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Sacred prostitution

Sacred prostitution, temple prostitution, cult prostitution, and religious prostitution are rites consisting of paid intercourse performed in the context of religious worship, possibly as a form of fertility rite or divine marriage (hieros gamos). Scholars prefer the terms "sacred sex" or "sacred sexual rites" in cases where payment for services is not involved.

Inanna/Ishtar, Mesopotamian goddess of sex and fertility, depicted on a ceremonial vase

The historicity of literal sacred prostitution, particularly in some places and periods, is a controversial topic within the academic world. Mainstream historiography has traditionally considered it a probable reality, based on the abundance of ancient sources and chroniclers detailing its practices, although it has proved harder to differentiate between true prostitution and sacred sex without remuneration. Authors have also interpreted evidence as secular prostitution administered in the temple under the patronage of fertility deities, not as an act of religious worship by itself. In contrast, some modern gender researchers have challenged it entirely as the result of mistranslation and cultural slander.

Outside academic debate, sacred prostitution has been adopted as a sign of distinction by sex workers, modern pagans and practitioners of sex magic. Social authors have both decried it as a subproduct of patriarchy and embraced it as a symbol of women's empowerment.

Contents

Inanna depicted wearing the ceremonial headdress of the high priestess

Ancient Near Eastern societies along the Tigris and Euphrates rivers featured many shrines and temples or houses of heaven dedicated to various deities. The 5th-century BC historian Herodotus's account and some other testimony from the Hellenistic Period and Late Antiquity suggest that ancient societies encouraged the practice of sacred sexual rites not only in Babylonia and Cyprus, but throughout the Near East.

The work of gender researchers like Daniel Arnaud, Julia Assante and Stephanie Budin has cast the whole tradition of scholarship that defined the concept of sacred prostitution into doubt. Budin regards the concept of sacred prostitution as a myth, arguing taxatively that the practices described in the sources were misunderstandings of either non-remunerated ritual sex or non-sexual religious ceremonies, possibly even mere cultural slander. Although popular in modern times, this view has not gone without being criticized in its methodological approach, including accusations of an ideological agenda. A more nuanced view espoused by Vinciane Pirenne-Delforge, who also called for caution on Budin's categorical denial, suggests that some form of temple prostitution might have existed in the Near East, though not in the Greek or Roman worlds in classical or Hellenistic times.

Sumer

Through the twentieth century, scholars generally believed that a form of sacred marriage rite (hieros gamos) was staged between the kings in the ancient Near Eastern region of Sumer and the high priestesses of Inanna, the Sumerian goddess of sexual love, fertility, and warfare, later called Ishtar. The king would couple with the priestess to represent the union of Dumuzid with Inanna. According to the noted Assyriologist Samuel Noah Kramer, the kings would further establish their legitimacy by taking part in a ritual sexual act in the temple of the fertility goddess Ishtar every year on the tenth day of the New Year festival Akitu.

However, no certain evidence has survived to prove that sexual intercourse was included, despite many popular descriptions of the habit. It is possible that these unions never occurred but were embellishments to the image of the king; hymns which praise Ancient Near Eastern kings for coupling with the goddess Ishtar often speak of them as running 320 km (200 mi), offering sacrifices, feasting with the sun-god Utu, and receiving a royal crown from An, all in a single day. Some modern historians argue in the same direction, though their posture has been disputed.

Babylonia

According to Herodotus, the rites performed at these temples included sexual intercourse, or what scholars later called sacred sexual rites:

The foulest Babylonian custom is that which compels every woman of the land to sit in the temple of Aphrodite and have intercourse with some stranger at least once in her life. Many women who are rich and proud and disdain to mingle with the rest, drive to the temple in covered carriages drawn by teams, and stand there with a great retinue of attendants. But most sit down in the sacred plot of Aphrodite, with crowns of cord on their heads; there is a great multitude of women coming and going; passages marked by line run every way through the crowd, by which the men pass and make their choice. Once a woman has taken her place there, she does not go away to her home before some stranger has cast money into her lap, and had intercourse with her outside the temple; but while he casts the money, he must say, "I invite you in the name of Mylitta". It does not matter what sum the money is; the woman will never refuse, for that would be a sin, the money being by this act made sacred. So she follows the first man who casts it and rejects no one. After their intercourse, having discharged her sacred duty to the goddess, she goes away to her home; and thereafter there is no bribe however great that will get her. So then the women that are fair and tall are soon free to depart, but the uncomely have long to wait because they cannot fulfil the law; for some of them remain for three years, or four. There is a custom like this in some parts of Cyprus.

The British anthropologist James Frazer accumulated citations to prove this in a chapter of his magnum opus The Golden Bough (1890–1915), and this has served as a starting point for several generations of scholars. Frazer and Henriques distinguished two major forms of sacred sexual rites: temporary rite of unwed girls (with variants such as dowry-sexual rite, or as public defloration of a bride), and lifelong sexual rite. However, Frazer took his sources mostly from authors of Late Antiquity (i.e. 150–500 AD), not from the Classical or Hellenistic periods. This raises questions as to whether the phenomenon of temple sexual rites can be generalized to the whole of the ancient world, as earlier scholars typically did.

In Hammurabi's code of laws, the rights and good name of female sacred sexual priestesses were protected. The same legislation that protected married women from slander applied to them and their children. They could inherit property from their fathers, collect income from land worked by their brothers, and dispose of property. These rights have been described as extraordinary, taking into account the role of women at the time.

Terms associated with temple prostitution in Sumeria and Babylonia

All translations are sourced from the Pennsylvania Sumerian Dictionary. Akkadian terms were used in the Akkadian Empire, Assyria, and Babylonia. The terms themselves come from lexical profession lists on tablets dating back to the Early Dynastic period.

English Sumerian Akkadian Signs Cuneiform
Abbess nin-diĝir ēntu SAL.TUG2.AN 𒊩𒌆𒀭
Priestess lukur nadītu SAL.ME 𒊩𒈨
Nun nugig qadištu NU.GIG 𒉡𒍼
Hierodule Priestess nubar kulmašītu NU.BAR 𒉡𒁇
Cult Prostitute amalu ištaru GA2×AN.LUL 𒂼𒈜
A Class of Women sekrum sekretu ZI.IG.AŠ 𒍣𒅅𒀸
Prostitute geme2karkid harīmtu SAL×KURTE.A.KID 𒊩𒆳𒋼𒀀𒆤
Prostitute (EDIIIb) geme2karkid harīmtu SAL×KURTE.A.AK 𒊩𒆳𒋼𒀀𒀝

Notes on the cuneiform: by convention Akkadian is italicized, spoken Sumerian is lowercase and cuneiform sign transliteration is uppercase. In addition, a determinative sign is written as a superscript. Determinatives are only written and never spoken. In spoken sumerian homophones are distinguished by a numerical subscript.

