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￭ Epistle of a millennial
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2011-08-13 | | Submited by Veronica Vãleanu
Perhaps no section of Babylonian literature has been more generally studied than the legends which record the Creation of the world. On the publication of the late Mr. George Smith's work, "The Chaldean Account of Genesis," which appeared some twenty-seven years ago, it was recognized that there was in the Babylonian account of the Creation, as it existed in the seventh century before Christ, much which invited comparison with the corresponding narrative in the Book of Genesis.
It is true that the Babylonian legends which had been recovered and were first published by him were very fragmentary, and that the exact number and order of the Tablets, or sections, of which they were composed were quite uncertain; and that, although they recorded the creation of the heavens and of the heavenly bodies, they contained no direct account of the creation of man. In spite of this, however, their resemblance to the Hebrew narrative was unmistakable, and in consequence they at once appealed to a far larger circle of students than would otherwise have been the case.
THE SEVEN TABLETS OF THE HISTORY OF CREATION
The First Tablet
1. When in the height heaven was not named,
2. And the earth beneath did not yet bear a name,
3. And the primeval Apsû, who begat them,
4. And chaos, Tiamat, the mother of them both,—
5. Their waters were mingled together,
6. And no field was formed, no marsh was to be seen;
7. When of the gods none had been called into being,
8. And none bore a name, and no destinies [were ordained];
9. Then were created the gods in the midst of [heaven],
10. Lahmu and Lahamu were called into being [...].
11. Ages increased, [...],
12. Then Anshar and Kishar were created, and over them [...].
13. Long were the days, then there came forth [...]
14. Anu, their son, [...]
15. Anshar and Anu [...]
16. And the god Anu [...]
17. Nudimmud, whom his fathers [his] begetters [...]
18. Abounding in all wisdom, [...]
19. He was exceeding strong [...]
20. He had no rival [...]
21. (Thus) were established and [were ... the great gods (?)].
22 . But T[iamat and Âpsû] were (still) in confusion [...],
23. They were troubled and [...]
24. In disorder(?) ... [...]
26. And Tiamat roared [...]
25. Apsû was not diminished in might [...]
27. She smote, and their deeds [...]
28. Their way was evil ... [...] ...
29. Then Apsû, the begetter of the great gods,
30. Cried unto Mummu, his minister, and said unto him:
31. "O Mummu, thou minister that rejoicest my spirit,
32. "Come, unto Tiamat let us [go]!"
33. So they went and before Tiamat they lay down,
34. They consulted on a plan with regard to the gods [their sons].
35. Apsû opened his mouth [and spake],
36. And unto Tiamat, the glistening one, he addressed [the word]:
37. "[...] their way [...],
38. "By day I cannot rest, by night [I cannot lie down (in peace)].
39. "But I will destroy their way, I will [...],
40. "Let there be lamentation, and let us lie down (again in peace)."
41. When Tiamat [heard] these words,
42. She raged and cried aloud [...].
43. [She ...] grievously [...],
44. She uttered a curse, and unto [Apsû she spake]:
45. "What then shall we [do]?
46. "Let their way be made difficult, and let us [lie down (again) in peace]."
47. Mummu answered, and gave counsel unto Apsû,
48. [...] and hostile (to the gods) was the counsel Mu[mmu gave]:
49. "Come, their way is strong, but thou shalt destroy [it];
50. "Then by day shalt thou have rest, by night shalt thou lie down (in peace)."
51. Apsû [hearkened unto] him and his countenance grew bright,
52. [Since] he (i.e. Mummu) planned evil against the gods his sons.
53. [...] he was afraid [...],
54. His knees [became weak(?)], they gave way beneath him,
55. [Because of the evil] which their first-born had planned.
56. [...] their [...] they altered(?).
58. Lamentation [...] they sat in [sorrow] '
57. [...] they [...],
60. Then Ea, who knoweth all that [is], went up and he beheld their muttering.
62. [...] ... his pure incantation
63. [...] ... [...]
65. [...] misery
[Lines 68-82 are wanting.]
84 [...] ...
85. [...] the god Anu,
86. [... an aven]ger.
88. [...] and he shall confound Tiamat.
89. [...] he ...
90. [...] for ever.
91. [...] the evil,
92. [...] ... he spake:
93. "[...] thy [...] he hath conquered and
94. " [...] he [weepeth] and sitteth in tribulation(?).
95. "[...] of fear,
96. "[...] we shall not lie down (in peace).
97. "[...] Apsû is laid waste(?),
98. "[...] and Mummu, who were taken captive, in [...]
99. "[...] thou didst, ...
100. "[...] let us lie down (in peace).
101. "[...] ... they will smite (?) [...].
102. " [...] let us lie down (in peace).
103. "[...] thou shalt take vengeance for them,
104. "[...]unto the tempest shalt thou [...]!"
105. [And Tiamat hearkened unto] the word of the bright god, (and said):
106. "[...] shalt thou entrust! let us wage [war]!"
107. [...] the gods in the midst of [...]
108. [...] for the gods did she create.'
109. [They banded themselves together and] at the side of Tiamat [they] advanced;
110. [They were furious, they devised mischief without resting] night and [day].
111. [They prepared for battle], fuming and raging;
112. [They joined their forces] and made war.
113. [Ummu-Hubu]r, who formed all things,
114. [Made in addition] weapons invincible, she spawned monster-serpents,
115. [Sharp of] tooth, and merciless of fang;
116. [With poison instead of] blood she filled [their] bodies.
117. Fierce [monster-vipers] she clothed with terror,
118. [With splendour] she decked them, [she made them] of lofty stature.
119. [Whoever beheld] them, terror overcame him,
120. Their bodies reared up and none could withstand [their attack].
121. [She set] up vipers, and dragons, and the (monster) [Lahamu],
122. [And hurricanes], and raging hounds, and scorpion-men,
123. And mighty [tempests], and fish-men, and[rams];
124. [They bore] cruel weapons, without fear of [the fight].
125. Her commands [were mighty], [none] could resist them;
126. After this fashion, huge of stature, [she made] eleven (monsters).
127. Among the gods who were her sons, inasmuch as he had given [her support],
128. She exalted Kingu; in their midst [she raised] him [to power].
129. To march before the forces, to lead [the host],
130. To give the battle-signal, to advance to the attack,
131. To direct the battle, to control the fight,
132. Unto him she entrusted; in [costly raiment] she made him sit, (saying):
133. "I have uttered thy spell, in the assembly of the gods I have raised thee to power.
134. "The dominion over all the gods [have I entrusted unto him].
135. "Be thou exalted, thou my chosen spouse,
136. "May they magnify thy name over all [of them ... the Anunnaki]."
137. She gave him the Tablets of Destiny, on [his] breast she laid them, (saying):
138. "Thy command shall not be without avail, and[the word of thy mouth shall be established]."
139. Now Kingu, (thus) exalted, having received [the power of Anu],
140. [Decreed] the fate among the gods his sons, (saying):
141. "Let the opening of your mouth [quench] the Fire-god;
142. "Whoso is exalted in the battle, let him [display (his) might]!"
