Shamayim, (lit. Canaanite divinities seem to have been almost identical in form and function to the neighboring Arameans to the east, and Baal Hadad and El can be distinguished amongst earlier Amorites, who at the end of the Early Bronze Age invaded Mesopotamia. One of the sacrificial animals, a complete donkey, was found beneath the foundations of a building, leading to speculation this was a 'foundation deposit' placed before the building of a residential house. It was associated with sensuous fertility-cult worship of a particularly lewd and orgiastic kind, which proved to be more influential than any other nature religion … The Romans transcribed "phoenix" to "poenus", thus calling the descendants of the Canaanite settlers in Carthage "Punic". Kings also played an important religious role and in certain ceremonies, such as the hieros gamos of the New Year, may have been revered as gods. Canaanite religion was the group of belief systems utilized by the people living in the ancient Levant throughout the Bronze Age and Iron Age. "Skies"), god of the heavens, paired with Eretz, the land or earth. The Canaanite Pantheon. She was slain by. [26], Canaanite religious practice had a high regard for the duty of children to care for their parents, with sons being held responsible for burying them, and arranging for the maintenance of their tombs. The idea of two mountains being associated here as the breasts of the Earth, fits into the Canaanite mythology quite well. The late period of this cosmology makes it difficult to tell what influences (Roman, Greek, or Hebrew) may have informed Philo's writings. For example, during the Hyksos period, when chariot-mounted maryannu ruled in Egypt, at their capital city of Avaris, Baal became associated with the Egyptian god Set, and was considered identical – particularly with Set in his form as Sutekh. The aleph-bet-gimmel semitic writing system known as proto-Canaanite that would eventually develop into Hebrew and Aramaic emerged in 1800 BCE and can be seen in early examples from Egypt and Sinai. As the myths of ancient Ugarit indicate, the religion of the Canaanite peoples was a crude and debased form of ritual polytheism. 200 BCE, https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/islamic-state/11620441/Islamic-State-fighters-seize-the-world-heritage-site-of-Palmyra-in-pictures.html, https://www.theguardian.com/world/2015/sep/01/satellite-images-reveal-isis-destruction-of-palmyras-temple-of-bel, "The Shelby White & Leon Levy Program: Dig Sites, Levant Sothern", "Life, Death, and Afterlife in Ancient Israel and Canaan", "Canaanites Imported Sacrificial Animals From Egypt, Archaeologists Find", "A view from Copenhagen: Israel and the History of Palestine", "The Cuneiform Texts of Ras Shamra~Ugarit", Bibliography of Canaanite & Phoenician Studies, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Ancient_Canaanite_religion&oldid=991032802, Articles needing additional references from February 2017, All articles needing additional references, Articles with unsourced statements from April 2017, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, Athirat, "walker of the sea", Mother Goddess, wife of El (also known as Elat and after the Bronze Age as, Astoreth or Athtart, better known by her Greek name. GIMMELGIMMEL (Heb. An abjad of twenty-plus acrophonic glyphs, found in Levantine texts of the Late Bronze Age (from ca. Finkelstein, Israel, and Silberman, Neil Asher, 2001, Asherah: goddesses in Ugarit, Israel and the Old Testament, By Tilde Binger. In the later Proto-Canaanite and in the early Phoenician scripts the letter was represented by three fingers meeting at a common base . Anat goes to the Underworld, attacks Mot with a knife, grinds him up into pieces, and scatters him far and wide. Proto-Canaanite is the name given to (a) the Proto-Sinaitic script when found in Canaan. Canaanite religion refers to the group of ancient Semitic religions practiced by the Canaanites living in the ancient Levant from at least the early Bronze Age through the first centuries of the Common Era. [38][39], According to The Encyclopedia of Religion, the Ugarit texts represent one part of a larger religion that was based on the religious teachings of Babylon. Corrections? VIII (Leipzig, 1781), p. 161. the 15th century ), … This marriage of the divinity with the city would seem to have Biblical parallels too with the stories of the link between Melqart and Tyre; Chemosh and Moab; Tanit and Baal Hammon in Carthage, Yah and Jerusalem. Navigate parenthood with the help of the Raising Curious Learners podcast. [24], Archaeological investigations at the site of Tell es-Safi have found the remains of donkeys, as well as some sheep and goats in Early Bronze Age layers, dating to 4,900 years ago which were imported from Egypt in