Hittites

The Hittites practiced sacred prostitution as part of a cult of deities, including the worship of a mated pair of deities, a bull god and a lion goddess, while in later days it was the mother-goddess who became prominent, representing fertility, and (in Phoenicia) the goddess who presided over human birth.

Phoenicia

It has been argued that sacred prostitution, worked by both males and females, was a custom of ancient Phoenicians. It would be dedicated to the deities Astarte and Adonis, and sometimes performed as a festival or social rite in the cities of Byblos, Afqa and Baalbek (later named Heliopolis) as well as the nearby Syrian city of Palmyra.

At the Etruscan site of Pyrgi, a center of worship of the eastern goddess Astarte, archaeologists identified a temple consecrated to her and built with at least 17 small rooms that may have served as quarters for temple prostitutes. Similarly, a temple dedicated to her equated goddess Atargatis in Dura-Europos, was found with nearly a dozen small rooms with low benches, which might have used either for sacred meals or sacred services of women jailed in the temple for adultery. Pyrgi's sacred prostitutes were famous enough to be apparently mentioned in a lost fragment of Lucilius's works.

In northern Africa, the area of influence of the Phoencian colony of Carthage, this service was associated to the city of Sicca, a nearby city that received the name of Sicca Veneria for its temple of Astarte or Tanit (called Venus by Roman authors). Valerius Maximus describe how their women gained gifts by engaging in prostitution with visitors.

Phoenicio-Punic settlements in Hispania, like Cancho Roano, Gadir, Castulo and La Quéjola, have suggested this practice through their archaeology and iconography. In particular, Cancho Roano features a sanctuary built with multiple cells or rooms, which has been identified as a possible place of sacred prostitution in honor to Astarte. A similar institution might have been found in Gadir. Its posterior, renowned erotic dancers called puellae gaditanae in Roman sources (or cinaedi in the case of male dancers) might have been desecrated heirs of this practice, considering the role occupied by sex and dance on Phoenician culture.

Another center of cult to Astarte was Cyprus, whose main temples were located in Paphos, Amathus and Kition. The epigraphy of the Kition temple describes personal economic activity on the temple, as sacred prostitution would have been taxed as any other occupation, and names possible practitioners as grm (male) and lmt (female).

Hebrew Bible

The Hebrew Bible uses two different words for prostitute, zonah (זונה)‎ and kedeshah (or qedesha) (קדשה)‎. The word zonah simply meant an ordinary prostitute or loose woman. But the word kedeshah literally means set apart (in feminine form), from the Semitic root Q-D-Sh (קדש)‎ meaning holy, consecrated or set apart. Nevertheless, zonah and qedeshah are not interchangeable terms: the former occurs 93 times in the Bible, whereas the latter is only used in three places, conveying different connotations.

This double meaning has led to the belief that kedeshah were not ordinary prostitutes, but sacred harlots who worked out of fertility temples. However, the lack of solid evidence has indicated that the word might refer to prostitutes who offered their services in the vicinity of temples, where they could attract a larger number of clients. The term might have originated as consecrated maidens employed in Canaanite and Phoenician temples, which became synonymous with harlotry for Biblical writers.

In any case, the translation of sacred prostitute has continued, however, because it explains how the word can mean such disparate concepts as sacred and prostitute. As put by DeGrado, "neither the interpretation of the קדשה as a "priestess-not-prostitute" (so Westenholz) nor as a "prostitute-not-priestess" (so Gruber) adequately represents the semantic range of Hebrew word in biblical and post-biblical Hebrew."

Male prostitutes were called kadesh or qadesh (literally: male who is set apart). The Hebrew word kelev (dog) below may also signify a male dancer or prostitute.

The Law of Moses (Deuteronomy) was not universally observed in Hebrew culture under the rule of King David's dynasty, as recorded in Kings. In fact Judah had lost "the Book of the Law". During the reign of King Josiah, the high priest Hilkiah discovers it in "the House of the Lord" and realizes that the people have disobeyed, particularly regarding prostitution. Examples of male prostitution ("sodomites" in KJV, GNV: see Bible translations into English) being banned under King Josiah are recorded to have been commonplace since the reign of King Rehoboam of Judah (King Solomon's son).

Most Bible translations do not reflect the latest scholarship and modern translations refer to King Josiah's bans on "male temple prostitutes" [NRSV] or similarly "male shrine prostitutes" [NIV], whereas older translations refer to the ban of "Sodomites" and "the Houses of the Sodomites" [KJV, GNV]. Under the uncentralised religious practices that were commonplace, homosexual prostitution experienced a degree of cultural acceptance along with heterosexual prostitution among the Hebrew tribes, but under the religious reforms prostitution was not allowed in conjunction with the worship of Yahweh, where these had been expressly forbidden in Deuteronomy, their sacred Book of Law under King Josiah.

None of the daughters of Israel shall be a kedeshah, nor shall any of the sons of Israel be a kadesh. You shall not bring the hire of a prostitute (zonah) or the wages of a dog (kelev) into the house of the Lord your God to pay a vow, for both of these are an abomination to the Lord your God.

In the Book of Ezekiel, Oholah and Oholibah appear as the allegorical brides of God who represent Samaria and Jerusalem. They became prostitutes in Egypt, engaging in prostitution from their youth. The prophet Ezekiel condemns both as guilty of religious and political alliance with heathen nations.

Ancient Greece

In ancient Greece, sacred prostitution was known in the city of Corinth where the Temple of Aphrodite employed a significant number of female servants, hetairai, during classical antiquity.

The Greek term hierodoulos or hierodule has sometimes been taken to mean sacred holy woman, but it is more likely to refer to a former slave freed from slavery in order to be dedicated to a god.

In the temple of Apollo at Bulla Regia, a woman was found buried with an inscription reading: "Adulteress. Prostitute. Seize (me), because I fled from Bulla Regia." It has been speculated she might be a woman forced into sacred prostitution as a punishment for adultery.

Hellenistic world

In the Greek-influenced and colonized world, "sacred prostitution" was known in Cyprus (Greek-settled since 1100 BC), Sicily (Hellenized since 750 BC), in the Kingdom of Pontus (8th century BC) and in Cappadocia (c. 330 BC hellenized). 2 Maccabees 6:4–5 describes sacred prostitution in the Hebrew temple under the reign of the Hellenistic ruler Antiochus IV Epiphanes.

Ancient Rome

Late antiquity

The Roman emperor Constantine closed down a number of temples to Venus or similar deities in the 4th century AD, as the Christian church historian Eusebius proudly noted. Eusebius also claimed that the Phoenician cities of Aphaca and Heliopolis (Baalbek) continued to practise temple prostitution until the emperor Constantine put an end to the rite in the 4th century AD.

