CCP 7.2.u93 - Cento of literary texts

Catalogue information
British Museum
BM 32574
BabylonBabylon (Smith / Marini?)
STC 1 216-217


Base text: 
Cento of literary texts
Tablet information
obv. 11, rev. 12, up. e. 2
Neo/Late Babylonian, specifics unknown
Ea-tabtan(ni)-uṣur s. Bēl-aplu-uṣur d. Atkuppu

Borger, 1967R. Borger, Handbuch der Keilschriftliteratur. Band I. Repertorium der sumerischen und akkadischen Texte. de Gruyter, 1967.
[216f. 32574) Astralmythologischer Kommentar. Cf Lambert AfO 19 62, BWL 296; Poebel PBS 4/I 42.]
: 234

Frahm, 2011E. Frahm, Babylonian and Assyrian Text Commentaries. Origins of Interpretation. Ugarit-Verlag, 2011.: 101

Kraus, 1970F. R. Kraus, Sumerer und Akkader. Ein Problem der altmesopotamischen Geschichte. North-Holland Publ. Co, 1970.
[in einem späten astralmythologischen Kommentar]
: 48-49

Lambert, 1960bW. G. Lambert, Babylonian Wisdom Literature. Clarendon Press, 1960.
[On line r 2-3]
: 296

Lambert, 1989W. G. Lambert, The laws of Hammurabi in the First Millennium, in Reflets des deux fleuves: Volume de melanges offerts a André Finet, M. Lebeau and Talon, P. , Eds. Peeters, 1989, pp. 95-98.
[Citation from Marduk's Address, Enūma eliš, Code of Hammurapi, Marduk Hymn 2, Ludlul III, Anzû]
: 97b

Lambert, 2013W. G. Lambert, Babylonian Creation Myths. Eisenbrauns, 2013.
["A cento of quotations with comments"]
: 8, 224 [r 8-9], 483 [o 2-3]

Oelsner, 1986J. Oelsner, Materialien zur Babylonischen Gesellschaft und Kultur in Hellenistischer Zeit. Eötvös Loránd Tudományegyetem, 1986.: 214

Reynolds, 1994F. Reynolds, Esoteric Babylonian Learning: A First Millennium Calendar Text. PhD thesis, 1994.: 274-275, 318, 381

Gabbay, 03/2015 (Suggestions, photos)
Jiménez, 09/2016 (Transliteration)
Jiménez, 09/2016 (Translation)
Jiménez, 09/2016 (Introduction)
Jiménez, 09/2016 (Collation from photograph)
Jiménez, 09/2016 (Lemmatization)
Gabbay, 10/2016 (Suggestions [ll. 2, 5, 6])
By Enrique Jiménez | Make a correction or suggestion
How to cite
Jiménez, E., 2015, “Commentary on Cento of literary texts (CCP 7.2.u93),” Cuneiform Commentaries Project (E. Frahm, E. Jiménez, M. Frazer, and K. Wagensonner), 2013–2024; accessed May 24, 2024, at DOI: 10079/6hdr85p
© Cuneiform Commentaries Project (Citation Guidelines)

This previously unedited tablet contains a series of etymographies of divine, celestial, and personal names. Thus, Marduk’s name [(…)] Asaralimnunna is explained as “light of Anu, Enlil, and Ea” in l. o 2; the name of his celestial counterpart, the planet Jupiter (, is explained by means of a notarikon analysis as the “provider of (ominous) signs for the lands” (ll. o 7-8). The name of Laluralimma, an officer from Kassite Nippur that features in Ludlul, is also etymologized in ll. r 1′-2′. Some of the explanations are based on astrological concepts: thus, the idea that Marduk dwells inside the sun, known from other texts, plays a part in l. 6; the conception that Qingu and the month Nisannu belong to the realm of Anu and Enlil is justified by means of a quotation from Mulapin in r 8′-9′.

The tablet contains an very high number of quotations from literary texts. The following can be identified: Marduk’s Address to the Demons (o 1),1 Enūma eliš (o 3), the Code of Ḫammurapi (o 5), the Prayer to Marduk II (o 9), Ludlul bēl nēmeqi (?) (r 1′), and some version of Anzû (r 6′).2 All the quoted texts are literary texts, most of which, but not all, feature Marduk. Whereas in some cases the quotations seem to be prompted by etymological analyses in the previous lines (e.g. ll. o 3, r 6′), in the majority of them the lines are quoted freely, and no apparent line of reasoning can be perceived. The impression gained is that the tablet is, as described by W. G. Lambert, a “cento of quotations with comments.”3

The lišlim-formula at the beginning of the tablet invokes Marduk and Zarpanītu, thus suggesting that the tablet was written in Babylon. This is further confirmed by a secrecy clause in the colophon, according to which the tablet cannot be shown to a non-Babylonian. The colophon states that the tablet belong to a previously unknown individual, Ea-tabtan(ni)-uṣur4 son of Bel-aplu-uṣur, descendant of A[tkuppu]. Members of the Atkuppu (lit., “reed worker”) clan were active in Borsippa during the Neo-Babylonian and Achaemenid period,5 and the present tablet should also be dated to that period.


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(Base textCommentaryQuotations from other texts)


BM 032574

o 0o 0

    [ina a-mat d]AMAR.UTU u dzar-pa-ni-tu₄ liš-lim

By the command of Marduk and Zarpanītu, may (this work) suceed!

o 11

[GE UMUNḫi den-líl DINGIR]-MEŠ a-ši-ir kib-rat GE UMUNḫi IBILA DUMU?.SAG? eri-[du₁₀]

[I am Asalluḫi, the Enlil of the god]s, the guardian of the universe” (Marduk’s Address l. 73); “I am Asalluḫi, the first born of Eri[du] (Marduk’s Address l. 100),

o 22

[(x) dASAR].ALIM.NUN.NA : nu-úr šá d60 d50 u d40 : ASAR : nu?-[úr? (DINGIR-MEŠ)]1

[Asar]alimnunna (means) “light of Anu, Enlil, and Ea” Asar means li[ght],

o 33

[dASAR].ALIM.NUN.NA ka-ru-ba nu-úr a-bi a-li-di-šú

(as in) [Asaral]imnunna, the noble, the light of his father, his begetter” (= Enūma eliš VII 5)

o 44

da-num SIPA nap-ḫar KI dAMAR.UTU ina É KAL den-líl x [x x]2

Anu, the shepherd of all the land, Marduk in the ... of Enlil ... [...]

o 55

ina ì-nu-um da-num ṣi-i-ri : ina? x [(x)]3

In “When the splendid Anu” (= Code of Ḫammurapi 1) ... [...]

o 66

-šum! dUTU : dUTU šá KURḫa NU šá dAMAR.UTU ina lìb-bi-šú šu?-ú?-[ma]4

on account of Šamaš Šamaš of the sunrise, the image of Marduk i[s] inside of it.

o 77

dSAG.ME.GAR ina MU-šú na-din it-ti ana KUR.KUR šá-niš na-[din (x x x)]5

Sagmegar (i.e., Jupiter, Marduk’s planet), according to (lit., “in”) its name, (means) “provider of sign(s) to the lands”; alternatively, (it means) pro[vider of ...],

o 88

šá-niš ṣa-ad-du nu-úr : SAG* : ma-ta-a-ti : ina dx [x x (x)]

alternatively, (it means) “signal of light” (since) sag means “lands,” ... [...]

o 99

im-bi MU-ka a-bi DINGIR-MEŠ dnu-nam-nir [x x x (x x)]

“Nunammir, the father of the gods, created you” (= Prayer to Marduk II l. 37) [...]

o 1010

GAR? :? šá-kan* TUR šá-la-la ki x [(x)]-ti : x [x x x x (x x)]6

gar (?) means “to place,” tur means “to plunder” ... [...]

o 1111

[x x x] x ta-ba-lu nu-[...]

[... means] “to carry off,” ... [...]

o 1212

[x x x x] x x x x [...]

[...] ... [...]

r 1'r 1'

[x x x] x x x x x x x-na [x x x x x x]

[...] ... [...]

r 2'2'

LÀL* : ṭa-a-bi : ÚR : ut!(ERIM-)lu₄ : ALIM [: dBAD x x (x)]7

(in Laluralimma’s name,) lal means “good,” ur means “lap,” alim [means “Enlil.” “Nippur” means]

r 3'3'

mu-ṣu-ú šá-niš NIBRUki : dun-nu* :* : [x x x x x (x)]8

“exit,” alternatively, “Nippur” means “foundation, ... [...].

r 4'4'

gišMES.KI.IN.GI.RA : ḫu-la-me-su [x x x x x (x)]9

giš.mes-kingira (lit., “the Sumerian mes-tree”) means “the ḫulamēsu-tree,” [since ...]

r 5'5'

KI.IN.GI : NIBRUki : IR : šá-la-la [: RA : ma-ḫa-ṣu?]

kingi (i.e., “Sumer”) means “Nippur,” ir means “to plunder,” [and ra means “to beat”],

r 6'6'

an-zu-ú im-ḫaṣ kap-pa-šú -bir : MES [x x x x (x)]10

(as in) “he beat Anzû and broke its wings” (= quotation from a version of the Anzû Myth); mes [means ...]

r 7'7'

šá ana EN-šú qar-nu ṣap-ru u mu-šá-kil-šú [x x x (x)]11

(refers to someone) who presses down the horns for his lord, and his supplier [...]