order to be sacrificed. Through Eichhorn the name then came into general usage (cf. aspect of Israel’s religious expression gives some unity to the essays to follow. Although child sacrifice was known to surrounding peoples, there is no reference to it in ancient Phoenician or Classical texts. [29] There are a number of possible etymologies for the word. [24] [25] [26] [21] Synonym for Paleo-Phoenician or Paleo-Hebrew script [ edit ] [40], Archaeological excavations in the last few decades have unearthed more about the religion of the ancient Canaanites. Omissions? KAF. The religion of the Proto-Indo-Europeans is not directly attested, but reconstruction has been attempted based on the existence of similarities among the deities, religious practices and mythologies of the Indo-European peoples. The basic shape of this letter consists of two strokes forming an angle: thus in the Proto-Sinaitic , Proto-Canaanite . The use of this language in early Hebrew history would explain why the same language was used in the ancient kingdom of Saba (Sheba). The early, Proto-Canaanite form of this letter h… Hexapla, HEXAPLA The body of manuscript evidence compiled by origen at caesarea in palestine before a.d. 245 for … 600 BCE to ca. From the other direction, Jean Bottéro has suggested that Ya of Ebla (a possible precursor of Yam) was equated with the Mesopotamian god Ea during the Akkadian Empire. Bodies were buried with grave goods, and offerings of food and drink were made to the dead to ensure that they would not trouble the living. (c) a hypothetical ancestor of the Phoenician script, with an undefined affinity to Proto-Sinaitic. 925 BCE) and its Translation into Mycenaean Linear B, Coupled with the Profound Implications of the Powerful Impact of Supersyllabograms aka Surcharged Adjuncts on Linear B (1985)"Analyzing the Abominable: Our Understanding of Canaanite Religion" (The Jewish quarterly review, 1985), The Encyclopedia of Religion - Mcmillan Library Ref. For the origins of the modern-day religion of Judaism, see Origins of Rabbinic Judaism.. Just uploaded to academia.edu: The Gezer Agricultural Calendar Almanac in Paleo-Hebrew (ca. Encyclopaedia Britannica's editors oversee subject areas in which they have extensive knowledge, whether from years of experience gained by working on that content or via study for an advanced degree.... Be on the lookout for your Britannica newsletter to get trusted stories delivered right to your inbox. The ideas of pairs of mountains seem to be quite common in Canaanite mythology (similar to Horeb and Sinai in the Bible). [38] As a result, the accounts contained within the Bible represented almost the only sources of information on ancient Canaanite religion. Evans, Annette H. M. "Monotheism and Yahweh". Philo of Byblos states that Atlas was one of the Elohim, which would clearly fit into the story of El Shaddai as "God of the Mountain(s)". Canaanite religion, beliefs and practices prevalent in ancient Palestine and Syria during the 2nd and 1st millennia bc, centring primarily on the deities El, Baal, and Anath (qq.v.). [25], It is considered virtually impossible to reconstruct a clear picture of Canaanite religious practices. The biblical representation of Canaanite religion is always negative. ג; גִּמֶּל), third letter of the Hebrew alphabet; its numerical value is therefore 3. The Phoenician, Hebrew, and other Canaanite dialects were largely indistinguishable before that time. Iconographically henceforth, Baal was shown wearing the crown of Lower Egypt and shown in the Egyptian-like stance, one foot set before the other. Canaanite religion was polytheistic, and in some cases monolatristic. Dead relatives were venerated and sometimes asked for help.[22][23]. [32] The excavation of the city of Ras Shamra (1928 onwards) and the discovery of its Bronze Age archive of clay-tablet alphabetic cuneiform texts provided a wealth of new information. The Phoenician, Hebrew, and other Canaanite dialects were largely indistinguishable before that time. With Mot defeated, Ba'al is able to return and refresh the Earth with rain. (b) the early Phoenician script before some cut-off date, typically 1050 BCE. Detailed study of the Ugaritic material, of other inscriptions from the Levant and also of the Ebla archive from Tel Mardikh, excavated in 1960 by a joint Italo-Syrian team, have cast more light on the early Canaanite religion. When the Greeks later traded with the Canaanites, this meaning of the word seems to have predominated as they called the Canaanites the Phoenikes or "Phoenicians", which may derive from the Greek word "Phoenix" meaning crimson or purple, and again described the cloth for which the Greeks also traded. Carried west by Phoenician sailors, Canaanite religious influences can be seen in Greek mythology, particularly in the tripartite division between the Olympians Zeus, Poseidon and Hades, mirroring the division between Baal, Yam and Mot, and in the story of the Labours of Hercules, mirroring the stories of the Tyrian Melqart, who was often equated with Heracles.