India

In Some parts of Indian state have the practice of hierodulic prostitution, with similar customary forms such as basavi, and involves dedicating pre-pubescent and young adolescent girls from villages in a ritual marriage to a Hindu deity or a Hindu temple, who then work in the temple and function as spiritual guides, dancers, and prostitutes servicing male devotees in the temple. The devadasis were originally seen as intercessors who allowed upper-caste men to have contact with the gods. Though they did develop sexual relations with other men, they were not looked upon with lust. Before Muslim rule in the 14th century, they could live an existence apart from the men, with inheritance rights, wealth and influence, as well as living outside of the dangers of Indian marriage.

The system was criticised by British colonial government while defended by Brahmins , leading to a decline in support for the system and the devadasis soon turned to prostitution. Many scholars have stated that the Hindu scriptures do not mention the system. Human Rights Watch also reports claim that devadasis are forced into this service and, at least in some cases, to practice prostitution for upper-caste members. Various state governments in India enacted laws to ban this practice both prior to India's independence and more recently. They include Bombay Devdasi Act, 1934, Devdasi (Prevention of dedication) Madras Act, 1947, Karnataka Devdasi (Prohibition of dedication) Act, 1982, and Andhra Pradesh Devdasi (Prohibition of dedication) Act, 1988. However, the tradition continues in certain regions of India, particularly the states of Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh.

Japan

During the Kamakura period, many shrines and temples, which provided for miko, fell into bankruptcy. Some miko started travelling in search of livelihood and came to be known as aruki miko (lit. walking miko). While aruki miko primarily provided religious services, they were also widely associated with prostitution. However, no religious reasons for miko prostitution are known, and hence the act might be unrelated to sacred prostitution.

Indonesia

Main article: Mount Kemukus
Statue of Xochipilli, Aztec god of art, games, dance, flowers, and song. Patron of homosexuals and homosexual prostitutes.

Maya

The Maya maintained several phallic religious cults, possibly involving homosexual temple prostitution.

Aztec

Much evidence for the religious practices of the Aztec culture was destroyed during the Spanish conquest, and almost the only evidence for the practices of their religion is from Spanish accounts. The Franciscan Spanish Friar Bernardino de Sahagún learned their language and spent more than 50 years studying the culture. He wrote that they participated in religious festivals and rituals, as well as performing sexual acts as part of religious practice. This may be evidence for the existence of sacred prostitution in Mesoamerica, or it may be either confusion, or accusational polemic. He also speaks of kind of prostitutes named ahuianime ("pleasure girls"), whom he described as "an evil woman who finds pleasure in her body... [A] dissolute woman of debauched life."

It is agreed that the Aztec god Xochipili (taken from both Toltec and Maya cultures) was both the patron of homosexuals and homosexual prostitutes. Xochiquetzal was worshiped as goddess of sexual power, patroness of prostitutes and artisans involved in the manufacture of luxury items.

Inca

The Inca sometimes dedicated young boys as temple prostitutes. The boys were dressed in girl's clothing, and chiefs and head men would have ritual sexual intercourse with them during religious ceremonies and on holy days.

In the 1970s and early 1980s, some religious cults practised sacred prostitution as an instrument to recruit new converts. Among them was the cult Children of God, also known as The Family, who called this practice "Flirty Fishing". They later abolished the practice due to the growing AIDS epidemic.

In Ventura County, California, Wilbur and Mary Ellen Tracy established their own temple, the Church Of The Most High Goddess, in the wake of what they described as a divine revelation. Sexual acts played a fundamental role in the church's sacred rites, which were performed by Mary Ellen Tracy herself in her assumed role of High Priestess. Local newspaper articles about the Neopagan church quickly got the attention of local law enforcement officials, and in April 1989, the Tracys' house was searched and the couple arrested on charges of pimping, pandering and prostitution. They were subsequently convicted in a trial in state court and sentenced to jail terms: Wilbur Tracy for 180 days plus a $1,000.00 fine; Mary Ellen Tracy for 90 days plus mandatory screening for STDs.

Some modern sacred prostitutes act as sexual surrogates as a form of therapy. In places where prostitution is illegal, sacred prostitutes may be paid as therapists, escorts, or performers.

According to Avaren Ipsen, from University of California, Berkeley's Commission on the Status of Women, the myth of sacred prostitution works as "an enormous source of self-esteem and as a model of sex positivity" to many sex workers. She compared this situation to the figure of Mary Magdalene, whose status as a prostitute, though short-lived according to Christian texts and disputed among academics, has been celebrated by sex working collectives (among them Sex Workers Outreach Project USA) in an effort to de-stigmatize their job. Ipsen speculated that academic currents trying to deny sacred prostitution are ideologically motivated, attributing them to the "desires of feminists, including myself, to be 'decent.'"

In her book The Sacred Prostitute: Eternal Aspect of the Feminine, psychoanalyst Nancy Qualls-Corbett praised sacred prostitution as an expression of female sexuality and a bridge between the latter and the divine, as well as a rupture from mundane sexual degradation. "[The sacred prostitute] did not make love in order to obtain admiration or devotion from the man who came to her... She did not require a man to give her a sense of her own identity; rather this was rooted in her own womanliness." Qualls also equated censuring sacred prostitution to demonize female sexuality and vitality. "In her temple, men and women came to find life and all that it had to offer in sensual pleasure and delight. But with the change in cultural values and the institutionalization of monotheism and patriarchy, the individual came to the House of God to prepare for death."

This opinion is shared by several schools of modern Paganism. among them Wicca, for whom sacred prostitution, independently from its historical backing, embodies the sacralization of sex and a celebration of the communion between female and male sexuality. This practice is associated to spiritual healing and sex magic. Within secular thinking, philosopher Antonio Escohotado is a popular adept of this current, favoring particularly the role of ancient sacred prostitutes and priestesses of Ishtar. In his seminal work Rameras y esposas, he extols them and their cult as symbols of female empowerment and sexual freedom.

Actress Susie Lamb approached sacred prostitution in her 2014 performance Horae: Fragments of a Sacred History of Prostitution, in which she points out its value to challenge gender roles. "The idea of sacred prostitution is almost entirely incomprehensible to the modern imagination. It involved women having sex as an act of worship... The relationship between men and women in this ancient tradition is based on respect for the woman. She was seen as a powerful person."

