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Inanna new moon goddess

Inanna new moon goddess

The theme is about Inanna the New Moon as the main goddess of the age before Bronze Age. The myths are about resurrection and fertility animated by human examples. The ritual is going beneath to Underworld searching for resurrection and afterlife

Inanna new moon goddess, Inanna steps down, Inanna lure the boys, Under the apple tree, Uruk, Sumer, Eridu, Easter, Ishtar, Maria, Fishman, Ereshkigal, face of Leo, Engelstrup Zeeland, shepherd Dumuzi, Enlil, Ninlil, Sin, Virgin

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Inanna, rain and new moon steps down to Underworld.


From the Great Above

She directed her desire towards the Great Below.

The Goddess from the Great Above.

She directed her desire towards the Great Below

My Mistress left the heaven, left the earth

To the underworld she steps down

Inanna left the heaven, left the earth.

To the underworld she steps down,

Left to be a ruler, left to be a mistress.


This is the symbolic "eye of the underworld" found in Sumer.

Similar symbol found in Bush Barrow near Stonehenge.

Queen of the new moon Inanna was the Goddess of Town in Uruk at former Persian Gulf. Of the cities in Sumer Uruk was probably the second. Eridu was older and founded by a sea god with a temple in harbour and the god got a lot of fish as offer.

Every town had a deity as ruler interpreted by the priests. The towns were lead by priest kings and councils at least until the Akkadian Sargon c.2350 BC shoved there could be a ruler outside the temple. He was the first known to play world ruler.

This means that most of the orders of power were supposed to come from the deities thorough the mouth of a high priest or priestess of course. All doings were done in the name of the deity. That gives some totally different languages compared with ours. On the other hand they referred to most deities as existing in the sky ... no filled brains when the ideas was in the sky! In written text there is always a star sign above the name.

Inanna is as important to us as to the Sumerians because she is behind the culture of double axe, boat axe and ground chisels or axes for ritual purposes. The figures on our rocks may be simple, but there is no doubt that a lot of them are a sign of Inanna. That is the case in many figures of the Girl with a plait too.

The poems are of the third millennium and most of them are written in Uruk and shown in plays at the Town Theatre of Uruk I suppose:

She made the night come forth

like the moonlight,

She made the morning come forth

like the bright daylight,

When in bedchamber sweet sleep

had come to an end,

When all the lands and

the black-headed people had assembled -

Who had slept on the roofs,

who had slept in the walls -

And uttering orisons approached her,

brought their words to her,

Then did she study their words,

knew the evildoer,

Against the evildoer she renders a cruel judgement,

destroy the wicked,

She looks with kindly eyes on the straightforward,

gives him her blessing.

My Lady looks on in sweet wonder

from heaven's midst,

They parade before the holy Inanna

The lady who reaches heaven, Inanna, is lofty,

The Maiden, Inanna, I would praise as is proper.

She made the night come forth

like the moonlight,

She made the morning come forth

like the bright daylight,

When in bedchamber sweet sleep

had come to an end,

When all the lands and

the black-headed people had assembled -

Who had slept on the roofs,

who had slept in the walls -

And uttering orisons approached her,

brought their words to her,

Then did she study their words,

knew the evildoer,

Against the evildoer she renders a cruel judgement,

destroy the wicked,

She looks with kindly eyes on the straightforward,

gives him her blessing.

My Lady looks on in sweet wonder

from heaven's midst,

They parade before the holy Inanna

The lady who reaches heaven, Inanna, is lofty,

The Maiden, Inanna, I would praise as is proper.


A poem tells about the ceremony and rituals, which they attuned to the phases of the moon, as Easter still is today:


The people of Sumer assemble in the palace,

The house that guides the land.

The king builds a throne for the queen of the palace.

He sits beside her on the throne.

In order to care for the life of all the lands,

The exact day of the month is closely examined,

And on the day of the disappearance of the moon,

On the day of the sleeping of the moon,

The me are perfectly cared out

So that the New Year's Day,

the day of rites may be properly determined,

and a sleeping place is set up for Inanna.

The me were icons of archetypes of moral precepts and ritual we may not really understand: Good, pure, given, taken, held, lifted as a few examples and a lot of instruments of power and rituals. These formed the law and order of the city-states.

The following poems is from c.2250 BC when king Isin-Dagan becomes half god and marry Inanna. I suppose his wife was the priestess and in place of Inanna. This was a century after the great Sargon. The goddess was becoming more in armour like the Dragon of heaven:

She embraces her beloved husband.

Holy Inanna embraces him.

The throne in the great sanctuary is made glorious

Like the daylight.

