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Danatay, Khubur, Daniel, Namtara, Kothar-and-Khasis, Gods

Prehistoric Monument

Returning to his estate with Huray, Keret is blessed by El at Baal's behest and is promised eight sons, the first of which, Yassib, shall have Athirat and Anat as nursemaids. In addition, Huray will bear eight daughters all of whom as blessed as a first-born child. Athirat calls attention to Keret's promise of wealth to Huray which he has yet to fulfill. Later, Keret and Huray prepare a great feast for the lords of Khubur. Later still Keret has become deathly ill and Huray entreats guests at a feast to morn for him and make sacrifices on his behalf.


The household is tense and Keret's son Elhu, despondently visits his father. Keret tells him not to sorrow, but to send for his sympathetic sister, Keret's daughter Thitmanat ('the eighth one'). Her sympathy, heighted Keret expects from her surprise at his state will evoke the attention of the gods during a sacrifice he intends to perform. Indeed she weeps readily when the truth is revealed. Meanwhile, the rains have ceased with Keret's illness, but return after a ceremony on Mt. Zephon. El convenes an assembly of the gods and dispatches the demoness Sha'taqat who cures Keret. Keret's son and heir Yassib, unaware of his father's cure entreats him to surrender his throne as he has been remiss in his duties, but Yassib is rebuffed and cursed.

 

 

 

Daniel: 'He of Harnan', a devotee of Rapiu (Baal) and a patriarchal king. Like Keret, Daniel is in mourning because unlike his brothers he had no sons. So, for several days he sacrificed food and drink to the gods. On the seventh day, Baal takes notice and successfully petitions El to allow Daniel and his wife, Danatay, to have a child, citing, among other reasons, that the child will be able to continue the contributions and sacrifices to their temples. El informs Daniel of his impending change of fortune. He rejoices and slaughters an ox for the Kotharat, pouring sacrifices to them for six days and watching them depart on the seventh. During some missing columns, Danatay gives birth to Aqhat. Later, Kothar-and-Khasis arrives with a specially crafted bow and arrows set for Aqhat.

Aqhat, Hirgab, Sumul, Pughat, Anat, Danatay, Baal, Daniel

Shasu Prisoners

Daniel and Danatay hold a feast, inviting the god, and Daniel presents Aqhat with the bow reminding him to sacrifice the choices game to the gods. When Aqhat is slain, Daniel's daughter Pughat notices the eagles and the drought and becomes upset.

 

Daniel prays that Baal might return the rains and travels among the fields coaxing the few living plants to grow and wishing that Aqhat were there to help harvest them. Pughat informs him of Aqhat's demise. Daniel then swears vengeance upon his son's slayer.


In succession he spies some eagles, Hirgab, and Sumul. He calls upon Baal to break their wings and breast-bones, then he searches their insides for Aqhat's remains. Initially not finding them, he asks Baal to restore the eagles and Hirgab. Finding Aqhat's remains within Sumul, he buries him and calls upon Baal to break the bones of any eagle that my disturb them and curses the lands near which his son was slain.

 

His court goes into mourning for seven years, at which time Daniel dismisses the mourners and burns incense in sacrifice to the gods. Pughat prays to the gods to bless her in her venture and disguises herself as Anat, intending to wreck vengeance upon those who slew Aqhat.


Aqhat: The much anticipated child of Daniel and Danatay, Aqhat is presented with a bow and arrows set made by Kothar-and-Khasis early in his life by his father at a feast. Daniel reminds him to take the best of his kills to the temple for the gods. At the feast Anat offers Aqhat riches and eternal life if he would give her the bow. When he refuses, she promises to deliver vengeance upon him should he ever transgress. Presumably he fails to offer his best kills to the gods. Later he follows a disguised Anat to Qart-Abilim but presumably thwarts her new scheme to acquire his bow and lives there for a time, possibly under the favor of Yarikh.

 

He is left on a mountain and while sitting for a meal is attacked by Anat's attendant Yatpan in the form of an eagle, along with other birds of prey, and is slain. Following his death, the land is poisoned and there is a period of famine and drought. Daniel recovers his son's remains from the eagle S,umul.

