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Bible Encyclopedias

Kitto's Popular Cyclopedia of Biblial Literature


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Ner´gal. Recent inquiries into the astrolatry of the Assyrians and Chaldæans have led to the conclusion that Nergal is one of the names for the planet Mars. This name of the planet, both among the Zabians and Arabians, means ill-luck, misfortune; and it was by no means peculiar to the mythology of the West to make it the symbol of bloodshed and war. Among the people first named, the planet Mars was typified under the figure of a man holding in one hand a drawn sword, and in the other a human head just cut off; and his garments were also red, which, as well as the other ideas attached to this idol, were no doubt founded on the reddish hue which the body of the planet presents to the eye. Among the southern Arabs his temple was painted red; and they offered to him garments stained with blood, and also a warrior (probably a prisoner), who was cast into a pool.





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Kitto, John, ed. Entry for 'Nergal'. "Kitto's Popular Cyclopedia of Biblial Literature".

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