The Second Tablet
1. Tiamat made weighty her handiwork,
2. [Evil] she wrought against the gods her children.
3. [To avenge] Apsû, Tiamat planned evil,
4. But how she had collected her [forces, the god ...] unto Ea divulged.
5. Ea [hearkened to] this thing, and
6. He was [grievous]ly afflicted and he sat in sorrow.
7. [The days] went by, and his anger was appeased,
8. And to [the place of] Anshar his father he took[his way].
9. [He went] and standing before Anshar, the father who begat him,
10. [All that] Tiamat had plotted he repeated unto him,
11. [Saying, "Ti]amat our mother hath conceived a hatred for us,
12. "With all her force she rageth, full of wrath.
13. "All the gods have turned to her,
14. "[With] those, whom ye created, they go at her side.
15. "They are banded together and at the side of Tiamat they advance;
16. "They are furious, they devise mischief without resting night and day.
17. "They prepare for battle, fuming and raging;
18. "They have joined their forces and are making war.
19. "Ummu-Hubur, who formed all things,
20. "Hath made in addition weapons invincible, she hath spawned monster-serpents,
21. "Sharp of tooth, and merciless of fang.
22. "With poison instead of blood she hath filled their bodies.
23. "Fierce monster-vipers she hath clothed with terror,
24. "With splendour she hath decked them, she hath made them of lofty stature.
25. "Whoever beholdeth them is overcome by terror,"
26. "Their bodies rear up and none can withstand their attack.
27. "She hath set up vipers, and dragons, and the
28. "And hurricanes and raging hounds, and scorpion-men,
29. "And mighty tempests, and fish-men and rams;
30. "They bear cruel weapons, without fear of the fight.
31. "Her commands are mighty, none can resist them;
32. "After this fashion, huge of stature, hath she made eleven (monsters).
33. "Among the gods who are her sons, inasmuch as he hath given her support,
34. She hath exalted Kingu; in their midst she hath raised him to power.
35. "To march before the forces, to lead the host,
36. "To give the battle-signal, to advance to the attack,
37. "[To direct] the battle, to control the fight,
38. "Unto him [hath she entrusted]; in costly raiment she hath made him sit, (saying):
39. "'[I have uttered] thy [spell], in the assembly of the gods I have raised thee to power,
40. "'[The dominion over all] the gods have I entrusted [unto thee].
41. "'[Be thou exalted], thou [my chosen spouse],
42. "'[May they magnify thy name over all of them ...] ...'
43. "[She hath given him the Tablets of Destiny, on his breast she] laid them, (saying):
44. "'[Thy command shall not be without avail], and the [word] of thy mouth shall be established.'
45. "[Now Kingu, (thus) exalted], having received the power of Anu,
46. "Decreed the fate [for the gods, her sons], (saying):
47. "'Let [the opening of your mouth] quench the Fire-god;
48. "'[Whoso is exalted in the battle], let him display (his) might!'"
49. [When Anshar heard how Tiamat] was mightily in revolt,
50. [...], he bit his lips,
51. [...], his mind was not at peace,
52. His [...], he made a bitter lamentation:
53. [...] battle,
54. "[...] thou ....
55. "[Mummu and] Apsû thou hast smitten,
56. "[But Tiamat hath exalted Kin]gu, and where is one who can oppose her?"
57. [...] deliberation
58. [ ... the ... of] the gods, N[u]di[mmud]
[A gap of about ten lines occurs here.]
(72) [Anshar unto] his son addressed [the word]:
(73) "[...] ... my mighty hero,
(74) "[Whose] strength [is great] and whose onslaught cannot be withstood,
(75) "[Go] and stand before Tiamat,
(76) "[That] her spirit [may be appeased], that her heart may be merciful.
(77) "[But if] she will not hearken unto thy word,
(78) "Our [word] shalt thou speak unto her, that she may be pacified."
(79) [He heard the] word of his father Anshar
(80) And [he directed] his path to her, towards her he took the way.
(81) Anu [drew nigh], he beheld the muttering of Tiamat,
(82) [But he could not withstand her], and he turned back.
(83) [...] Anshar
(84) [...] he spake unto him:
(85) "[...] upon me
[A gap of about twenty lines occurs here.]
(105) [...] an avenger [...]
(106) [...] va[liant]
(107) [...] in the place of his decision
(108) [...] he spake unto him:
(109) "[...] thy father
(110) "Thou art my son, who maketh merciful his heart.
(111) " [...] to the battle shalt thou draw nigh,
(112) "[...] he that shall behold thee shall have peace."
(113) And the lord rejoiced at the word of his father,
(114) And he drew nigh and stood before Anshar.
(115) Anshar beheld him and his heart was filled with joy,
(116) He kissed him on the lips and his fear departed from him.
(117) "[O my father], let not the word of thy lips be overcome,
(118) "Let me go, that I may accomplish all that is in thy heart.
(119). "[O Anshar], let not the word of thy lips be overcome,
(120) ". [Let me] go, that I may accomplish all that is in thy heart."
(121) "What man is it, who hath brought thee forth to battle?
(122) "[...] Tiamat, who is a woman, is armed and attacketh thee."
(123) "[...] ... rejoice and be glad;
(124) "The neck of Tiamat shalt thou swiftly trample under foot.
(125) "[...] ... rejoice and be glad;
(126) "[The neck] of Tiamat shalt thou swiftly trample under foot.
(127) "O my [son], who knoweth all wisdom,
(128) "Pacify [Tiama]t with thy pure incantation.
(129) "Speedily set out upon thy way,
(130) "For [thy blood (?)] shall not be poured out, thou shalt return again."
(131) The lord rejoiced at the word of his father,
(132) His heart exulted, and unto his father he spake:
(133) "O Lord of the gods, Destiny of the great gods,
(134) "If I, your avenger,
(135) "Conquer Tiamat and give you life,
(136) "Appoint an assembly, make my fate preeminent and proclaim it.
(137) "In Upshukkinaku seat yourselves joyfully together,
(138) "With my word in place of you will I decree fate.
(139) "May whatsoever I do remain unaltered,
(140) "May the word of my lips never be changed nor made of no avail."
The Third Tablet
1. Anshar opened his mouth, and
2. [Unto Gaga], his [minister], spake the word:
3. "[O Gaga, thou minis]ter that rejoicest my spirit,
4. ''[Unto Lahmu and Lah]amu will I send thee.
5. "[...] thou canst attain,
6. ''[...] thou shalt cause to be brought before thee.
7. [... let] the gods, all of them,
8. "[Make ready for a feast], at a banquet let them sit,
9. "[Let them eat bread], let them mix wine,
10. ''[That for Marduk], their avenger, they may decree the fate.
11. "[Go,] Gaga, stand before them,
12. ''[And all that] I, tell thee, repeat unto them, (and say):
13. "[Anshar], your son, hath sent me,
14. "[The purpose] of his heart he hath made known unto me.
15. "[He saith that Tia]mat our mother hath conceived a hatred for us,
16. "[With all] her force she rageth, full of wrath.