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  4. Joan Goodnick Westenholz, Tamar, Qedesha, Qadishtu, and Sacred Prostitution in Mesopotamia, The Harvard Theological Review 82, 198
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Sacred prostitution
Sacred prostitution Language Watch Edit Sacred prostitution temple prostitution cult prostitution 1 and religious prostitution are rites consisting of paid intercourse performed in the context of religious worship possibly as a form of fertility rite or divine marriage hieros gamos Scholars prefer the terms sacred sex or sacred sexual rites in cases where payment for services is not involved Inanna Ishtar Mesopotamian goddess of sex and fertility depicted on a ceremonial vase The historicity of literal sacred prostitution particularly in some places and periods is a controversial topic within the academic world 2 Mainstream historiography has traditionally considered it a probable reality based on the abundance of ancient sources and chroniclers detailing its practices 1 3 although it has proved harder to differentiate between true prostitution and sacred sex without remuneration 4 Authors have also interpreted evidence as secular prostitution administered in the temple under the patronage of fertility deities not as an act of religious worship by itself 5 6 In contrast some modern gender researchers have challenged it entirely as the result of mistranslation and cultural slander 1 3 Outside academic debate sacred prostitution has been adopted as a sign of distinction by sex workers modern pagans and practitioners of sex magic 7 8 9 Social authors have both decried it as a subproduct of patriarchy 1 3 and embraced it as a symbol of women s empowerment 10 11 Contents 1 Ancient Near East 1 1 Sumer 1 2 Babylonia 1 3 Terms associated with temple prostitution in Sumeria and Babylonia 1 4 Hittites 1 5 Phoenicia 1 6 Hebrew Bible 2 Ancient Greece and Hellenistic world 2 1 Ancient Greece 2 2 Hellenistic world 3 Ancient Rome and late antiquity 3 1 Ancient Rome 3 2 Late antiquity 4 Asia 4 1 India 4 2 Japan 4 3 Indonesia 5 Mesoamerica and South America 5 1 Maya 5 2 Aztec 5 3 Inca 6 Recent Western occurrences 7 Modern views 8 See also 9 References 10 Bibliography 11 External linksAncient Near East Edit Inanna depicted wearing the ceremonial headdress of the high priestess Ancient Near Eastern societies along the Tigris and Euphrates rivers featured many shrines and temples or houses of heaven dedicated to various deities The 5th century BC historian Herodotus s account and some other testimony from the Hellenistic Period and Late Antiquity suggest that ancient societies encouraged the practice of sacred sexual rites not only in Babylonia and Cyprus but throughout the Near East The work of gender researchers like Daniel Arnaud 12 Julia Assante 13 and Stephanie Budin 14 has cast the whole tradition of scholarship that defined the concept of sacred prostitution into doubt Budin regards the concept of sacred prostitution as a myth arguing taxatively that the practices described in the sources were misunderstandings of either non remunerated ritual sex or non sexual religious ceremonies possibly even mere cultural slander 15 Although popular in modern times this view has not gone without being criticized in its methodological approach 16 including accusations of an ideological agenda 7 A more nuanced view espoused by Vinciane Pirenne Delforge who also called for caution on Budin s categorical denial suggests that some form of temple prostitution might have existed in the Near East though not in the Greek or Roman worlds in classical or Hellenistic times 17 Sumer Edit Through the twentieth century scholars generally believed that a form of sacred marriage rite hieros gamos was staged between the kings in the ancient Near Eastern region of Sumer and the high priestesses of Inanna the Sumerian goddess of sexual love fertility and warfare later called Ishtar The king would couple with the priestess to represent the union of Dumuzid with Inanna 18 According to the noted Assyriologist Samuel Noah Kramer the kings would further establish their legitimacy by taking part in a ritual sexual act in the temple of the fertility goddess Ishtar every year on the tenth day of the New Year festival Akitu 19 However no certain evidence has survived to prove that sexual intercourse was included despite many popular descriptions of the habit 20 It is possible that these unions never occurred but were embellishments to the image of the king hymns which praise Ancient Near Eastern kings for coupling with the goddess Ishtar often speak of them as running 320 km 200 mi offering sacrifices feasting with the sun god Utu and receiving a royal crown from An all in a single day 21 Some modern historians argue in the same direction 15 22 23 though their posture has been disputed 18 Babylonia Edit According to Herodotus the rites performed at these temples included sexual intercourse or what scholars later called sacred sexual rites The foulest Babylonian custom is that which compels every woman of the land to sit in the temple of Aphrodite and have intercourse with some stranger at least once in her life Many women who are rich and proud and disdain to mingle with the rest drive to the temple in covered carriages drawn by teams and stand there with a great retinue of attendants But most sit down in the sacred plot of Aphrodite with crowns of cord on their heads there is a great multitude of women coming and going passages marked by line run every way through the crowd by which the men pass and make their choice Once a woman has taken her place there she does not go away to her home before some stranger has cast money into her lap and had intercourse with her outside the temple but while he casts the money he must say I invite you in the name of Mylitta It does not matter what sum the money is the woman will never refuse for that would be a sin the money being by this act made sacred So she follows the first man who casts it and rejects no one After their intercourse having discharged her sacred duty to the goddess she goes away to her home and thereafter there is no bribe however great that will get her So then the women that are fair and tall are soon free to depart but the uncomely have long to wait because they cannot fulfil the law for some of them remain for three years or four There is a custom like this in some parts of Cyprus 24 The British anthropologist James Frazer accumulated citations to prove this in a chapter of his magnum opus The Golden Bough 1890 1915 25 and this has served as a starting point for several generations of scholars Frazer and Henriques distinguished two major forms of sacred sexual rites temporary rite of unwed girls with variants such as dowry sexual rite or as public defloration of a bride and lifelong sexual rite 26 However Frazer took his sources mostly from authors of Late Antiquity i e 150 500 AD not from the Classical or Hellenistic periods 27 This raises questions as to whether the phenomenon of temple sexual rites can be generalized to the whole of the ancient world as earlier scholars typically did In Hammurabi s code of laws the rights and good name of female sacred sexual priestesses were protected The same legislation that protected married women from slander applied to them and their children They could inherit property from their fathers collect income from land worked by their brothers and dispose of property These rights have been described as extraordinary taking into account the role of women at the time 28 Terms associated with temple prostitution in Sumeria and Babylonia Edit All translations are sourced from the Pennsylvania Sumerian Dictionary 29 Akkadian terms were used in the Akkadian Empire Assyria and Babylonia The terms themselves come from lexical profession lists on tablets dating back to the Early Dynastic period English Sumerian Akkadian Signs CuneiformAbbess nin diĝir entu SAL TUG2 AN 𒊩𒌆𒀭Priestess lukur naditu SAL ME 𒊩𒈨Nun nugig qadistu NU GIG 𒉡𒍼Hierodule Priestess nubar kulmasitu NU BAR 𒉡𒁇Cult Prostitute amalu istaru GA2 AN LUL 𒂼𒈜A Class of Women sekrum sekretu ZI IG AS 𒍣𒅅𒀸Prostitute geme2karkid harimtu SAL KURTE A KID 𒊩𒆳𒋼𒀀𒆤Prostitute EDIIIb geme2karkid harimtu SAL KURTE A AK 𒊩𒆳𒋼𒀀𒀝 Notes on the cuneiform by convention Akkadian is italicized spoken Sumerian is lowercase and cuneiform sign transliteration is uppercase In addition a determinative sign is written as a superscript Determinatives are only written and never spoken In spoken sumerian homophones are distinguished by a numerical subscript Hittites Edit The Hittites practiced sacred prostitution as part of a cult of deities including the worship of a mated pair of deities a bull god and a lion goddess while in later days it was the mother goddess who became prominent representing fertility and in Phoenicia the goddess who presided over human birth 30 Phoenicia Edit It has been argued that sacred prostitution worked by both males and females was a custom of ancient Phoenicians 31 It would be dedicated to the deities Astarte and Adonis and sometimes performed as a festival or social rite in the cities of Byblos Afqa and Baalbek later named Heliopolis 32 as well as the nearby Syrian city of Palmyra 31 At the Etruscan site of Pyrgi a center of worship of the eastern goddess Astarte archaeologists identified a temple consecrated to her and built with at least 17 small rooms that may have served as quarters for temple prostitutes 33 Similarly a temple dedicated to her equated goddess Atargatis in Dura Europos was found with nearly a dozen small rooms with low benches which might have used either for sacred meals or sacred services of women jailed in the temple for adultery 33 34 Pyrgi s sacred prostitutes were famous enough to be apparently mentioned in a lost fragment of Lucilius s works 35 In northern Africa the area of influence of the Phoencian colony of Carthage this service was associated to the city of Sicca a nearby city that received the name of Sicca Veneria for its temple of Astarte or Tanit called Venus by Roman authors 35 Valerius Maximus describe how their women gained gifts by engaging in prostitution with visitors 36 Phoenicio Punic settlements in Hispania like Cancho Roano Gadir Castulo and La Quejola have suggested this practice through their archaeology and iconography In particular Cancho Roano features a sanctuary built with multiple cells or rooms which has been identified as a possible place of sacred prostitution in honor to Astarte 32 A similar institution might have been found in Gadir Its posterior renowned erotic dancers called puellae gaditanae in Roman sources or cinaedi in the case of male dancers might have been desecrated heirs of this practice considering the role occupied by sex and dance on Phoenician culture 31 35 37 Another center of cult to Astarte was Cyprus whose main temples were located in Paphos Amathus and Kition 32 The epigraphy of the Kition temple describes personal economic activity on the temple as sacred prostitution would have been taxed as any other occupation and names possible practitioners as grm male and lmt female 35 38 Hebrew Bible Edit The Hebrew Bible uses two different words for prostitute zonah זונה 39 and kedeshah or qedesha קדשה 39 The word zonah simply meant an ordinary prostitute or loose woman 39 But the word kedeshah literally means set apart in feminine form from the Semitic root Q D Sh קדש meaning holy consecrated or set apart 39 Nevertheless zonah and qedeshah are not interchangeable terms the former occurs 93 times in the Bible 40 whereas the latter is only used in three places 41 conveying different connotations This double meaning has led to the belief that kedeshah were not ordinary prostitutes but sacred harlots who worked out of fertility temples 42 However the lack of solid evidence 23 43 44 has indicated that the word might refer to prostitutes who offered their services in the vicinity of temples where they could attract a larger number of clients 42 The term might have originated as consecrated maidens employed in Canaanite and Phoenician temples which became synonymous with harlotry for Biblical writers 34 In any case the translation of sacred prostitute has continued however because it explains how the word can mean such disparate concepts as sacred and prostitute 45 As put by DeGrado neither the interpretation of the קדשה as a priestess not prostitute so Westenholz nor as a prostitute not priestess so Gruber adequately represents the semantic range of Hebrew word in biblical and post biblical Hebrew 45 Male prostitutes were called kadesh or qadesh literally male who is set apart 46 The Hebrew word kelev dog below may also signify a male dancer or prostitute 47 The Law of Moses Deuteronomy was not universally observed in Hebrew culture under the rule of King David s dynasty as recorded in Kings In fact Judah had lost the Book of the Law During the reign of King Josiah the high priest Hilkiah discovers it in the House of the Lord and realizes that the people have disobeyed particularly regarding prostitution 48 49 Examples of male prostitution sodomites in KJV GNV see Bible translations into English being banned under King Josiah are recorded to have been commonplace since the reign of King Rehoboam of Judah King Solomon s son 50 Most Bible translations do not reflect the latest scholarship and modern translations refer to King Josiah s bans on male temple prostitutes NRSV or similarly male shrine prostitutes NIV whereas older translations refer to the ban of Sodomites and the Houses of the Sodomites KJV GNV Under the uncentralised religious practices that were commonplace homosexual prostitution experienced a degree of cultural acceptance along with heterosexual prostitution among the Hebrew tribes but under the religious reforms prostitution was not allowed in conjunction with the worship of Yahweh where these had been expressly forbidden in Deuteronomy their sacred Book of Law under King Josiah 51 None of the daughters of Israel shall be a kedeshah nor shall any of the sons of Israel be a kadesh You shall not bring the hire of a prostitute zonah or the wages of a dog kelev into the house of the Lord your God to pay a vow for both of these are an abomination to the Lord your God In the Book of Ezekiel Oholah and Oholibah appear as the allegorical brides of God who represent Samaria and Jerusalem They became prostitutes in Egypt engaging in prostitution from their youth The