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Lilith in Folklore and the Bible

Lilith_Periodo_de_Isin_Larsa_y_BabiloniaA brief but interesting item in this post.

In keeping up with ongoing elements and developments in biblical studies I came across a blog I hadn’t read before. It included a post titled “Lilith in the Bible and Jewish Folklore.” Readers may have heard of Lilith from Jewish folklore with the idea that she was Adam’s second wife. But this post takes another approach after considering a mention of her in the book of Isaiah, chapter 34 (Jerusalem Bible translation):

Wild cats will meet hyenas there,
the satyrs will call to each other,
there too will Lilith take cover
seeking rest.

After some discussion of the various instances where Lilith is mentioned in different cultures and time periods, the author notes that she appears in ancient Babylonian and Assyrian contexts. The piece concludes with some interesting words that remind us that all religions, including the Judeo-Christian tradition, incorporate monsters and mythical creatures:

“The usage of Lilith in Isaiah 34 — as a nature spirit that haunts ruins and roams the uninhabited wilderness — might lie somewhere between its earlier stage as a Babylonian wind deity and its later stage as a mischievous demon that would haunt people’s homes and oppress them.”

Related posts:

“Jewish Monstrosity”

“J. Gordon Melton Interview on Vampire Mythology”

“Timothy Beal: Religion and Its Monsters”

 

Comment Pages

There are 3 Comments to "Lilith in Folklore and the Bible"

  • Thanks for mentioning my blog, John! I find the myths about gods and monsters in the Bible to be endlessly fascinating.

  • It was my pleasure, Paul. Great to find your blog, and then to find it addressing gods, monsters and the Bible was an extra added dimension.

  • Carl Rosenberg says:

    I also appreciated this. Those interested might also want to check out the anthology Lilith’s Cave: Jewish Tales of the Supernatural (ed. Howard Schwartz) which I’ve mentioned before on this blog.

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