17. "All the gods have turned to her,
18. "With those, whom ye created, they go at her side.
19. ''They are banded together, and at the side of Tiamat they advance;
20 . "They are furious, they devise mischief without resting night and day.
21. ''They prepare for battle, fuming and raging;
22. "They have joined their forces and are making war.
23. "Ummu-Hubur, who formed all things,
24. "Hath made in addition weapons invincible, she hath spawned monster-serpents,
25. "Sharp of tooth and merciless of fang.
26. "With poison instead of blood she hath filled heir bodies.
27. "Fierce monster-vipers she hath clothed with terror,
28. "With splendour she hath decked them, she hath made them of lofty stature.
29. "Whoever beholdeth them, terror overcometh him,
30. "Their bodies rear up and none can withstand their attack.
31. "She hath set up vipers, and dragons, and the (monster) Lahamu,
32. "And hurricanes, and raging hounds, and scorpion-men,
33. "And mighty tempests, and fish-men, and rams;
34. They bear merciless weapons, without fear of the fight.
35. "Her commands are mighty, none can resist them;
36. "After this fashion, huge of stature, hath she made eleven (monsters).
37. "Among the gods who are her sons, inasmuch as he hath given her [support],
38. "She hath exalted Kingu; in their midst she hath raised [him] to power.
39. ''To march before the forces, [to lead the host],
40. "[To] give the battle-signal, to advance [to the attack],
41. "[To direct] the battle, to control the [fight],
42. "Unto him [hath she entrusted; in costly raiment] she hath made him sit, (saying):
43. "'[I have] uttered thy spell, in the assembly of the gods [I have raised thee to power],
44. "'[The] dominion over all the gods [have I entrusted unto thee].
45. "'[Be] thou exalted, [thou] my chosen spouse,
46. "' May they magnify thy name over all of [them ... the Anunnaki].'
47. "She hath given him the Tablets of Destiny, on his breast she laid them, (saying):
48. "'Thy command shall not be without avail, and the word of [thy] mouth shall be established.'
49. "Now Kingu, (thus) exalted, having received [the power of Anu],
50. "Decreed the fate for the gods, her sons, (saying):
51. "'Let the opening of your mouth quench the Fire-god;
52. "'Whoso is exalted in the battle, let him display (his) might! '
53. ''I sent Anu, but he could not withstand her;
54. "Nudimmud was afraid and turned back.
55. "But Marduk hath set out, the director of the gods, your son;
56. ''To set out against Tiamat his heart hath prompted (him).
57. "He opened his mouth and spake unto me, (saying):
58. "'If I, your avenger,
59. "'Conquer Tiamat and give you life,
60. "'Appoint an assembly, make my fate preeminent and proclaim it.
61. "'In Upshukkinaku seat yourselves joyfully together;
62. "'With my word in place of you will I decree fate.
63. "'May whatsoever I do remain unaltered,
64. "'May the word of my lips never be changed nor made of no avail.'
65. "Hasten, therefore, and swiftly decree for him the fate which you bestow,
66. "That he may go and fight your strong enemy!"
67. Gaga went, he took his way and
68. Humbly before Lahmu and Lahamu, the gods, his fathers,
69. He made obeisance, and he kissed the ground at their feet.
70. He humbled himself; then he stood up and spake unto them, (saying):
71. "Anshar, your son, hath sent me,
72. ''The purpose of his heart he hath made known unto me.
73. "He saith that Tiamat our mother hath conceived a hatred for us,
74. "With all her force she rageth, full of wrath.
75. "All the gods have turned to her,
76. "With those, whom ye created, they go at her side.
77. "They are banded together and at the side of Tiamat they advance;
78. ''They are furious, they devise mischief without resting night and day.
79. "They prepare for battle, fuming and raging;
80. ''They have joined their forces and are making war.
81. ''Ummu-Hubur, who formed all things,
82. "Hath made in addition weapons invincible, she hath spawned monster-serpents,
83. "Sharp of tooth and merciless of fang.
84. "With poison instead of blood she hath filled their bodies.
85. ''Fierce monster-vipers she hath clothed with terror,
86. "With splendour she hath decked them, she hath made them of lofty stature.
87. ''Whoever beholdeth them, terror overcometh him,
88. "Their bodies rear up and none can withstand their attack.
89. ''She hath set up vipers, and dragons, and the (monster) Lahamu,
90. "And hurricanes, and raging hounds, and scorpion-men,
91. ''And mighty tempests, and fish-men, and [rams];
92. "They bear merciless weapons, without fear of the fight.
93. "Her commands are mighty, none can resist them;
94. ''After this fashion, huge of stature, hath she made eleven (monsters).
95. ''Among the gods who are her sons, inasmuch as he hath given her support,
96. "She hath exalted Kingu; in their midst she hath raised him to power.
97. "To march before the forces, to lead the host,
98. ''To give the battle-signal, to advance to the attack,
99. "To direct the battle, to control the fight,
100. ''Unto him hath she entrusted; in costly raiment she hath made him sit, (saying):
101. "'I have uttered thy spell, in the assembly of the gods I have raised thee to power,
102. "'The dominion over all the gods have I entrusted unto thee.
103. "'Be thou exalted, thou my chosen spouse,
104. "'May they magnify thy name over all of them ... the Anunna[ki].'
105. "She hath given him the Tablets of Destiny, on [his] breast [she laid them], (saying):
106. "'Thy command shall not be without avail, [and the word of thy mouth shall be established].
107. "Now Kingu, (thus) exalted, [having received the power of Anu],
108. "[Decreed the fate] for the gods, her sons, (saying):
109. "'Let the opening of your mouth [quench] the Fire-god;
110. "'Whoso is exalted in the battle, [let him display] (his) might!'
111. "I sent Anu, but he could not [withstand her];
112. "Nudimmud was afraid and [turned back].
113. "But Marduk hath set out, the director of the[gods, your son];
114. "T o set out against Tiamat [his heart hath prompted (him)].
115. "He opened his mouth [and spake unto me], (saying):
116. "'If I, [your avenger],
117. "'Conquer Tiamat and [give you life],
118. "'Appoint an assembly, [make my fate preeminent and proclaim it].
119. "'In Upshukkinaku [seat yourselves joyfully together];
120. "'With my word in place of [you will I decree fate].
121. "'May whatsoever [I] do remain unaltered,
122. "'May the word of [my lips] never be changed nor made of no avail.'
123. ''Hasten, therefore, and swiftly [decree for him] the fate which you bestow,
124. "That he may go and fight your strong enemy!"
125. Lahmu and Lahamu heard and cried aloud,
126. All of the Igigi wailed bitterly, (saying):
127. ''What has been altered so that they should ... [...]
128. ''We do not understand the d[eed] of Tiamat!"
129. Then did they collect and go,
130. The great gods, all of them, who decree [fate].
131. They entered in before Anshar, they filled [...];
132. They kissed one another, in the assembly [...].
133. They made ready for the feast, at the banquet [they sat];
134. They ate bread, they mixed [sesame-wine].
135. The sweet drink, the mead, confused their [...],
136. They were drunk with drinking, their bodies were filled.
137. They were wholly at ease, their spirit was exalted;
138. Then for Marduk, their avenger, did they decree the fate.
The Fourth Tablet
1. They prepared for him a lordly chamber,
2 . Before his fathers as prince he took his place.