Phoenician Female Mask

Later, Daniel visits the underworld, probably in hopes of recovering Aqhat, and there encounters the Rephaim. Pughat: She is one of Daniel and Danatay's daughters. When Aqhat is slain, She notices the eagles and the drought and becomes upset. Daniel prays that Baal might return the rains and travels among the fields coaxing the few living plants to grow and wishing that Aqhat were there to help harvest them. Pughat encounters Aqhat's servants and learns of his demise.

 

After seven years of Daniel's court mourning, Daniel dismisses the mourners and burns incense in sacrifice to the gods. Pughat prays to the gods to bless her in her venture and disguises herself as Anat, intending to wreck vengeance upon those who slew Aqhat. She arrives and meets Yatpan, accepting his wine, and the rest is missing.

 

Little is certain about the cosmology of the Canaanites. While the Ugaritic texts tell us of El, Athirat, and Rahmay's creation of the gracious gods, for the creation of the universe we must rely on the Greek sources of Philo of Byblos, Athenaeus, and Damascius, which are thoroughly drenched in Greek cosmology.

 

In general they relate that from gods like chaos, ether, air, wind and desire was produced the egg Mot, which was probably not the same Mot as found in Ugarit. The egg was populated with creatures who remained motionless until it was opened, whence the sky and heavenly bodies were formed. Later the waters were separated from the sky, and gods of El's generation were formed. Additional hints about the divine geography gathered from the Ugarit texts are included below:

 

Mt. Lel: Where the assembly of the gods meet. It is El's abode and the source of the rivers and two oceans, as well as where those waters meet those of the firmament. It lies 'two layers beneath the wells of the earth, three spans beneath its marshes.' It had been thought to be a field and not a mountain. The mansion there has eight entrances and seven chambers. hmry 'Miry' Mot's city in the underworld, "where a pit is the throne on which he sits, filth the land of his heritage." (Gibson p. 66)

 

Mt. Zephon, Roman, Hadrian, Kosiba, Hebrew

 

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The underworld 'The place of freedom'.

 

The Aramaeans believed that the souls of the blessed dead ate with Baal-Hadad. Targhizizi and Tharumagi:

 

These are the twin mountains which hold the firmament up above the earth-circling ocean, thereby bounding the earth.

 

The entrance to the underworld and Shapshu's 'grave'.

 

It is entered by lifting up a rock to a wooded height. The entrance is bounded by a river-shore land of pasture and fields known ironicly as "Pleasure" or "Delight".

 

Ughar or Inbab This is the location of Anat's mansion.


Mt. Zephon

Either the mountain is deified and holy, godlike in proportion, or El has a pavilion there.

 

It has recesses within which Baal holds his feast.

 

Baal had his first house of cedar and brick there, as well as his second house of gold, silver, and lapis-lazuli.

 

When last we left Canaan, Judaea had been destroyed, and in 70 A.D, the city of Jerusalem had also been destroyed.

 

Not much was left.

 

In 130 A.D. The Roman Emperor Hadrian planned a great temple to Zeus in the newly founded city of Aelia Capitolina, which was on the ruined site of Jerusalem.

 

Moreover, Hadrian had recently outlawed circumcision. these Romanizing acts of the government, easily ignited the second great revolt of the Hebrews against Rome.

 

This was the Bar Cochba or Kochba, (nickname for Simon - (Son of the Star), Revolt of 132 to 135 A.D, which was led by Simon ben Kosiba, (Simon son of Kosiba).

 

Once again the Romans raised an enormous army to put down the revolt.

 

Hadrian personally led the Roman attack on the rebels.

 

In the aftermath of the Bar Cochba Revolt, the Romans excluded Hebrews from a large area around Aelia Capitolina, which Romans only inhabited.

 

The province now hosted two legions and many auxiliary units, two colonies, and a new name, "Syria Palaestina" to replace Judaea.

 

The center of Hebrew settlement moved northward to Galilee and Gaulanitis.