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Hadad, or Adad was the supreme storm-god of Syria. In the second millennium BCE, the king of Aleppo, or Halab, received a statue of Ishtar from the king of Mari, as a sign of deference, to be displayed in the temple of Hadad in Kilasou. The god Hadad is called on a stele of the Assyrian king Shalmaneser "the god of Aleppo." The name "Hadad" is found in various other forms, even as an element in the names of Assyrian kings: Adad, Dadu, Bir and Dadda. Adad is also known as Rimon ("the thunderer"), the chief god of Damascus, according to the Tanach (Old Testament).

The Syrian kings of Damascus seem to have habitually assumed the title of Benhadad, or son of Hadad. just as a series of Egyptian monarchs are known to have been accustomed to call themselves sons of Amon-Ra.

The name-element 'Hadad' is found in the names of kings, such as Benhadad, the king of Syria whom Asa, king of Judah, employed to invade the northern kingdom, Israel, according to 1 Kings 15:18), or Hadadezer, the Syrian king defeated by David. In the 9th or 8th century BCE, the name of Bar-Hadad, king of Aram, is inscribed on his votive basalt stele dedicated to Melqart, found in Bredsh, a village north of Aleppo (National Museum, Aleppo, accession number KAI 201).

The word Hadadrimmon, for which the inferior reading Hadarrimmon is found in some manuscripts in the phrase "the mourning of (or at) Hadadrimmon" (Zech xii. ii), has been a subject of much discussion. According to Jerome and all the older Christian interpreters, the mourning for something that occurred at a place called Hadadrimmon (Maximianopolis) in the valley of Megiddo is meant, the event alluded to being generally held to be the death of Josiah (or, as in the Targum, the death of Ahab at the hands of Hadadrimmon); but more recently the opinion has been gaining ground that Hadadrimmon is merely another name for Adonis or Tammuz, the allusion being to the mournings by which the Adonis festivals were usually accompanied (Hitzig on Zech. xii. ii, Isa. xvii. 8; Movers, Phonizier, i. 196).

TK Cheyne (Encycl. Bibl. s.v.) points out that the Septuagint reads simply Rimmon, and argues that this may be a corruption of Migdon (~Megiddo), in itself a corruption of Tammuz-Adon. He would render the verse, "In that day there shall be a great mourning in Jerusalem, as the mourning of the women who weep for Tammuz-Adon" (Adon means lord).

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This entry was originally from the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica.