Dushara

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Dushara (Arabic: ذو شرى‎, "Lord of the Mountain"), also transliterated as Dusares, a deity in the ancient Middle East worshipped by the Nabataeans at Petra and Madain Saleh (of which city he was the patron). He was mothered by Manat the goddess of fate.[1] In Greek times, he was associated with Zeus because he was the chief of the Nabataean pantheon as well as with Dionysus. His sanctuary at Petra contained a great temple in which a large cubical stone was the centrepiece.

A shrine to Dusares has been discovered in the harbour of Pozzuoli in Italy. Ancient Puteoli was an important harbour for trade to the Near East, and a Nabataean presence is detected there in the mid 1st century BC.[2]

The cult continued in some capacity well into the Roman period and possibly as late as the Islamic period.[3]

This deity was mentioned by the 9th century CE historian Hisham Ibn Al-Kalbi, who wrote in The Book of Idols (Kitab al-Asnām) that: "The Banū al-Hārith ibn-Yashkur ibn-Mubashshir of the ʻAzd had an idol called Dū Sharā."

See also[edit]

Dushara

References[edit]

  1. ^ Langdon, S. (1930). "The Semitic Goddess of Fate, Fortuna-Tyche". Journal of the Royal Asiatic Society of Great Britain and Ireland (Royal Asiatic Society of Great Britain and Ireland) (1): 21–29. ISSN 0035-869X. JSTOR 25194060. 
  2. ^ AA.VV. Museo archeologico dei Campi Flegrei - Catalogo generale (vol. 2) - Pozzuoli, Electa Napoli 2008, pag. 60-63
  3. ^ Peterson, Stephanie Bowers, "The Cult of Dushara and the Roman Annexation of Nabataea" (2006). Open Access Dissertations and Theses. Paper 5352.

Bibliography[edit]

  • Ibn al-Kalbī, The Book of Idols, Being a Translation from the Arabic of the Kitāb al-Asnām. Tr. and comm. Nabih Amin Faris (Princeton, Princeton University Press, 1952).
  • Healey, John F., The Religion of the Nabataeans: A Conspectus (Leiden, Brill, 2001) (Religions in the Graeco-Roman World, 136).
  • el-Khouri, Lamia; Johnson, David, "A New Nabataean Inscription from Wadi Mataha, Petra," Palestine Exploration Quarterly, 137,2 (2005), 169-174.

External links[edit]