CCP 6.1.17 - Aa III/2 (pirsu 17)

Catalogue information
British Museum
BM 40745
MSL 14 pl. xi [Lambert]

Civil & Green & Lambert, 1979M. Civil, Green, M. W. , and Lambert, W. G. , Ea A = nâqu, Aa A = nâqu, with their Forerunners and Related Texts. Pontificium Institutum Biblicum, 1979.: 331 no.



Base text: 
Aa III/2 (pirsu 17)
Tablet information
obv 6, rev 13
Neo/Late Babylonian, specifics unknown

PSD B 165b[On line 6']

Civil, 1971M. Civil, The Series Izi = išātu, Ká-gal = abullu and Níg-ga = makkūru. Pontificium Institutum Biblicum, 1971.: 247

Civil & Green & Lambert, 1979M. Civil, Green, M. W. , and Lambert, W. G. , Ea A = nâqu, Aa A = nâqu, with their Forerunners and Related Texts. Pontificium Institutum Biblicum, 1979.
: 331 no.

Frahm, 2011E. Frahm, Babylonian and Assyrian Text Commentaries. Origins of Interpretation. Ugarit-Verlag, 2011.: 246, 311

Gabbay, 2016U. Gabbay, The Exegetical Terminology of Akkadian Commentaries. Brill, 2016.
[On line 7]
: 75

Landsberger, 1968B. Landsberger, The Third Tablet of the Series Ea = Nâqu, Journal of the American Oriental Society, vol. 88, pp. 133-147, 1968.: 134a

Wagensonner, 06/2018 (Introduction)
Wagensonner, 06/2018 (Collation)
Wagensonner, 06/2018 (ATF Transliteration)
Wagensonner, 06/2018 (Lemmatization)
Wagensonner, 06/2018 (Translation)
By Klaus Wagensonner | Make a correction or suggestion
How to cite
Wagensonner, K., 2018, “Commentary on Aa III/2 (pirsu 17) (CCP 6.1.17),” Cuneiform Commentaries Project (E. Frahm, E. Jiménez, M. Frazer, and K. Wagensonner), 2013–2018; accessed July 17, 2018, at DOI: 10079/v15dvh3
© Cuneiform Commentaries Project (Citation Guidelines)

This small fragment of the lower left corner of a tablet was found by Hormuzd Rassam at the Babylonian site of Jimjima and entered the collection of the British Museum in 1881. Unfortunately, nothing of its subscript or colophon is preserved, but its entries refer clearly to the 3rd tablet of the lexical series Ea. This commentary preserves a rather interesting part of the tablet, namely combinations of the sign ka inscribed with one or more graphemes. The lexical treatment of ka-compounds reaches back as far as the Early Dynastic period.1

The commentary, as far as it is preserved, first quotes the base text followed by comments in intended lines. This format is similar to the Aa commentary CCP 6.1.16.B. The complex graphemes are written in a comparatively archaic script and the inserted signs are repeated thereafter. This follows the standards of the lists Ea and its cognate Aa.2

The explanations are based on etymographical considerations. In doing so, the complex graphemes are disassembled and each element explained separately. Thus, for the complex grapheme ka× explains each element (gi is not preserved) in order to explain šurbûtu, “burning thirst.” This approach follows in line of contemporary analytical renderings of cuneiform characters (i.e., sign names).3

  • 1. See, for instance, the ED IIIb sign list MS 3200, the Old Akkadian tablet MDP 14, 87, and the unpublished sign inventory YBC 4615 (see Wagensonner [forthcoming])
  • 2. See also the Middle Assyrian tablet VAT 10172 with combinations of the sign lagab.
  • 3. For a recent treatment of such renderings see Y. Gong, Die Namen der Keilschriftzeichen. Ugarit-Verlag, 2000.

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(Base textCommentaryQuotations from other texts)


MSL 14, pl. 11 [commentaries]

o (missing)
o 1'1'

* [KA×BAD ...]

(o 1') [(The complex grapheme) |KA×BAD|], read //, [means ...].

o 2'2'

* še-e[KA×BALAG ...]

(o 2') [(The complex grapheme) |KA×BALAG|], read /še/ (= Ea III 91), [means ...].

o 3'3'

* šu-du[KA׊U ...]

(o 3') [(The complex grapheme) |KA׊U|], read /šudu/ (= Ea III 97), [means ...].

o 4'4'

* kur-ku[KA×SI ...]

(o 4') [(The complex grapheme) |KA×SI|], read /kurku/ (= Ea III 99), [means ...].

o 5'5'


(o 5') [(The complex grapheme) |KA×X|, read /.../, means ...].

o 6'6'

[*] pu-u⸣[KA×GÁNt ...]