3. "Thou art chiefest among the great gods,
4. "Thy fate is unequalled, thy word is Anu!
5. "O Marduk, thou art chiefest among the great gods,
6. "Thy fate is unequalled, thy word is Anu!
7. "Henceforth not without avail shall be thy command,
8. "In thy power shall it be to exalt and to abase.
9. "Established shall be the word of thy mouth, irresistible shall be thy command;
10. "None among the gods shall transgress thy boundary.
11. "Abundance, the desire of the shrines of the gods,
12. "Shall be established in thy sanctuary, even though they lack (offerings).
13. "O Marduk, thou art our avenger!
14. "We give thee sovereignty over the whole world.
15. "Sit thou down in night, be exalted in thy command.
16. "Thy weapon shall never lose its power, it shall crush thy foe.
17. "O lord, spare the life of him that putteth his trust in thee,
18. "But as for the god who began the rebellion, pour out his life."
19. Then set they in their midst a garment,
20. And unto Marduk their first-born they spake:
21. "May thy fate, O lord, be supreme among the gods,
22. "To destroy and to create; speak thou the word, and (thy command) shall be fulfilled.
23. "Command now and let the garment vanish;
24. "And speak the word again and let the garment reappear!"
25. Then he spake with his mouth, and the garment vanished;
26. Again he commanded it, and the garment reappeared.
27. When the gods, his fathers, beheld (the fulfilment of) his word,
28. They rejoiced, and they did homage (unto him, saying), " Marduk is king! "
29. They bestowed upon him the sceptre, and the throne, and the ring,
30. They give him an invincible weapon, which overwhelmeth the foe.
31. "Go, and cut off the life of Tiamat,
32. "And let the wind carry her blood into secret places."
33. After the gods his fathers had decreed for the lord his fate,
34. They caused him to set out on a path of prosperity and success.
35 . He made ready the bow, he chose his weapon,
36. He slung a spear upon him and fastened it . . .
37. He raised the club, in his right hand he grasped (it),
38. The bow and the quiver he hung at his side.
39. He set the lightning in front of him,
40. With burning flame he filled his body.
41. He made a net to enclose the inward parts of Tiamat,
42. The four winds he stationed so that nothing of her might escape;
43. The South wind and the North wind and the East wind and the West wind
44. He brought near to the net, the gift of his father Anu.
45. He created the evil wind, and the tempest, and the hurricane,
46. And the fourfold wind, and the sevenfold wind, and the whirlwind, and the wind which had no equal;
47. He sent forth the winds which he had created, the seven of them;
48. T o disturb the inward parts of Tiamat, they followed after him.
49. Then the lord raised the thunderbolt, his mighty weapon,
50. He mounted the chariot, the storm unequalled for terror,
51. He harnessed and yoked unto it four horses,
52. Destructive, ferocious, overwhelming, and swift of pace;
53. [...] were their teeth, they were flecked with foam;
54. They were skilled in [...], they had been trained to trample underfoot.
55. [...], mighty in battle,
56. Left and [right ...
57. His garment was [...], he was clothed with terror,
58. With overpowering brightness his head was crowned.
59. Then he set out, he took his way,
60. And towards the [rag]ing Tiamat he set his face.
61. On his lips he held [...],
62. ... [...] he grasped in his hand.
63. Then they beheld him, the gods beheld him,
64. The gods his fathers beheld him, the gods beheld him.
65. And the lord drew nigh, he gazed upon the inward parts of Tiamat,
66. He perceived the muttering of Kingu, her spouse.
67. As (Marduk) gazed, (Kingu) was troubled in his gait,
68. His will was destroyed and his motions ceased.
69. And the gods, his helpers, who marched by his side,
70. Beheld their leader's [...], and their sight was troubled.
71. But Tiamat [...], she turned not her neck,
72. With lips that failed not she uttered rebellious words:
73. "[...] thy coming as lord of the gods,
74. "From their places have they gathered, in thy place are they!"
75. Then the lord [raised] the thunderbolt, his mighty weapon,
76. [And against] Tiamat, who was raging, thus he sent (the word):
77. "[Thou] art become great, thou hast exalted thyself on high,
78. "And thy [heart hath prompted] thee to call to battle.
79. "[...] their fathers [...],
80. "[...] their [...] thou hatest [...].
81. "[Thou hast exalted King]u to be [thy] spouse,
82. "[Thou hast . . . ] him, that, even as Anu, he should issue decrees.
83. "[...] thou hast followed after evil,
84. "And [against] the .gods my fathers thou hast contrived thy wicked plan.
85. "Let then thy host be equipped, let thy weapons be girded on!
86. "Stand! I and thou, let us join battle!"