[35]. El approves, and the palace is built by Kothar-wa-Khasis. They show that Proto-Canaanite, the common ancestor of Phoenician, Moabite, Ammonite and Hebrew, existed already in the third millennium B.C.E as a language distinct from Aramaic, Ugaritic and the other Semitic languages. The Canaanite scribes who produced the Baal texts were also trained to write in Babylonian cuneiform, including Sumerian and Akkadian texts of every genre. Our editors will review what you’ve submitted and determine whether to revise the article. As a … In Canaanite mythology there were twin mountains Targhizizi and Tharumagi which hold the firmament up above the earth-circling ocean, thereby bounding the earth. 1200 - 516 B.C.E - Digging deeper into the spiritual side of the geographical area which gave birth to Judaism and how polytheism turned into monotheism. Video shows what Proto-Canaanite alphabet means. https://www.britannica.com/topic/Canaanite-religion. By signing up for this email, you are agreeing to news, offers, and information from Encyclopaedia Britannica. The other deities, especially El and Anat, are distraught that Ba'al has been taken to the Underworld. Harriet Lutzky has presented evidence that Shaddai was an attribute of a Semitic goddess, linking the epithet with Hebrew šad "breast" as "the one of the Breast". In this program we take a quick look at the history of the ancient land of Canaan and its inhabitants, the Canaanites. Between the 10th and 7th centuries BCE, ancient Israelite and Judean religion took place in cultic and temple contexts. Similarly Athirat (known by her later Hebrew name Asherah), Athtart (known by her later Greek name Astarte), and Anat henceforth were portrayed wearing Hathor-like Egyptian wigs. Let us know if you have suggestions to improve this article (requires login). In the Middle and Late Bronze Age, there are also strong Hurrian and Mitannite influences upon the Canaanite religion. [citation needed], Group of ancient Semitic religions practiced by the Canaanites, Whereas the Israelites originated as Bronze Age Canaanites, the origin of Yahweh is indeterminate (see. Canaanite religion refers to the group of ancient Semitic religions practiced by the Canaanites living in the ancient Levant from at least the early Bronze Age through the first centuries of the Common Era. [2] (c) a hypothetical ancestor of the Phoenician script, with an undefined affinity to Proto-Sinaitic. [27], Canaanite deities such as Baal were represented by figures which were placed in shrines often on hilltops, or 'high places' surrounded by groves of trees, such as is condemned in the Hebrew Bible, in Hosea (v 13a) which would probably hold the Asherah pole, and standing stones or pillars.[28]. From time to time it subverted the essential monotheism of the Israelites after they occupied Canaan, the Promised Land of … Horon, an underworld god, co-ruler of the underworld, twin brother of Melqart, a son of Mot. In the tenth-century b.c.e. Afterward, with the help of Athirat and Anat, Ba'al persuades El to allow him a palace. [2](c) a hypothetical ancestor of the Phoenician script, with an undefined affinity to Proto-Sinaitic. The sources for Canaanite religion come either from literary sources written by the early Hebrews, or from archaeological discoveries. The union of El Elyon and his consort Asherah would be representation of primordial Cronos and Rhea in Greek mythology, or Roman Saturnus and Ops. In the Baal Cycle, Ba'al Hadad is challenged by and defeats Yam, using two magical weapons (called "Driver" and "Chaser") made for him by Kothar-wa-Khasis. Even so, the deity being worshiped, usually Yahweh, was understood to be physically present in the temple, have a body, and be a personal god with emotions and willpower. Ishat, goddess of fire, wife of Moloch. A great number of deities in a four-tier hierarchy headed by El and Asherah[1] were worshiped by the followers of the Canaanite religion; this is a detailed listing:[2], Canaanites believed that following physical death, the npš (usually translated as "soul") departed from the body to the land of Mot (Death). [1](b) the early Phoenician script before some cut-off date, typically 1050 BCE. Phoenician script two types occur: and . Canaanite religion, beliefs and practices prevalent in ancient Palestine and Syria during the 2nd and 1st millennia bc, centring primarily on the deities El, Baal, and Anath (qq.v.). Pidray, goddess of light and lightning, one of the three daughters of Ba'al Hadad. From shop DanubeJewelry ... Mythology art print / limited