Dagon

Boyd’s Bible Dictionary:

(fish). National male idol of the Philistines (1 Chron. 10:1010And they put his armor in the house of their gods, and fastened his head in the temple of Dagon. (1 Chronicles 10:10)). Noted temples at Ashdod (1 Sam. 5:1-71And the Philistines took the ark of God, and brought it from Eben-ezer unto Ashdod. 2When the Philistines took the ark of God, they brought it into the house of Dagon, and set it by Dagon. 3And when they of Ashdod arose early on the morrow, behold, Dagon was fallen upon his face to the earth before the ark of the Lord. And they took Dagon, and set him in his place again. 4And when they arose early on the morrow morning, behold, Dagon was fallen upon his face to the ground before the ark of the Lord; and the head of Dagon and both the palms of his hands were cut off upon the threshold; only the stump of Dagon was left to him. 5Therefore neither the priests of Dagon, nor any that come into Dagon's house, tread on the threshold of Dagon in Ashdod unto this day. 6But the hand of the Lord was heavy upon them of Ashdod, and he destroyed them, and smote them with emerods, even Ashdod and the coasts thereof. 7And when the men of Ashdod saw that it was so, they said, The ark of the God of Israel shall not abide with us: for his hand is sore upon us, and upon Dagon our god. (1 Samuel 5:1‑7)); Gaza (Judg. 16:2323Then the lords of the Philistines gathered them together for to offer a great sacrifice unto Dagon their god, and to rejoice: for they said, Our god hath delivered Samson our enemy into our hand. (Judges 16:23)); Beth-dagon (Josh. 15:4141And Gederoth, Beth-dagon, and Naamah, and Makkedah; sixteen cities with their villages: (Joshua 15:41)); and in Asher (Josh. 19:2727And turneth toward the sunrising to Beth-dagon, and reacheth to Zebulun, and to the valley of Jiphthah-el toward the north side of Beth-emek, and Neiel, and goeth out to Cabul on the left hand, (Joshua 19:27)). Represented with human hands and face and a fish’s body.

Concise Bible Dictionary:

The national god of the Philistines, whose principal temples were at Gaza and Ashdod. The name has been traced by some to dag, a fish; others however associate the fish-god with EA, the water-god; and trace Dagon to dagancorn” as a god of agriculture. This was the idol that fell to pieces before the ark of Israel, and it was in its temple subsequently that the Philistines hung the head of Saul. A representation of a god found at Khorsabad has the head and hands of a man, and the body and tail of a fish (Judg. 16:2323Then the lords of the Philistines gathered them together for to offer a great sacrifice unto Dagon their god, and to rejoice: for they said, Our god hath delivered Samson our enemy into our hand. (Judges 16:23); 1 Sam. 5:2-72When the Philistines took the ark of God, they brought it into the house of Dagon, and set it by Dagon. 3And when they of Ashdod arose early on the morrow, behold, Dagon was fallen upon his face to the earth before the ark of the Lord. And they took Dagon, and set him in his place again. 4And when they arose early on the morrow morning, behold, Dagon was fallen upon his face to the ground before the ark of the Lord; and the head of Dagon and both the palms of his hands were cut off upon the threshold; only the stump of Dagon was left to him. 5Therefore neither the priests of Dagon, nor any that come into Dagon's house, tread on the threshold of Dagon in Ashdod unto this day. 6But the hand of the Lord was heavy upon them of Ashdod, and he destroyed them, and smote them with emerods, even Ashdod and the coasts thereof. 7And when the men of Ashdod saw that it was so, they said, The ark of the God of Israel shall not abide with us: for his hand is sore upon us, and upon Dagon our god. (1 Samuel 5:2‑7); 1 Chron. 10:1010And they put his armor in the house of their gods, and fastened his head in the temple of Dagon. (1 Chronicles 10:10)).

Strong’s Dictionary of Hebrew Words:

Transliteration:
Dagown
Phonic:
daw-gohn’
Meaning:
from 1709; the fish-god; Dagon, a Philistine deity
KJV Usage:
Dagon

Jackson’s Dictionary of Scripture Proper Names:

the fish-god (from its fecundity)

Potts’ Bible Proper Names:

An excellent fish; fish-god:―a Philistine deity [BETH-DAGON], 1 Chron. 10:10. {Piscis excellens}

From Manners and Customs of the Bible:

Dagon was the national god of the Philistines. The name is derived from dag, a fish. Dagon is the diminutive of dag, and signifies “little fish”; not so much, however, in reference to size, as to the affection entertained for it; so that some would render it, “dear little fish.” From the description given in 1 Samuel 5:44And when they arose early on the morrow morning, behold, Dagon was fallen upon his face to the ground before the ark of the Lord; and the head of Dagon and both the palms of his hands were cut off upon the threshold; only the stump of Dagon was left to him. (1 Samuel 5:4), the idol is supposed to have been a combination of the human form with that of a fish. “And when they arose early on the morrow morning, behold, Dagon was fallen upon his face to the ground before the ark of the Lord; and the head of Dagon and both the palms of his hands were cut off upon the threshold; only the stump of Dagon was left to him.”
Omitting the words supplied by the translators [“the stump of”] and we find that the human part, consisting of the head and hands, was cut off, while dagon, or the fish part, remained. This description is corroborated by ancient traditions. The Babylonians believed that a being part man and part fish emerged from the Erythraean Sea, and appeared in Babylonia in the early days of its history, and taught the people various arts necessary for their well-being. Representations of this fish god have been found among the sculptures of Nineveh. The Philistian Dagon was of a similar character. The deity is supposed to have been intended to represent the vivifying and productive powers of nature. The fish was an appropriate image to be used for this purpose, by reason of its rapid and enormous multiplication.