87. When Tiamat heard these words,
88. She was like one possessed, she lost her reason.
89. Tiamat uttered wild, piercing cries,
90. She trembled and shook to her very foundations.
91. She recited an incantation, she pronounced her spell,
92. And the gods of the battle cried out for their weapons.
93. Then advanced Tiamat and Marduk, the counsellor of the gods;
94. To the fight they came on, to the battle they drew nigh.
95. The lord spread out his net and caught her,
96. And the evil wind that was behind (him) he let loose in her face.
97. As Tiamat opened her mouth to its full extent,
98. He drove in the evil wind, while as yet she had not shut her lips.
99. The terrible winds filled her belly,
100. And her courage was taken from her, and her mouth she opened wide.
101. He seized the spear and burst her belly,
102. He severed her inward parts, he pierced (her) heart.
103. He overcame her and cut off her life;
104. He cast down her body and stood upon it.
105. When he had slain Tiamat, the leader,
106. Her might was broken, her host was scattered.
107. And the gods her helpers, who marched by her side,
108. Trembled, and were afraid, and turned back.
109. They took to flight to save their lives;
110. But they were surrounded, so that they could not escape.
111. He took them captive, he broke their weapons;
112. In the net they were caught and in the snare they sat down.
113. The [...] ... of the world they filled with cries of grief.
114. They received punishment from him, they were held in bondage.
115. And on the eleven creatures which she had filled with the power of striking terror,
116. Upon the troop of devils, who marched at her [...],
117. He brought affliction, their strength [he ...];
118. Them and their opposition he trampled under his feet.
119. Moreover, Kingu, who had been exalted over them,
120. He conquered, and with the god Dug-ga he counted him.
121. He took from him the Tablets of Destiny that were not rightly his,
122. He sealed them with a seal and in his own breast he laid them.
123. Now after the hero Marduk had conquered and cast down his enemies,
124. And had made the arrogant foe even like ...,
125. And had fully established Anshar's triumph over the enemy,
126. And had attained the purpose of Nudimmud,
127. Over the captive gods he strengthened his durance,
128. And unto Tiamat, whom he had conquered, he returned.
129. And the lord stood upon Tiamat's hinder parts,
130. And with his merciless club he smashed her skull.
131. He cut through the channels of her blood,
132. And he made the North wind bear it away into secret places.
133. His fathers beheld, and they rejoiced and were glad;
134. Presents and gifts they brought unto him.
135. Then the lord rested, gazing upon her dead body,
136. While he divided the flesh of the ..., and devised a cunning plan.
137. He split her up like a flat fish into two halves;
138. One half of her he stablished as a covering for heaven.
139. He fixed a bolt, he stationed a watchman,
140. And bade them not to let her waters come forth.
141. He passed through the heavens, he surveyed the regions (thereof),
142. And over against the Deep he set the dwelling of Nudimmud.
143. And the lord measured the structure of the Deep,
144. And he founded E-shara, a mansion like unto it.
145. The mansion E-shara which he created as heaven,
146. He caused Anu, Bêl, and Ea in their districts to inhabit.
The Fifth Tablet
1. He.(i.e. Marduk) made the stations for the great gods;
2. The stars, their images, as the stars of the Zodiac, he fixed.
3. He ordained the year and into sections he divided it;
4. For the twelve months he fixed three stars.
5. After he had [...] the days of the year [...] images,
6. He founded the station of Nibir 1to determine their bounds;
7. That none might err or go astray,
8. He set the station of Bêl and Ea along with him.
9. He opened great gates on both sides,
10. He made strong the bolt on the left and on the right.
11. In the midst thereof he fixed the zenith;
12. The Moon-god he caused to shine forth, the night he entrusted to him.
13. He appointed him, a being of the night, to determine the days;
14. Every month without ceasing with the crown he covered(?) him, (saying):
15. "At the beginning of the month, when thou shinest upon the land,
16. "Thou commandest the horns to determine six days,
17. "And on the seventh day to [divide] the crown.
18. "On the fourteenth day thou shalt stand opposite, the half [...].
19. "When the Sun-god on the foundation of heaven [...] thee,
20. "The [...] thou shalt cause to ..., and thou shalt make his [...].
21. "[...] ... unto the path of the Sun-god shalt thou cause to draw nigh,
22. "[And on the ... day] thou shalt stand opposite, and the Sun-god shall ... [...]
23. "[...] to traverse her way.
24. "[...] thou shalt cause to draw nigh, and thou shalt judge the right.
25. "[...] to destroy
26. "[...] me.
[The following twenty-two lines are taken from K. 3,449a,
and probably form part of the Fifth Tablet.]
(66 ). [...]
(68 ) From [...]
(69) In E-sagil [...]
(70) To establish [...]
(71) The station of [...]
(72) The great gods [...]
(73) The gods [...]
(74) He took and [...]
(75) The gods [his fathers] beheld the net which he had made,
(76) They beheld the bow and how [its work] was accomplished.
(77) They praised the work which he had done [...]
(78) Then Anu raised [the ...] in the assembly of the gods.
(79) H e kissed the bow, (saying), "It is [...]!"
(80) And thus he named the names of the bow, (saying),
(81) "'Long-wood' shall be one name, and the second name [shall be ...]
(82) "And its third name shall be the Bow-star, in heaven [shall it ...]"
(83) Then he fixed a station for it [...]
(84) Now after the fate of [...]
(85) [He set] a throne [...]
(86) [...] in heaven [...]
(87) [...] ... [...]
[The following traces of the last thirteen lines of the Fifth Tablet are taken from the reverse of K. 11,641 and from the reverse of K. 8,526.]
(128) "[...] him [...]"
(129) "[...] them [...]"
(130) "[...] him [...]"
(131) "[...] them [...]"
(132) "[...] their [...] may [...]"
(133) [...] the gods spake,
(134) [...] the heavens [...]: 1
(135) "[... your] son [...]"
(136) "[...] our [...] hath he [...]"
(137) "[...] he hath caused to live [...]"
(138) "[...] splendour [...]"
(139) "[...] not [...]!"
(140) "[...] we [...]!"
85:1 In the speech that follows it may be conjectured that the gods complained that, although Marduk had endowed the heavens with splendour and had caused plants to live upon the earth, yet there were no shrines built in honour of the gods, and there were no worshippers devoted to their service; see below, p. 88, note 1
The Sixth Tablet
1. When Marduk heard the word of the gods,
2. His heart prompted him and he devised [a cunning plan].
3. He opened his mouth and unto Ea [he spake],
4. [That which] he had conceived in his heart he imparted [unto him]:
5. "My blood will I take and bone will I [fashion],
6. "I will make man, that man may ... [...].
7. "I will create man who shall inhabit [the earth],"
8. "That the service of the gods may be established, and that [their] shrines 1 [may be built].
9. "But I will alter the ways of the gods, and I will change [their paths];
10. "Together shall they be oppressed 2, and unto evil shall [they ...]."
11. And Ea answered him and spake the word:
12. "[...] the [...] of the gods I have [changed]
13. [...] ... and one ... [...]
14. [...shall be de]stroyed and men will I [...]
15. [...] and the gods [...]
16. [...] ... and they [...]
17. [...] ... and the gods [...]
18. [...] .... [...]
19. [...] the gods [...]
20. [...] the Anunnaki [...]
21. [...] ... [...]
[The rest of the text is wanting 1 with the exception of the last few lines of the tablet, which read as follows.]
138. [...] ... [...]
139. [...] ... [...]
140. When [...] ... [...]
141. They rejoiced [...] ... [...]
142. In Upshukkinnaku they set [their dwelling].
143. Of the heroic son, their avenger, [they cried]:
144. "We, whom he succoured, ... [...]!"
145. They seated themselves and in the assembly they named [him ...],
146. They all [cried aloud (?), they exalted [him ...]. 2
89:1 ... literally the line reads "Let the service of the gods be established, and as for them let [their] shrines be built. It is interesting to note the reason that is here implied for the creation of mankind, i.e., that the gods my have worshipers. There is clearly a reference to this in l. 29 of the Seventh Tablet, where, after referring to Marduk's mercy upon the gods, the text goes on ... "For their forgiveness did he create mankind."
89:2 It seems preferable to assign to the Piel of [kabâtu] its usual meaning "to oppress," rather than to render the passage as "Together shall they be honoured." The sense seems to be that Marduk, by the creation of man, will establish the worship of the gods, but at the same time will punish the gods for their complaints. It is possible that in his speech that follows Ea dissuades Marduk from carrying out the second part of his proposal.
91:1 It is probable that the missing portion of the text corresponded closely with the account of the creation of man and animals given by Berossus; for a further discussion of this subject, see the Introduction. The tablet K. 3,364 (Cun. Texts, part xiii, pl. 24 f.) has been thought to belong to the Creation Series, and to contain the instructions given by Marduk to man after his creation. Had this been so, it would have formed part of the Sixth Tablet. On plates lxiv ff. of Vol. II is published the text of a Neo-Babylonian tablet, No. 33,851, which gives a duplicate text to K. 3,364; and in Appendix II I have given reasons for believing that the text inscribed upon K. 3,364 and No. 33,851 has no connection with the Creation Series, but is part of a long composition containing moral precepts. Another fragment which it has been suggested belongs to one of the later tablets of the Creation Series is K. 3,445 + R. 396 (Cun. Texts, part xiii, pl. 24 f.; cf. also its duplicate K. 14,949, pl. 24); but there are strong reasons against the identification of the text as a fragment of the series Enuma elish, though it may well be part of a parallel version of the Creation story (see further, Appendix II).
