Eshmun , the Phoenician God of healing and medicine

Mythology :God of medicine & healing

Mosaic of Eshmun  Boustan El Cheikh Byzantine age


Eshmun had great healing powers; he is the eighth of the Cabeiri or Qabirim. His father was Sydyk , the God of justice . Eshmun was a very handsome young man , unlike his seven brothers who were ugly and dwarfish. The word Eshmun means eight in Phoenician . Kings and nobles were proud to add his name to theirs, so they could be called Abed-Eshmun or Eshmun-Azar . His symbol was a serpent coiled around a stick, which still symbolizes medicine today. People who sought him for cures had to offer him sacrifices. His favorite was a cockerel. His temples were built near water for its cleansing power. The most famous temple is the one build south of the Awali River, near Sidon. Other known Eshmun temples were found in Beirut, Carthage, Sardinia and Cyprus. A bronze coin minted in Beirut in the third century A.D shows Eshmun standing between two serpents.



Dances with the Gods

By Wafa Stephan Tarnowski

Illustrated By Myriam Misk