Abaddon

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Abaddon (Hebrew: אֲבַדּוֹן‎, 'Ǎḇaddōn, Greek: Apollyon, Latin: Exterminans, Coptic: Abbaton, meaning "A place of destruction", "The Destroyer", "Depths of Hell") in the Revelation of St. John, is the king of tormenting locusts and the angel of the bottomless pit.[1] The exact nature of Abaddon is debated, but the Hebrew word is related to the triliteral root אבד (ABD), which in verb form means "to perish."[2]

Contents

In Judaism and Christianity

Biblical mentions

In the Hebrew scriptures, Abaddon comes to mean "place of destruction," or the realm of the dead, and is associated with Sheol.[3]

The Christian scriptures contain the first known[4] depiction of Abaddon as an individual entity instead of a place. In St. John's Revelation 9:1-11, Abaddon is described as the king of the bottomless pit and of a plague of locusts that resemble war horses with crowned human faces and having women's hair, lions' teeth, locusts' wings, and the tail of a scorpion.

Other theological works

The text of the Thanksgiving Hymns—which was found in the Dead Sea Scrolls—tells of "the Sheol of Abaddon" and of the "torrents of Belial [that] burst into Abaddon". The Biblical Antiquities attributed to Philo mentions Abaddon as a place (sheol, hell), not as a spirit or demon or angel. In the 3rd century Acts of Thomas, Abaddon is the name of a demon, or the Devil himself. Abaddon has also been identified as the angel of death and destruction, demon of the abyss, and chief of demons of the underworld hierarchy, where he is equated with Samael or Satan. In magic, Abaddon is often identified with the Destroying Angel of the Apocalypse.[5]

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