91:2 The address of the gods to Marduk forms the subject of the Seventh Tablet of the series
The Seventh Tablet
1. O Asari, "Bestower of planting," "[Founder of sowing],"
2. "Creator of grain and plants," "who caused [the green herb to spring up]!"
3. O Asaru-alim, "who is revered in the house of counsel," "[who aboundeth in counsel],"
4. The gods paid homage, fear [took hold upon them]!
5. O Asaru-alim-nuna, "the mighty one," "the Light of [the father who begat him],"
6. Who directeth the decrees of Anu, Bel, [and Ea]!"
7. He was their patron, he ordained [their . . . . ];
8. He, whose provision is abundance, goeth forth [...]!
9. Tutu [is] 1 "He who created them anew;"
10. Should their wants be pure, then are they [satisfied];
11. Should he make an incantation, then are the gods [appeased];
12 . Should they attack him in anger, he withstandeth [their onslaught]!
13. Let him therefore be exalted, and in the assembly of the gods [let him ...];
14. None among the gods can [rival him]!
15. Tutu is Zi-ukkina, "the Life of the host [of the gods],"
16. Who established for the gods the bright heavens.
17. He set them on their way, and ordained [their path (?)]
18. Never shall his [...] deeds be forgotten among men.
19. Tutu as Zi-azag thirdly they named, "the Bringer 1 of Purification,"
20. "The God of the Favouring Breeze," "the Lord of Hearing and Mercy,"
21. "The Creator of Fulness and Abundance," "the Founder of Plenteousness,"
22. "Who increaseth all that is small."
23. "In sore distress we felt his favouring breeze,"
24. Let them say, let them pay reverence, let them bow in humility before him!
25. Tutu as Aga-azag may mankind fourthly magnify!
26. "The Lord of the Pure Incantation," "the Quickener of the Dead,"
27. "Who had mercy upon the captive gods,"
28. "Who removed the yoke from upon the gods his enemies,"
29. "For their forgiveness did he create mankind,"
30. "The Merciful One, with whom it is to bestow life!"
31. May his deeds endure, may they never be forgotten
32. In the mouth of mankind 1 whom his hands have made!
33. Tutu as Mu-azag, fifthly, his "Pure Incantation" may their mouth proclaim,
34. "Who through his Pure Incantation hath destroyed all the evil ones!"
35. Shag-zu, "who knoweth the heart of the gods," "who seeth through the innermost part!"
36. "The evil-doer he hath not caused to go forth with him!"
37. "Founder of the assembly of the gods," "[who ...] their heart! "
38. "Subduer of the disobedient," "[...]!"
39. "Who rebellion and [...]!"
41. Tutu as Zi-si, "the [...],
42. "Who put an end to anger," "[who ...]!"
43. Tutu as Suh-kur, thirdly, "the [Destroyer of the foe],"
44. "Who put their plans to confusion," "[...],"
45. "Who destroyed all the wicked," "[...],"
46. [...] let them [...]!
47. [...] ... [...]
[The following lines are taken from the fragment K. 12,830, but their position in the text is uncertain.]
[He named the four quarters (of the world)], mankind [he created],
[And upon] him understanding [...]
[...] ... [...]
[...] Tiamat [...]
[...] ... [...]
[...] distant [...]
[...] may [...].
[The following lines are taken from the fragment K. 13,761.]
(10) 1 [...]
"The mighty one [...]!"
... Agi[l ...],
"The Creator of [the earth ...]!"
Zulummu ... [...],
"The Giver of counsel and of whatsoever [...]!"
Mummu, "the Creator [of ...]!"
Mulil, the heavens [...], "Who for ... [...]!"
Gishkul, let [...],
(10) "Who brought the gods to naught[...]!"
"Who in [ ............ ]!"
"Who in [...]!"
[The following lines are taken from the fragment K. 8,519 and its duplicate K. 13,337; this portion of the text was not separated by much from that preserved by K. 13,761.]
[... the Chief (?) of] all lords,"
[... supreme] is his might!
[Lugal-durmah, "the King] 1 of the band of the gods," "the Lord of rulers,"
"Who is exalted in a royal habitation,"
"[Who] among the gods is gloriously supreme!"
[Adu-nuna], "the Counsellor of Ea," who created the gods his fathers,
Unto the path of whose majesty
[No] god can ever attain!
[... in] Dul-azag he made it known,
[...] pure is his dwelling!
[... the ...] of those without understanding is Lugal-dul-azaga!
[...] supreme is his might!
[...] their [...] in the midst of Tiamat,
[...] ... of the battle!
[The numbering of the following lines is based on the marginal numbers upon No. 91,139. + 93,073.]
105. [...] ... [...] him,
106. [...] ... the star, which [shineth in the heavens].
107. May he hold the Beginning and the Future 1, may they 2 pay homage unto him,
108. Saying, "He who forced his way through the midst of Tiamat [without resting],
109. "Let his name be Nibiru, 'the Seizer of the Midst'!
110. "For the stars of heaven he upheld the paths,
111. "He shepherded all the gods like sheep!
112. "He conquered Tiamat, he troubled and ended her life,"
113. In the future of mankind, when the days grow old,
114. May this be heard without ceasing, may it hold sway for ever!
115. Since he created the realm (of heaven) and fashioned the firm earth,
116. "The Lord of the World," the father Bêl hath called his name.
117. (This) title, which all the Spirits of Heaven proclaimed,
118. Did Ea hear, and his spirit was rejoiced, (and he said):
119. "He whose name his fathers have made glorious,
120. "Shall be even as I, his name shall be Ea!
121. "The binding of all my decrees shall he control,
122. "All my commands shall he make known! "
123. By the name of "Fifty" did the great gods
124. Proclaim his fifty names, they made his path pre-eminent." 1
125. Let them 2 be held in remembrance, and let the first man proclaim them;
126. Let the wise and the understanding consider them together!
127. Let the father repeat them and teach them to his son;
128. Let them be in the ears of the pastor and the shepherd!
129. Let a man rejoice in Marduk, the Lord of the gods,
130. That he may cause his land to be fruitful, and that he himself may have prosperity!
131. His word standeth fast, his command is unaltered;
132. The utterance of his mouth hath no god ever annulled.
133. He gazed in his anger, he turned not his neck;
134. When he is wroth, no god can withstand his indignation.
135. Wide is his heart, broad is his compassion;
136. The sinner and evil-doer in his presence [...].
137. They received instruction, they spake before him,
138. [...] unto [...].
139. [...] of Marduk may the gods [...].
140. [May] they [... his ] name [...]!
