There have been many scholarly papers written on the early deities on the Mediterranean area. One name has come to the forefront because of an artifact found on the tiny island in Nova Scotia called Oak Island.
The name Tanit has come up as a possible answer to this artifacts identity. This short article will give examples of the Tanit, and it’s many other names in antiquity. The Tanit most of us are aware of depicts the circle head, stick arms out or up and a triangular base. The base denotes the pubic triangular area where life for all begins. She is said to be Punic and Phoenician in origin and the consort of Baal. You will find her with many other names, for example: Tannit, Tannou, Tangon, Tannith.
As with deities of the Greeks and Romans, there are different names for the same deity according to location, but what they do or give to mortal man is the same—example the “God of the Sea”—Greek name is Poseidon, the Roman name is Neptune. Same god, different hat, as they say.
You will see Tanit’s mirror in Asherah. She was the consort of Yahwah of Israel and Juddah. Her depictions are not contained to the triangular lower body, but in instances, very straight up and down. As in the book of Jeremiah 7: 16-18, 44: 17-19,25- Asherah is called “The Queen of Heaven”.
(Photos by Doug Crowell, historical researcher for the TV History Channel show The Curse of Oak Island)
The first view of the artifact shows uneven arms, a circle on the top a bit off to the side, then a bar straight down. The next photo is a side view of the same artifact. It’s clearly not flat. The ‘arms’ are bent at an angle slightly. This could denote the object giving a blessing or a protection. Tanit kept watch over ships at sea, Asherah as the ‘Queen of Heaven’ would be giving a blessing to her people. See her outstretched arms at this link.
What depictions or artifacts have been found today that would lend one to see similarities? Historical researcher Doug Crowell found a similar photo and information (Click Here). At the bottom of this post is a photo of a discovery by Gloria Farley in Vermont (Photo by Zena Halpern). For many further images of Tanit, see Zena Halpern’s presentation to the 2009 Atlantic Conference at this link. Open this link to launch the audio portion of Zena’s presentation and be guided through her entire presentation.
It is interesting that these deities were worshipped in Solomon’s time (died 931 bc). The question is if the Templars came into contact with such depictions in the time period they were in the Holy Land and surrounding areas(12th to 14th centuries). If one looks at a map as to where the Templars once had strongholds, it is easy to see they were in those areas. There has always been a question if the Templars recovered any objects, manuscripts, etc. from under Solomon’s Temple. Someday it might be it might be unconditionally determined. Would objects depicting Tanit or Asherah be found there?
More work, and connecting to researchers who have done extensive work in this area of deities will add more to this question.
Tanit carved on roof of stone chamber in South Woodstock, Vermont.
Photo by Zena Halpern at the Reeves Chamber, South Woodstock, Vermond, 1996. Tanit is carved on large stone slabs of the ceiling. The insignia of the goddess is clearly visible; a triangle, outstretched arms and circular head. First seen by Gloria Farley in 1975 with Barry Fell who identified Celtic Ogam script as a dedication to the goddess.
2 thoughts on “The Maritime Goddess Tanit on Oak Island”
What is the significance of the long shaft terminating in the shape of a hand at the bottom? No mention of it has been made in the show. You can clearly see a hand at the bottom of the crucifix on my 55″ tv when they do a close up of it.
Yes. When I saw that, I thought the same thing!