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Ugaritic Letters (3.WS.A.2)

(1,010 words)

Author(s): Pardee, Dennis
Subject: Archival Documents from the Biblical World; West Semitic Archival Documents; Letters Commentary Excavations began at the site of Ras Shamra in the spring of 1929 and have continued with some regularity to the present. Over four thousand inscribed objects have been discovered, including many texts in Ugaritic and Akkadian inscribed on clay tablets (overviews in Yon 1997 and Pardee 1997a,b). The Ugaritic poetic corpus has attracted the greatest attention (see introductions to the Ugaritic myths in  COS 1), but the vast majority of texts are prosaic reflections of e…

Arad 7: Another Order for Allotment of Supplies (3.43F)

(160 words)

Contributor(s): Hallo, William W.
Subject: Archival Documents from the Biblical World; West Semitic Archival Documents; Letters; Hebrew Letters Arad 7: Another Order for Allotment of Supplies (3.43F) Subject: Josh 8:32; Isa 65:6; 3:16; Est 2:23; 1 Chr 24:6 To Elyashib. And now, give to the Kittim for the (period from) the first (day) of the tenth (month) until the sixth (day) of (that) month three b( at-measures of wine?). [And] make a record (of this) f on the second (day) of the tenth month.1 Also seal (a jar of) oil [and send it …].2 Biblical References f Josh 8:32 Isa 65:6 3:16 Est 2:23 1 Chr 24:6 Notes^ back to text1. This f…

Lachish 6: Reactions to Forwarded Correspondence (3.42E)

(301 words)

Contributor(s): Hallo, William W.
Subject: Archival Documents from the Biblical World; West Semitic Archival Documents; Letters; Hebrew Letters Lachish 6: Reactions to Forwarded Correspondence (3.42E) Subject: Jer 38:4 Salutation (line 1) To my lord Yaush. May Yahweh make this time a good one for you.1 Letters that Weaken Resolve ( lines 2–15) Who is your servant (but) a dog that my lord should have sent (him) the king’s letter and those of the officials asking me to read them? The [officials’]2 statements are not good — (they are of a kind) to slacken your courage3  n and to weaken that of the men[…]. Won’t you w…

Emergency Report From a City-commander (RS 19.011) (3.45FF)

(331 words)

Contributor(s): Hallo, William W.
Subject: Archival Documents from the Biblical World; West Semitic Archival Documents; Letters; Ugaritic Letters; Between Non-Royal Correspondents (32) Emergency Report From a City-commander (RS 19.011) (3.45FF) 1 Subject: Judg 6:4; Mal 3:11; Gen 13:10; 18:28; 19:13–14; 2 Kgs 19:12; Lam 2:8; Isa 10:6; Exod 22:5; 1 Sam 23:1 Address (lines 1–2) To ǴRDN,2 my master, say: The Report ( lines 3–11) BN ḪRNK has come (here), he has defeated the (local) troops,3 he has pillaged xx the town, he has even burned4 our grain5  yy on the threshing-floors zz and destroyed the vineyards. aaa  T…

Lachish 5: Thanks and Remarks on the Harvest (3.42D)

(182 words)

Contributor(s): Hallo, William W.
Subject: Archival Documents from the Biblical World; West Semitic Archival Documents; Letters; Hebrew Letters Lachish 5: Thanks and Remarks on the Harvest (3.42D) Salutation (lines 1–2) May [Yahweh] give my lord the best possible [news at this very time]. Humble Thanks for Correspondence ( lines 3–7) Who is your servant (but) a dog that you should have sent to your servant these letters?1 Your servant (herewith) returns the letters to my lord. The Grain Harvest ( lines 7–10) May Yahweh allow my lord to witness a good harvest today. Is Ṭobyahu going to send royal grain to your servant?2 No…

ʿUzzīnu to the King (RS 94.2391) (3.45V)

(328 words)

Contributor(s): Hallo, William W.
Subject: Archival Documents from the Biblical World; West Semitic Archival Documents; Letters; Ugaritic Letters; Between King or Queen and a Non-Royal Personage (22) ʿUzzīnu to the King (RS 94.2391) (3.45V) 1 Address (lines 1–3) To the king, my master, say: Message of ʿUzzīnu, your servant. Prostration Formula and Greeting ( lines 4–7) At the feet of my master two times seven times (from) afar I fall. With my master may it be well. […] Taking Care of Someone ( lines 10´ -15´) […] pr[ie]sts before him. So nourish his well-being. And you should order for me that he go [some…

A Double Letter to Yabnīnu (RS 19.102) (3.45GG)

(228 words)

Contributor(s): Hallo, William W.
Subject: Archival Documents from the Biblical World; West Semitic Archival Documents; Letters; Ugaritic Letters; Between Non-Royal Correspondents (33) A Double Letter to Yabnīnu (RS 19.102) (3.45GG) 1 First Address (lines 1–5) To Yabnīnu, my father, say: Message of Ta[lmiy]ānu, your son. Prostration Formula ( lines 6–7) At the fee[t of my father I] fa[ll]. […] Second Address ( lines 13–16) To Yabnī[nu], my master, s[ay]: Message of ʿAbd[…], your servant: Prostration Formula and Request for Return of News ( lines 17–24) At the feet of my master twice seven times from af…

Arad 21: A Son’s Letter (3.43J)

(92 words)

Contributor(s): Hallo, William W.
Subject: Archival Documents from the Biblical World; West Semitic Archival Documents; Letters; Hebrew Letters Arad 21: A Son’s Letter (3.43J) Subject: 1 Sam 24:20; Prov 13:21; 25:22 Your son Yehukal (hereby) sends greetings to (you) Gedalyahu [son of] Elyair and to your household. I bless you to Yahweh. And now, if my lord had done […] may Yahweh reward i my lord […].1 Biblical References i 1 Sam 24:20 Prov 13:21 25:22 Notes^ back to text1. This letter was originally ten lines long, but only the praescriptio and the beginning of the body are reasonably well preserved.

The Passover Letter (3.46)

(1,269 words)

Author(s): Porten, Bezalel
Subject: Archival Documents from the Biblical World; West Semitic Archival Documents; Letters; Aramaic Letters; The Jedaniah Archive From Elephantine Commentary Significant as this letter (P. Berlin 13464 [ TAD A4.1]) is, its full intent eludes us because of our ignorance as to the identity of Hananiah and the loss of the command from Darius to Arsames (Instructions I). Hananiah arrived from outside of Egypt, either upon the initiative of the Jewish authorities in Jerusalem or of the Persian court or in response to a peti…

Praise of Pi-Ramessu (3.3)

(789 words)

Author(s): Allen, James P.
Subject: Archival Documents from the Biblical World; Egyptian Archival Documents; Letters; New Kingdom Model Letters Commentary The papyrus from which this letter is taken, now in the British Museum (EA 10246), is dated to the third regnal year of Merneptah, son and successor of Ramesses II (Dyn. 19, ca. 1213–1203 bce). It contains several model letters and other scribal exercises, some of which appear in other contemporary papyri. The letter translated here celebrates the charms of the Ramesside capital Pi-Ramessu (House of Ramesses), the biblical Raamses. Praise of Pi-Ramessu (…

Message of ʾIririṯaruma to the Queen (RS 16.402) (3.45X)

(834 words)

Contributor(s): Hallo, William W.
Subject: Archival Documents from the Biblical World; West Semitic Archival Documents; Letters; Ugaritic Letters; Between King or Queen and a Non-Royal Personage (24) Message of ʾIririṯaruma to the Queen (RS 16.402) (3.45X) 1 Subject: 2 Kgs 18:23; Deut 28:5–3, 55, 57; Isa 29:2, 7; 51:13 Address (lines 1–2) [To the queen], my lady, [say: Mes]sage of ʾIririṯaruma, your servant. Prostration Formula and Greeting ( lines 3–4) [At] my [l]ady’s [feet] (from) afar [do I fall]. [W]ith my lady may it be well. First Matter: A Royal Campaign ( lines 5–21)2 […] our king is strong […] the ene…

Report of Imprisonment of Jewish Leaders (3.49)

(1,283 words)

Author(s): Porten, Bezalel
Subject: Archival Documents from the Biblical World; West Semitic Archival Documents; Letters; Aramaic Letters; The Jedaniah Archive From Elephantine Commentary Opening and closing with a pagan Salutation, a private letter (P. Berlin 13456 + Cairo J. 43476 [ TAD A4.4]) from the otherwise unknown Islaḥ, son of Nathan, to an unknown son of Gaddul reported the fateful incarceration of several men in Elephantine and the seizure and imprisonment of six Jewish women and five Jewish leaders at the gate in Thebes. The men were apparently …

A Report of Bedouin (3.5)

(475 words)

Author(s): Allen, James P.
Subject: Archival Documents from the Biblical World; Egyptian Archival Documents; Letters; New Kingdom Model Letters Commentary This model letter is one of four unique scribal exercises compiled in a single papyrus, now in the British Museum (EA 10245). The opening protocol of the papyrus is dated to the reign of Seti II, but the regnal year mentioned in the letter translated here is probably that of his predecessor, Merneptah. The letter refers to the arrival of bedouin and their flocks from the northern Sinai…

ʿAmmurāpiʾ to the King of Egypt(RS 34.356) (3.45N)

(296 words)

Contributor(s): Hallo, William W.
Subject: Archival Documents from the Biblical World; West Semitic Archival Documents; Letters; Ugaritic Letters; Outgoing Correspondence To Other Courts (14) ʿAmmurāpiʾ to the King of Egypt (RS 34.356) (3.45N) 1 First Address (lines 1–2) [To the Sun, the] great [king], king of kin[gs], [my master], say: Message of ʿAmmurāpiʾ, [your servant]. First Body ( lines 3–8) […] NMY, [your] messenger, has arrived […] [the Sun], the great king, my master, to [me …]. Then I, your servant, greatly re[joiced? …] my good master […] the Sun, my master, has sent […] the [Su]n, the gre…

The Heqanakht Letters (3.1)

(515 words)

Author(s): Allen, James P.
Subject: Archival Documents from the Biblical World; Egyptian Archival Documents; Letters; Middle Kingdom Letters Commentary The three letters translated here provide a unique glimpse into the life of a middle-class Egyptian family of the early Middle Kingdom. They were written by a ka-servant named Heqanakht, who served the mortuary cult of an official’s tomb in Thebes, probably during the first decade of the reign of Senwosret I, second king of the 12th Dynasty (ca. 1971–1926 bce). The letters, along with a number of Heqanakht’s accounts and some scribal equipment, w…

The King to Kaššū In Tapikka 2 (HKM 2) (3.14)

(351 words)

Contributor(s): Hallo, William W.
Subject: Archival Documents from the Biblical World; Hittite Archival Documents; Letters; Middle Hittite Period (ca. 1450–1350 BCE) The King to Kaššū In Tapikka 2 ( HKM 2) (3.14) Thus speaks His Majesty: Say to Kaššū: ( 4) Concerning the matter of chariotry1 about which you wrote to me: Be advised that I have already dispatched chariotry. Wait for it. ( 10) Concerning the matter of Ḫimuili’s brother about which you wrote: I am dispatching him now. [ps]2 ( 14) Say to Uzzū, my dear brother: Thus speaks Šuriḫili, your brother: With me all is well. ( 17) May all be well also with y…

The King to Kaššū In Tapikka 11 (HKM 12) (3.23)

(85 words)

Contributor(s): Hallo, William W.
Subject: Archival Documents from the Biblical World; Hittite Archival Documents; Letters; Middle Hittite Period (ca. 1450–1350 BCE) The King to Kaššū In Tapikka 11 ( HKM 12) (3.23) 1 Thus speaks His Majesty: Say to Kaššū: ( 4) Seize Tarḫumiya and [send] him before [My Majesty]. […] ( Reverse) […] and [let them] conduct him immediately before [My Majesty]. Bibliographical References Text:  HKM 12. Edition:  HBM 136ff. Notes^ back to text1. What remains of this short letter appears to be an arrest order.

Talmiyānu to His Mother Ṯarriyelli (RS 15.008) (3.45A)

(1,086 words)

Contributor(s): Hallo, William W.
Subject: Archival Documents from the Biblical World; West Semitic Archival Documents; Letters; Ugaritic Letters; Correspondence Between Members of the Royal Family (1) Talmiyānu to His Mother Ṯarriyelli (RS 15.008) (3.45A) 1 Subject: 2 Kgs 19:10; Num 6:24, 26; Ps 40:12; Isa 42:6; Job 8:6; Ezra 4:12, 13; 5:8; Dan 3:18; 1 Kgs 2:19; Num 6:25; Pss 31:17; 67:2; 119:135; Dan 9:17; Mal 3:20; Deut 24:5; Prov 10:1; Gen 43:27–28; 2 Kgs 4:26 Address (lines 1–3) Message of Talmiyānu: To Ṯarriyelli, my mother, say:2 a  Greetings ( lines 4–6) May it be well with you. May the gods of Uga…

A Problem with Rations (RS 29.095) (3.45II)

(626 words)

Contributor(s): Hallo, William W.
Subject: Archival Documents from the Biblical World; West Semitic Archival Documents; Letters; Ugaritic Letters; Between Non-Royal Correspondents (35) A Problem with Rations (RS 29.095) (3.45II) 1 Address (lines 1–2) Message of Talmiyānu: To Pizziya say: Greetings and Double Return of News Formula ( lines 3–8) May it be well with you. May the gods keep you well, may they guard you. Here with me it is w[el]l. There with you 〈whatever well-being there may be〉, return word (of that) to me.2 What to Do about Rations ( lines 9–19) Now listen well: As ʿDN has been continually request…

Letter From Piḫa-Walwi of Ḫatti to Ibiranu of Ugarit (3.32)

(150 words)

Contributor(s): Hallo, William W.
Subject: Archival Documents from the Biblical World; Hittite Archival Documents; Letters; Later New Kingdom (Ḫattušili III TO Suppiluliuma II) (ca. 1250–1180 BCE) Letter From Piḫa-Walwi of Ḫatti to Ibiranu of Ugarit (3.32) §1 Thus says Prince Piha-Walwi: Say to my “son” (i.e., subordinate), Ibiranu: §2 All is well at present with His Majesy. §3 Why have you not come before His Majesty since you became king in the land of Ugarit? Why have you not sent your messengers? His Majesty is very angry about this matter. So send your messengers to His Maje…
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