Ain Dara

Local nameAin Dara temple
LocationAleppo, Syria

The Ain Dara temple, located near the village of Ain Dara, in Afrin, Syria is an Iron Age Syro-Hittite temple noted for its similarities to Solomon's Temple, also known as the First Temple, as described in the Hebrew Bible. According to the excavator Ali Abu Assaf, it was in existence from 1300 BC until 740 BC and remained "basically the same" during the period of the Solomonic Temple's construction as it had been before, so that it predates the Solomon Temple. The temples of Emar, Mumbaqa, and Ebla are also comparable, as is the nearby 8th-century Tell Tayinat temple. The surviving sculptures depict lions and sphinxes.

Massive footprints were carved into the floor; whether of giants, humans or animals is debatable. Also left to speculation is to whom the temple is dedicated. Ain Dara may have been devoted to Ishtar, goddess of fertility, or to the related female goddess Astarte.

Tags Archaeological Site
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Address Syria

Coordinates 36°27'34.66" N 36°51'9.241" E

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