Dagon — a God in a Fish Suit

Dagon is a god of agricultural fertility and grain, and also a major deity of fish and fishing. Like the Babylonian god Oannes, who may be another form of Dagon, he is shown as a merman, human above the waist and fish below. The Babylonian writer Berossus stated that Oannes was the bringer of all wisdom to humankind after the creation, that he had the form of a fish, but underneath looked like a man, and that he rose out of the Persian Gulf each day to teach humans writing, arts, and sciences, returning to the deep each night.

Dagon was very popular with the Philistines, who were enemies of the Israelites, and who captured the Ark of the Covenant from Yahweh’s followers and took it to Dagon’s temple in Ashdod, bringing dire consequences on themselves.

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