CCP 3.1.16 - Enūma Anu Enlil 16-19

Catalogue information
British Museum
BM 47447
Borsippa(Borsippa or Babylon)

Rochberg, 1988F. Rochberg, Aspects of Babylonian Celestial Divination: The Lunar Eclipse Tablets of Enūma Anu Enlil. Berger & Söhne, 1988.: 284-290

DivinationAstrological. Enūma Anu Enlil

ṣâtu 4a

Base text: 
Enūma Anu Enlil 16-19
Tablet information
Complete tablet
obv 37, rev 34
14 × 8,3 × 1,6 cm
Achaemenid (5th cent - 331 BCE) (Uruk, Anu-ikṣur / Nippur / Babylon)
Iprā'ya s. Arad-Baba d. Ēṭiru
445, 385, or 339/XI/23

Finkel, 1988I. L. Finkel, Adad-apla-iddina, Esagil-kin-apli, and the series SA.GIG, in A scientific humanist: studies in memory of Abraham Sachs, E. Liechty, Ellis, MdeJ. , Gerardi, P. , and Gingerich, O. , Eds. University Museum, 1988, pp. 143-159.
[On the colophon]
: 155

Frahm, 2011E. Frahm, Babylonian and Assyrian Text Commentaries. Origins of Interpretation. Ugarit-Verlag, 2011.: 38, 52, 144, 307, 412

Gabbay, 2014aU. Gabbay, Actual Sense and Scriptural Intention: Literal Meaning and Its Terminology in Akkadian and Hebrew Commentaries, in Encounters by the Rivers of Babylon: Scholarly Conversations between Jews, Iranians, and Babylonians, U. Gabbay and Secunda, S. , Eds. Mohr Siebeck, 2014, pp. 335-370.
[On line 28-30]
: 341

Gabbay, 2016U. Gabbay, The Exegetical Terminology of Akkadian Commentaries. Brill, 2016.
[53 (r 14), 64 (r 28, r 30, 37), 74 (13, r 17, 23, r 26, 27, 29), 108 (r 12), 153 (r 21, 4–5), 154 (3), 212, 239–240 (9–14), 218 (29–30), 237 (15, 23–24), 256 (r 8), 116–117 (11–12), 116, 184, 186, 192, 193 (28–30), 197 (r 13–15), 237–238 (1–2), 239, 240 (r 2–3)]

George, 1991bA. R. George, Babylonian Texts from the folios of Sidney Smith. Part Two: Prognostic and Diagnostic Omens, Tablet I, Revue d'Assyriologie, vol. 85, pp. 137-167, 1991.
[On line 30: kayyān, “literal meaning”]
: 155

Jiménez, 2016aE. Jiménez, Loose Threads of Tradition. Two Late Hemerological Compilations, Journal of Cuneiform Studies, vol. 68, pp. 197-227, 2016.
[Iprāʾya’s tablet collection]
: 218

Koch-Westenholz, 1995U. Koch-Westenholz, Mesopotamian Astrology. An Introduction to Babylonian and Assyrian Celestial Divination. Museum Tusculanum, 1995.
: 87

Koch, 2009aJ. Koch, Neues vom Stern bālu, N.A.B.U. Nouvelles Assyriologiques Brèves et Utilitaires, vol. 2009/28, 2009.
[On line r 24]

Oelsner, 1999J. Oelsner, Review of Van Soldt Solar Omens EAE 23(24)-29(30), Orientalistische Literaturzeitung, vol. 94, pp. 200-204, 1999.
[On line r 34: Reading of the colphon [incorrect]]
: 203 fn. 1

Reiner, 1998aE. Reiner, Celestial Omen Tablets and Fragments in the British Museum, in tikip santakki mala bašmu.. Festschrift für Rykle Borger zu seinem 65. Geburtstag am 24. Mai 1994, S. M. Maul, Ed. Styx, 1998, pp. 215-302.: 300

Reynolds, 1997F. Reynolds, Review of Vogelzang & Vanstiphout Mcsopotamian Poetic Language CM 6, Orientalistische Literaturzeitung, vol. 92, pp. 685-689, 1997.
[On line 4: "a waterless flood"]
: 689

Rochberg, 1988F. Rochberg, Aspects of Babylonian Celestial Divination: The Lunar Eclipse Tablets of Enūma Anu Enlil. Berger & Söhne, 1988.
: 284-290

Sachs & Hunger, 1988A. Sachs and Hunger, H. , Astronomical Diaries and Related Texts from Babylonia. Volume I. Diaries from 652 B.C. to 262 B.C. Verlag der österreichische Akademie der Wissenschaften, 1988.
[On line 41: raqqatu said of clouds]
: 29

Stol, 1996M. Stol, Suffixe bei Zeitangaben im Akkadischen, Wiener Zeitschrift für die Kunde des Morgenlandes, vol. 86, pp. 413–424, 1996.
[On line 48: In späteren wissenschaftlichen Texten steht "sein Monat" für "der erwartete bzw. errechnete Monat".]
: 419 fn. 19

Jiménez, 11/2015 (Transliteration)
Jiménez, 11/2015 (Translation)
Jiménez, 11/2015 (Collations)
Jiménez, 11/2015 (Annotation)
Jiménez, 11/2015 (Introduction)
Frazer, 02/2016 (Introduction [correction])
Jiménez, 08/2016 (Commentary markup)
By Enrique Jiménez | Make a correction or suggestion
How to cite
Jiménez, E., 2015, “Commentary on Enūma Anu Enlil 16-19 (CCP 3.1.16),” Cuneiform Commentaries Project (E. Frahm, E. Jiménez, M. Frazer, and K. Wagensonner), 2013–2024; accessed March 2, 2024, at DOI: 10079/zs7h4hh
© Cuneiform Commentaries Project (Citation Guidelines)

This long and well-preserved tablet contains a commentary on the series of astrological omens Enūma Anu Enlil. The entries explained in the tablet are extracted mainly from the 16th chapter of that series, which deals with lunar eclipses.1 In addition, the last entries of the tablet comment on entries from the 19th tablet of Enūma Anu Enlil, which is devoted to the same topic.

The colophon of the tablet identifies Iprāʾya,2 (grand)son of Arad-Baʾu, descendant of Ēṭiru, as its owner.3 This scribe also copied one of the commentaries on “Marduk’s Address to the Demons,” BM 47529 (CCP 2.2.1.B), as well several small treatises that compile medical, astrological, and hemerological material.4 The present tablet is dated to the 19th year of one of the three Persian kings named Artaxerxes, i.e., to 445, 385, or 339 BCE. The tablet may come from Babylon or perhaps Borsippa (the latter city is suggested by the mention of Nabû in the colophon).


The main interest of the tablet is in providing philological explanations for obscure words and writings. The last few lines of the text, however, are concerned with providing astronomical directions to ensure the correct interpretation of the omens. In at least one case (ll. 41-46) the commentary tries to demonstrate the internal consistency of an omen by proving that a word from its protasis is “etymologically” related to a word from its apodosis.

The text uses many technical terms. aššu, “because,” is used to provide justifications for commentarial equations (ll. 3, 4-5, 58, and 61 (?)). The term šanîš, “alternatively,” is used to introduce alternative explanations to the same explananda (ll. 13, 23, 27, 29, 54, and 63). In one of the explanations the term šanîš is followed by kayyān, “regular,” which is used to denote the “actual” meaning of a given entry (in this case, its contextual sense).5 ana muḫḫi ... qabi, “it is said on account of...,” which is used to refine the scope of an entry. Thus line 2 specifies that an omen, “If there is an eclipse and lightning strikes," refers to a particular season of the year - it "is said on account of summer" (ana muḫḫi ummāti qabi). The commentary thus limits the omen's applicability. Similarly, the omen “the gods will make the king live long” is explained in the commentary as “said to refer to an abandoned land” (ana muḫḫi māti nadīti qabi, ll. 14-15). A very rare technical expresion that appears several times in this text is mala iqbû, which is used when the term being explained appears in more than one of the lines of the base text (ll. 10, 13-14, and 39-49). It can thus be freely rendered as “on all the occasions it appears.”

