Legend from the Hattite people of central Turkey relates how the storm god Teshub did battle with the water dragon Illuyanka — and lost. To keep his enemy down, Illuyanka took out Teshub’s eyes and heart. Teshub was forced to depart, blind and humiliated, but it isn’t that easy to kill a god.
Once he’d nursed his wounds, Teshub devised a strategy for healing and revenge. He courted the earth goddess, Hebat, married her, and sired a son named Sarruma. Sarruma grew up to become a mountain god. In the way of the times, Teshub negotiated a marriage for Sarruma. The bride was Illuyanka’s own daughter! Teshub prevailed upon Sarruma to ask his new father-in-law for a nuptial gift — the eyes and heart of Teshub. Illuyanka agreed, though one suspects with some hesitation. Thus Teshub’s strength and eyesight were restored.
The marriage went forward, but after some time Teshub confronted his old enemy once again. The battle raged, and this time Teshub gained the upper hand. At the last moment, Sarruma came to the field. He must have become fond of Illuyanka, for he was enraged to realize his father had used him in a scheme for revenge against his wife’s father.
Sarruma cried out, “If you kill him, you must include me. Show us no mercy!” And Teshub showed no mercy. He killed both Illuyanka and Sarruma with a storm of lightning and thunder.
Can you imagine the conversation between Teshub and Hebat afterward? “He told me to do it, honey.” It just goes to show that the Greeks didn’t have a lock on the highest drama in mythology.