Babel, Tower of

Babel, Tower of (confusion) In the Bible, O.T., a ziggurat erected on the plains of Shinar by the descendants of Noah when they reached Babylonia. Genesis (11:1–9) says the plan was to build a tower that would reach to heaven. Yahweh, the Hebrew cult god, said “Go to, let us go down, and there confound their language, that they may not understand one another’s speech” (Gen. 11:7). This accounts for the variety of languages in the world. The zigguarat is believed to have been of the god Marduk’s temple in Babylon, which consisted of six square stages, one on top of the other, the last with a small room for the god. Numerous paintings on the subject exist. One of the most famous is by Brueghel; another is by Marten van Valckorborch.


Encyclopedia of World Mythology and Legend, Third Edition – Written by Anthony S. Mercatante & James R. Dow– Copyright © 2009 by Anthony S. Mercatante