Another rare technical term used in this tablet is umma, "thus," which is reminiscent of the use of the speech introduction particle, , used to introduce explanations in Assyrian commentaries. In lines 47-48, the entry “the people of the land will see their enemies,” which is written in an ambiguous way, is explained by means of an unambiguous rendering.


The tablet has been thoroughly collated for the present edition. Almost every line below contains improved readings; some of them are of great relevance for the understanding of the exegetical techniques used in the commentary (e.g. 34-36, 47-48, and 57).


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BM 047447 (unpublished unassigned ?) [commentaries]


[*] AN.GE₆ GAR-ma U₄ ŠÚup * AN.GE₆ GAR-ma dIŠKUR KA-šú ŠUBdi * AN.GE₆

(1) "If there is an eclipse and the day becomes dark" (= EAE XVI 1 = STT 329 5'). "If there is an eclipse and Adad roars" (= EAE XVI unknown = STT 329 6'). "If there is an eclipse and it rains" (= EAE XVI unknown). "If there is an eclipse and lightning strikes" (= EAE XVI unknown) is said on account of the summer.


GAR-ma ŠÈG ŠURnun <*> AN.GE₆ GAR-ma NIM.GÍR ibGÍR ana UGU AMA-MEŠ qa-bi1


ik-kam-ma-ru : id-da-a-ku : -šum ka-ma-ri GÌR*-du-u : ár-ḫiš2

(3) "Will be heaped up" (ikammaru) (= EAE XVI unknown = STT 329 7') means "they will be killed," because "loss" (kamāru) means defeat. "Quickly" (= EAE XVI unknown = STT 329 7') means "promptly." "A waterless flood" (= EAE XVI unknown = STT 329 9') means "plague." "It will take away" (= EAE XVI unknown = STT 329 9') means "it will carry away," because "to take away" means "to carry away."


ḫa-an-ṭiš : a-bu-bu la A-MEŠ : mu-ta-nu : ub-bal : i-na--šá-a -šum


ba-ba-lu : na-šú-u : * AN.GE₆ GAR-ma DUNGU ana ŠÀ DUNGU KU₄

(5) "If there is an eclipse and one cloud enters into another cloud, the gods will take away (KAR-MEŠ) the intelligence of the land, the king of that land, his days are near (sc. the end)" (= EAE XVI unknown = STT 329 10'-11' and 80-7-19,103 o 10-11) (means that) during the eclipse a star enters into another star, (since) "cloud" (means) "star." KAR-MEŠ means "they will take away," i.e., "they will deprive," since "to take away" means "to deprive."




MUL ana ŠÀ MUL KU₄ : DUNGU MUL : KAR-MEŠ : iṭ-ṭe-ru : ik-ke-mu4


KAR <:> e-ṭe-ri :* KAR : e-ke-mu : LUGAL ina di-bi-ri : LUGAL ina ud-da-a-ta

(8) "The king in a calamity" (= EAE XVI unknown = 80-7-19,103 o 13) means "the king will constantly live in distress."


it-ta-na-al-lak : * AN.GE₆ GAR-ma ina DUNGU BABBAR GE₆ SA₅ SIG₇ u GÙN

(9) "If there is a eclipse and it stands in a white, black, red, yellow, multicolored, or very dark cloud, and it peters out" (= EAE XVI unknown), as many times as it appears, "cloud" is said on account of planets.


u du-ʾ-um GUB-ma u ZÁLAGir : ma-la iq-bu-u a-na UGU dUDU.IDIM-MEŠ5


DUNGU qa-bi DUNGU e-re-tu₄* : DUNGU : sa-an-da :*

(11) An "empty" (lit. "naked") cloud (= EAE XVI unknown) is a red cloud. An alludānu-cloud (= EAE XVI unknown) is a cloud that lasts as long as the sun, alternatively, it is a cloud that stands for the whole day and night. As many times as it appears, "cloud" is said on account of the summer.


