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A Letter Reporting Matters in Kalaḫ (Kalḫu) (3.96)

(1,336 words)

Author(s): Younger, K. Lawson, Jr.
Subject: Archival Documents from the Biblical World; Akkadian Archival Documents; Letters; Assyria Commentary This letter (NL 16; ND 2765; IM 64159) comes from Kalaḫ (Nimrud) and dates between 720 and 715 bce during the reign of Sargon II. Therefore its contents cannot refer to the aftermath of the campaign against Ashdod in 712/ 711 bce (see note 1). Beside the issues regarding a festival that has recently been celebrated in the city and certain bull colossi that the governor, Marduk-rēmanni, had been placing in their appropriate locations, the l…

A Report on Work on Dūr-Šarrukin (3.98)

(368 words)

Author(s): Younger, K. Lawson, Jr.
Subject: Archival Documents from the Biblical World; Akkadian Archival Documents; Letters; Assyria A Report on Work on Dūr-Šarrukin (3.98) Subject: 2 Kgs 17:6 (beginning 3–4 lines lost) ( lines 1´ -10´) [Concerning what the king], my lo[rd] wrote to me: “provide the [Sam]arians,1  a [as many as] are [in] your [ha]nds (with work) in Dūr-Šarrukin,”2 I thereafter [sent (word) to] the sheikhs [say]ing: “gather [all] the carpenters and potters; let them come (and) [direc]t the deportees [who are in D]ūr-Šarrukin.” (But) they did not consent to send (them) to me. ( lines 11´ - r. 4a) […

The Murder of Sennacherib (3.95)

(633 words)

Author(s): Hallo, William W.
Subject: Archival Documents from the Biblical World; Akkadian Archival Documents; Letters; Assyria Commentary About three thousand letters have been recovered from the royal archives of the Sargonid Dynasty (721–609 bce) at Nineveh. Half of them were published by Harper (1892–1914) under the title of Assyrian and Babylonian Letters (hence  ABL ), and translated by Waterman (1930–36) and, in part, by Pfeiffer (1935). The whole corpus is being reedited by the State Archives of Assyria (SAA) project (Helsinki); see for now SAA 1, 5, 8, 10, 13 and 15. From the contextual pe…

A Letter Concerning the Grain Tax of the Samarians (3.97)

(374 words)

Author(s): Younger, K. Lawson, Jr.
Subject: Archival Documents from the Biblical World; Akkadian Archival Documents; Letters; Assyria Commentary This letter has the horizontally oblong “report” format (Parpola 1987:170). A Letter Concerning the Grain Tax of the Samarians (3.97) Subject: 2 Kgs 17:4–6 ( lines 1–3) To Nabû-duru-uṣur, a letter (lit. “tablet”) from Arīḫu,1 good health to my son. ( lines 4- r. 3) As to the grain tax2 of the Samarians,3  a my ⌜lord⌝ should s⌜end a report⌝ — ⌜whether⌝ it [exists] ⌜or not⌝ — so that we may be content about (it).4 The men in charge are passive. They do not go to do…

The El-Amarna Letters (4.80-86)

(7,085 words)

Author(s): Hess, Richard S.
Commentary The El Amarna tablets represent the largest collection of letters and other literature emerging from Palestine before the writing of the Hebrew Bible. However, the letters are not limited to the land of Israel or even to the southern Levant. Originating across the eastern Mediterranean and the Middle East of the fourteenth century bce, this corpus of about 380 cuneiform texts was rediscovered in 1887. They appeared at the abandoned site that became known as Tell el-Amarna in Egypt. The town was originally built as his capital by pharaoh …