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Praise of Ishtar










































Praise the goddess, the most awesome of the goddesses.
Let one revere the mistress of the peoples, the greatest of the Igigi.
Praise Ishtar, the most awesome of the goddesses.
Let us revere the queen of women, the greatest of the Igigi.

She is clothed in pleasure and love.
She is laden with vitality, charm, and voluptuousness.
Ishtar is clothed in pleasure and love.
She is laden with vitality, charm, and voluptuousness.

In lips she is sweet; life is in her mouth.
At her appearance rejoicing becomes full.
She is glorious; veils are thrown over her head.
Her figure is beautiful; her eyes are brilliant.

The goddess - with her there is counsel.
The fate of everything she holds in her hand.
At her glance there is created joy,
Power, magnificence, the protecting deity and guardian spirit.

She dwells in, she pays heed to compassion and friendliness.
Besides, agreeableness she truly possesses.
Be it slave, unattached girl, or mother, she preserves (her).
One calls on her; among women one names her name.

Who - to her greatness who can be equal?
Strong, exalted, splendid are her decrees.
Ishtar - to her greatness who can be equal?
Strong, exalted, splendid are her decrees.

She is sought after among the gods; extraordinary is her station.
Respected is her word; it is supreme over them.
Ishtar among the gods, extraordinary is her station.
Respected is her word; it is supreme over them.

She is their queen; they continually cause her commands to be executed.
All of them bow down to her.
They receive her light before her.
Women and men indeed revere her.

In their assembly her word is powerful; it is dominating.
Before Anum their king she fully supports them.
She rests in intelligence, cleverness, (and) wisdom.
They take counsel together, she and her lord.

Indeed they occupy the throne room together.
In the divine chamber, the dwelling of joy,
Before them the gods take their places.
To their utterances their attention is turned.

The king their favorite, beloved of their hearts,
Magnificently offers to them his pure sacrifices.
Ammiditana, as the pure offering of his hands,
Brings before them fat oxen and gazelles.

From Anum, her consort, she has been pleased to ask for him
An enduring, a long life.
Many years of living, to Ammiditana
She has granted, Ishtar has decided to give.

By her orders she has subjected to him
The four world regions at his feet;
And the total of all peoples
She has decided to attach them to his yoke.










































(from an Akkadian hymn to Ishtar, translated by Ferris J. Stephens: Man, Myth and Magic. Vol.13.) It was written in the latter part of the First Dynasty of Babylon, approximately 1600 BC.