In the mythology of the ancient Near East, Dagon (or Dagan) was a major deity associated with fertility, vegetation, and military strength. Followers in Mesopotamia* built many temples dedicated to him. Some people believe that Dagon was worshiped as a fish god or a god of the sea, while others identify him as a god of grain and agriculture.

deity god or goddess

A temple dedicated to Dagon at Ashdod (in present-day Israel) is mentioned in the books of Judges and I Samuel in the Bible. In one story, the hero Samson destroys the temple and kills the worshipers inside by pulling down two pillars supporting the building's roof.

See also Samson ; Semitic Mythology .

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