Photo: Courtesy of Claude Doumet-Serhal

ASTARTE’S HOUSE. This model shrine from Sidon’s temple likely would have housed an effigy of the Canaanite fertility goddess Astarte, whose Mesopotamian counterpart was the goddess Ishtar. Dated to the second millennium B.C.E., the model shrine was crowned by one of Astarte’s attributes, a lion’s head with incised eyes. The animal featured a broken tongue hanging out of its mouth to allow the flow of liquid for libation through a hole on the top of its head. The doorframe of this miniature sanctuary has two perforated protrusions indicating that its door would have been closed with a string.