Page:Myth, Ritual, and Religion (Volume 1).djvu/329

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Greeks, on the other hand, recognised their Cronus in the Phœnician Moloch.[1] Thus Porphyry describes the human sacrifices with which the Rhodians adored Cronus, and when the Greeks had to speak of the Carthaginian offering of children to Moloch, Moloch was spoken of by them under the name of Cronus. We have, therefore, our choice between two hypotheses. The Greeks borrowed their legend of Cronus and their custom of human sacrifices from the Phœnicians, or the Greeks, like the Phœnicians, had originally a god fond of human blood, and under the Phœnician Moloch they recognised their own original Cronus. The idea that the Greeks borrowed a god and a custom they would never have invented is maintained, among others, by Böttiger.[2] In the story of the victory of Zeus and of the exile of Cronus to the distant west, Böttiger sees the victory of the Hellenic religion of Zeus and the retreat of the Phœnician faith "before the folding star of Crete." Professor Sayce is struck by the resemblance between the legend of Moloch, (or Baal under the name of Moloch) and the legend of Cronus; but he regards Moloch as a deity of non-Semitic origin, a deity borrowed by the Phœnicians "from the primitive Accadian population of Babylonia. Like the Cronos of the Greeks, he (Baal, Moloch, the sun-god) slew his own son Sadid" (which, however, Cronus did not do) "and cut off his daughter's head with the sword, while he rent his father, the sky, into pieces, filling the streams and rivers with the blood

  1. Diodorus, xx. 14, 15, p. 416; Porphyry, ap. Euseb., Præp. Evang., iv. 10.
  2. Kunst Mythologie, i. 222, 372.