CCP 4.2.I - Therapeutic (skin diseases) I

Catalogue information
National Museum of Iraq
IM 74385
W 22307/38
UrukUruk, Ue XVIII/1 Schnittgraben, südl. Hä.
SpTU 1 52
Uruk Foto Nr. 13105

Clancier, 2009 (GKAB)

Hunger, 1976H. Hunger, Spätbabylonische Texte aus Uruk. Teil I. Gebr. Mann Verlag, 1976.: 62-63 no. 52

MedicalTherapeutic texts


Base text: 
Therapeutic (skin diseases)
Commentary no: 
Tablet information
5,0 × 7,5 × 1,0 cm
Achaemenid (5th cent - 331 BCE) (Uruk, Anu-ikṣur / Nippur / Babylon)

Clancier, 2009P. Clancier, Les bibliothèques en Babylonie dans le deuxième moitié du 1er millénaire av. J.-C. Ugarit-Verlag, 2009.
[Descendants Šangû-Ninurta]
: 50, 52, 55, 71, 265, 389

Fincke, 2000J. C. Fincke, Augenleiden nach keilschriftlichen Quellen. Untersuchungen zur altorientalischen Medizin. Königshausen & Neumann, 2000.
[On line 7]
: 198 fn. 1473

Fincke, 2011J. C. Fincke, Spezialisierung und Differenzierung im Bereich der altorientalischen Medizin: Die Dermatologie am Beispiel der Symptome simmū matqūtu, kalmātu (matuqtu), kibšu, kiṣṣatu und gurištu, in The Empirical Dimension of Ancient Near Eastern Studies / Die empirische Dimension altorientalischer Forschungen, G. J. Selz, Ed. Lit, 2011, pp. 159-208.
[On line 6'-7': kissatu]
: 178

Frahm, 2011E. Frahm, Babylonian and Assyrian Text Commentaries. Origins of Interpretation. Ugarit-Verlag, 2011.: 234, 292

Gabbay, 2016U. Gabbay, The Exegetical Terminology of Akkadian Commentaries. Brill, 2016.: 74 (9), 167 (3), 201 (2)

Genty, 2010aT. Genty, Les commentaires dans les textes cunéiformes assyro-babyloniens. MA thesis, 2010.
: 403

Heeßel, 2000N. P. Heeßel, Babylonisch-assyrische Diagnostik. Ugarit-Verlag, 2000.
[On line 7: kissatu]
: 189

Hunger, 1976H. Hunger, Spätbabylonische Texte aus Uruk. Teil I. Gebr. Mann Verlag, 1976.
[Editio princeps]
: 62-63 no. 52

Clancier, 01/2009 (ATF Transliteration)
Clancier, 01/2009 (Lemmatization)
Jiménez, 06/2015 (Revision)
Jiménez, 06/2015 (Collation)
Jiménez, 06/2015 (Introduction)
Jiménez, 08/2016 (Commentary markup)
Fadhil & van Ess, 10/2017 (Museum number)
By Enrique Jiménez | Make a correction or suggestion
How to cite
Jiménez, E., 2015, “Commentary on Therapeutic (skin diseases) (CCP 4.2.I),” Cuneiform Commentaries Project (E. Frahm, E. Jiménez, M. Frazer, and K. Wagensonner), 2013–2024; accessed April 16, 2024, at DOI: 10079/c59zwgn
© Cuneiform Commentaries Project (Citation Guidelines)

This fragment contains a commentary on a medical text dealing with skin diseases and materia medica to treat them. Because of its findspot it can be ascribed to Anu-ikṣur’s library, a library in which commentaries on therapeutic text abound. Ll. 6-7 of the text, which explain the sequence of diseases ekketu rišûtu (both of them are skin diseases), seem to make use of a quotation from the exorcistic series Muššuʾu VI 12:1


su-gu₇-e sa-gu₇-e sa//su-umbin-ag-ag

ki-is-sa-tu₄ ek-ke-turi-šu-tu


Line 10 seems to perform a notarikon analysis on the name of the disease bar.zi.luḫ, which is explained as “drying up the innards” (bar.zi = kabattu, “innards,” and luḫ = abā[lu], “to dry up”). Noteworthy is also the entry of ll. 11-12, which explains the phrase kamūn bīni, “Cumin (kamūnu) from a tamarisk” as “alum,” and the latter as “a fungus (kamūnu) that appears in the roots of a tamarisk,” thus justifying the first equation. This same explanation is attested in the Qutāru commentary CCP 4.2.M.a l. 22.