prophet Ezekiel condemns both as guilty of religious and political alliance with heathen nations 52 Ancient Greece and Hellenistic world EditAncient Greece Edit Main article Prostitution in ancient Greece Temple prostitution in Corinth In ancient Greece sacred prostitution was known in the city of Corinth where the Temple of Aphrodite employed a significant number of female servants hetairai during classical antiquity 53 The Greek term hierodoulos or hierodule has sometimes been taken to mean sacred holy woman but it is more likely to refer to a former slave freed from slavery in order to be dedicated to a god 15 In the temple of Apollo at Bulla Regia a woman was found buried with an inscription reading Adulteress Prostitute Seize me because I fled from Bulla Regia It has been speculated she might be a woman forced into sacred prostitution as a punishment for adultery 33 Hellenistic world Edit In the Greek influenced and colonized world sacred prostitution was known in Cyprus 54 Greek settled since 1100 BC Sicily 55 Hellenized since 750 BC in the Kingdom of Pontus 56 8th century BC and in Cappadocia c 330 BC hellenized 57 2 Maccabees 6 4 5 describes sacred prostitution in the Hebrew temple under the reign of the Hellenistic ruler Antiochus IV Epiphanes Ancient Rome and late antiquity EditAncient Rome Edit Main article Prostitution in ancient Rome Prostitution and religion Late antiquity Edit The Roman emperor Constantine closed down a number of temples to Venus or similar deities in the 4th century AD as the Christian church historian Eusebius proudly noted 58 Eusebius also claimed that the Phoenician cities of Aphaca and Heliopolis Baalbek continued to practise temple prostitution until the emperor Constantine put an end to the rite in the 4th century AD 58 Asia EditIndia Edit In Some parts of Indian state have the practice of hierodulic prostitution with similar customary forms such as basavi 59 and involves dedicating pre pubescent and young adolescent girls from villages in a ritual marriage to a Hindu deity or a Hindu temple who then work in the temple and function as spiritual guides dancers and prostitutes servicing male devotees in the temple The devadasis were originally seen as intercessors who allowed upper caste men to have contact with the gods Though they did develop sexual relations with other men they were not looked upon with lust Before Muslim rule in the 14th century they could live an existence apart from the men with inheritance rights wealth and influence as well as living outside of the dangers of Indian marriage 60 The system was criticised by British colonial government while defended by Brahmins leading to a decline in support for the system and the devadasis soon turned to prostitution 61 Many scholars have stated that the Hindu scriptures do not mention the system 62 Human Rights Watch also reports claim that devadasis are forced into this service and at least in some cases to practice prostitution for upper caste members 63 Various state governments in India enacted laws to ban this practice both prior to India s independence and more recently They include Bombay Devdasi Act 1934 Devdasi Prevention of dedication Madras Act 1947 Karnataka Devdasi Prohibition of dedication Act 1982 and Andhra Pradesh Devdasi Prohibition of dedication Act 1988 64 However the tradition continues in certain regions of India particularly the states of Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh 65 Japan Edit During the Kamakura period many shrines and temples which provided for miko fell into bankruptcy Some miko started travelling in search of livelihood and came to be known as aruki miko lit walking miko While aruki miko primarily provided religious services they were also widely associated with prostitution 66 However no religious reasons for miko prostitution are known and hence the act might be unrelated to sacred prostitution Indonesia Edit Main article Mount KemukusMesoamerica and South America Edit Statue of Xochipilli Aztec god of art games dance flowers and song Patron of homosexuals and homosexual prostitutes Maya Edit The Maya maintained several phallic religious cults possibly involving homosexual temple prostitution 67 Aztec Edit Much evidence for the religious practices of the Aztec culture was destroyed during the Spanish conquest and almost the only evidence for the practices of their religion is from Spanish accounts The Franciscan Spanish Friar Bernardino de Sahagun learned their language and spent more than 50 years studying the culture He wrote that they participated in religious festivals and rituals as well as performing sexual acts as part of religious practice This may be evidence for the existence of sacred prostitution in Mesoamerica or it may be either confusion or accusational polemic He also speaks of kind of prostitutes named ahuianime pleasure girls whom he described as an evil woman who finds pleasure in her body A dissolute woman of debauched life 68 It is agreed that the Aztec god Xochipili taken from both Toltec and Maya cultures was both the patron of homosexuals and homosexual prostitutes 69 70 71 72 Xochiquetzal was worshiped as goddess of sexual power patroness of prostitutes and artisans involved in the manufacture of luxury items 73 74 75 Inca Edit The Inca sometimes dedicated young boys as temple prostitutes The boys were dressed in girl s clothing and chiefs and head men would have ritual sexual intercourse with them during religious ceremonies and on holy days 76 77 Recent Western occurrences EditIn the 1970s and early 1980s some religious cults practised sacred prostitution as an instrument to recruit new converts Among them was the cult Children of God also known as The Family who called this practice Flirty Fishing They later abolished the practice due to the growing AIDS epidemic 78 In Ventura County California Wilbur and Mary Ellen Tracy established their own temple the Church Of The Most High Goddess in the wake of what they described as a divine revelation Sexual acts played a fundamental role in the church s sacred rites which were performed by Mary Ellen Tracy herself in her assumed role of High Priestess 79 Local newspaper articles about the Neopagan church quickly got the attention of local law enforcement officials and in April 1989 the Tracys house was searched and the couple arrested on charges of pimping pandering and prostitution They were subsequently convicted in a trial in state court and sentenced to jail terms Wilbur Tracy for 180 days plus a 1 000 00 fine Mary Ellen Tracy for 90 days plus mandatory screening for STDs 80 81 Some modern sacred prostitutes act as sexual surrogates as a form of therapy In places where prostitution is illegal sacred prostitutes may be paid as therapists escorts or performers 82 Modern views EditAccording to Avaren Ipsen from University of California Berkeley s Commission on the Status of Women the myth of sacred prostitution works as an enormous source of self esteem and as a model of sex positivity to many sex workers 7 She compared this situation to the figure of Mary Magdalene whose status as a prostitute though short lived according to Christian texts and disputed among academics has been celebrated by sex working collectives among