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BAAL

Real Name: Baal-Hadad (Hadad is his Sumerian name. “Ba'al” is a title meaning  “Lord.” “Bel” is its feminine counterpart.)

Occupation: God of wind, rain, storm and fertility, god of the east wind, former King of the Gods of Mesopotamia

Legal Status: Citizen of Ancient Sumeria

Identity: The general populace of Earth is unaware of the existence of Baal except as a mythological character.

Other Aliases: Adad (Babylonian), Iskur (Akkadian Name), Teshub (Hittite name), Tesup (Hurrian name), Mr. Rider (mortal name)

Place of Birth: Nippur, Sumeria (now part of modern Iraq)

Marital Status: Married

Known Relatives: Anu (father), (father), Asherah (mother), Anath (wife), Ninkasi, Zintuki (daughters), Telepinu (son); Hupasiyas (son-in-law, deceased), Dagon, Ninurta, Martu (brothers); Nergal, Nusku, Kinyras, Gibil (half-brothers); Ningal, Zarpandit, Ninlil, Gatumdug, Gula (half-sisters); Ea (uncle), Mami, Damkina, Eriskegal (aunts); Shamash, Nanna, Ullikummis (nephews); Marduk (cousin);

Group Affiliation: The Gods of Mesopotamia (The Annunaki), possible member of an unnamed group of underworld gods

Base of Operations: Allatum, formerly Mount Saphon (modern Jabal al-Aqra) in Hattia (now part of modern Turkey), formerly Nippur, Sumeria (now part of modern Iraq),

First Appearance: (historical) “Pantheons of the Megaverse” by C.J. Carella, (modern) Wolverine II #11

History: Hadad is a member of an other-dimensional race of beings known as the Anunnaki, who were worshipped as gods primarily by the Ancient Sumerians and Babylonians, considered the oldest race of gods known on Earth with the possible exception of the Egyptian Gods. Hadad was the son of Anu, ruler of the Mesopotamian Gods, and Asherah, the mother of the gods. Worshipped as weather-god, a trait he shared with his brothers, Hadad and his fellow gods once lived on Earth among mortals as rulers with Anu as one of the original kings of Ancient Sumer. However, Anu was overthrown by Enlil, the god of storm, as ruler of the gods of Sumeria. Anu managed to escape to heaven while Enlil replaced him in the role of ruler and father of the gods. During his rule, Enlil acquired the name, Dagon, possibly in an effort to usurp the worshippers of the older Hyborian god. Hadad did not care for his brother’s rule and covertly sought a way to overthrow him. Hadad went to Ea, the god of the sea, known as Enki to the Babylonians, for help in overthrowing Enlil, but in order to do so, Hadad had to slay Apsu, the older god of the sea in his place. In gratitude to the young god, Ea offered Hadad anything in return and eventually decided to support Hadad in overthrowing Enlil. Remaining true to his promise to help him dethrone Enlil, Ea gave Hadad the weapons and the support to oust Enlil and force him into exile. In his absence, Hadad became ruler of Sumer and eventually added the title of Baal to his name. (It is entirely possible that Baal was also the name of another older forgotten god from the Hyborian Age.)

As Ruler of Sumeria, Baal-Hadad was a beneficent and just ruler to his rulers and worshippers. In time, he became known as just Baal. Anath, the sun-goddess, however, began slaughtering many of Baal’s worshippers and demanded the secret of lightning from him for herself, establishing herself as a war-goddess in the process. Anath persuaded Ea to have a house created for Baal at the top of Mount Saphon to live apart from mortals. Once the artisan-god Kinyras completed the house, she presented herself to Baal as his wife and equal and became Queen of the Gods. Anath bore him a number of children including Telepinu, the water-god, and Ninkasi and Zintuki, goddesses of wine and food. Hadad eventually sought out to slay the dragon, Illuyankas. Unable to slay the dragon, Hadad was instead taken capture and had his eyes removed to insure his captivity. Ninkasi and Zintuki afterward created a great feast for Illuyankas and her spawn to consume in a rescue attempt of their father. Once Illuyankas and her children were in a weakened state, Zintuki had her mortal husband, Hupasiyas, tie up Illuyankas while Telepinu rescued Hadad and restored his eyes to him. Once his vision was restored, Hadad slew Illuyankas and her children.

In his exile from Sumer, Dagon fathered the giant Ullikummis, but Shamash, the sun god, saw them approaching from a far and warned Baal. Baal briefly abdicated the throne as Dagon once more briefly usurped his rule and Baal fled to Ea for advice on how to defeat Ullikummis. Remembering his debt of honor to Baal, Ea surrendered Baal a scythe with mystical properties to rend through the flesh of Ullikummis. Baal used it to rend through Ullikummis’s ankles. Wounding the giant enough to be able to kill him, Baal then once more overthrew Dagon and exiled him to the underworld, regaining the throne.

