Humbaba (Huwawa, Kumbaba) In the Babylonian epic poem Gilgamesh, demon-spirit, guardian of the sacred Cedar Tree, killed by Gilgamesh and Enkidu. Originally Humbaba may have been a nature divinity who became associated with evil forces. In one ancient prayer he was called the “supporter of evil” and “the merciless demon.” In Babylonian art Humbaba is often portrayed with a beard made of the entrails of animals. Demon masks were often hung on doors to ward off evil, in the belief that greater evil—namely, Humbaba— would defeat some minor evil spirit.
From the Encyclopedia of World Mythology and Legend, Third Edition – Written by Anthony S. Mercatante & James R. Dow
Copyright © 2009 by Anthony S. Mercatante
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