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Old 09-10-2016, 11:23 AM   #25
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Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Iceland*
Default Re: Moon Priests/Priestesses

Originally Posted by jason taylor View Post
As the moon is an astronomical object make her a patron of sailors.
Again, this is a male god. In Babylonian culture, the bull is lunar, not solar as we might be more used to in those mythologies that are more familiar to us in the West. It is, however, still a male symbol and the long-bearded, masculine Su'en, riding his winged bull, is a male god.

In any event, the sun and the moon do not appear to have been symbols of the male and female principle in Mesopotamia to the same extent as they were in Indo-European mythology. The male and female principle were instead linked to the sky and earth, respectively, much like various steppe peoples did.

The name of the deity I'm using in my campaign* is Su'en or Sin in Akkadian, Na-an-na or Nanna in Sumerian. Nannaru is an appelation that means 'Lightbringer' in Akkadian, but also has an obvious similarity to the Sumerian name of the deity, which is likely to have contributed to the use of it among Akkadian speakers who still retained some Sumerian for liturgical purposes.

It is tempting to have a role for my version of Su'en as a patron of boatmen, mariners and sailors among the Untheri** people. There isn't a powerful local god with that role at the moment and, in my setting, gods constantly compete for worship.

Does anyone know whether the historical Su'en was associated with marine endeavours in any way?

*It's set in a fantasy setting that is not Earth, but the people who worship Su'en were transplanted there a millenia ago from a place that was Earth or a very near analogue of Earth, taken as slaves by a portal-using civilisation ruled by powerful wizards. The deity is therefore based on our historical Nanna/Sin, but not identical to it, as the people and their culture have developed in ways that our history never allowed.
**The people eventually established by the descendants of the Babylonian (and some other Mesopotamian) people taken in slavery many generations before.
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