(o 6') [(The complex grapheme) |KA×GAN₂t|, read /pu/ (= Ea III 101), [means ...].

r 1r 1

* [...] KA×UD UD! : ṣa-a-ḫu : šá KA [...] 1

(r 1) (The complex grapheme) |KA×UD|, read [...] (= Ea III 113?), means "to laugh" pertaining to the mouth(?) (= Ea III 113),[...], i.e., "to suck," ..., "to relent," "to spare," ... [...].

r 22

    ma-za-qu x x gi [...] 2

r 33

    pe-du-u : ga-ma-lu₄ : ni [...]

r 44

* im-mi-in-giKA×ME.GI ME.GI : šu-ur-pi-⸢tu₄ [...] 3

(r 4) (The complex grapheme) |KA×ME.GI|, read /immingi/ (= Ea III 114), means "burning thirst" (= Ea III 114), [...], i.e., KA means "mouth," TE means "tongue," [and GI means ...].

r 55

    KA : pu-u : ME : li⸣-[šá-nu ...]

r 66

* im-mìn!-teKA×ME.TE ME.TE! : lap-lap-[tu₄ ...] 4

(r 6) (The complex grapheme) |KA×ME.TE|, read /imminte/ (= Ea III 115), means "parching thirst" (= Ea III 115), [...], i.e., TE means "to be afraid", alternatively [...].

r 77

    TE : pa-la-ḫu : šá-niš [...]

r 88

* im-mi-inKA×UD : KA×UD [...] 5

(r 8) (The complex grapheme) |KA×UD|, read /immin/, means [...], ...

r 99

* zu-gu-uzKA×LUM LUM : ga-ṣa-⸢ṣu [...]

(r 9) (The complex grapheme) |KA×LUM|, read /zuguz/ (= Ea III 116), means "to gnash the teeth" (= Ea III 117), [...]

r 1010

* tu-uk-kuKA×Ú Ú : ga-⸢ṣa⸣-[ṣu ...] 6

(r 10) (The complex grapheme) |KA×U₂|, read /tukku/ (= Ea III 117), means "to gnash the teeth" (= Ea III 116), [...]

r 1111

* zu-ubKA×GA GA : na-⸢ṣa⸣-[bu ...]

(r 11) (The complex grapheme) |KA×GA|, read /zub/ (= Ea III 118), means "to suck" [...], i.e., "to kiss" (= Ea III 118), [...]

r 1212

    na-šá-qu : x [...]

r 1313

    e-⸢ne-qu [...]

l.e. 1l.e. 1

x x x <(ḫe- -šú)>

1The Akkadian rendering ṣâhu, “to laugh"” (see CAD Ṣ 64–65), contradicts Ea III 113, which renders KA×UD as ṣūmu, “thirst” (see CAD Ṣ 247). For the latter see the Šumma ālu commentary CCP 3.5.57, 18': im-maKA×UD = ṣu-u₂-mu and now also the unpublished lexical list MLC 1948, line 4: en-me-en = ṣu₂-mu-um (see Wagensonner [forthcoming]). Related to ṣâhu in the commentary is the Hittite version of Erimhuš (MSL 17, 108) 33': KA×UD = ṣu₂-uh-hu, “"laughing.”

2The whole line is written over erasure. MSL 14 331 notes that there is a he-pi₂ eš-[šu₂] written over the last three erased signs in this line, but this cannot be verified after collation. There is, however, such a remark on the left edge.

3Ea III 114 offers šur-bu-[tu₄] as Akkadian rendering (see CAD Š/III 353), Kagal D, Section 8:5' the rendering šu-ur-bi-tum.

4The rare Akkadian word laplaptu (see CAD L 94) is also attested in the Old Babylonian version Kagal D, Section 8:6': la-ap-la-ap-tum and now in the unpublished text MLC 1948, line 5: en-me-en-te = la-ap-⸢la-ap⸣-tum following an entry en-me-en = ṣu₂-mu-um (see Wagensonner [forthcoming]). Note that these two entries use the phonetic representation in the Sumerian column instead of the complex graphemes.

5The sign reading (collated; but see MSL XIV 331) is written over erasure. It corresponds to entry Ea III 113, whose sign reading is im-[mi-in] repeated from the previous entry.

6Ea III 116 offers the sign reading tu-kur. In our commentary, KU is written beneath the first two signs.

Photos by Enrique Jiménez

Courtesy of the Trustees of the British Museum