The king-like the Sun-god,

Plenty, happiness and abundance

before him prosper.

A feast of good things they set before him,

The dark-headed people prosper before him.


The king with food and drink is properly provided.

The divine mother, fearful dragon of heaven,

With food and drink is properly provided.

The temple gleams, the king rejoices.

Daily the people are satisfied with abundance,

The divine mother,

fearful dragon of heaven, rejoices.

Inanna was surely master of Ishtar and of the virgin Maria too. The motives of bible and torah are much older than the Babylonian captivity otherwise Hebrews would have lived on an isolated island in dessert.

The myths of Inanna and other motives were some processes going on during the third millennium. It was a millennium of more intelligence than ever before or after. The Sumerians were too kind and friendly to be true ... at least the writers were. There is no reason to admire our destroying technology and man-eating politics in comparison with the Sumerians.

Our heritage as Indo-Europeans comes mostly from the Sumerians and the custom of small states or half-ethnic communities with its small city-states too. We know them from Greece and still Europe consists of small states. The Hittites designed a treaty of equivalent city-states or what we would call a federation. This principle made it possible to form greater areas with common law. A federation is of course a sort of brotherhood.

Inanna lured the boys

Now back to Inanna and how she got the laws from Enki. He was the ruler of the older Eridu town. The name Enki may mean "First on earth" and it is understood, he was the follower of Oannes a Fishman.

Birth sagas are not much to lean on and that counts for the first people of Sumer too. Probably Eridu was an enclave founded by traders, as the custom in the Middle East was to found enclaves with the same rituals as the master city. Because a Fishman as god is found at Balkan, may be traders from Balkan founded Eridu. Balkan was ahead in many things in the time before 4000 BC. I suppose my guess is as good as others and as always up to present knowledge.

In the following I have tried to reconstruct the earliest myth of Inanna. She was in pair with her twin sister Ereshkigal, the Great to give Birth. In symbols they were the new moon and the morning star. However, there is an early myth of birth of Sin, the moon too. But, let it us look at it in understandable order.

Come, my messenger Isimud, listen to me!

I will tell you some words, listen to them!

The Virgin has all alone,

Directed her steps towards Abzu.

Inanna has all alone,

Directed her steps towards Abzu.

Let the Virgin step into Abzu at Eridu.

Let the Virgin step into Abzu at Eridu.

Give her to eat a corn-cake with butter.

Pour to her cold water, which freshen her heart.

Give to her a drink of beer in the face of the Leo,

at the holly table, Table of Heaven

Make a welcome to Inanna.

This tale is about first time-events ... always essential in Sumerian thinking and strategy. All work and rituals were repeating the first time as that of success. In the face of Leo, is in face of the star or written as new moon in the Leo. The table might be the dolmen and other images of the real agenda as the table of a feast. I suppose it is a close guess that some of our cup-marks were used in offering corn-cakes with butter as told in late folk-tales. Now a side-step.

We were about six or seven my sweetie and I when we explored the passage graves belonging to her parent's farm. She was afraid of the darkness in the grave and said. "Ma says there are Huha-men inside" ... it was of course the best urge she could make. No man could resist showing who is the hero. My concerns were the burning nettles guarding the passage.

Later in life I understood that those nettles have regenerated nutriment and especially nitrogen for more than five millenniums at the same place. It was on a long barrow that had remained untouched since it was used.

We know that folks had their feasts at the mouth of the passage graves. Then comes the question: Did they also celebrate the journey of Inanna when she went to the underworld or the temple beneath in front of passage graves? ... By the way there was nothing to see in there - and no Huha-men. Archaeologists had taken it all. There were only small stony boxes for the skeletons left. But now back to the Virgin.

Maybe she had some Belladonna in her eyes. If so they turned to be like dark lakes in the woods. That usually set ants in the pants of men. The beer did the rest. When they sat at the table she fooled the old man to give her his tablets of me. Furthermore his rope and the stick used when staking out and a lot more.

I say Hail! To thee Inanna, the First Daughter of the Moon,.

The young men carrying big rings sing for you,

they carry the sword and the double axe.

The young girls and priestesses go

in front of you with high styled hair.

The holy kurgarru-priests greet you with their swords.

The Priest, with his sword stained with blood,

splash blood on your holly throne.

The tigi-drum, the sem-drum and the ala-tambourines echo..

Inanna "the fertilised" leave the seed to "the Great to give Birth", her sister Ereshkigal in the next step of the wonder of giving birth.

