Astarte sentence example
As a consequence of the first half of the name, Atargatis has frequently, though wrongly, been identified with Astarte.
But it is probable that the horns were primarily ram's horns, 4 and that Astarte the moon-goddess is due to the influence of the Egyptian Isis 1 The vocalization suggests the Heb.
Astarte was introduced also into Egypt and had her temple at Memphis.
To nomads, Astarte may well have been a sheep-goddess, but this, if her earliest, was not her only type, as is clear from the sacred fish of Atargatis, the doves of Ascalon (and of the Phoenician sanctuary of Eryx), and the gazelle or antelope of the goddess of love (associated also with the Arabian Athtar).
Both Baal and Astarte were venerated in Egypt at Thebes and Memphis in the XIXth Dynasty, and the former, through the influence of the Aramaeans who borrowed the Babylonian spelling Bel, ultimately became known as the Greek Belos who was identified with Zeus.Advertisement
In many cases, however, Atargatis and Astarte are fused to such an extent as to be indistinguishable.
This fusion is exemplified by the Carnion temple, which is probably identical with the famous temple of Astarte at Ashtaroth-Karnaim.
The worship was a relic of the Phoenician cult of Astarte.
The origin of this particular form of worship can scarcely be sought in Egypt; the Apis which was worshipped there was a live bull, and image-worship was common among the Canaanites in connexion with the cult of Baal and Astarte (qq.v.).
Thus a Phoenician colonist might desire to carry abroad the cult of a certain Baal or Astarte who lived in a conical stone or pillar.Advertisement
Pilgrims visiting Paphos, the original home and temple of Astarte, could of course be in no doubt about which of the heavenly powers inhabited the cone of stone in which she was there held to be immanent; nor was any Semite ever ignorant as to which Baal he stood before.
The male god Dagon has his partner Astarte (qq.v.), and Baal-zebub, a famous oracle of Ekron (2 Kings i.) finds a parallel in the local " baals " of Palestine.'
And when the pagan legend of the Syrian Astarte tells how she lived for ten years in Tyre as a prostitute, this directly recalls the Gnostic myth of how Simon found Helena in a brothel in Tyre (Epiphanius, Ancoratus, c. 104).
Like Aphrodite and Adonis in Syria, Baal and Astarte at Sidon, and Isis and Osiris in Egypt, the Great Mother and Attis formed a duality which symbolized the relations between Mother Earth and her fruitage.
It seems, however, that as time went on some of them acquired a more extended character; thus Ba'al and Astarte assumed celestial attributes in addition to their earthly ones, and the Tyrian Melqarth combined a celestial with a marine aspect.'Advertisement
The mistress of Gebal was no doubt `Ashtart (Astarte in Greek, `Ashtoreth in the Old Testament, pronounced with the vowels of bosheth, " shame "), a name which is obviously connected with the Babylonian Ishtar, and, as used in Phoenician, is practically the equivalent of " goddess."
There are no signs of Oriental influence in her cults, except at Corinth, where she seems to have been identified with Astarte.
In Syria, the temple of Atargatis in Hierapolis was an immemorial resort of pilgrims. In Phoenicia, a similar significance was enjoyed by the shrine of Astarte, on the richly-watered source of the river Adonis, till, as late as the 4th century after Christ, it was destroyed by Constantine the Great.
Indeed Asiatic influence made itself felt in Egypt before the Hyksos age, and later, and more strongly, during the XVIIIth and following Dynasties, and deities of Syro-Palestinian fame (Resheph, Baal, Anath, the Baalath of Byblos, Kadesh, Astarte) found a hospitable welcome.
Among the Semitic peoples (with the notable exception of the Hebrews) a supreme female deity was worshipped under different names - the Assyrian Ishtar, the Phoenician Ashtoreth (Astarte), the Syrian Atargatis (Derketo), the Babylonian Belit (Mylitta), the Arabian Ilat (Al-ilat).Advertisement
Westward of and above these strata, the Middle and Upper Jurassic formations are found (Lias, Lower Oolite, Oxfordian, &c.), with well-marked and numerous fossils (Ammonites, Nerinaea, Natica, Astarte, Rhynchonella, Echinodermata, &c.); then the Cretaceous rocks, both these and the Jurassic series being largely developed, the Cretaceous fossils including Nautilus, Belemnites, Ostrea, Gryphaea, &c., and some very large Ammonites (Pachydiscus).
Their chief deity was Ashtart (Astarte), the goddess of fertility.
The Astarte Plaques therefore depict the goddess in the context of her shrine.
Cult objects found in Dor included clay statuettes of both local and Greek styles pertaining to the Phoenician cults of Baal and Astarte.
Whether Astarte was also a lunar goddess has been questioned.Advertisement
Originating probably, in the observation of the fertilizing effect of rains and streams upon the receptive and reproductive soil, baalism becomes identical with the grossest nature-worship. Joined with the baals there are naturally found corresponding female figures known as Ashtaroth, embodiments of Ashtoreth (see Astarte; Ishtar).
Apart from the religious cult suggested in the name Mount Nebo, there were local cults of the Baal of Peor and the Baal of Meon, and Mesha's allusion to `Ashtar-Chemosh, a compound deity, has been taken to point to a corresponding consort whose existence might naturally be expected upon other grounds (see Astarte).
This view, however, has not met with general acceptance, on the ground that, in Semitic mythology, the moon is always a male divinity; and that the full moon and crescent, found as attributes of Astarte, are due to a misinterpretation of the sun's disk and cow's horns of Isis, the result of the dependence of Syrian religious art upon Egypt.
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