them Sex Workers Outreach Project USA in an effort to de stigmatize their job 7 Ipsen speculated that academic currents trying to deny sacred prostitution are ideologically motivated attributing them to the desires of feminists including myself to be decent 7 In her book The Sacred Prostitute Eternal Aspect of the Feminine psychoanalyst Nancy Qualls Corbett praised sacred prostitution as an expression of female sexuality and a bridge between the latter and the divine as well as a rupture from mundane sexual degradation The sacred prostitute did not make love in order to obtain admiration or devotion from the man who came to her She did not require a man to give her a sense of her own identity rather this was rooted in her own womanliness 83 Qualls also equated censuring sacred prostitution to demonize female sexuality and vitality In her temple men and women came to find life and all that it had to offer in sensual pleasure and delight But with the change in cultural values and the institutionalization of monotheism and patriarchy the individual came to the House of God to prepare for death 84 This opinion is shared by several schools of modern Paganism 7 9 among them Wicca 85 for whom sacred prostitution independently from its historical backing embodies the sacralization of sex and a celebration of the communion between female and male sexuality 9 This practice is associated to spiritual healing and sex magic 85 Within secular thinking philosopher Antonio Escohotado is a popular adept of this current favoring particularly the role of ancient sacred prostitutes and priestesses of Ishtar In his seminal work Rameras y esposas he extols them and their cult as symbols of female empowerment and sexual freedom 10 Actress Susie Lamb approached sacred prostitution in her 2014 performance Horae Fragments of a Sacred History of Prostitution in which she points out its value to challenge gender roles The idea of sacred prostitution is almost entirely incomprehensible to the modern imagination It involved women having sex as an act of worship The relationship between men and women in this ancient tradition is based on respect for the woman She was seen as a powerful person 11 See also EditDeuki Devadasi Hetaera Shamhat Sex worker Sex magic Primitive promiscuity Hijra South Asia Sexuality in ancient Rome List of fertility deities List of love and lust deities Padre PutasReferences Edit a b c d Schulz Matthias 26 March 2010 Sex in the Service of Aphrodite Did Prostitution Really Exist in the Temples of Antiquity Der Spiegel Retrieved 1 January 2016 Cooper 1971 pp 18 19 a b c Stol 2016 pp 419 435 Joan Goodnick Westenholz Tamar Qedesha Qadishtu and Sacred Prostitution in Mesopotamia The Harvard Theological Review 82 198 Martin Gruber Hebrew Qedesha and her Canaanite and Akkadian Cognates Ugarit Forschungen 18 1986 Gerda Lerner The Origin of Prostitution in Ancient Mesopotamia Signs 11 1986 a b c d e f Ipsen 2014 Qualls Corbett 1988 pp 14 24 a b c Pike 2004 pp 122 126 127 a b Escohotado 2018 a b Keating Sara 20 February 2017 Sacred Prostitution An ancient tradition based on respect for the woman The Irish Times Retrieved 15 July 2019 Arnaud 1973 pp 111 115 Assante 2003 Budin 2008 a b c Budin 2008 more briefly the case that there was no sacred prostitution in Greco Roman Ephesus Baugh 1999 see also the book review by Vinciane Pirenne Delforge Bryn Mawr Classical Review April 28 2009 Rickard 2015 Pirenne Delforge Vinciane April 2009 Review of The Myth of Sacred Prostitution in Antiquity Bryn Mawr Classical Review Retrieved 30 August 2019 a b Day 2004 pp 2 21 Kramer 1969 Frazer 1922 Chapter 31 Adonis in Cyprus Sweet 1994 pp 85 104 Assante 2003 pp 13 47 a b Yamauchi1973 pp 213 222 Herodotus vol 1 p 199 Frazer 1922 abridged ed Chapter 31 Adonis in Cyprus see also the more extensive treatment Frazer 1914 3rd ed volumes 5 and 6 Frazer s argument and citations are reproduced in slightly clearer fashion by Henriques 1961 vol I ch 1 Henriques 1961 vol I ch 1 Herodotus and Strabo are the only sources mentioned by Frazer that were active prior to the 2nd century AD his other sources include Athenaeus pseudo Lucian Aelian and the Christian church historians Sozomen and Socrates of Constantinople Qualls Corbett 1988 p 37 University of Pennsylvania Pennsylvania Sumerian Dictionary Pennsylvania Sumerian Dictionary University of Pennsylvania Retrieved 12 June 2020 Singh 1997 p 6 a b c Jose Maria Blazquez Martinez La diosa de Chipre Real Academia de la Historia Saitabi Revista de la Facultat de Geografia i Historia 62 63 2012 2013 pp 39 50 a b c Teresa Moneo Religio iberica santuarios ritos y divinidades siglos VII I A C 2003 Real Academia de la Historia ISBN 9788495983213 a b c Biblical Archaeology Society Staff Sacred Prostitution in the Story of Judah and Tamar 7 August 2018 a b Lipinski 2013 pp 9 27 a b c d Ana Maria Jimenez Flores Cultos fenicio punicos de Gadir Prostitucion sagrada y Puella Gaditanae 2001 Habis 32 Universidad de Sevilla Valerius Maximus Factorum et dictorum memorabilium libri novem II 6 15 Guadalupe Lopez Monteagudo Maria Pilar San Nicolas Pedraz Astarte Europa en la peninsula iberica Un ejemplo de interpretatio romana Complurum Extra 6 I 1996 451 470 Julio Gonzalez Alcalde Simbologia de la diosa Tanit en representaciones ceramicas ibericas Quad Preh Arq Cast 18 1997 a b c d Associated with the corresponding verb zanah Genesis 1 1 KJV Blue Letter Bible Retrieved 5 April 2018 incorporating Strong s concordance 1890 and Gesenius s Lexicon 1857 Also transliterated qĕdeshah qedeshah qedesa qedashah kadeshah kadesha qedesha kdesha A modern liturgical pronunciation would be k deysha Lexicon results for zanah Strong s H2181 Blue Letter Bible Retrieved 5 April 2018 Lexicon results for qĕdeshah Strong s H6948 Blue Letter Bible Retrieved 5 April 2018 incorporating Strong s concordance 1890 and Gesenius s Lexicon 1857 a b Grossman et al 2011 p 596 Kamionkowski 2003 pp 21 22 Westenholz 1989 pp 245 265 a b DeGrado 2018 Gruber 1986 pp 133 148 Lexicon results for kelev Strong s H3611 incorporating Strong s Concordance 1890 and Gesenius s Lexicon 1857 2 Kings 22 8 Sweeney 2001 p 137 1 Kings 14 24 1 Kings 15 12 and 2 Kings 23 7 Deuteronomy 23 17 18 NETBible Oholibah Retrieved 18 May 2015 Strabo Geographica VIII 6 20 CS1 maint location link Watson Andrea 18 October 2016 It was an ancient form of sex tourism BBC Retrieved 18 February 2018 Stupia Tiziana Salome re awakens Beltane at the Temple of Venus in Sicily Goddess Pages goddess pages co uk Retrieved 25 August 2019 Debord 1982 p 97 Yarshater 1983 p 107 a b Eusebius Life of Constantine 3 55 and 3 58 What is child hierodulic servitude Anti Slavery Society Archived from the original on 2 January 2016 Retrieved 5 April 2018 Melissa Hope Ditmore 2006 Encyclopedia of Prostitution and Sex Work Volumen 1 Greenwood Publishing Group ISBN 978 03 133296 8 5 Dunbar 2015 Ruspini amp Bonifacio 2018 Human Rights Watch Caste Asia s Hidden Apartheid United Nations Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women Thirty seventh session 15 January 2 February 2007 Project Combat launched to eradicate Devadasi system The Hindu 30 January 2006 Archived from the original on 25 May 2006 Retrieved 31 January 2007 Kuly 2003 p 199 Greenberg 