A Sumerian seal with the essential part of the myth of Inanna. Here in the act of leaving the seed to Ereshkigal, the great goddess to give birth and to the right their company the shepherd Dumuzi. (Maybe it was Archer at an early stage). We see it on many carvings in Scandinavia.

This rock-carving is on a stone at Engelstrup Zeeland Denmark

A Sumerian seal with the essential part of the myth of Inanna. Here in the act of leaving the seed to Ereshkigal, the great goddess to give birth and to the right their company the shepherd Dumuzi. (Maybe it was Archer at an early stage). We see it on many carvings in Scandinavia.

The witchcraft of Enki set ants in her hair ... but she turned to the song and read it three times at least with the ants fooling around in her hair. She tried to simplify the long song. Sumerian songs were long as the ceremonies and with many doubled lines.

A summary she made of the songs ... everything happened long times ago and before they created the legs of gods. That means that mankind was the legs.

In the town of Nippur lived its young man Enlil and its young girl Ninlil with her mother Nun-barshegunu. The mother cannot give birth and she decided to marry her daughter in order to get food on the table. She advises her daughter:

In the pure wave, young woman

Have a bath in the pure water.

Ninlil, walk along the river Nunbirdu

The clear-eyed, the ruler with bright eyes

The big mountain father Enlil,

The clear-eyed shall see you.

The herd ... who decides the fortunes

The clear-eyed shall see you.

Shall without delay embrace you and kiss you.


Ninlil obeys as a good daughter:


In the pure wave is the bathing woman

In the pure water.

Ninlil walks along the river of Nunbirdu.

The clear-eyed, the ruler with bright eyes.

The big mountain, father Enlil,

The clear-eyed see her.

The ruler talks to her about love

- she will not.

Enlil talks to her about love

- she will not.

"My vagina is too small,

It knows nothing about making love.

My lips are too small,

They know nothing about kisses.

The girl was shy and should not be too eager ... bucks are many and the buck in Enlil was awake so Ninlil was seduced. But they do not allow that among gods. The council of gods condemns Enlil to the underworld. They do not allow rape.

Ninlil, the pregnant followed him. But Enlil did not like it, because their coming son they would condemn Sin also to stay in the underworld. So he planned to lure the three guards of the underworld by a tricky plan. The first had the key to the underworld. The second controlled the river of the underworld and third was the ferryman. Together they were "the three lock of earth". The plan of Enlil was to get into their guise. Then he made Ninlil pregnant with these guards. It was a pledge of love so that their son Sin might rise against the sky.

Ninlil talks to the guard (Enlil under cover)

"Enlil is truly your ruler,

but I am your mistress.

Let then my hand touch your cheek.

The seed of your ruler,

the outshining superior seed is in my womb.

The seed of Sin, the superior seed is in my womb.

Let then the seed of my ruler rise towards the sky.

Let my seed proceed downwards to earth.

Let my seed instead of that of my ruler

proceed downwards to earth."

As she prepared for the life in Uruk, she also read about two brothers who brought the seed from the mountains. An idea was born that now she should be the manager of growing.

In her thoughts she changed the name of Sin to kunisu the corn in her mind. She selected the role of making love for herself. They thought her twin sister to be the pregnant and bearer of the unborn.

The birth of Sin was a first time act and she split it in stages. It was typical for the Sumerian mind. That is why we see the odd act on seals where the Virgin is giving the seed to her twin sister vulva to vulva.

But when Inanna met reality the problems came. The first problem was the struggle between the farmers and cowboys or shepherds. A lot of Belladonna in her eyes and a tour to the wood was the solution and she married Dumuzi.

Then came the question how to get the work done on the field. The young men were as always more interested in playing games or hunting. The best was to be laying in a boat out of reach for insects and demands from women.

Well. Her art of attraction had worked before and her plays on a scene as well. Now she planed the play "The Rise from the underworld". Again she should be the leading actress and again make the trip to the underworld:

The SHUGURRA crown,

The crown of the plains she set on her head.

She set a kiss lock of her hair at her brow.

The measuring rope and the stick of lapis lazuli,

She took in her hand.

Small stones of lapis lazuli, as a collar around her neck.

A pair of nunuz-stones set on her bosom.

A golden ring she took in her hand.

The breastplate "Come man, come"

She fastened on her breast.

The pala-garment of the Mistress covered her body.

The paint "Let him comes, let him come"

She had as make up on her eyes

Tell what young man will resist. Her ritual in the song texts is about ten sides long with a lot of repeated lines. As pledge of love she sends Dumuzi in her stead. She painted him green ... it was the colour of the underworld also in Egypt. Maybe he was the symbolic fertilisation.

