenge their leader, she disguised one of her lovers as Ara and spread the rumor that the gods had brought Ara back to life. As a result, the war ended. Although many different versions of the legend exist, it is usually accepted that Ara never came back to life."
https://www.bible-history.com/links.php?cat=31&sub=3083&cat_name=People+in+History&subcat_name=Semiramis+(Assyrian+Sammu-Ramat)


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ashur_(god
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nineveh#Ninevite_5_period
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ninus
https://www.jstor.org/stable/23612466?read-now=1&refreqid=excelsior%3A430b77fdb3d12a524cc3fcaca1630cd4#page_scan_tab_contents
https://www.etsjets.org/files/JETS-PDFs/56/56-2/JETS_56-2_273-305_Petrovich.pdf
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Berossus
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Semiramis
https://www.worldhistory.org/Semiramis/
https://www.bible-history.com/links.php?cat=31&sub=3083&cat_name=People+in+History&subcat_name=Semiramis+(Assyrian+Sammu-Ramat

Offline eik

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Re: Old Testament Heretics (and Saints)
« Reply #28 on: July 23, 2021, 10:16:59 AM »
Ba'al Idolatry in the Bible (Nimrod deified) (III)
____________________________________

From the evidence the spread of the cult of Inanna of Uruk over the whole land of Sumer, and later the whole of Mesopotamia, including Akkad, Babylonia and Assyria, originated with the activities of the post flood kings of Uruk, starting with Enmer'kar (Nimrod), who was particular devoted to Inanna. Inanna became synretized with other analogous deities, such as Nina of Girsu, and especially Ishtar (Inanna's Semitic counterpart) of Akkadia, Babylonia, and Assyria.

The direct influence of Nimrod on the real Mesopotamian pantheons (as opposed to the fictitious one later invented by the Greeks, etc involving Ninius and Semiramis), seems to have been limited to the transformation of the god Ningirsu ("Lord of Girzu" - the Sumerian god of springtime thunder and rainstorms and of the plow and plowing) into a god of hunting and of war. Girzu was later incorporated into the large Sumerian city of Lagash, where Girzu became a district of Lagash. Lagash was a large city of much importance and a border town with Elamite territory. Ningirsu also became transformed into the god Ninurta, and obtained a principal cult centre at Nippur, the "holy city." The cult of Ninurta further spread to Assyria, and to Babylonia under the form of the god Marduk.

It is unclear where it was just Nimrod who became individually deified as Ninurta, or whether it was Nimrod together with his immediate successor kings, such as Lugalbanda and Gilgamesh, who were also heroes. In any event the legitimizing myth seems to be common, i.e. involving the slaying of the demonic Anzu bird, who steals the "tablets of destiny" fron Enlil, and puts the kingdom and the gods of the kingdom in grave danger. In one version of the legend, the gods sent Lugalbanda to retrieve the tablets, who in turn, killed Anzu. In another, Ea/Enki and Belet-Ili conceived Ninurta for the purpose of retrieving the tablets. In a third legend, found in The Hymn of Ashurbanipal, Marduk (of Babylon) is said to have killed Anzu. Ninurta/Ningirsu is rewarded and promoted by Enlil for this epic feat of arms. Hence Ninurta was deemed the "son" of Enlil and Ninlil.

It was vital for the purpose of cultic legitimacy to ascribe provenance to new gods from older and more widely accepted gods. Thus the ancient Enlil god, of the city of Nippur became the legitimizer and "father" of Ninurta, via the myth of the combat with the Anzu bird, denoting the transformation of an agricultural deity ("Ninurta" means lord of the plough) into a war deity.