1988 p 164 Bernardino de Sahagun 1982 pp 55 56 Trexler 1995 pp 132 133 Keen1990 p 97 Estrada 2003 pp 10 14 Taylor 1987 p 87 Clendinnen 1991 p 163 Miller amp Taube 1993 p 190 Smith 2003 p 203 Guerra 1971 p 91 Flornoy1958 pp 191 192 Williams 1998 p 320 Padilla Steve 31 August 1989 Woman Tells Court She Performed Sex Acts for Religious Reasons Los Angeles Times Retrieved 13 June 2020 Religion Based On Sex Gets A Judicial Review The New York Times 2 May 1990 Retrieved 24 November 2015 Star News Google News Archive Search Retrieved 18 May 2015 Hunter 2006 p 419 420 Qualls Corbett 1988 p 40 Qualls Corbett 1988 p 43 a b Holland 2008Bibliography EditArnaud Daniel 1973 La prostitution sacree en Mesopotamie un mythe historiographique Revue de l Histoire des Religions 183 111 115 Assante Julia 2003 From Whores to Hierodules the Historiographic Invention of Mesopotamian Female Sex Professionals In Donohue A A Fullerton Mark D eds Ancient Art and its Historiography Cambridge University Press ISBN 9780521815673 Baugh S M September 1999 Cult Prostitution In New Testament Ephesus A Reappraisal Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society 42 3 443 460 Bernardino de Sahagun 1982 Florentine Codex General History of the Things of New Spain Introductions and Indices University of Utah Press ISBN 9780874801651 Budin Stephanie Lynn 2008 The Myth of Sacred Prostitution in Antiquity Cambridge University Press ISBN 9780521880909 Clendinnen Inga 1991 Aztecs An Interpretation Cambridge and New York Cambridge University Press ISBN 0 521 40093 7 OCLC 22451031 Cooper Jerrold S 1971 Prostitution PDF Reallexikon der Assyriologie de Gruyter ISBN 9783110195453 Day John 2004 Does the Old Testament Refer to Sacred Prostitution and Did it Actually Exist in Ancient Israel In McCarthy Carmel Healey John F eds Biblical amp Near Eastern Essays A amp C Black pp 2 21 ISBN 9780826466907 Debord Pierre 1982 Aspects Sociaux et economiques de la Vie Religieuse Dans L Anatolie Greco Romaine in French BRILL ISBN 9789004064690 DeGrado Jessie 12 January 2018 The qdesha in Hosea 4 14 Putting the Myth of the Sacred Prostitute to Bed Vetus Testamentum 68 1 8 40 doi 10 1163 15685330 12341300 Dunbar Julie C 2015 Women Music Culture An Introduction Routledge ISBN 9781351857451 Escohotado Antonio 2018 Rameras y Esposas Cuatro Mitos Sobre Sexo y Deber in Spanish Independently Published ISBN 9781729289563 Estrada Gabriel S 2003 An Aztec Two Spirit Cosmology Re Sounding Nahuatl Masculinities Elders Femininities and Youth Frontiers A Journal of Women Studies 24 2 3 10 14 doi 10 1353 fro 2004 0008 ISSN 0160 9009 JSTOR 3347344 S2CID 144868230 Flornoy Bertrand 1958 The World of the Inca Translated by Winifred Bradford Doubleday Frazer James George 1914 The Golden Bough A Study in Magic and Religion 3rd ed Published in 12 volumes Frazer James George 1922 The Golden Bough A Study in Magic and Religion abridged ed Greenberg David F 1988 The Construction of Homosexuality University of Chicago Press ISBN 9780226306278 Grossman Maxine et al 2011 The Oxford Dictionary of the Jewish Religion Oxford University Press ISBN 9780199730049 Gruber Mayer 1986 Hebrew Qedesha and her Canaanite and Akkadian Cognates Ugarit Forschungen 18 Guerra Francisco 1971 The Pre Columbian Mind A Study Into the Aberrant Nature of Sexual Drives Drugs Affecting Behaviour and the Attitude Towards Life and Death with a Survey of Psychotherapy in Pre Columbian America Seminar Press Limited ISBN 9780128410509 Herodotus 1920 c 440 BC The Histories of Herodotus Translated by A D Godley Harvard University Press Henriques Fernando 1961 Prostitution and society a survey MacGibbon amp Kee Holland Eileen 2008 The Wicca Handbook Weiser Books ISBN 9781609254520 isbn 9781609254520 Hunter Jennifer Tibe 2006 Sacred Prostitution Contemporary In Ditmore Melissa Hope ed Encyclopedia of Prostitution and Sex Work Volume 2 Greenwood Press ISBN 0 313 32970 2 Ipsen Avaren 2014 Sex Working and the Bible Routledge ISBN 9781317490661 Kamionkowski S Tamar 2003 Gender Reversal and Cosmic Chaos A Study in the Book of Ezekiel Bloomsbury Publishing ISBN 9780567137876 Keen Benjamin 1990 The Aztec Image in Western Thought Rutgers University Press ISBN 9780813515724 Kramer Samuel Noah 1969 The sacred marriage rite aspects of faith myth and ritual in ancient Sumer Indiana University Press ISBN 978 0253350350 Kuly Lisa 2003 Locating Transcendence in Japanese Minzoku Geino Yamabushi and Miko Kagura Ethnologies 25 1 191 208 doi 10 7202 007130ar ISSN 1481 5974 Lipinski Edward April 2013 Cult Prostitution and Passage Rites in the Biblical World PDF The Biblical Annals 60 1 9 27 Miller Mary Taube Karl 1993 The Gods and Symbols of Ancient Mexico and the Maya An Illustrated Dictionary of Mesoamerican Religion London Thames amp Hudson ISBN 0 500 05068 6 OCLC 27667317 Pike Sarah M 2004 New Age and Neopagan Religions in America Columbia University Press ISBN 9780231124034 Qualls Corbett Nancy 1988 The Sacred Prostitute Eternal Aspect of the Feminine Inner City Books ISBN 9780919123311 pagan Rickard Kelley 2015 A Brief Study into Sacred Prostitution in Antiquity ResearchGate Ruspini Elisabetta Bonifacio Glenda Tibe eds 2018 Women and Religion Contemporary and Future Challenges in the Global Era Policy Press ISBN 9781447336372 Singh Nagendra Kr 1997 Divine Prostitution APH Publishing ISBN 9788170248217 Smith Michael E 2003 The Aztecs 2nd ed Malden MA Blackwell Publishing ISBN 0 631 23015 7 OCLC 48579073 Stol Marten 2016 Temple Prostitution Women in the Ancient Near East Walter de Gruyter GmbH amp Co KG ISBN 9781614512639 Sweeney Marvin Alan 2001 King Josiah of Judah The Lost Messiah of Israel Oxford University Press ISBN 9780195133240 Sweet R 1994 A New Look at the Sacred Marriage in Ancient Mesopotamia In Robbins Emmet Sandahl Stella eds Corolla Torontonensis studies in honour of Ronald Morton Smith TSAR ISBN 9780920661222 Taylor Clark L 1987 Legends Syncretism and Continuing Echoes of Homosexuality from Pre Columbian and Colonial Mexico In Murray Stephen O ed Male homosexuality in Central and South America Instituto Obregon ISBN 9780942777581 Trexler Richard C 1995 Sex and conquest gendered violence political order and the European conquest of the Americas Cornell University Press Westenholz Joan Goodnick 1989 Tamar Qedesa Qadistu and Sacred Prostitution in Mesopotamia The Harvard Theological Review 82 3 245 265 doi 10 1017 S0017816000016199 ISSN 0017 8160 JSTOR 1510077 Williams Miriam 1998 Heaven s Harlots My Fifteen Years as a Sacred Prostitute in the Children of God Cult Eagle Brook ISBN 9780688155049 Yamauchi Edwin M 1973 Cultic Prostitution a Case Study in Cultural Diffusion In Hoffner Harry A ed Orient and Occident Essays Presented to Cyrus H Gordon on the Occasion of His Sixty fifth Birthday Butzon amp Bercker ISBN 9783766688057 Yarshater Ehsan 1983 The Cambridge History of Iran Cambridge University Press ISBN 9780521200929 External links EditStuckey H Johanna Sacred Prostitutes MatriFocus 2005 vol 5 1 Deuteronomy 23 18 19 and a discussion Jenin Younes 2008 Sacred Prostitution in Ancient Israel Retrieved from https en wikipedia org w index php title Sacred prostitution amp oldid 1052172732, wikipedia, wiki, book,

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