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VI. Religion

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Chapter Summary

The religion of the Aramaeans of Syria belongs to the larger sphere of West Semitic religions. The religion of the Aramaeans of Syria must be examined from various perspectives. These perspectives focus on: the pantheon; the monarchy as an intermediary between the divine and the human world; the temples as the seat of deities and the cults as devotions to the deities; prophecy and divination; magic as a means to explore the divine will; and the realm of funeral and mortuary cult. In an approach based on regional geographic aspects, Syria is divided into three regions: the area between the Tigris and Euphrates, the area between the Euphrates and the Mediterranean, and the southwest area east of the Lebanon. Attested since the 2nd millennium B.C., the "Goddess or mistress of the land" comes originally from Carchemish and expanded her sphere of cultic influence to Anatolia and north and middle Syria.

Keywords: Euphrates; Mediterranean; middle Syria; monarchy; pantheon; prophecy; religion; temples; Tigris



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