The commentary uses the technical terms ša iqbû (l. 2), to introduce an explanandum, and šanîš (l. 9), to introduce an alternative explanation.


A photograph of the tablet was kindly provided by Hermann Hunger, and it allowed some improved readings (esp. line 13). The transliteration below makes use of an ATF transliteration originally prepared by Philippe Clancier for the GKAB project, which has been extensively revised. Thanks are expressed to Philippe Clancier and Eleanor Robson.


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SpTU 1, 052

o 1o 1

[...] x-TAB x

(o 1) ...

o 22

[...] GAZI?sar? [x x x x] : GUR.GUR-ma šá Eu

(o 2) [...] mustard [...] What it says, GUR.GUR-ma, means [...].

o 33

[...]-x-su ina ŠÀ x Ú x NAM AB LU

(o 3) ...

o 44

[...]-x-šu ta-zar-ru : Ù.BU.BU.UL : bu-bu-tu₄

(o 4) [...] ... you scatter (it). ù.bu.bu.ul means "boil."

o 55

[... nu]-pu-ul : na-pal : e-ke-ka : e-ge-gi

(o 5) [...] nuppul derives from "to dig out." ekēku means "to scratch."

o 66

[ek]-ke-tu₄ ri-šu-tu₄ : SU. SA.

(o 6) ["It]ching (and) redness," (it is as) su.gú sa.gú || 'gnawing'-disease, itching (and) redness" (quotation from Muššuʾu VI 12).

o 77

[SA].UMBIN.AG.AG : ki-is-sa-tu₄ ek-ke- ri-šú-1

o 88

[ḫa-aḫ-ḫu] : su-alu : ŠÀ.NÍGIN : ḪUR.BA.LUḪ : BAR.ZI.LUḪ2

(o 8) [ḫaḫḫu (?)] means "phlegm." "Instestines" means ḫḫ. bar.zi.luḫ means [...] ... . Alternatively, "cough" means "phlegm," (because) [bar.zi.luḫ] means "phlegm," (because) bar.zi means "innards" and luḫ means "to dr[y up"].

o 99

[x x x] x-ú-lu* šá-niš su-a-a-lu ḫa-aḫ-ḫa

o 1010

[BAR?.ZI?.LUḪ? :?] ḫa-aḫ-ḫu : BAR.ZI : ka-bat- : LUḪ : a-ba-[lu]3

o 1111

[x x x x] šá tar-bu-ti : ka-mun ŠINIG : na₄ga-[bu-u]

(o 11) [...] said of seedling. "Cumin (kamūnu) from tamarisk" means "alum," [...] (i.e.), a fungus (kamūnu) that appears in the roots of a tamarisk. [...] cumin means (?) "saffron."

o 1212

[(x x) x x] x-u UZU.DIR šá ina SUḪUŠ ŠINIG a-ṣu-[ú]4

o 1313

[(x x) x x]- : ka-mu-nu? x-šá : ú*a-zu-pi*-[ru]5

o 1414

[(x x) x x]-tas-su : šá-ḫur-[ra?-tu₄?] GIG-ma : šá-ḫur-ra-[tu₄?]

(o 14) [...] ... "He suffers from šahurratu" (?), šahurratu (?) means [...].

o 1515

[(x x) x x]-x-ṭi : lu-ba-ṭu : [x] ḪU A A x [...]

(o 15) [...] ... lubāṭu-disease ... [...]

o 1616

[(x x) x x] x-ú-tu x TAB : šá x [(x)] x ŠÀ x [...]

(o 16) ...

o 1717

[(x x) x x] a-na si?-mat e-bu-ru [...]

(o 17) [...] appropriate for summer [...]

o 1818

[x x x] KAM A x x x x x [...]

(o 18) ...

o 1919

[x x x] x [...]

(end obverse missing)

1The sequence su.gú sa.gú || kissatu ekketu rišûtu is probably a quotation from Muššuʾu VI 12.

2The restoration at the beginning is Hunger's (see SpTU 1 [1976] p. 63a ad loc). For the word at the end, cf. Šurpu VII 29, bar.zi.ud || ḫu-ḫu-luḫ-ḫa

3Si vera lectio, the equation LUḪ = abālu would be elsewhere unattested, but compare UD = abālu. Note that BAR.ZI = kabattu is also elsewhere unattested, but cp. the common equation BAR = kabattu.

4The equation kamūn bīni = gabû and subsequent explanation of the present line is also attested in the Qutāru commentary BRM 4 32 22 (CCP 4.2.M.a).

5Compare perhaps úŠUR.ŠUR = azupīru in CAD A/2 530b.