Okay, so, I saw this on Facebook a few minutes ago, and I almost went off on the person who posted it, before deciding… Facebook does not get that much of my energy.
I Googled it and noticed that this bizarre notion is apparently spreading across the internet — in almost the same language, proving that this is all just a self-referential circle jerk of misinformation. And with Ishtar being one of my ladies, I can’t stand for this nonsense. Plus, poor understanding of the historical context of pagan cultures pisses me off.
So. This graphic is conflating a few things. Ishtar/Inanna was a goddess who had a symbolic journey to the Underworld, essentially dying and being reborn (a trait she shares not only with Jesus of Nazareth but with at least one deity in just about every culture since the dawn of time). Her worship was no longer anywhere near common enough to influence the start of Christianity, though — aspects of her had been folded into Hera/Juno and Aphrodite/Venus, but that’s as close as you’ll get.
The eggs and bunnies come from another deity — the Germanic Eostre. Linguists do believe that connection between the names Eostre and Easter/Ostern is sound and not just coincidence — but only in Germanic-derived languages. In Latin-derived languages, it remains a variation of Pasca/Pascha.
Constantine had nothing to do with any of it. The Eostre/Easter collision happened a few centuries later, with the conquest of the Teutonic and Baltic territories, largely under the Frankish Merovingian and Carolingian dynasties.
Oh and it’s definitely pronounced ISH-tar. Vowels might have some variation, and of course this is all transliterated out of Sumerian/Akkadian/Babylonian anyway, but that “H”-sound is definitely there.
Just so we’re all clear.