Baal eventually sought out the secrets of life and death in order to prevent death for mortals and traveled to Allatum, the Mesopotamian underworld, and met with Namtar, the god of death, worshipped as Moloch by the Hittites, who served as vizier to Eriskegal, Queen of the Underworld and goddess of the dead. Explaining he had come for the secrets of life and death, Baal was invited by Namtar to eat off the table of the dead as he went to retrieve Eriskegal. They both then revealed to him that since he had eaten from the table of the dead that he could not leave Allatum as a result. When Anath learned the truth, she challenged Namtar, ordering him to restore Baal to life. Baal, however, opted to stay in the underworld, and Anath slew Namtar as a result.

Tiamat, the ocean-goddess, however, threatened Earth over the death of Apsu, her consort. Marduk, the son of Ea, slew her to defend the gods and was nominated to replace Baal as ruler of the gods. (It is possible that Tiamat just might actually be Gaea, the ancestor of the all the gods of Earth, but this is unconfirmed.) Marduk became the patron god of the Babylonian Empire replacing the waning Sumerian Empire. From the underworld, Baal had no choice but to abdicate his position of power to him. Baal’s activities over the next few years are unrevealed. He had less influence and power on his mortal followers under the Babylonian and Assyrian Empires. The Early Jewish Church erroneously denounced all the Mesopotamian gods as demons in the face of their own scriptures. Since departing Earth, Anu had created the other-dimensional realm of Celestial Dilmun as a home for the Mesopotamian gods who departed Earth. The gods who entered Dilmun became known as the Igigi, while the gods bound to earth and the underworld remained as the Anunnaki. In rewriting the old Sumerian stories into their texts, the Jews might have assigned angelic traits to the former gods as members of the Elohim or archangels in order to mask their original forms. While bound to the underworld, Baal ruled over the Anunnaki and claimed the souls of his loyal followers after death.

In recent years, it has been theorized that several of the Anunnaki might have reverted into demonic-like entities since a number of entities claiming to be the former members of the Anunnaki have appeared. Modern devil-worshippers on Earth have called upon Baal as god of the underworld for power or prominence. A cult of devil worshippers calling themselves the Brotherhood of Baal came into existence worshipping Baal as a demonic entity. Destroyed by the Frankenstein Monster, they returned a few years later calling themselves the Followers of Baal and began seeking the fragments of the Gehenna Stone. They used it to successfully bring Baal to Earth, but it is uncertain if this was the true Baal or merely a demon claiming to be him. Wolverine, a member of the team of mutants known as the X-Men, destroyed the stone, seemingly destroyed the demon as a result. In later years, a warlock named Aleister Creel attempted to bring a demon to earth and released an entity calling itself Baal. Whether this Baal is the same Baal whose followers were dispersed by the Frankenstein monster is unknown, but this being was driven back to the underworld through the activities of Etrigan and the Batman.

A short time later, this same Baal or a third one was brought to Earth by a University student named Darryl Licht experimenting with a Native American ritual. This Baal made an attempt to corrupt the soul of Johnny Blaze by kidnapping his children but was defeated by the Native American spirit known as the Wendigo attracted by Licht’s ritual.

In recent years, Ahriman, the Eastern god of evil, helped free Baal from the underworld in order to seduce Superman into an agent of evil. Assisted by other underworld gods, they bequeathed his wife, Lois, with godly powers to help sway him, but Lois realized their true guises from behind their facades and actually helped to defeat them. Baal and Ahriman were forced from earth, stripping Lois of her godly powers in the process, and driving the former deities back to their perspective underworlds.

It is not sure if this Baal was the true Baal or any of the known previous demons with this name. It is known that the alien Oan race impersonated many of the Anunnaki in prehistory (just as the Eternals impersonated the Olympian Gods and the K'un-L'un's impersonated the Xian of China) and it could have just as easily been one of then. It is unknown if any of these later entities were the true Baal-Hadad of the Mesopotamians in disguise or if they were all the same demon. At least one of them could be the aforementioned Elder God Baal once worshipped in the Hyborian Age whose worshippers were usurped by Baal-Hadad. Any distinction between these beings is unrevealed.

Height: 6' 7"
Weight: 410 lbs.
Eyes: Blue
Hair: Black

Strength Level: Baal possesses superhuman strength superior to the majority of the Mesopotamian gods, enabling him to lift (press) possibly 100 tons under optimal conditions.

Known Superhuman Powers: Baal possesses the conventional physical attributes of the Mesopotamian Gods. Like all of the Anunnaki, he is exceptionally long-lived, but he is not immortal like the Gods of Olympus. He has not aged since reaching adulthood and cannot die by any known conventional means. He is immune to all known terrestrial diseases and is invulnerable to conventional injury. If wounded, his godly life force would enable him to recover with superhuman speed. It would take an injury of such magnitude that it dispersed a major portion of his bodily molecules to cause him a physical death. Even then, it might be possible for Anu, Ea or a number of gods of equal power working together to revive him. Baal-Hadad does have some superhuman strength and his own Anunnaki metabolism gives him far greater than human endurance in all physical activities. (Anunnaki flesh and bone is about three times as dense as similar human tissue, contributing to the superhuman strength and weight of the Mesopotamian Gods).