DUNGU al-lu-da-nu DUNGU šá ma-la dUTU ma-ṣu-u : 6


šá-niš DUNGU šá kal-la U₄mu u mu-ši GUBzu : DUNGU ma-la


iq-bu-ú ana UGU AMA*-MEŠ qa-bi : DINGIR-ME LUGAL ú-lab-ba-ru ana U₄-[ME x x]7

(14) "The gods will make the king live long" (= EAE XVI unknown) is said on account of an abandoned land.


ana UGU KUR na-di-tu₄ qa-bi : * AN.GE₆ GAR-ma ina TÙR DUak* u* ZÁLAGir8

(15) "If there is an eclipse and moves within the halo and peters out," (= EAE XVI unknown) (means) "it peters out during the winter in a clear sky." "Halo" is said on account of a clear sky.


ina EN*.TE*.NA ina* ANe za-ku-tu ZÁLAGir-ma : TÙR ana UGU ANe


šá-me-e za-ku-tu qa-bi [: *] AN.GE₆ GAR-ma TÙR NÍGIN-ma LUGAL? ana? na?-x9

(17) "If there is an eclipse and it is surrounded by a halo and ... is dark ... risen" (= EAE XVI unknown), [...] ZI-ú, ZI means "to rise," alternatively it means "to be proud." "If there is an exlipse and [...] go [...]" (= EAE XVI unknown), means "oneself," (also) means "curse," [...].


GAZ* x x x TÙR [NÍGIN]-ma u?-x-[...] É a-dir x [...] ZI.GA10


[x x x x x] ZI*ú : ZI te-bu-ú : MIN ga*-pa*-šú* : [* AN].GE₆ GAR-ma


[x x x x x] DUak : re-ma-a-ni* : IM* ár*-ra?-tu₄ : [(x)] x mi-kin-tu₄11


[x x] x [x x] ŠÀ*ú IM TI : šá*-a*-ri* ṣe*-li*12

(21) [...] as in "IM TI means wind of the ribs." NÍGIN means "to go around," NÍGIN (also) means "to surround."


NÍGIN* : ṣa-a-du* [NÍGIN] : la-mu-ú : * AN.GE₆ GAR-ma AN.[GE₆] BI BABBAR

(22) "If there is an eclipse and that eclipse is white, black, red, yellow, [(or multicolored)]" (= EAE XVI unknown), (means that) the eclipse occcurs [in a c]loud. Alternatively, it is said on account of the shape of the eclipse.


GE₆ SA₅ SIG₇ [(GÙN) ina] DUNGU AN.GE₆ GAR-ma : šá-niš ana muḫ-ḫi ši-kin


AN.GE₆ qa-[bi :] * 30 ad-riš È-ma id-lip NÍG.ḪA.LAM.MA

(24) "If the moon rises in obscurity and lingers on, destruction of the whole land, [variant,] rebellion" (= EAE XVI unknown), "it rises obscure and" (the verb) "it lingers on" means "it tarries."


KUR .A.BI [(x) :] saḫ₄-ma-áš-tu₄ a-dir È-ma : id-lip :* i-ku*-13


* 30 ad-riš È-ma EN ZÁLAG GUBzu :* ina DUNGU KAN₅ È-ma ANe ú-nam-mar-ma

(26) "If the moon rises in obscurity and stands until clearing" (= EAE XVI unknown) means "it rises in a dark cloud and brightens the sky," alternatively, it means "it peters out at the beginning of the winter." "It rises in obscurity and sets in obscurity" means "it rises obsure and sets obscure."


