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Who is Tammuz? Mesopotamia – West Asian religion

By |2018-04-24T12:02:10-07:00September 15th, 2017|Religion, West Asia|

The god Tammuz (probably) with grain growing from his shoulders A West Asian god Tammuz (or Dumuzi) was a West Asian god who personified growing food, like Persephone in Greece or Osiris in Egypt. Like Osiris, Tammuz was male. The Sumerians worshipped Tammuz as early as 2600 BC - and probably much earlier - and so did all the other people [...]

Who is Ishtar? Mesopotamian goddess – West Asian religion

By |2018-04-15T12:09:53-07:00September 15th, 2017|Religion, West Asia|

The Mesopotamian goddess Ishtar or Inanna Ishtar (also called Inanna) was an important goddess of West Asia. Beginning at least by 3000 BC she was worshipped by the Sumerians, and by the Akkadians, and theBabylonians, and the Assyrians. Like most other female goddesses, Ishtar was a fertility goddess, but Ishtar was fiercer and more powerful than the Greek goddesses like Athena or Aphrodite. According [...]

The Greek underworld – Hades

By |2019-06-06T18:53:19-07:00July 16th, 2017|Greeks, Religion|

Hades and Persephone in the Greek underworld What happened when you died? Greek people didn't like to talk about what happened to you after you died. So we don't know as much about what they thought as we might like. Egyptian afterlife Zoroastrianism Probably they did not think about life after death as [...]

Persephone and Hades – Greek religion

By |2018-04-23T09:49:50-07:00July 16th, 2017|History|

Hades kidnaps Persephone (mosaic from Amphipolis, 300s BC) Persephone was the daughter of the goddess Demeter. One day Persephone was dancing with her friends in a sunny meadow, having a good time, picking flowers. Suddenly Persephone's spooky uncle Hades burst out of the ground and grabbed her and pulled her into his chariot! He took Persephone (purr-SEFF-oh-nee) [...]

Greek mystery cults – ancient Greece

By |2018-04-23T10:04:50-07:00July 13th, 2017|Greeks, Religion|

Torchlight parade (this one is actually in India) Most Greek religious rituals were about sacrifice to the gods. But there was another form of religious activity also, which we call the mystery cults. People who wanted to participate in the mystery cults also kept on doing the usual sacrifices. You didn't have to choose. It's like [...]

Who is Hades? – ancient Greek gods

By |2018-04-23T09:54:02-07:00July 13th, 2017|Greeks, Religion|

Hades kidnaps Persephone (Greek painting from the Hellenistic period) Hades was the god of the dead, who ruled the place where dead people went after they died (Sometimes people also called the underworld "Hades"). He is a rather shadowy figure in more ways than one, spooky and cruel, and the Greeks didn't like to talk about [...]

Eleusinian Mysteries – a Greek mystery cult

By |2019-05-27T14:00:32-07:00July 13th, 2017|Greeks, Religion|

Eleusinian Mysteries: Demeter, Persephone, and Triptolemos (the boy), an 1899 drawing from a stone carving found at Eleusis . When did the Eleusinian Mysteries start? Beginning at least as early as the Late Bronze Age (about 1400 BC) and maybe much earlier even than that, the people of Eleusis in Greece celebrated a [...]

Persephone project – Greek mythology

By |2018-04-23T09:49:49-07:00July 13th, 2017|Greeks, History, Religion|

Persephone project: Hades kidnaps Persephone (Greek painting from the Hellenistic period) Put on a play for your class, or make a short film about Persephone, or write a book or a song about Persephone. Send it to us here at Quatr.us (or send us a link to the YouTube video), and we'll put [...]

Who is Demeter? Greek goddess Demeter

By |2019-05-04T07:13:55-07:00July 12th, 2017|Greeks, Religion|

Greek goddess Demeter: A field of wheat growing What does "Demeter" mean? The Greek goddess Demeter is an earth goddess; her name is De, which means earth (the same word as Gaia) and meter, which means mother. Demeter is the goddess of growing things, especially of grains like wheat and barley and millet. History of [...]

Classical Greek painting – ancient Greece

By |2019-04-08T12:37:53-07:00July 3rd, 2017|Art, Greeks|

Tomb of the Diver (ca. 500 BC) Classical Greek painting Artists in Classical Greece continued to favor the stiffer Mycenaean style of painting more than the looser, fancier Minoan style. Mycenaean painting Classical sculpture Classical Greek history All our Ancient Greece articles What did it look like? Classical Greek painters usually didn't include [...]