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In Inanna's Descent into the Underworld, Dumuzid fails to mourn Inanna's death and, when she returns from the Underworld, she allows the galla demons to drag him down to the Underworld as her replacement.Inanna later regrets this decision and decrees that Dumuzid will spend half the year in the Underworld, but the other half of the year with her, while his sister Geshtinanna stays in the Underworld in his place, thus resulting in the cycle of the seasons.The cult of Ishtar and Tammuz continued to thrive until the eleventh century AD and survived in parts of Mesopotamia as late as the eighteenth century. The galla go to Dumuzid's unnamed "friend," who betrays Dumuzid, telling the galla exactly where Dumuzid is hiding.Tammuz is mentioned by name in the Book of Ezekiel and possibly alluded to in other passages from the Hebrew Bible. The galla capture Dumuzid, but Utu, the god of the Sun, who is also Inanna's brother, rescues Dumuzid by transforming him into a gazelle.
In the Sumerian poem Inanna Prefers the Farmer, Dumuzid competes against the farmer Enkimdu for Inanna's hand in marriage.Gilgamesh references Tammuz in Tablet VI of the Epic of Gilgamesh as one of Ishtar's past lovers, who was turned into an allalu bird with a broken wing.