r 8'8'

dqin-gu u itiBÁRA šá d60 u d50 U₄ 1.[KAM mulḪUN. IGI.]12

Qingu and (the month) Nisannu (belong) to Anu and Enlil. On the first day [Aries is visible]

r 9'9'

mulḪUN. : dDUMU.ZI : dqin-gu [: dDUMU.ZI (x)]13

Aries equals Dumuzi, Qingu [equals Dumuzi (...)]

r 10'10'

MUNUS (⸢x) x DINGIR al-ma-nu- DUak : x [x x x (x)]14

a woman ... will be widowed ... [...]

r 11'11'

ri-ig-mu šak-na-at : É.KUR : É x [x x x x (x)]

means “the noise is loud.” ekur means “house ... [...].

r 12'12'

[(x)] x .GI DAM.GÀR šá a-na dnin-líl [x x x x (x)]

The golden [...] ... of the merchant, who to Ninlil [...]

r 13'13'

    pa-liḫ dUTU ana la DUMU TIN.TIRki la i-nam-din NÍG.GIG x x [x (x)]

He who reveres Šamaš should not show it to a non-Babylonian it is a taboo of ... [...]

r 14'14'

    im dBAD-tab-tan-ÙRI A-šú šá dEN-A-ÙRI DUMU mAD.[KID]

One-column tablet of Ea-tabtan(ni)-uṣur son of Bel-aplu-uṣur, descendant of A[tkuppu].

r 15'15'



1Note Aa IV/4 106 (MSL 14 p. 442): nu-úr-ì- URU×IGI [šá dASAR(URU×IGI) dAMAR.UTU]. As noted by Uri Gabbay (private communication), the elements ASAR, ALIM, and NUN are elsewhere interpreted several times as Anu, Enlil, and Ea: see Gabbay HES 1 (2014) pp. 46-47 fn. 192: this suggests that there is a word missing before [(x) dASAR].ALIM.NUN.NA, which would have been interpreted as nūru.

2Quotation from unknown text?

3According to CAD I/J 153a and Lambert Fs Finet 1989 (1989) p. 97b, the present line is a quotation from the first line of the Code of Ḫammurapi. The signs after ṣi-i-ri appear to be erased.

4Note KAR 307 r 5: ša ŠÀ dUTU [d]AMAR.UTU, “that which is inside of the sun is Marduk”: see Beaulieu JCS 51 (1999) p. 93b. Note also A 163(+) (CCP 2.2.1.A.a) l. 41: MU ṣu-lum šá lìb-bi dUTU dMES iq-ta-bi (the latter reference is courtesy of Uri Gabbay).

5Note, in the notarikon analysis, probably GAR = nadānu (Aa III/6 31 = MSL 14 p. 350). Note the alternative etymology of mulSAG.ME.GAR as nāš ṣaddī ana dadmī, “bearer of signals for the villages,” in the star list BM 42262 (5R 46/1) r 3 and K.6151 l. 1 (CCP 7.2.u83). On the term ina šumīšu, “according to its name,” see Lambert MC 16 (2013) p. 482.

6It is uncertain whether this line still comments on Sagmegar’s name.

7Laluralimma, the name of a Kassite officer in Nippur during the reign of Nazi-Maruttaš, is known from Ludlul III 25. The same etymology given here appears in l. r 5 of the Ludlul commentary (CCP 1.3), and also in the Name List 5R 44 ii 17.

8The sign after dun was formerly read as mu, e.g. Lambert BWL (1960) p. 296. It is uncertain why Nippur is said to mean dunnu and (apparently) mūṣû; note that both words can be rendered by means of a Sumerian word that includes ZAG (ZAG.šáDU = dunnu [CAD D 184a] and ZAG.È = mūṣû [CAD M/2 247b]), compare perhaps the name of Nippur URU.SAGki, in George BTT (1992) p. 442.

9Quotation from Ḫḫ III 206 (MSL 5 p. 109). At the end, perhaps gišMES : me-e-su.

10As noted by Lambert Fs Finet 1989 (1989) p. 97b, “[the present line] is not, it seems, from Tablet III of the Anzû Myth, where Ninurta “cut off his pinions” (ú-nak-kis ab-re-e-šú), but since it is a perfect metrical line it is no doubt cited from some text.

11The line has been interpreted as a commentarial explanation, but it might well be a quotation from a literary text. Note ṣapāru ša qarni in K.17826 l. 8′ (CCP 7.2.u77).

12The end has been restored after Mulapin I ii 36: see Lambert MC 16 (2013) p. 224.

13The identification of Aries and Dumuzi was current in Babylonian astrology. See e.g. Mulapin I i 43.

14Almānu is a god identified in Hg B VI 52 (MSL 11 p. 41) and An = Anu IV 283 as Išḫara’s spouse.

Photos by Enrique Jiménez & Uri Gabbay

Courtesy of the Trustees of the British Museum