šá-niš ina re- [ku]-ú-ṣu ZÁLAGir : ad-riš È-ma ad-riš KU₄


ina DUNGU ad-ri* È-ma ad-ri ŠÚ*-ma : * 30 ad-riš KU₄14

(28) "If the moon sets (īrub-ma) in obscurity" (= EAE XVI unknown) means "it enters (īrub-ma) a cloud in darkness and sets (while) in the cloud," alternatively, (it has its) regular (sense) (i.e., "it sets," īrub-ma).


ina i-dir-tu₄ [ina] DUNGU KU₄-ma ina DUNGU ŠÚ-ma : šá-niš


ka-a-a-nu : * 30 ina SAG-šú a-dir KUR kiš-šat UN-MEŠ15

(30) "If the moon is dark at its top, the land (and) the totality of the people will be left over for all times" (= EAE XVI unknown), "at its top" means "at its top the appearance [...]. "They will be left over" means "they will be killed."


EN ul-la [i-ri]-iḫ-ḫa : ina SAG-šú : ina SAG-šú IGI*.DU₈*.ÀM16


[x] x-la [x x x] x-še-e : i-ri-iḫ-ḫa : id-dak-ka


x ri-kis lum-[nu : nap]-ḫar lum-nu : * ina SI-šú a-dir-ma : ina MÚRU-[šú]

(33) "The totality of the evil" (= EAE XVI unknown) means "[al]l the evil." "If (the moon) is dark in its horn in [its] middle it is dominant (but) [it is dark] to its right" (= EAE XVI unknown) means that [x part] of the disk is eclipsed.


ga-ši-ir ina 15-šú [a-dir : x] ḫab-rat AN.GE₆ GAR-ma : * ina MÚRU-šú a-dir-ma17

(34) "If it is dark in its middle and sprinkled" (= EAE XVI unknown), "in [its] mid[dle]" means that in the middle of the month, (i.e.) on the 14th day, there is an eclipse. SU means "to sprinkle," SU (also) means "to be bright." (Therefore, it means) "it is dark but it peters out to the right and to the left," (it refers) to a small eclipse which peters out quickly.


ù i-li-iḫ ina* MÚRU*-[šú] ina mi-šil ITI U₄ 14.KAM AN.GE₆ GAR-ma


SU* : e-le-ḫi : SU : na*-ma*-ri : a-dir-ma 15 u GÙB-šú ZÁLAGir18


ana AN.GE₆ i-ṣa šá* ḫa-an-[ṭiš] ZÁLAG* : * 30 a-dir u ZÁLAG SU-šú BABBAR DINGIR-MEŠ KUR ḫe-19

(37) "If the moon is dark and peters out, its face is white, the gods will (broken) the land" (= EAE XVI unknown) [...] the eclipse a star ... will set [...] (means) "the defeat of the land will be establised."


x x :* AN.GE₆ ÁB x-ma ŠÚ-ma? [x x x x x x x x x x]


tab-de-e KUR -šak-kan : qad-diš ŠÚ BABBAR GE₆ SA₅ SIG₇ GÙN u* DARA₄* [ma-la]

(39) "It sets (while) bowed" (= EAE XVI unknown). As many times as it appears, "white, black, red, yellow, multicolored, or very dark" is said about planets and (about) a cloud.


iq-bu-ú ana UGU* dUDU.IDIM-MEŠ u DUNGU qa-bi <:> * 30 a-dir-ma TÉŠ.BI

(40) "If the moon is dark and completely covered" (= EAE XVI unknown) means that the eclipse stands in a dark, thin cloud.


i-rim : AN.GE₆ ina DUNGU ṣa-lim-tu₄ raq-qa-tu₄ DU-ma <:> * 30 a-dir-ma TÉŠ.BI

(41) "If the moon is obscure and completely covered, and it turns into a glow, (variant) it stands until dawn misfortune will occur everywhere in the land, (variant) the reign of the land will be spared from defeat, the land will suffer severe famine" (= EAE XVI unknown) (the entire line) means that there will be a complete eclipse which will be shaped (TAG₄ = KÀD, kaṣāru?) like a star, it is said as in "the lands will be spared from defeat." "Glow" (birṣu) means "star." NÍG.NAM.KÀD means "glow," (and in the logogram) NÍG.NAM.KÀD, KÀD means "to save."


