The Syrian and Phoenician name of Adonis. His death happened on the banks of the river Adonis, and in summer-time the waters always become reddened with the hunter's blood. (See Ezekiel viii. 14.)
Thammuz came next behind, Whose annual wound on Lebanon allured The Syrian damsels to lament his fate In amorous ditties all a summer's day, While smooth Adonis from his native rock Ran purple to the sea, supposed with blood Of Thammuz yearly wounded.
Source: Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, E. Cobham Brewer, 1894