Dushara, also transliterated as Dusares, is a pre-Islamic Arabian god worshipped by the Nabataeans at Petra and Madain Saleh (of which city he was the patron). Safaitic inscriptions imply he was the son of Al-Lat, and that he assembled in the heavens with other gods. He is called "Dushara from Petra" in one inscription. Dushara was expected to bring justice if called by the correct ritual.
Dushara is known first from epigraphic Nabataean sources who invariably spell the name dwsr?, the Nabataean script denoting only consonants. He appears in Classical Greek sources (Dousár?s) and in Latin as Dusares. The original meaning is disputed, but early Muslim historian Ibn al-Kalbi in his "Book of Idols" explains the name as Dh? l-?ar? (Arabic: ), meaning likely "The One from Shara", Shara being a mountain range south-east of the Dead Sea. If this interpretation is correct, Dushara would be more of a title than a proper name, but both the exact form of the name and its interpretation are disputed.
A shrine to Dushara has been discovered in the harbour of ancient Puteoli in Italy. The city was an important nexus for trade to the Near East, and it is known to have had a Nabataean presence during the mid 1st century BCE. The cult continued in some capacity well into the Roman period and possibly as late as the Islamic period.
This deity was mentioned by the 9th century CE Muslim historian Hisham Ibn Al-Kalbi, who wrote in The Book of Idols (Kitab al-Asn?m) that: "The Ban? al-H?rith ibn-Yashkur ibn-Mubashshir of the ?Azd had an idol called D? Shar?."