i-rim-ma ana bir*-ṣu* GUR*-ma : EN EN.NUN.U₄.ZAL.LA DU-ma20




AN.GE₆ TILtu₄* [GAR]-ma GIM MUL TAG₄-ma ina ŠÀ* KUR.KUR ina tab-de-e


in-*-ṭe-ra iq-bi : bir-ṣu : MUL : NÍG.NAM.TAG₄ : bir-ṣu : 22


NÍG.NAM.TAG₄ : TAG₄ : e-ze-bi : * 30 a-dir-ma qim-mat-su ANe dal-ḫat

(46) "If the moon is obscure and its 'scalp' darkens (dalḫat) the sky" (= EAE XVI unknown), the eclipse ..., means that there is a disturbance (dilḫu) on the surface of the sky. "The people of the land will see their evil one" (= EAE XVI unknown) is thus (umma): "[The people] of the land will see their enemies."


AN.GE₆ [x x]-tu₄ di-il-ḫi ina IGI ANe GÁL-ma : UN KUR lem-ni-ša IGI-MEŠ


um*-ma* UN* KUR* ze-ʾ-er*-e-šú i-na-aṭ-ṭaṭal : * 30 a-na ITI-šú23

(48) "If the moon to its month [...]" (= EAE XVI unknown) (it refers to the moon) that there is an eclipse from one fixed time to another.


[x] x [x] GAR? : šá a-dan-nu a-na a-dan-nu AN.GE₆ -šak-ka-na24


[* 30 ina] itiBÁRA ina IGI.-šú a-dir ina È-šú ad-ri È LUGAL-ME* .-ma

(50) "If when the moon appears in the month of Nisannu (I) it is dark, and when it rises, it rises in obscurity, kings will be comparable (with each other) (SÁ.SÁ-ma, šanānu N)" (= EAE XVI unknown), [SÁ.SÁ-ma means] "will rival each other," thus (umma) (it means) that a king will be as powerful as the other. [SÁ.SÁ means "to r]ival," "to rival" means "to conquer."


[.-ma :] -šá-an-na-nu-ma : um-ma LUGAL ma-la LUGAL i-ma-aṣ-ṣu


[. : šá]-na-nu : šá-na-nu ka-šá-du <: *> ina itiSIG₄ U₄ 21*.KAM AN.GE₆ :. GAR-ma25

(52) "In the month of Simānu (III) on the 21st day there is an eclipse and (the moon) sets while eclipsed, the pregnant women will miscarry their unborn children" (= EAE XIX III 6) means that the eclipse occurs in Scorpius and on the 22nd and 23rd days.


KAN₅-[su] KU₄ MUNUS.PEŠ₄-MEŠ šá ŠÀ-ši-na ŠUBni ina mulₓ(AB₂)GÍR.TAB AN.GE₆ GAR-ma


U₄ 22?.[KAM u U₄] 23?.KAM : ŠU.DU₇ : šuk-lu-lu : šá-niš šul-lu-mu

(54) ŠU.DU₇ (= EAE XVI or XIX unknown) means "to be complete," alternatively, it means "to be safe."


* ina itiDU₆? U₄ 14.KAM AN.GE₆ 30 GAR-ma KAN₅-su KU₄ AN.x.BU-MEŠ

(55) "In the month of Tašrītu (VII) on the 14th day there is a moon eclipse and (the moon) sets while eclipsed, the ... of the sky will become loose, the king of Elam will die" (= EAE XIX unknown). The eclipse is in the region of Gula the star of Gula is the region of the rain, the region of Elam, the iškaru-fields of the palace.


ANe DU₈*ir LUGAL* NIM.MA*ki* UG₇* : ina mulₓ(AB₂)GU.LA AN.GE₆ GAR-ma


mulₓ(AB₂)GU.LA KI* ŠÈG KI* kurNIM.MAki -kar* É.GAL : ANŠE.KUR.RA-MEŠ26

(57) "Horses will be furious" (= EAE XIX unknown) means "they will neigh," since "to be furious" means "to neigh."


