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Semiramis

Semiramis (sĕmĭrˈəmĭs) [key], mythical Assyrian queen, noted for her beauty and wisdom. She was reputed to have conquered many lands and founded the city of Babylon. After a long and prosperous reign she vanished from earth in the shape of a dove and was thereafter worshiped as a deity, acquiring many of the characteristics of the goddess Ishtar. The historical figure behind this legend is probably Sammuramat, who acted as regent of Assyria from 810 to 805 B.C.

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

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