SHAMASH
   Babylonian sun god. According to the personal names from the Akkadperiod, the sun deity, as in other Semitic cultures, may have originally been female. In Mesopotamia, Shamash became identified with the Sumerian sun god Utu, whose shrine was at Larsa. In the Old Babylonian period, Shamash came to be seen as the supreme arbiter of justice—Hammurabi on the stele with his law code is seen to receive the symbols of kingship from the sun god. At this time, the main sanctuary of the sun god was at Sippar, where he resided in the Ebabbar, the “shining house,” to the detriment of the temple at Larsa.
   In Babylonian hymns and prayers, Shamash is not only invoked to safeguard the rights of individuals but to guard all those on a journey, such as merchants and soldiers, and to combat evil in the many apotropaic and curative rituals and incantations. The wife of Shamash was Aya, who was the patron of a special category of cloistered (naditu) women during the Old Babylonian period.
   See also RASSAM, Hormuzd.

Historical Dictionary of Mesopotamia. . 2012.

Look at other dictionaries:

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  • Shamash — [shä′mäsh] n. [< Akkadian shamshu, sun] Bab. & Assyr. Myth. the sun god, responsible for summer warmth and the success of crops, and a symbol for justice …   English World dictionary

  • Shamash — For the Canaanite sun godess, see Shemesh Shamash was the common Akkadian name of the sun god and god of justice in Babylonia and Assyria, corresponding to Sumerian Utu.History and meaningThe name simply means sun . Both in early and in late… …   Wikipedia

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  • Shamash —    The Babylonian sun god, who was closely associated with the older Sumerian solar deity, Utu, and whose symbol was the solar disk. Shamash s father was Nanna, god of the moon; his sister was Inanna, goddess of love and sexual passion; and his… …   Ancient Mesopotamia dictioary

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  • Shamash — noun The common Akkadian name of the sun god and god of justice in Babylonia and Assyria, corresponding to Sumerian Utu …   Wiktionary

  • Shamash — Solgud (Babylonisk Assyrisk) …   Danske encyklopædi

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