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Dumuzi-Inanna Songs (1.169)

(302 words)

Author(s): Sefati, Yitschak
Subject: Canonical Compositions from the Biblical World; Sumerian Canonical Compositions; Divine Focus; Love Poems Commentary The three poems translated below belong to the Sumerian love poetry composed during the Third Dynasty of Ur and early Old Babylonian periods (ca. 2100–1800 BCE). This poetry which is mainly cultic deals with the love affair and marriage of the divine couple, the gods of love and fertility, Dumuzi (the Sumerian name for Tammuz) and Inanna (the Sumerian name for Ishtar). This symbolic mar…

Love by the Light of the Moon (1.169C)

(1,151 words)

Contributor(s): Hallo, William W.
Subject: Canonical Compositions from the Biblical World; Sumerian Canonical Compositions; Divine Focus; Love Poems Commentary This poem1 is a dialogue between Inanna and Dumuzi/Ama-ushumgalanna, who woo each other as a young couple prior to their marriage. The song opens with Inanna’s monologue, in which she tells of her chance meeting with Dumuzi and about Dumuzi holding her hand and embracing her (obverse lines 1–8) when spending the previous day in song and dance. Then a dialogue with Dumuzi develops (obverse lines 9–22): Inan…

Cairo Love Songs (1.50)

(231 words)

Author(s): Fox, Michael V.
Subject: Canonical Compositions from the Biblical World; Egyptian Canonical Compositions; Individual Focus; Love Poems Commentary The following are stanzas from the second of two seven-stanza love songs (numbers 21A-21G) written on a vase, now shattered.1 Cairo Love Songs (1.50) Subject: Cant 8:6 ( Boy) ( Number 21A)If only I were her Nubian maid,her attendant in secret!She brings her [a bowl of] mandragoras …It is in her hand,while she gives pleasure.In other words:she would grant methe hue of her whole body. ( Boy) ( Number 21B)If only I were the laundrymanof my sister’s linen g…

Ostracon Gardiner 304 (1.52)

(227 words)

Author(s): Fox, Michael V.
Subject: Canonical Compositions from the Biblical World; Egyptian Canonical Compositions; Individual Focus; Love Poems Commentary A number of ostraca, mostly written as school exercises, hold love songs or phrases typical of love songs. This ostracon dates to the reign of Ramses III (ca. 1182–1151 bce). Ostracon Gardiner 304 (1.52) Subject: Cant 8:1; Cant 4:9 ( Boy) ( Number 54)My sister’s love is in the …Her necklace is of flowers;her bones are reeds.Her little seal–ring is [on her finger],her lotus in her hand.I kiss [her] before everyone,that they may see my love.1  j Indeed it is…

Papyrus Harris 500 (1.49)

(1,057 words)

Author(s): Fox, Michael V.
Subject: Canonical Compositions from the Biblical World; Egyptian Canonical Compositions; Individual Focus; Love Poems Commentary BM 10060 (HPBM 2, pls. XLI-XLVI). The manuscript is a sort of literary anthology, containing two stories (“The Doomed Prince” and “The Capture of Joppa”), a mortuary song (the “Harper’s Song”) and three groups of love songs. Papyrus Harris 500 (1.49) Subject: Cant 2:15; Cant 5:1; 8:2b; Cant 2:5; 5:8; Cant 7:9; Cant 4:12–5:1 ( Girl) ( Number 4)My heart is not yet done with your love,my wolf cub! a Your liquor is your lovemaking.1  b I will not abandon itu…

The Women’s Oath (1.169A)

(721 words)

Contributor(s): Hallo, William W.
Subject: Canonical Compositions from the Biblical World; Sumerian Canonical Compositions; Divine Focus; Love Poems Commentary 1 This poem may be divided into two parts. The first and shorter part (lines 1–12) is in the form of an address (written in the main dialect of Sumerian called Emegir) by Dumuzi to Inanna, the “sister,” consisting of epithets of endearment for his beloved. The second part (lines 13–32, written in the Emesal-dialect of Sumerian) consists of Inanna’s response, the main point of which is …

Bridegroom, Spend the Night In Our House Till Dawn (1.169B)

(667 words)

Contributor(s): Hallo, William W.
Subject: Canonical Compositions from the Biblical World; Sumerian Canonical Compositions; Divine Focus; Love Poems Commentary 1 This poem is a monologue by King Shu-Sin’s beloved in which she yearns for him with words of love and expresses her longing for him in requests and wishes. At the conclusion of the song (lines 27–29) there is apparently an invitation to sexual union but in language not adequately clear to us. Bridegroom, Spend the Night In Our House Till Dawn (1.169B) 2 Subject: Judg 14:18; Ezek 3:3; Pss 19:11; 119:103; Prov 24:13; Cant 4:11; Cant 1:4; Prov 7:17; Prov 23:16; Ps …

Love Lyrics of Nabu and Tashmetu (1.128)

(693 words)

Author(s): Livingstone, Alasdair
Subject: Canonical Compositions from the Biblical World; Akkadian Canonical Compositions; Divine Focus; Love Poems Love Lyrics of Nabu and Tashmetu (1.128) Subject: Cant 6:11; 7:13 (1) Let anyone trust in whom he trusts; as for us we trust in Nabu, are filled with awe by Tashmetu! ( 4) What belongs to us is ours; Nabu is our lord and Tashmetu the mountain of our trust! Ditto. _________________ ( 6) Say to the one of the wall, to the one of the wall, to Tashmetu: “Grant safety from disaster! Settle down in the cella!” ( 8) Let the pure scent of juniper incense circulate in the sanctuary! Ditto. ______…

Papyrus Chester Beatty I (1.51)

(1,101 words)

Author(s): Fox, Michael V.
Subject: Canonical Compositions from the Biblical World; Egyptian Canonical Compositions; Individual Focus; Love Poems Commentary A large papyrus containing three groups of love songs, the tale of “Horus and Seth,” two hymns to the king, and a short business note. From Pap. Chester Betty I, C1,1-C5,2; the first group of love songs. Papyrus Chester Beatty I (1.51) Subject: Cant 4:9, 1–7, 9–15; 5:10–16; 6:4–10; 7:2–10a; Cant 8:1b The Beginning of the Sayings of the Great Entertainer1 ( Boy) ( Number 31)One alone is my sister, having no peer:more gracious than all other women.Behold her…