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J. GRAY, Social aspects of Canaanite religion

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Chapter Summary

The impression that the Canaanites were pre-occupied with the fertility cult with its purpose to secure by appropriate rites the bounty of Providence in nature is not contradicted by the material remains of Canaanite religion from Syria, Palestine and Egypt in the XVIIIth and XIXth Dynasties, when Canaanite influences were strong in the Delta, in Baal-figurines, now recognizable in the light of evidence from Ras Shamra and Minet el-Beida, and the nude goddesses Anat and Ashera in sculpture and in figurines moulded in day or metal from most archaeological sites in Syria and Palestine in the Late Bronze Age. There is sufficient evidence for the social aspect of Canaanite religion in the literary texts, which relate the vicissitudes of the ancient Canaanite kings. In the former the author notes that EI is the protagonist, and not Baal as in the main myths of the fertility-cult.

Keywords: Aqht text; Canaanite religion; Egypt; Hebrew prophets; Krt text; Palestine; social aspects; Syria



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