Stephanie Dalley, in Myths from Mesopotamia, writes that
 
"the Epic of Anzu is principally known in two versions: an Old Babylonian version of the early second millennium, giving the hero as Ningirsu; and 'The Standard Babylonian' version, dating to the first millennium BC, which appears to be the most quoted version, with the hero as Ninurta". However, the Anzu character does not appear as often in some other writings."
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anz%C3%BB

Another legitimizing epic, is "Ninurta's Journey to Eridu." Ninurta leaves the Ekur temple in Nippur and travels to the Abzu in Eridu, led by an unnamed guide. In Eridu, Ninurta sits in assembly with the gods An and Enkiand Enki gives him the tokens of divinity for life. The poem ends with Ninurta returning to Nippur. The story resembles the other Sumerian myth of Inanna and Enki, in which the goddess Inanna journeys to Eridu and receives the tokens of divinity from Enki.

Interestingly, there is another epic "Ninurta and the turtle," where after slaying the Anzu bird, Ninurta "sets his sights on the whole world. "He told no one and inwardly did not ....... The great lord Enki intuitively grasped the substance of the plan. In the shrine, in the abzu he stirred up a dark flood-storm. ..... Against Ninurta, Enki fashioned a turtle from the clay of the abzu. Against him he stationed the turtle at an opening, at the gate of the abzu. Enki talked to him near the place of the ambush and brought him to the place where the turtle was. The turtle was able to grab Ninurta's tendon from behind. The hero Ninurta managed to turn back its feet. Enki, as if perplexed, said, "What is this!" He had the turtle scrape the ground with its claws, had it dig an evil pit. The hero Ninurta fell into it with the turtle. The hero did not know how to get out from ....... The turtle kept on gnawing his feet with its claws. The great lord Enki said to him: "From ...... you who set your mind to kill me ...... who makes big claims - I cut down, I raise up. You who set your sights on me like this - what has your position seized for you, how ......? Where has your strength fled? Where is your heroism? In the great mountains you caused destruction, but how will you get out now?"
https://etcsl.orinst.ox.ac.uk/section1/tr163.htm

Some including Rohl, have seen this as relating to the tower of Babel episode at Eridu, where Enki frustrated Nimrod's (Ninurta's) plans to create a large temple as a pantheon to all the gods.

Gilgamesh is also associated with the Anzu bird in the "Inanna and the Huluppu Tree" myth. The Huluppu Tree grows in Inanna's garden at Uruk, and contains three unsavoury characters, the Anzu bird, a snake and a lilitu, a female spirit. Gilgamesh kills the snake and uproots the tree. The other creatures flee.

According to Johanna Stuckey ("One Way of Demoting a Great Goddess") the myth reduced the status of Inanna and subjected her power to the subordination of kings. This is because "the sacred World Tree, was reshaped into limited goddess objects: a bed and a throne." In other words, it reduced the status of the goddess to being the consort of the god.

"When Gilgamesh had disposed of the huluppu tree's inhabitants, he uprooted it, thus eliminating, finally, any natural connection between earth and underworld (cf. Inanna and Dumuzid myth). He then gave the wood to Inanna to make into a bed and a throne, the furniture used in the "Sacred Marriage."

However, the furniture, which was essentially constructed from her body, was no longer entirely hers. The institution of kingship had appropriated it and, with the furniture, Inanna herself. What is more, the poem presents her as willingly co-operating in her own demotion. Both she
and the furniture would henceforth serve a male monarchy in a male-dominated society. In this way, society was able to circumscribe her and direct her undoubted power into channels that would be useful to the male-dominated city."



Concluding this part, Rohl notes of the Sumerian Nimrod, Enmer'kar, that the Sumerian prefix en means "lord", and the suffix kar translates as "hunter". Enmerkar, then, roughly means Enmer, or Lord Mer, the Hunter.

"Nimrod, of course, was remembered by the Hebrews as "a mighty hunter before the Lord". No wonder, then, that he was represented as both semi-divine hero and god. The Babylonians knew him as Ninurta, the hunter-god armed with bow, and linked him with Marduk, warrior-god and lord of vegetation. The Sumerians of Eridu themselves elevated the mortal King Enmer'kar ("Enmer the hunter") to godhood as Asar, "son" of Enki. The Sumerians of the Early Dynastic times named him Ningirsu, god of war and agriculture. In the city of Lagash they built the House of Ninnu (E'Ninnu) as Ningirsu's temple and gave him the epithet Enmersi after his ancient and original name."
http://www.redmoonrising.com/worldpowers/awpII.htm#The%20Historical%20Nimrod

(As I have said previously, don't know where "Asar" comes from in the above, unless it is simply due to both Ninurta and Asar being coincidentally sons of Enki. But this may just be a coincidence as Enlil also had many "sons" who were by no means the same "god".)