-ta-mar-ma : i-šá-as-si : -šum šit-mu-ru : ša-su-ú


a-bu-bi : ILLU gap-šu : LUGAL a-gi-i* : LUGAL dan-nu : * ina itiAPIN

(59) A "deluge" (= EAE XIX III 11) is a massive flood. A "crowned king" (= EAE XIX III 12) is a mighty king. "If in the month of Araḫsamnu (VIII) on the 14th day there is an eclipse and (the moon) sets while eclipsed, AKKIL will fall upon the land" (= EAE XIX III 14 (?)) AKKIL means "lamentation," the same can also be on account of (the halo whose) inner part is in the region of the Pleiades and Taurus plague.




AKKIL : ik-kil-lu₄ : MIN : MU ŠÀ*nu KI ÁB.ÁB u mulₓ(AB₂)GU₄.AN.NA ÚŠ-MEŠ27


* ina itiGAN U₄ 14.KAM AN.GE₆ GARan KAN₅-su KU₄ LUGAL ši-si-tu₄ UGU-šú ŠUBdi

(62) "In the month of Kislīmu (IX) on the 14th day there is a moon eclipse and (the moon) sets while eclipsed, a cry will fall upon the king" (= EAE XIX III 16) (means that the eclipse occurs) in the region of Orion; alternatively, (it occurs) facing Sagittarius plague.


ina KI mulₓ(AB₂)SIPA.ZI.AN.NA šá-niš ana tar-ṣi mulₓ(AB₂)PA.BIL.SAG ÚŠ-MEŠ


* ina itiZÍZ U₄ 14.KAM AN.GE₆ 30 GAR-ma <<ina>> KAN₅-su KU₄ DINGIR GU₇

(64) "In the month of Šabāṭu (XI) on the 14th day there is a moon eclipse and (the moon) sets while eclipsed, the god will devour (the land)" (= EAE XIX III 18 (?)) (means that the eclipse occurs) in the region of Gemini plague.


ina KI mulₓ(AB₂)MAŠ.TAB.BA.GAL.GAL ÚŠ-MEŠ * ina itiŠE U₄ 14.KAM AN.GE₆ 30 GAR-ma28

(65) "In the month of Addaru (XII) on the 14th day there is a moon eclipse and (the moon) sets while eclipsed there will be combat in the country" (= EAE XIX III unknown) (means that the eclipse occurs) in the region of Virgo and Saturn. "Combat" the good or evil that is said in the eclipse, (depends on whether) the region of its month [equals ("broken")] the region that is destined for the land.


KAN₅-su KU₄ : taš-nin-tu₄ ina KUR GÁLši ina KI mulₓ(AB₂)AB.SÍN u TUR.DIŠ29


taš-nin-tu₄ SIG₅ u lum-nu* šá ina AN.GE₆ iq-bu-ú KI ITI-šú* ana KI šá ana KUR mi-ḫir-ti ḫe-30


ṣa-a-* u šu-ut KA mál-su-ti <ÉŠ>.GÀR* U₄ da-num den-líl-31

(68) Lemmata and oral explanations (relating to) a 'reading' of Enūma Anu Enlil, (section) "If there is an eclipse and the day becomes dark" (= EAE XVI 1), finished. Its continuation (is entitled) "If there is an eclipse on the 14th of Nisannu" (= EAE XVII 1).


* AN.GE₆ GAR-ma U₄ ŠÚup AL.TIL EGIR-šú ina itiBÁRA U₄ 14.KAM AN.GE₆ GARan


IM mŠE.BA-ʾ-ia A mÌR-dba-ú A me-ṭi-ru IN.SAR itiZÍZ U₄ 23.KAM

(70) Tablet written by Iprāʾya, (grand)son of Arad-Baʾu, descendant of Ēṭiru. 23rd of Šabāṭu (XI month), 19th year of the king Artaxerxes. The reverer of Nabû shall not steal (the tablet), he should esteem (it) very much.


MU 19.KAM mar-tak-šat-su LUGAL pa-liḫ dAG NU* TÙM* ma*-ʾ*-diš* li-šá-qir

1On ana muḫḫi ummāti qabi, compare TCL 6 17 l. 50 (CCP 3.1.8.A.a), ana muḫḫi ummāti u EN.TE.NA qabi. See also below l. 14.

