Ancient Sumerian Deities

Deity: Displays the name of the deity along with a notation of any other pantheons they belong to.

Patron City: Center of worship of the deity.
Description: A brief description of the deity’s duties.
Symbol: Symbol commonly used to denote the deity.
Relationships: Relationships with other deities.
Comments: Interesting side notes concerning the deity.
Also Known As…: Other names the deity is known by along with a notation of the pantheon(s) they belong to.

Continue reading Ancient Sumerian Deities

Ancient Civilization Appears Along the Nile

The waters of the Nile came from annual rains in the tropics to the south of Egypt. The Nile rose in early July, and in October it receded, leaving little water and a layer of black, fertile soil — inspiring people there to call the area the Black Land. Continue reading Ancient Civilization Appears Along the Nile

The Maccabaean Revolt

Antiochus IV, ruling his empire including Jerusalem from Syria, wrongly assumed that the worship of Yahweh among the Jews could be transformed into the worship of the universal god, Zeus, as easily as such transformations had been made in his dominions farther east — where Jews worshiped Yahweh under the name of Zeus Sabazions. He wrongly assumed that the Jews of Judea would easily accept the notion that all worshiped the same God. In 167 he had the temple in Jerusalem rededicated as a shrine to Zeus. A problem in semantics developed. Some Jews saw Antiochus as compelling them to practice idolatry — something neither the Persians nor the Ptolemies had tried to force upon them. Continue reading The Maccabaean Revolt

Hellenism & Jews

With Alexander’s conquests also came significant cultural change. In West Asia and North Africa, well-to-do tradesmen, intellectuals and aristocrats who were neither Greek nor Macedonian, including those who were Jews, had begun developing an interest in things Greek — to the annoyance of those who believed that the old ways were best. From Marseille to India, Greek became the language of intellectuals. The Greek gymnasium became popular. It was a place for bathing and physical exercise Continue reading Hellenism & Jews

Persecutions during Sassanid Rule

The high-priest of Zoroastrianism, Kartir Hangirpe, believed that he represented the one true religion. He was an absolutist,

Sasanid map
Sasanid Dynasty Map

believing that there was good and evil, with nothing in between. Into the later half of the 200s CE, he continued with his persecution of competing religions: the Manichaeans, Christians, Jews and Buddhists. Then, sometime during the reign of Bahram II (276-293), Kartir died, and religious tolerance began to reassert itself. Continue reading Persecutions during Sassanid Rule

Hatshepsut Poetry : Speak to Me

Poetry
These poems are taken from Hatshepsut, Speak to Me by Ruth Whitman [Wayne SU Press, Detroit: 1992]

Hatshepsut, seated, as female

HATSHEPSUT:

When I was six

my father Thutmose the First

lifted me up to sit beside him

on his throne of Amen. Continue reading Hatshepsut Poetry : Speak to Me