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anz%C3%BB
https://etcsl.orinst.ox.ac.uk/section1/tr163.htm
http://www.redmoonrising.com/worldpowers/awpII.htm#The%20Historical%20Nimrod

Offline eik

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Re: Old Testament Heretics (and Saints)
« Reply #29 on: July 24, 2021, 11:15:27 AM »
Ba'al Idolatry in the Bible (Nimrod deified) (IV)
____________________________________

It cannot be proven beyond all doubt that Nimrod was Enmerkar. Others have postulated Lugalbanda, Gilgamesh and Sargon 1st of Akkad, whose dynasty overthrew that of the Sumerian kings in the 24th to 23rd centuries BC.

Moreover there is no direct evidence of Enmerkar being treated as "high deity" in the legends. He seems to be restricted to his titular epithet, "son of the sun god (i.e. Utu i.e. Ham)," and to his approbation by Enki in the "Lords of Arrata" epic. The evidences are that his immediate descendants Lugalbanda and Gilgamesh became more important deities in time, through their legends. Yet Enki was closely associated with Enmerkar, and Lugalbanda was closely associated with Enlil in the legend of the Anzud bird (https://etcsl.orinst.ox.ac.uk/cgi-bin/etcsl.cgi?text=t.1.8.2.2#), and obtained the status of "high" deity for his services to Enlil: in real life, likely for preserving the status of Nippur, Enlil's cult centre (https://www.jstor.org/stable/593008?read-now=1&refreqid=excelsior%3Abdfc6bda16ec3d3aa8bf2bab90693dee&seq=11#page_scan_tab_contents).

According to one commentator, it was likely that Meskingasher and Enmerkar were distinguished by their attachment to Uruk (& Eridu), not Nippur, which wasn't sufficient to obtain divine approprobation by the priests of Enlil for elevation by the "high trinity" of Sumer. However we have in the "Lords of Arrata" epic Enmerkar being given wisdom by Enki, (https://etcsl.orinst.ox.ac.uk/cgi-bin/etcsl.cgi?text=t.1.8.2.3#); and so Enmerkar, even if not a son of Enlil, was seen as a son of Enki.

Whether Ninurta/Ningirsu historically owed his supreme cultic elevation by Enlil to the reputation of Lugalbanda alone (as per the legend), or to Enmerkar and Lugalbanda jointly, isn't clear. Possibly (i.e. speculatively), in Assyria it was the Enmerkar connection to Ninurta/Ningirsu that was valued, and in Sumer it was the Lugalbanda connection.

It was the process of accreditation by which the new national "high" deities arose that became so very important. Without accreditation, these new deities were nothing. Yet inevitably on being accredited, they displace the original gods that accredit them, and become, in time, degenerate gods, epecially when  further syncretized with other gods with characters far removed from that of their accreditors. The high gods in the later creation epics of Babylon and Assyria, are, apart from the allusions to the Sumerian Enki etc, clearly human. These epics are themselves examples of degeneration in the character of the gods.

Ninurta/Ningirsu provided the original model for legitimization, later roughly followed in the myths for Marduk of Babylon and Asshur of Assyria per the Babylonian creation epic (Enuma elish, "When on High"). The Babylonian myth model is similar to the myth in which Asshur figures. The two national deities are quite similar in terms of their myths, and some have supposed they are essentially the same deities, except for their epithets. The elevation of Ninurta/Ningirsu provided the original legitimization model for Asshur and Marduk, by reference to the established trinity of Anu (lord of the sky), Enlil (lord of the air), and Enki (lord of sea and land) in Sumer. However a whole variety of gods and demons also appear in the later myths from Babylon and Assyria, where the slaying of Anzu bird by Ninurta/Ningirsu is displaced by the slaying of Tiamat the demon-dragon by Marduk, who is a son of Enki (and not Enlil as Ninurta/Ningirsu).

