TADMORTO, Syria — During a recent excavation at the ancient city of Tadmorto (Palmyra) in the Syrian desert, postdoctoral researcher Alexandra Kubik-Schneider of the University of Wroclaw in Poland discovered new inscriptions referring to an unknown deity.
According to Science in Poland, a news site run by the Polish government, the unknown deity is mentioned in several Aramaic inscriptions at Tadmorto.
Kubik-Schneider compared the Tadmorto inscriptions with inscriptions found at other sites across Beth Nahrin (Mesopotamia) which date back to the first millennium B.C. She found that the gods worshiped in Beth Nahrin were known by names similar to the unknown god of Tadmorto.
For example, Bel-Marduk, the supreme god of Babylon, was also called “the Merciful”. The phrase “lord of the world”, a title similar to “lord of the universe”, was sometimes used to refer to Balshamin, a sky god, Kubiak-Schneider told Science in Poland.
Kubiak-Schneider said that the unknown deity mentioned in the Tadmorto inscriptions is not a single deity, but several gods including Bel-Marduk and Balshamin. She also says that people did not mention the names of the gods as a sign of respect.
A researcher who has studied the history and archeology of Tadmorto and the surrounding area extensively, Leonardo Gregoratti, stated that Kubiak-Schneider submitted a hypothesis for the scientific community who would discuss it and each scholar would decide to accept or reject it to present their counterintelligence to the latter case.