141. [...] they took and [...];
142. [...]! 1
93:1 The title Tutu is there explained as ba-a-nu, " creator," while its two component parts (TU + TU) occur in the Sumerian version of the line as the equivalents of la-nu-u and e-di-shu.
97:1 The text of the commentary read mu-kin, i.e. "the Founder of Purification"; for other variant readings in the line, see Appendix I.
99:1 Literally, "the black-headed ones."
103:1 In the margin of the fragment K. 13,761 every tenth line is indicated by the figure "10."
105:1 The word durmahu was employed as a Babylonian priestly title. It may here be rendered by some such general phrase as "ruler," unless it is to be taken as a proper name.
107:1 ... The expression rêshu-arkât, literally "the beginning—the future," may be taken as implying Marduk's complete control over the world, both at its creation and during its subsequent existence. It is possible that s'u-nu is the pronominal suffix and should be attached to the preceding word, i.e. rêsh-arkâtu-shu-nu, "their beginning and future," that is, "the beginning and future of mankind."
107:2 I.e., mankind.
111:1 From the commentary R. 366, etc., and the explanatory text S. 747, it may be concluded that the Seventh Tablet, in its original form, ended at 1. 124. It is probable that ll. 125-142 were added as an epilogue at the time when the composition was incorporated in the Creation Series (see Appendix I).
111:2 I.e., the names of Marduk.
115:1 This is probably the last line of the tablet. It may here be noted that, for the text of the Seventh Tablet given in the preceding pages, only those fragments have been used which are proved by the commentaries to contain missing portions of the text. Several other fragments, which from their contents and style of writing may possibly belong to copies of the text, have not been. included. The text of one such fragment (S. 2,013) is of peculiar interest and is given in Appendix II; in l. 10 f. it refers to Ti-amat e-li-ti and Ti-amat shap-li-ti, "The Ocean (Tiamat) which is above" and "The Ocean (Tiamat) which is beneath," a close parallel to "the waters which were above the firmament" and "the waters which were under the firmament" of Gen. i, 7; see the Introduction.
Other Accounts of the History of Creation
I. Another Version of the Dragon-Myth 1
I. The cities sighed, men [...],
2. Men uttered lamentation, [they ...],
3. For their lamentation there was none [to help],
4. For their grief there was none to take [them by the hand].
5. Who was the dragon [...]?
6. Tiamat 2 was the dragon [...]!
7. Bêl in heaven hath formed [...].
8. Fifty kaspu in his length, one kaspu [his height], 3
9. Six cubits is his mouth, twelve cubits [his ...],
10. Twelve cubits is the circuit of his [ears ...];
11. For the space of sixty cubits he [...] a bird;
12. In water nine cubits deep he draggeth [...].
13. He raiseth his tail on high [...];
14. All the gods of heaven [...].
15. In heaven the gods bowed themselves down before [the Moon-god ...];
16. The border of the Moon-god's robe they hasti[ly grasped]:
17. "Who will go and [slay] the dragon, 1
18. "And deliver the broad land [from ...],
19. "And become king [over ...]?"
20. "Go, Tishhu, [slay] the dragon,
21. "And deliver the broad land [from ...],
22. "And become king [over ...]?"
23. "Thou hast sent me, O lord, [to ...] the raging (creatures) 2 of the river,
24. "But I know not the [...] of the Dragon!"
[The rest of the Obverse and the upper part of the Reverse of the tablet are wanting.]
1. [And ...] opened his mouth and [spake] unto the god 1[...]:
2 . "Stir up cloud, and storm [and tempest]!
3. "The seal of thy life [shalt thou set] before thy face,
4. "Thou shalt grasp it, and thou shalt [slay] the dragon."
5. He stirred up cloud, and storm [and tempest],
6. He [set] the seal of his life before his face,
7. He grasped it, and [he slew] the dragon.
8. For three years and three months, one day and [one night] 2
9. The blood of the dragon flowed [...] 3
117:1 For the text, see Cuneiform Texts, part xiii, pl. 33 f., Rm. 282; for a previous publication, cf. Delitzsch, Assyrisches Wörterbuch, p. 390 f.; translations have been given by Zimmern in Gunkel's Schöpfung und Chaos, pp. 417 ff., and by Jensen in Schrader's Keilins. Bibl., vi, pp. 44 ff. Strictly speaking, the text is not a creation legend, though it gives a variant form of the principal incident in the history of creation according to the version Enuma elish. In the tablet Rm. 282 the fight with the dragon did not precede the creation of the world, but took place after men had been created and cities had been built; see further the Introduction.
117:2 The form of the name here used is Tâmtu, i.e., the Sea."
117:3 The kaspu is the space that can be covered in two hours travelling, i.e., about six or seven miles. These general dimensions of the size of the dragon are in accordance with the statement made in l. 8f. of the reverse to the effect that after the dragon had been slain his blood flowed for more than three years. The. second measurement in the line is taken by Zimmern to refer to the dragon's breadth, but, as Jensen points out, this is not consistent with the measurement of the mouth given in the following line. Even Zimmern's readings of 60 GAR in l. 10 and 65 GAR in l. 11 do not explain, but render still more anomalous, the ½ GAR in l. 9. Without going into the question of the probable length of the Babylonian cubit, it is obvious that the dragon's breadth can hardly have been given as so many miles, if its mouth only measures so many feet. This difficulty can be got over by restoring sîrûtishu in place of the suggested rupussu at the end of l. 8. We then have a consistent picture of the dragon as a long thin snake, rearing his head on high; his coils might well have been believed to extend for three hundred or three hundred and fifty miles, and the raising of his head in the air to a height of six or seven miles would not be inconsistent with the measurement of his mouth as six cubits, i.e., some ten feet or more across.
119:1 Lines 17-19 are the appeal of the gods to the Moon-god; ll. 20-22 contain the address of the Moon-god to Tishhu; and ll. 23 ff. give Tishhu's answer to the Moon-god.
119:2 Jensen, ri-hu-ut, which he renders as "moisture." The plural, dalhûti, may perhaps be explained by supposing that, according to this version also, the dragon had other creatures to help her in the fight.
121:1 Jensen suggests the restoration ilu B[êl], which he deduces from the traces upon the tablet as published by Delitzsch; for, as he states, the only other restoration possible would be ilu I[shtaar], and this is rendered unlikely by the masculine form of the imperatives in ll. 2 and 4. This would prove that the slayer of the dragon was Bêl, or Marduk, in both the versions of the story. As a matter of fact, the traces are incorrectly given by Delitzsch; they represent the sign AN and not the conflate sign AN +EN (cf. Cun. Txts., pt. xiii, pl. 34), and it is not possible to conclude from the text who is the hero of this version.
121:2 Jensen suggests the restoration u [ . KAS-PU], i.e., "for three years, three months, a day and [ . hours]." The trace of the next character after u is the single diagonal wedge (cf. Cun. Txts., pt. xiii, pl. 34); according to Jensen's restoration this sign can only be the number "10," i.e. X KAS-PU, "twenty hours," a not very probable reading. The diagonal wedge is more probably the beginning of the sign MI, i.e. mûshu, and the end of the line may be restored as umu IKAN u [mûshu IKAN]; this may be rendered "one day and one night," or possibly, as Zimmern in his translation suggests, "day and night."