It is notable that one of the epithets of Marduk was Asari, which is the name for Asshur, the Assyrian deity. Some have also connected Asari with Osiris of Egypt. It seems in the creation myths, Ashur dies and comes back to life, as does Osris.

In these new creation myths reserved for the state deities of Babylon and Assyria, the original Sumerian high trinity itself became displaced: there were tendencies to identify Ashur with Anshar, the father of Anu in these increasingly elaborate "state propaganda" myths.
https://www.britannica.com/topic/Ashur-Mesopotamian-deity

The purpose of the myths was to afford a seductive legitimacy to the national deities; only for themselves to become corrupted in being syncretized with other gods. Thus Marduk the Babylonian national god became in time syncretized into Bel ("Lord" i.e. Ba'al) by being joined with other older gods, such as Dumuzid and Enlil. Ashur in Assyra also became known as Bel. Also in Assyria, "thorough attempts were made to transfer to Ashur the primeval achievements of Marduk."
https://www.britannica.com/topic/Ashur-Mesopotamian-deity

"During the first millennium BC, the Babylonians worshipped Marduk under the title "Bel", meaning "lord", who was a syncretization of Marduk, Enlil, and the dying god Dumuzid. Bel held all the cultic titles of Enlil and his status in the Babylonian religion was largely the same. Eventually, Bel came to be seen as the god of order and destiny. The cult of Bel is a major component of the Jewish story of "Bel and the Dragon" from the apocryphal additions to Daniel."
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Marduk

https://etcsl.orinst.ox.ac.uk/cgi-bin/etcsl.cgi?text=t.1.8.2.2#
https://www.jstor.org/stable/593008?read-now=1&refreqid=excelsior%3Abdfc6bda16ec3d3aa8bf2bab90693dee&seq=11#page_scan_tab_contents
https://etcsl.orinst.ox.ac.uk/cgi-bin/etcsl.cgi?text=t.1.8.2.3#);
https://www.britannica.com/topic/Ashur-Mesopotamian-deity
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Marduk

Offline eik

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Re: Old Testament Heretics (and Saints)
« Reply #30 on: July 25, 2021, 04:45:04 AM »
Ba'al Idolatry in the Bible (Nimrod deified) (V)
____________________________________

Consequent on the Enuma Elis, the ancient gods of Sumer, Enlil, Ea and the newly promoted "son," Ninurta, became displaced by the Babylonian ba'al idol Marduk, or Bel (i.e. Ba'al) as he was later known. In a sense the Marduk /Ashur heresy only replicated what had happened in the elevation of Ninurta by Enlil, although in a more profound and cruder sense, where the character of the gods themselves became denigrated and vilified.

Markuk displaced Ea and Enlil in much the same way as Ba'al displaced El in Canaan. The vilification of the character of deity became the model. This is perhaps why Babylon is defined in the bible as the seat of all wickedness. Archaeological excavations and inscriptions found in Babylon show that Marduk statues displaced the principal ancient Sumar gods in their babylonian temples, reflecting the creeping influence of ba'al (i.e. Marduk) worship over every facet of divine worship in Babylon.

The Babylonian temple Esagila at the centre of Babylon was adjacent to, but separate from, the large Etemenanki ziqqurrat. It was known as the upper ziqqurrat of the Apzu as is referred to in the babylonian creation epic, Enuma Elis. This was clearly an attempt to replicate (and usurp) the Eridu temple. The Etemenanki ziqqurrat (the temple tower) dates back to the reign of Hammurabi 1792-1750BC. According to the Enuma Elis, Marduk built the Esagila as the center of the new world, and created mankind. The Etemenanki was next to the Esagila, and this means that the temple tower was erected at the center of the world, the axis of the universe.