edition Canaanite religion theology / mystical artwork by Skee Goedhart / … This article discusses the historical roots of Judaism throughout the 1st millennium BCE. The Hurrian goddess Hebat was worshiped in Jerusalem, and Baal was closely considered equivalent to the Hurrian storm god Teshub and the Hittite storm god, Tarhunt. The earliest known alphabetic (or "proto-alphabetic") inscriptions are the so-called Proto-Sinaitic (or Proto-Canaanite) script sporadically attested in the Sinai and in Canaan in the late Middle and Late Bronze Age.The script was not widely used until the rise of new Semitic kingdoms in the 13th and 12th centuries BC.. The Canaanite religion was practiced by people living in the ancient Levant throughout the Bronze Age and Iron Age. Lotan, Lawtan, and Lat = goddess in Canaanite). Any idea of one is often reconstructed from the much later Phoenician text by Philo of Byblos (c. 64–141 CE), after much Greek and Roman influence in the region. Present-day knowledge of Canaanite religion comes from: Until Claude F. A. Schaefer began excavating in 1929 at Ras Shamra in Northern Syria (the site historically known as Ugarit), and the discovery of its Bronze Age archive of clay tablets written in an alphabetical cuneiform,[37] modern scholars knew little about Canaanite religion, as few records have survived. כ ,ך ;כָּף), the eleventh letter of the Hebrew alphabet; its numerical value is 20. [1] (b) the early Phoenician script before some cut-off date, typically 1050 BCE. Page 35. abstract, K. L. Noll (2007) "Canaanite Religion", Olmo Lete, Gregorio del (1999), "Canaanite religion: According to the liturgical texts of Ugarit" (CDL), Hillers D.R. W. F. Albright, for example, says that El Shaddai is a derivation of a Semitic stem that appears in the Akkadian shadû ("mountain") and shaddā'û or shaddû'a ("mountain-dweller"), one of the names of Amurru. Israel’s religion emerged from a mythopoeic past under the impact of certain historical experiences which stimulated the creation of an epic cycle and its associated covenant rites of the early time. The making of these assignments was based upon trial and error which was guided by assuming that Akkadian words were behind them. Like other peoples of the ancient Near East, the Canaanites were polytheistic, with families typically focusing worship on ancestral household gods and goddesses while acknowledging the existence of other deities such as Baal, Anath, and El. Mot enters through the window and swallows Ba'al, sending him to the Underworld. Moscatti, Sabatino (1968), "The World of the Phoenicians" (Phoenix Giant), Ribichini, Sergio "Beliefs and Religious Life" in Maoscati Sabatino (1997), "The Phoenicians" (Rissoli), This page was last edited on 27 November 2020, at 22:21. More recently, the term Canaanite has been used for the secondary Iron Age states of the interior (including the Philistines and the states of Israel and Judah)[30][31] that were not ruled by Arameans—a separate and closely related ethnic group. Furth… Ancient Semitic religion encompasses the polytheistic religions of the Semitic peoples from the ancient Near East and Northeast Africa. None of the inscribed tablets found in 1929 in the Canaanite city of Ugarit (destroyed c. 1200 BCE) has revealed a cosmology. This record was supplemented by a few secondary and tertiary Greek sources: (Lucian's De Dea Syria (The Syrian Goddess), fragments of the Phoenician History of Philo of Byblos (died 141 CE), and the writings of Damascius). his "Einleitung in das Alte Testament" (Leipzig, 1787), I, p. 45). In the Proto-Sinaitic and early Proto-Canaanite inscriptions the kaf was drawn as a pictograph of the palm of the hand and hence its name. Thus while "Phoenician" and "Canaanite" refer to the same culture, archaeologists and historians commonly refer to the Bronze Age, pre-1200 BCE Levantines as Canaanites; and their Iron Age descendants, particularly those living on the coast, as Phoenicians. Papyrus seems to have been the preferred writing medium, but whereas in Egypt papyrus may survive centuries in the extremely dry climate, Canaanite records have simply decayed in the humid Mediterranean climate. and Proto-Arabian scripts. "At the center of Canaanite religion was royal concern for religious and political legitimacy and the imposition of a divinely ordained legal structure, as well as peasant emphasis on fertility of the crops, flocks, and humans."