Twinkle, twinkle little star,
How I wonder what you are.
Up above the world so high
Like a diamond in the sky.
Astghik/Stella, little star?
The opening lines of Trtounjq/Տրտունջքby Petros Durian
է՜հ, մնաք բարով, Արտուած եւ արէւ`
Որ կը բըլբըլաք իմ հոգւոյս վերեւ…:
Աստղ մ`ալ ես կ`երթամ յաւելուլ երկնից,
Աստղերն ինչ? են որ եթէ ո`չ անբիծ
Եւ թշուառ հոգւոց անէծք ողբագին`
Որք թըռին այրել ճակատն երկնքին.
There have been many attempts to link Astghik with Ishtar,, and of course with the biblical Esther.
Note that the tranlsator of the following chose to use L as the Latin for the Armenian GH/Ղ
Astlik was a goddess of love, beauty, fertility and waters. She was Vahagn?s wife or mistress. He name is quite interesting. Some believe that it is derived from the Semitic Istar and others from the Greek-sounding Astarte, but the name Aslik suggests some other origin.
We do not see any reason why this word ?astlik? could not be linked directly with the Armenian word ?astl?-astgx-, ?star?. We know that ?astl? is a genuine Armenian word of Inido-European origin. According to Adjarian, the Indo-European root for this word is ?ster? from which are derived the Sanscrit and Avestan star, Pahlavi star, Persian ?sitara?, Afgan ?storai?, Latin and Italian ?stella?, French ?astre?, Spanish ?astro?, German ?stern?, English ?star?, etc. The ?l? sound in ?astl? (and in Astlik) corresponds to ?l? rather than to ?r?, hence, the Armenian word ?astl? seems to be linked with the Latin ?stella? group rather that with the Semitic ?Istar?. Therefore, Astlik is connected more closely with the native Indo-European circle rather than with the Semitic.
It is not improbable, of course, that the Semitic divine names, like the Assyro-Babylonian Istar, the Eblaite Ester, the Hebrew Esther, the Phoenician Astoreth, etc., and the Indo-European root ?ster? and its derivatives could all have been originated from a common source; but it must be noted that the Semitic names are all proper nouns, whereas the Indo-European ?ster? and its derivatives in the various languages designate a common noun, against which the Semites (Assyro-Babylonians) have the word ?kakkabu? (-kawkabun- in Arabic). It must be accepted, therefore, that the Indo-European root (which had lost its mythological value, it if had any at all) is much older than the Semitic divine names. Furthermore, the Indo-European word must have been in the proto-language prior to the third millennium B.C., long before anything is known about Istar?s existence.
It is also probable that the Armenian native word ?astl?, in its derivative form Astl-ik, has regained its mythological value under the influence of the Assyro-Babilonian, or more likely, the Subarian-Mitannian- Istar, around the middle of the second millennium B.C. (In fact, as we know from the Mitannian-Egyptian correspondence, Mitannians honored Istar and had sent her to Egypt on a couple of occasions to have her heal the pharaoh, son-in-law).
I think that the traits of motherhood and love, originally personified by Innana-Nane, were later divided in two; Anahit retained the function of motherhood, goodness, benevolence and protection of the country, whereas the characteristics of love, beauty and fertility were passed on to Astlik. (webmaster: It is possible that Anahit/d=Diana, and Astlik=Aphrodite).
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