Th naked Lait = the flow of Levant is a clear copy of Inanna and the lotus stalks is her helper fertiliser and watering. The idea is seen in Indus too.

It was no help that Inanna dressed up for her visit to her sister Ereshkigal in Underworld. There are other rules there so she was forced to strip off and be naked.

Inanna steps up

The poem "Inanna steps down" is 412 lines in cuneiform and we should add that she rises again since she is the New Moon daughter of the moon Nanna. She also symbolises the growing seed instead of the earlier myth with Sin as the new moon and seed. After this came a new version and her consort Dumuzi and his sister Ghestin-ana took the roles of the roots.

In the original myth with Enlil raping Ninlil there was only three steps to Underworld like the farming instructions of braking the surface, going through the soil, to the wet ground. Inanna stepped seven steps and that number was later used many ritual connections. The happenings underground is naturally fantasies and a speculation about what happens when seed grows or not. Some of the details are right conclusions but hard to see without being the cultivator.

Firstly the time should be right by experience that the Sun warmth heath the soil to 4 degrees Celsius before water get the seed to start growing and sprout break the shell. At that time and at that climate the suitable time was spring equinox. So we get "When New Moon Inanna is in Scorpio" in the lines 29 - 45

"Having drunk cleansing water from the Ulaya river, Inanna stamped on the Scorpion (asterism) and cut off its tail. Like a lion it bellowed in an angry roar but its cries died down. …… she threw it …… and made it secure. Having heard its …… cries, …… poured forth the ……, the clay of creation, …… and laid it …….
2 lines missing …… the great lady of heaven delivered those words to An.

Having heard those words, An slapped his thighs in ……, his voice filled with sighs of grief: "What has my child done? She has become greater than me! What has Inanna done? She has become greater than me! From now on, the normal length of daylight becomes shorter, and daylight converts to night-time. From today, when the day's watch is three units long, daylight is equal to night-time." And now, when day began, it was indeed so."

The Scorpio gives us the time for the "first-time-event" around 3100 BC when they in many places started to use Scorpio and Oxen as time markers for half years. Unfortunately many words are missing but we get at least the connection to the Animal Round and spring equinox. The highest god / Might An does not like that Inanna is stronger than him. That is the wonder of growth!

Secondly the seed have to get water and fertiliser to grow further. The helping gods become worried should Inanna = seed come up again? They were her father full moon Nanna, Enki the great creator and heavenly water god with Ninshubur as messenger. The story goes shortened here:

209 - 289 Thus father Nanna did not help her in this matter, so she went to Eridu. In Eridu, when she had entered the house of Enki, she lamented before Enki: "Father Enki, don't let anyone kill your daughter in the underworld. …. Don't let young lady Inana be killed in the underworld."

Father Enki answered Ninšubur: "What has my daughter done? She has me worried. What has Inana done? She has me worried. What has the mistress of all the lands done? She has me worried. What has the hierodule of An done? She has me worried." Enki removed some dirt from the tip of his fingernail and created the Kur-gara. He removed some dirt from the tip of his other fingernail and created the Gala-tura. To the Kur-gara he gave the life-giving plant (fertiliser). To the gala-tura he gave the life-giving water.

One of you sprinkles the life-giving plant over Inanna, the seed. And the other the life-giving water. Go and direct your steps to the underworld. Flit past the door like flies. Slip through the door pivots like phantoms. The mother who gave birth, Ereškigal , the womb of Earth, on account of her children, is lying there. Her holy shoulders are not covered by a linen cloth. Her breasts are not full like a šagan vessel. Her nails are like a pickaxe upon her. The hair on her head is bunched up as if it were leeks."


"They will offer you a riverful of water -- don't accept it. They will offer you a field with its grain -- don't accept it. But say to Ereshkigal: "Give us the corpse hanging on the hook." (She will answer:) "That is the corpse of your queen." Say to her: "Whether it is that of our king, whether it is that of our queen, give it to us." She will give you the corpse hanging on the hook. One of you sprinkle on it the life-giving plant and the other the life-giving water. Thus let Inanna arise."


Ereškigal said to the Gala-tura and the Kur-gara: "Bring your queen ……, your …… has been seized." Inanna, because of Enki's instructions, was about to ascend from the underworld. But as Inanna was about to ascend from the underworld, the Anuna seized her: "Who has ever ascended from the underworld, has ascended unscathed from the underworld? If Inanna is to ascend from the underworld, let her provide a substitute for herself."