121:3 The lower part of the tablet is taken up with the common colophon found upon tablets from Ashur-bani-pal's palace.
II. A Reference to the Creation of the Cattle and the Beasts of the Field 1
1. When the gods in their assembly had made [the world],
2. And had created the heavens, and had formed [the earth], 2
3. And had brought living creatures into being [...],
4. And [had fashioned] the cattle of the field, and the beasts of the field, and the creatures [of the city],—
5. After [they had ...] unto the living creatures [...],
6. [And between the beasts] of the field and the creatures of the city had divided [...]
7. [And had ...] all creatures, the whole of creation [...],
8. [And had ...], which in the whole of my family [...],
9. [Then did] Nin-igi-azag [fashion] two small creatures [...].
10. [Among] all the beasts he made [their form] glorious
11. [...] the goddess Gula ... [...]
12. [...] ... one white [and one black ...]
13. [...] ... one white and one black [...]
14. [...] ... [...]
[The rest of the text is wanting.]
123:1 For the text, see Cuneiform Texts, part xiii, pl. 34, D.T. 41; for a previous publication, cf. Delitzsch, Assyrische Lesestücke, 3rd ed., p. 34 f.; and for previous translations, see George Smith, The Chaldean Account of Genesis, p. 76f., Zimmern in Gunkel's Schöpfung und Chaos, and Jensen in Schrader's Keilins. Bibl., vi, p. 42 f. This fragment, which George Smith suggested might be part of the Seventh Tablet of the Creation Series, does not belong to that series; it contains the introduction or opening lines of a text, and describes the creation of two small creatures by Nin-igi-azag, "The lord of clear vision." The reference to the creation of cattle and beasts of the field is merely incidental; it occurs in the long opening sentence and indicates the period at which the two small creatures were made; see further the Introduction.
123:2 It is probable, that the second section of the text also dealt with the two small creatures whose creation is described in the first paragraph.
III. A reference to the Creation of the Moon and the Sun
1. When the gods Ana, Enlil, and Enki
2. Through their sure counsel and by their great commands
3. Ordained the renewal of the Moon-god,
4. The reappearance of the moon, and the creation of the month,
5. And ordained the oracle of heaven and earth,
6. The New Moon did Ana cause to appear,
7. In the midst of heaven he beheld it come forth.
8. [Version]. When Anu, Bêl and Ea,
9. The great gods, through their sure counsel
10. Fixed the bounds of heaven and earth,
11. (And) to the hands of the great gods entrusted
12. The creation of the day and the renewal of the month which they might behold,
13. (And) mankind beheld the Sun-god 1 in the gate of his going forth,
14. In the midst of heaven and earth they duly created (him).
127:1 I is interesting to note that in the Semitic version the creation of the sun is substituted for that of the moon, although in the preceding line the renewal of the month is referred to.
IV. An Address to the River of Creation 1
1. O, thou River, who didst create all things,
2. When the great gods dug thee out,
3. They set prosperity upon thy banks,
4. Within thee Ea, the King of the Deep, created his dwelling,
5. The deluge they sent not before thou wert!
6. Fire, and wrath, and splendour, and terror
7. Have Ea and Marduk presented unto thee!
8. Thou judgest the cause of mankind!
9. O, River, thou art mighty! O River, thou art supreme! O River, thou art righteous!
129:1 This mystical river of creation was evidently suggested by the Euphrates, on the waters of which the fertility of Babylonia so largely depended; for a comparison of similar conceptions of a river of creation both in Egyptian and in Hebrew mythology, see the Introduction. The text forms the opening words of an incantation...
V. Another Version of the Creation of the World by Marduk. 1
1. The holy house, the house of the gods, in the holy place had not yet been made;
2 . No reed had sprung up, no tree had been created.
3. No brick had been laid, no building had been set up;
4. No house had been erected, no city had been built;
5. No city had been made, .no creature had been created.
6. Nippur had not been made, E-kur had not been built;
7. Erech had not been created, E-ana had not been built;
8. The Deep had not been created, Eridu had not been built;
9. Of the holy house, the house of the gods, the habitation had not been made.
10. All lands were sea.
11. At that time there was a movement in the sea;
12 . Then was Eridu made, and E-sagil was built,
13. E-sagil, where in the midst of the Deep the god Lugal-dul-azaga 1 dwelleth;
14. The city of Babylon was built, and E-sagil was finished.
15. The gods, the Anunnaki, he 2 created at one time;
16. The holy city, the dwelling, of their hearts' desire, they proclaimed supreme.
17. Marduk laid a reed upon the face of the waters,
18. He formed dust and poured it out beside the reed.
19. That he might cause the gods to dwell in the habitation of their hearts' desire,
20. He formed mankind.
21. The goddess Aruru together with him 1 created the seed of mankind.
22. The beasts of the field and living creatures in the field he formed.
23. H e created the Tigris and the Euphrates, and he set them in their place;
24. Their names he declared in goodly fashion.
25. The grass, the rush of the marsh, the reed, and the forest he created,
26. The green herb of the field he created,
27. The lands, the marshes, and the swamps;
28. The wild cow and her young, the wild calf; the ewe and her young, the lamb of the fold;
29. Plantations and forests;
30. The he-goat and the mountain-goat ... him.
31. The Lord Marduk laid in a dam by the side of the sea,
32. [He ...] a swamp, he made a marsh,
33. [...] he brought into existence.
34. [Reeds he form]ed, trees he created;
35. [...] he made in their place.
36. [Bricks he laid], buildings he set up;
37. [Houses he made], cities he built;
38. [Cities he made], creatures he created.
39. [Nippur he made], E-kur he built;
40. [Erech he made, E-an]a he built.
[The rest of the Obverse and the beginning of the Reverse of the tablet are wanting.]
1. [...] the decree [...]
2. [...] ... [...]
3f. Thy exalted minister is Papsukal, the wise counsellor of the gods.
5. May Nin-aha-kudû, the daughter of Ea,
6. Purify thee with the pure censer,
7. And may she cleanse thee with cleansing fire!
8f. With a cup of pure water from the Deep shalt thou purify thy way!
10. By the incantation of Marduk, the king of the hosts of heaven and earth,
11. May the abundance of the land enter into thee,
12. And may thy decree be accomplished for ever!
13f. O E-zida, thou glorious dwelling, thou art dear unto the hearts of Anu and Ishtar!
15. May (Ezida) shine like the heavens, may it be bright like the earth, may it [be glorious] like the heart of heaven,
16. [And may ...] be firmly established!
131:1 ...[This] is merely an elaborate introduction to an incantation which was intended to be recited in honour of E-zida, the great temple of Nabû at Borsippa. The reverse of the tablet contains the concluding lines of the incantation. For a further discussion of the legend on the obverse, see the Introduction.
133:1 Or, Lugal-du-azaga,
133:2 I.e., Marduk.
135:1 The Sumerian version reads "together with the god."
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