Baal also possessed the ability to tap into and manipulate both elemental and ambient mystical energies in the universe. Equal in power to gods as Enlil or Ninurta, his extent of power was nearly on the level of gods as Anu or Zeus. He can command the forces of weather and could command the wind, create rain and conjure thunderstorms of near hurricane proportions. He could throw lightning bolts and fire beams of electrical force capable of shattering mountains and destroying cities. He could create windstorms of extra-ordinary fury capable of leaving wakes of destruction.

Baal is also physically stronger, faster and invulnerable to injury than the majority of the Mesopotamian gods with the possible exception of his brothers, Ninurta, Enlil and Martu, and Anu and Ea themselves. He is virtually tireless and his stamina allows him to perform at top levels without tiring.

Baal could also tap into the mystical forces of the universe such as erecting shields and teleporting across dimensional barriers. His level of control over the forces of magic were no where close to figures such as Anu, Zeus or Odin, but by merging elemental energies with his spells, he could create atmospheric conditions even Dagon could not control. He could fire invisible projections of concussive force and levitate mass in the range of several thousand tons. He has limited precognitive ability; he is only able to perceive events and occurrences directly connected to himself.

Pets: Baal-Hadad owns two bulls of extra-ordinary power named Seris (“day”) and Hurris (“night”). They have the power to pull his chariot through the air with a semblance of flying.

Comments: This bio involves Baal-Hadad as he appears in the Marvel and DC Universes.

Baal is two things. One: it was the name of Hadad as ruler of the Mesopotamian gods. Second: it was a word/title meaning god. It was used in Baal-Hammon, Baal-Athirat, Baal- everyone else. Its female counterpart was “Bel-“ for the goddesses. When the Assyrian Empire came to power, guess what, another word, Nin, more titles. There were gods Nin-Girsu, Nin-Karrak and Ninhursag (used slightly differently for goddesses, Ninhursag was a name for Mother Earth/Gaea).

Technically, as far as the Mesopotamian Gods go, it was Baal-Hadad and then just Baal. The Hebrews really hated this figure. They never cared much for any of the old Sumerian gods, even as the Babylonian gods in their newer forms, and really denounced many of these figures as demonic entities regardless of their importance to the Hittites and Phoenicians.

There is some confusion in the broken texts of the Mesopotamian hieroglyphics regarding the relationships of Baal-Hadad toward Dagon/Enlil, Martu, Ninurta and Anu, especially where it concerns their multiple aliases, conflicting importance in different religions and the various translations and possible misinformation over thousands of years. Dagon (Enlil) is quite often called the son of Baal (Hadad), while Enlil (Dagon) is often called the father of Hadad (Baal). In Hurrian myth, they are referred to as brothers. However, Ninurta, the god of storm, is often called protector of the south wind and his brother Martu, protector of the west wind. If Baal-Hadad and Dagon-Enlil represent east and north, it would render them all sons of Anu, god of sky and heaven. In truth, their relationships to each other tend to vary by story depending on the importance of the character involved. For that matter, the identity of their mother varies just as much as their relationships. Ninhursag, Ki (Kishar), Astarte and other goddesses are often named. Asherah, the female counterpart of Anu, is typically Queen of the Mesopotamian Gods, superseding all the other mother-goddesses.

Several of the aspects of Baal’s life later turn up in other myths, namely Osiris slain by Seth and trapped in the afterlife, Cronus getting overthrown by Zeus; Persephone trapped in the underworld after eating the food of the dead; Zeus captured by Typhon and rescued by the Fates and (where Ullikummis is concerned) Achilles’ weakness in his ankles. In some texts, it has been theorized that that myths of the Greeks were actually handed down versions of the Sumerians.

The Sumerians are considered the oldest of all human empires, although even the Egyptians just as ancient. The Sumerians were overthrown by the Babylonians and then by the Assyrians. There was then an interim as several races kept preventing each other from developing an empire as great as the previous rules. This includes the Hittites, Hurrians, Canaanites, Phoenicians, and Philistines. The Greeks and the resulting Roman Empire subjugated them all and made the region part of what later became the Byzantine Empire, later conquered by the Turks as part of the Ottoman Empire and now known as Iraq.

Thanks to Jeff Christensen and Michael Hoskins of the Appendix to the Marvel Universe and J.R. Collins for Baal’s reported Marvel and DC appearances.

Clarifications: Baal is possibly not to be confused with:
 

 

Last updated: 03/21/08

 

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