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Shamash, Sumerian Sun God - Windows to the Universe

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The image above is a symbol of Shamash.

Shamash

Shamash was a Sun god according to the Sumerian mythology. Sumerians were living more than three thousand years ago in Mesopotamia. The region of Mesopotamia corresponds to the valleys of Tigris and Euphrates rivers.

Since he could see everything on Earth, he represented also the god of justice. That is why Shamash was depicted as a ruler seated on a throne. Shamash and his wife, Aya, had two important children. Kittu represented justice, and Misharu was law.

Every morning, the gates in the East open up, and Shamash appears. He travels across the sky, and enters the gate in the West. He travels through the Underworld at night in order to begin in the East the next day.

In Babylon, located in the south of Mesopotamia, the symbol of Shamash was the solar disk, with a four-pointed star inside it.

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Windows to the Universe, a project of the National Earth Science Teachers Association, is sponsored in part by the National Science Foundation and NASA, our Founding Partners (the American Geophysical Union and American Geosciences Institute) as well as through Institutional, Contributing, and Affiliate Partners, individual memberships and generous donors. Thank you for your support! NASA AGU AGI NSF