2The sign after aššum kamāri is a clear GÌR (not GAN, pace Rochberg). However, the meaning escapes us. Perhaps it has to be corrected to dabdû, as proposed by Rochberg AfO Beih 22 (1988) p. 287 (as noted there, the equation kamāru = dabdû is known elsewhere). A reading of the signs as GÌR.GUB vel sim. does not seem to yield good sense.

3The base text (preserved in the excerpt tablet STT 329 11') reads [LUGAL KUR BI] UD-MEŠ-šú LÚGUD.DA-MEŠ.

4MUL ana ŠÀ MUL KU₄ is also attested in STT 329 12'.

5Note that the omens are quoted "in vertical," summarizing in a single sentence what probably was a series of omens pertaining the color of the cloud.

6The rare word alludānu is elsewhere attested only in the "Stevenson omen tablet" (Bab 7 pl. 17 ii 16).

7On ana muḫḫi ummāti qabi see also above l. 2.

8The ana ... qabi clause redefines the scope of the omen and turns what was an omen about the king into an omen about an abandoned land.

9The first word of the line is perhaps a gloss on the last word of the previous line.

10It is uncertain how this line should be read.

11Si vera lectio, the equation IM = arratu would be otherwise unattested.

12The last equation is a quotation from Malku III 191.

13a-dir È-ma surely refers to the first part of the protasis, but its commentarial function is unclear.

14On the expression adri(š) irbī-ma, see CCP 3.1.20.B passim.

15As studied by Gabbay, "Actual Sense and Scriptural Intention: Literal Meaning and Its Terminology in Akkadian and Hebrew Commentaries," Encounters by the Rivers of Babylon (2014) p. 341-342, the first explanation is based on an understanding of the verb erēbu literally, as "to enter." The second interpretation, called "regular" (kayyān), uses its contextual meaning, "to set."

16As noted by Rochberg AfO Beih 22 (1988) p. 288b, the apodosis in this line is also quoted in the commentary CCP 3.1.u72 l. 27.

17Note the explanation gašāru = adāru in CCP 3.2.2.A l. 28, mentioned by Rochberg AfO Beih 22 (1988) p. 288b

18Compare SUD = elēḫu in CAD E 79-80 and SI = namāru and SULUG = namāru in CAD N/1 210-211.

19Pace AfO Beih 22 (1988) p. 289a, the first half of the present line is probably part of the previous explanation, and not a new entry. šá could also be read as GAR.

20The collations of this line are of capital importance for the understanding of the text. Rochberg's reading ana imKUR.RA-ma is clearly wrong.

21It is unclear whether the first half of the line belongs to the base text or to the explanation.

22The present entries are probably based on Antagal G 202-203 (MSL 17 226): TAK₄ = e-ze-bu | NÍG.NAM.NU.TAK₄ = bir-ṣu.

23The first part of the present line and the second half of the previous one were previously misread and misinterpreted.

24At the beginning, [A]N.[GE₆] looks possible on the tablet.

25The triple colon is here used apparently to omit quoting part of the base text. The line is identical to EAE XIX section III 6 (= Rochberg AfO Beih 22 1988 p. 169, pace Rochberg AfO Beih 22 1988 p. 289).

26Compare ÉŠ.GÀR É.GAL in TCL 6 1 l. 45 (Koch AOAT 326 (2005) p. 197).

27Line 63 and 65 also contain ÚŠ-MEŠ. It is uncertain whether mūtānu, "plague," is the correct reading of these signs.

28Pace Rochberg there is no ḫe-pí at the end of the line.

29The tablet preserves no trace of the ÚŠ-MEŠ transliterated by Rochberg at the end of the line.

30On the phrase ana ... miḫirtu as "to be (destined) for ...." see CAD M/2 51a.

31The sign after malsûti is GÀR (collated). The emendation ÉŠ.GÀR was suggested by E. Frahm (privatim).

Photos by Enrique Jiménez

Courtesy of the Trustees of the British Museum