Abgal (god)

Not to be confused with Abgaal.

Abgal (cognate with the sumerian ab.gal, related to the akkadian apkallu, "ferryman") is a pre-Islamic north Arabian god, known from the Palmyrian desert regions as a god of Bedouins and camel drivers.[1]

A kind of early form of the merman, the Abgal is mentioned in Sumerian mythology. It is one of a number of spirits, originally servants of Ea, the god of wisdom. Like the centaurs of Greek mythology who helped civilize humanity, the task of these beings was to teach the arts and sciences to humanity. They did this during the day while fasting, only stopping to eat at night. Early carved reliefs show them men above the waist, fish below. [2]


  1. Jordan, Michael (July 1993). Encyclopedia of Gods: Over 2,500 Deities of the World. Facts on File. ISBN 978-0-8160-2909-9.
  2. Matthews, John; Matthews, Caitlin (2005). The Element encyclopedia of magical creatures : the ultimate A-Z of fantastic beings from myth and magic. New York: Sterling Publishing. ISBN 9781402735431.

Further reading

Javier Teixidor, The pantheon of Palmyra, Leiden: Brill, 1979, pp. 80-82

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