In logic and tradition man has to leave a pledge when he takes something. So Inanna decided that after her "first-time-act" her consort Dumuzi could do that in lines 354 … 393

She looked at him, it was the look of death. She spoke to him (?), it was the speech of anger. She shouted at him (?), it was the shout of heavy guilt: "How much longer? Take him away." Holy Inana gave Dumuzi the shepherd into their hands.

Those who had accompanied her, who had come for Dumuzi, know no food, know no drink, eat no flour offering, drink no libation. They never enjoy the pleasures of the marital embrace, never have any sweet children to kiss. They snatch the son from a man's knee. They make the bride leave the house of her father-in-law.

Dumuzi let out a wail and wept. The lad raised his hands to heaven, to Utu, the sun: "Utu, you are my brother-in-law. I am your relation by marriage. I brought butter to your mother's house. I brought milk to Ningal's house (wane moon). Turn my hands into snake's hands and turn my feet into snake's feet, so I can escape my demons, let them not keep hold of me."

Utu accepted his tears. Dumuzi's demons could not keep hold of him. Utu turned Dumuzi's hands into snake's hands. He turned his feet into snake's feet. Dumuzi escaped his demons. Like a Sagkal snake he ……. They seized …….
2 lines fragmentary ... Holy Inana …… her heart.

Holy Inana wept bitterly for her husband.
4 lines fragmentary

She tore at her hair like esparto grass, she ripped it out like esparto grass. "You wives who lie in your men's embrace, where is my precious husband? You children who lie in your men's embrace, where is my precious child? Where is my man? Where ……? Where is my man? Where ……?"

I am wondering about his hands and feet turning to snakes. That means maybe becoming roots. As late as in Nordic symbolism on the golden bract we see a man with "rubber legs" in the Snake Pit and there is some amulet from Roman times showing Yahve with "snake legs"

There are later poems about him and his sister Ghestin-ana sharing the time in Underworld. Overall the long poem is about the disappearing moon as well as about sowing and resurrection. Inanna should maybe be defined as the fertile flow symbolised as water. Some images show her as the rain and thunder goddess. We should remember that it rains only 200 mm in Sumer yearly so they were more or less "rainmakers"

Maybe they, the couple had some barter transactions in order to help each other. She invented also shadowing trees. She found that lop of the branches could be harvested and used as food for goats. This could be safe for winter because growing was with great risks in the Sumerian landscape.

She made of course a new play and with her as the actress. The story was that she was sleeping under a tree. To the garden comes the young gardener. He takes the goddess with force ... he was sought three times. You are forbidden to rape. But she got the story together and her folks understood that shadowing trees are a necessity.

For original texts see

A lot of archaeologists imagine that there has been some offer of human. Hard to believe as those idols come together every year under the apple tree:

Under the apple tree

Temptation ... the serpent and the apple.

Dumuzi says:

"My sister, I would go with you to my garden.

Inanna, I would go with you to my garden.

I would go with you to my orchard.

I would go with you to my apple tree.

There I would plant the sweet, honey-covered seed."


Inanna says:

"He brought me into his garden.

My brother, Dumuzi, brought me into his garden.

I strolled with him among the standing trees,

I stood with him among the fallen trees,

By an apple tree I knelt as is proper.

Before my brother coming in song,

Who rose to me out of the poplar leaves?

Who come to me in the midday heat?

Before my lord Dumuzi,

I poured out plants from my womb.

I placed plants before him,

I poured out plants before him,

I placed grain before him,

I poured out grain before him.

I poured out grain from my womb.


Finally a song, with priests and priestesses playing the old bull game.


I bathed for the wild bull,

I bathed for the shepherd Dumuzi,

I perfumed my sides with ointment,

I coated my mouth with sweet-smelling amber

I painted my eyes with kohl.

He shaped my loins with his fair hands,

The shepherd Dumuzi filled my lap with cream and milk,

He stroked my pubic hair,

He watered my womb.

He laid his hands on my holy vulva,

He smoothed my black boat with cream,

He quickened my narrow boat with milk,

He caressed me on the bed.

Now I will caress my high priest on the bed,

I will caress the faithful shepherd Dumuzi,

I will caress his loins, the shepherdship of the lands,

I will decree a sweet fate for him.

Seeing her as a young girl full of enterprising spirit is easy. She was of course just an image or idol to follow. The myths tell a lot of the writers and people of Sumer and about their problems.

They followed her and she got a lot of cousins as time passed. She is Artemis as well as the Girl with the braid ... or why not a modern Pippi Longstocking but with two braids ... never mind, the Naked in Levant had also two thick braids. We meet now and then details of her myth in carvings and different artefacts too.

For more on Inanna and Isis see also