Asherat-of-the-Sea is a goddess of water and the patron saint of La Serenissima. She is considered to be married to the Doge of La Serenissima. Asherat lost her son and is in mourning for him. The island La Dolorosa off the coast of La Serenissima she made in his honor to symbolize her constant mourning. The wind howls constantly around the island. Superstitious sailors won't look at the island and turn their heads and whistle when sailing past.
In Kushiel's ChosenEdit
Benedicte de la Courcel married a woman in mourning who had taken the veil of Asherat and thus concealed her face. But his new bride is really Melisande Shahrizai, who reveals her identity to have Phèdre nó Delaunay de Montrève imprisoned in the secret prison built on La Dolorosa. She soon learns that the winds of Asherat's mourning will drive any prisoner mad. Phèdre escapes and while in the rough currents surrounding the island, vows to cleanse the temple to Asherat of its corruption.
After Melisande's plans are exposed and foiled, Melisande claims the sanctuary of the temple of Asherat. While there, she cannot be brought to justice, yet she must remain essentially imprisoned there.