Tiamat: A Guide to the Goddess You Need to Know

11 Monster-like an image from the Tiamat Myth

You may have heard of Tiamat in some game.

It is depicted as a character in the game, but do you know the original Tiamat?

Well, Tiamat is a god from Mesopotamian mythology.

What kind of goddess was Tiamat in the mythology?

Here is a brief introduction to the story.

Tiamat bears many children of Apsu

The story of Tiamat appears in the Babylonian epic of Genesis called Enûma Eliš.

Here is its beginning.

The heavens above were not named.

And the earth below also had no name.

In the beginning was Apsu, and all came into being.

Tiamat, the chaos, was also the mother of all.

And the waters were mingled together,

The fields were without form, and no moist place was seen.

Among the gods there was none that was born.

- The beginning of "Enuma Elish"

What do you think?

When the heavens and the earth had not yet been formed, there was only Apsu, who presided over fresh water, and Tiamat, who presided over salt water.

Tiamat is the mother who creates everything, which means that Apsu is the husband.

And this couple produced many children (gods).

Apsu tries to kill the children

They produced many children, and those children produced more children, and they had many offspring.

But here is where the problem arises.

One day, Apsu said something like this.

Aps image

No, seriously, those guys are too noisy! They make noise day and night, and I'm losing sleep because of it. Can I kill them to shut them up? If I kill them, I can go back to my quiet life.

Tiamat was surprised.

Tiamat image

What are you talking about? I gave birth to them! It's true that I have my own feelings about their behavior, but.... Anyway, let's just be patient here and be nice to them.

Tiamat stopped her husband, Apsu, but Apsu tried to carry out his murderous plan.

However, he was eventually discovered by Air, the god of wisdom, and was killed in return.

Aer built his own temple, Aerbuz, over Apsu's body, and a child, Marduk, was born to his wife Damkina.

Marduk is a very important character who becomes the main protagonist of this story.

Tiamat decides to take revenge

Marduk's birth and his frolicking with the four winds caused more commotion than ever before, and Tiamat's men began to criticize him.

With her husband also killed, Tiamat finally decided to take revenge on the young gods who are their descendants.

Tiamat image

We've come this far, we don't have a choice. But still, you have to be well prepared because you've chosen to fight.

Tiamat entrusted her second husband, Kingu (who is actually also Tiamat's child), with a symbol of divine authority, the "Book of Heavenly Lives Version."

This "Book of Heavenly Lives" is a sealed version that originally contained the "personal information of all living things" held by Enlil (the supreme deity).

Tiamat then created eleven monsters filled not with blood but with poison, steadily preparing for battle.

Meanwhile, Marduk, the representative of the young gods, was on his way to defeat Tiamat.

When Kingu confronts Marduk, he was demoralized by Marduk's overwhelmingly majestic appearance, and the "Book of Heavenly Lives" was also taken from him.

Finally, Marduk cornered Tiamat.

Tiamat challenged Marduk alone and tried to swallow him up, but just as she opened her mouth to swallow him, a storm of wind sent by Marduk prevented her from closing it, and Marduk took advantage of this opportunity and shooted Tiamat in the heart with his bow.

Anyway, this Marduk is strong!

Thus, Tiamat's revenge was not fulfilled.

To learn more about Marduk's victory over Tiamat,

Read the article here.

Tiamat's Deceased Becomes Heaven and Earth

Marduk created heaven and earth from Tiamat and human beings from Kingu.

Tiamat's corpse was torn in two, each becoming heaven and earth, and her breasts became mountains.

And from Tiamat's eyes arose the two great rivers, the Tigris and the Euphrates.

Marduk also created man from the blood of Kingu to take the place of the labor of the gods.

Thus Tiamat, the mother of all beginnings, became the foundation of the world.

You can read more about other Mesopotamian mythological gods in our article.

What are the characteristics of the gods in Mesopotamian mythology?

Please read them together if you like.

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