It has been estimated that the completed ziggurat was circa 54 meters tall. The temple at the top contributed another 12 meters in height, for a total height of 66 meters. However inscriptions indicate 92 meters square and 92 meters tall, but this is considered improbable. The building history suggests that the Babylonians were occupied with the construction of the tower for over a century. Apparently only one person lived in this temple, a native woman (an unverified account by the Greek historian Herodotus). It seems that the main issues with this  ziqqurrat were technical. It buckled under its own weight, by reason of the inadequate building materials used in its construction (mud brick). It was allegedly destroyed 689 BC by Sennacherib, athough probably in decay by then. Subsequent attempts to rebuild or repair it ended in failure.

"In 331 BCE, Alexander the Great captured Babylon and ordered repairs to the Etemenanki. When Alexander returned to the ancient city in 323 BCE, he noted that no progress had been made, and ordered his army to demolish the entire building in order to prepare a final rebuilding. His death, however, prevented the reconstruction. The Babylonian Chronicles and Astronomical Diaries record several attempts to rebuild the Etemenanki, which were always preceded by removing the last debris of the original ziggurat. The Ruin of Esagila Chronicle mentions that the Seleucid crown prince Antiochus I decided to rebuild it and made a sacrifice in preparation. However, while there, he stumbled on the rubble and fell. He then angrily ordered his elephant drivers to destroy the last of the remains. There are no later references to the Etemenanki from antiquity." 
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Etemenanki

The separate Esagila temple was at the centre of a temple complex. It had various chapels devoted to the old gods of Sumer both within and without the temple itself. A stone statue of Marduk was to be found in the Chapel of Ninurta located in the Esagila, whilst a wooden statute of Marduk was located in E-kar-zaginna, the temple to Ea (Markuk's father per the creation epic) located in the complex. Another wooden statue was to be found in the cult room of Marduk, the cella E-umusa. Another statue of Markduk was to be found in the E-namtila, the temple at Enlil at E-matati. The name of this statue was "king of the gods of heaven and the underworld." There was a separate temple to the god Ninurta, the E-hursagtilla ("House Which Exterminates the Mountains" denoting the warrior son who overcame the mountains for his father), located in the ?uanna district (modern Ishin Aswad) of Babylon. It too had a cult statue of Marduk. There was another temple E-gishur-ankia ("House of the ordinances of Heaven and the Underworld") devoted to Belet-Ninua (mistress of Nineveh i.e. Ishtar). It also has a statue of Marduk.

So we can conclude that the Babylonian Enuma Elis really denotes the cultic usurpation of the ancient Sumerian god Enlil "Lord of the air" or "spirit" by the usurper Marduk. Ea (Enki) also surrendered his identity to Marduk. The supremacy of Marduk was promoted by Nebuchadnezzar and his successors.
https://www.jstor.org/stable/43076310?read-now=1&refreqid=excelsior%3A6662faab425e225939602ce0a1e5f31a&seq=2#page_scan_tab_contents

NB: the temple as a religious institution sought to represent the cosmic mountain. The temple reached to heaven and had direct contact with the gods. This concept was graphically expressed in the architecture in Egypt, where the massive pylons of the great temples represented the mountains of the horizon, between which the sun rose each morning. This idea was portrayed in the names given to Mesopotamian temple towers (ziggurats): the temple of Ishtar of Nineveh at Babylon was called both Ehursagankia: ?House, Mountain of Heaven and Underworld". Another temple of Ishtar at Kar-Bel-Matati, near Babylon, was called Eanki: "House of Heaven and Underworld." The same name was given to the sanctuary of Anu at Uruk. The whole temple of Anu at Uruk was called Eanna: "House of Heaven." It was also the name of a shrine of Inanna at Lagash, and of Inanna at Girshu, as well as of other shrines.

https://core.ac.uk/download/43171057.pdf

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Etemenanki
https://www.jstor.org/stable/43076310?read-now=1&refreqid=excelsior%3A6662faab425e225939602ce0a1e5f31a&seq=2#page_scan_tab_contents
https://core.ac.uk/download/43171057.pdf

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