[33][34]. After the palace is constructed, Ba'al gives forth a thunderous roar out of the palace window and challenges Mot. KAF (Heb. Like other people of the Ancient Near East Canaanite religious beliefs were polytheistic, with families typically focusing on veneration of the dead in the form of household gods and goddesses, the Elohim, while acknowledging the existence of other deities such as Baal and El, Asherah and Astarte. [32], Canaanite religion was strongly influenced by their more powerful and populous neighbors, and shows clear influence of Mesopotamian and Egyptian religious practices. Updates? Posts about Proto-Canaanite written by vallance22. Used to write: a Semitic language called Canaanite or Paleo-Hebrew Proto-Canaanite is the name given to (a) the Proto-Sinaitic script when found in Canaan. "Linguists, too, will be interested in these texts. Phoenician alphabet letter on plate necklace keychain,Proto-Canaanite alphabet,Hebrew letter,Egyptian hieroglyphs jewelry,Sinaitic script DanubeJewelry. With no one to give rain, there is a terrible drought in Ba'al's absence. Tallay, the goddess of winter, snow, cold and dew, one of the three daughters of Ba'al Hadad. - Page 42, Learn how and when to remove this template message, The Early History of God: Yahweh and Other Deities in Ancient Israel, The Development of Jewish Ideas of Angels: Egyptian and Hellenistic Connections, ca. It was proposed at first to refer to the languages related to Hebrew by Ludwig Schlözer, in Eichhorn's"Repertorium", vol. Above: proto-Canaanite alphabet used by Gary Vey and John McGovern in their global research with this ancient language (aka: "First Tongue" and "Old Negev"). Although the many Jewish and Christians traditions suggest that Yahweh was the main and only deity through all Israelite and Judean religious history, archaeology, inscriptions, and the Hebrew Bibleitself indicate otherwise. Leviathan was known in northern Canaanite texts as the foe of the storm god Baal at least as early as the 14th century bce (var. The Akkadian word "kinahhu" referred to the purple-colored wool, dyed from the Murex molluscs of the coast, which was throughout history a key export of the region. MS in Canaanite West Semitic on bronze, Canaan, Israel/Lebanon, 11th c. BC, 1 arrowhead, inscribed on both sides with Proto-Canaanite script/early Phoenician script. What archaeologists have been able to discover of ancient scripts indicates not only that proto-Canaanite was an ancestor of later Phoenician, but that it was a likely middle step from Hieratic, a cursive script derived from Egyptian hieroglyphs. Gorelick, Leonard; Williams-Forte, Elizabeth; "alleged but not securely attested", according to Johnston, Sarah Isles. More recently, detailed study of the Ugaritic material, of other inscriptions from the Levant and also of the Ebla archive from Tel Mardikh, excavated in 1960 by a joint Italo-Syrian team, have cast more light on the early Canaanite religion. The Phoenician, Hebrew, and other Canaanite dialects were largely indistinguishable before that time. According to the pantheon, known in Ugarit as 'ilhm (Elohim) or the children of El, supposedly obtained by Philo of Byblos from Sanchuniathon of Berythus (Beirut) the creator was known as Elion, who was the father of the divinities, and in the Greek sources he was married to Beruth (Beirut = the city). Proto-Canaanite, also referred to as Proto-Canaan, Old Canaanite, or Canaanite, is the name given to the proto-Sinaitic script (c. 16th century BC), when found in Canaan. The Levant region was inhabited by people who themselves referred to the land as 'ca-na-na-um' as early as the mid-third millennium BCE. From time to time it subverted the essential monotheism of the Israelites after they occupied Canaan, the Promised Land of the Old Testament. This chart lists the letter assignments for these first alphabetic scripts found in the Sinai desert of Egypt which have been called Proto-Canaanite and Proto-Siniatic. In his "Gesc… The term Semite means a member of any of various ancient and modern Semitic-speaking peoples originating in southwestern Asia, including Akkadians, Canaanites, Phoenicians, Hebrews, Arabs, and Ethiopian Semites. Until the excavation of Ras Shamra in Northern Syria (the site historically known as Ugarit), and the discovery of its Bronze Age archive of clay tablet alphabetic cuneiform texts, little was known of Canaanite religion, as papyrus seems to have been the preferred writing medium, and unlike Egypt, in the humid Mediterranean climate, these have simply decayed. ... art and perhaps even religion. Proto-Canaanite is the name given to (a) the Proto-Sinaitic script when found in Canaan. Canaanite religion was influenced by its peripheral position, intermediary between Egypt and Mesopotamia, whose religions had a growing impact upon Canaanite religion. The early, Proto-Canaanite form of this letter h… Hebrews, Hebrews Term that is found chiefly in the Biblical traditions concerning the 2d millennium b.c., and then, apparently after centuries of desuetude, r… Hebrew Language, Major official language of the State of Israel.
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