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An ancient Semitic deity attested in the northern Mesopotamian area from the late third millennium and in the entire West Semitic area through biblical times. The Bible sees Dagon as the chief god of the Philistines. In (1Sam 5:2-7), a statue of Dagon falls before the captured Ark in the temple at Ashdod; a second fall destroys the statue. In (Judg 16:23), the imprisoned Samson pulls down around his head the temple of Dagon with the help of God. According to (1Chr 10:10), the Philistines hung up the head of Saul as a trophy in the temple of Dagon, presumably at Beth-shan (1Sam 31:12). (1Macc 10:83 and 1Macc 11:4) mention a temple of Dagon in Ashdod. The place-names Beth-dagon in Judah (Josh 15:41) and Beth-dagon in Asher (Josh 19:27) preserve the name of the deity.