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Sumerians

(167 words)

Author(s): Renger, Johannes (Berlin)

Gilgamesh, Gilgamesh Epic

(592 words)

Author(s): Renger, Johannes (Berlin)
[German version] (Gilgameš, Gilgameš Epic). G., legendary ruler of  Uruk in southern Mesopotamia; linked in the sources passed down to us with the construction of the 9-km long city wall of Uruk around 2900 BC. Non-literary sources already mention G. about 2700 BC. The rulers of the 3rd dynasty of Ur (21st cent. BC) originating in Uruk maintained that they were genealogically connected with G. and therefore fostered the stories passed down about G. and his equally legendary predecessors ( Epic) in…

Caspii

(49 words)

Author(s): Renger, Johannes (Berlin)
[German version] Indian mountain tribe in the Hindu Kush; the ancestors of the Kāfir (i.e. ‘the disbelieving’) in the valleys of the Kūnar, the river of Tschitral. In the records of the Persian taxation districts in Hdt. 3,93, they are summarized with the Saces. Renger, Johannes (Berlin)

Xisuthrus

(66 words)

Author(s): Renger, Johannes (Berlin)
[German version] (Ξίσουθρος/ Xísouthros: [1. 19 f.] or Σίσουθρος/

Lagaš

(73 words)

Author(s): Renger, Johannes (Berlin)
[German version] Town and territorial state (capital Girsu) in southern Mesopotamia, with important inscriptions, architectural and artistic finds from the 25th-21st cents. BC, which have been of great significance in reconstructing early Mesopotamian history and culture, as also for establishing a Sumerian Grammar ( Ancient oriental philology and history). Renger, Johannes (Berlin) Bibliography J. Bauer, D. P. Hanson, s.v. L., RLA 6, 4…

Tiamat

(103 words)

Author(s): Renger, Johannes (Berlin)
[German version] (Akkadian 'sea'). Primaeval/primordial female divine monster, known from the Babylonian creation myth Enūma Eliš . She is killed by her son Marduk in a theomachy (matricide) and split lengthwise into two halves: from the lower half he creates the earth, from the upper half the firmament of the heavens. In Berosus [1. 15] T. appears in a corrupt form as thalath (Gr. thálassa, 'sea'). T. is reflected in the Biblical creation myth (Gn 1:2) as

Latage

(38 words)

Author(s): Renger, Johannes (Berlin)
[German version] According to Ael. NA 16,10, an Indian town in the land of the Prasii, where the Greek Megasthenes was ambassador to the king. Renger, Johannes (Berlin) Bibliography O. Wecker, s.v. L. (2), RE 12, 892.

Andriaca

(63 words)

Author(s): Renger, Johannes (Berlin)
[German version] Κώμη ( kṓmē) in Media (Ptol. 6,2,18), not far from a place called Ῥάψα ( Rhápsa), on the road from Ecbatana to Persepolis [1]. A. appears to have been on the same stretch of the road, probably the same place as Gulpaigan or Kaidu, and only …

Tammuz

(303 words)

Author(s): Renger, Johannes (Berlin)
[German version] (Thammuz; Sumerian Dumu-zi, 'legitimate son', Aramaic  Tham(m)uza, Hebrew Thammûz, Greek  Θαμμουζ/ Thammouz). Prehistoric king of Uruk and husband of the city goddess Inanna (Ishtar; Hieros Gamos). She hands T. over to the forces of the Underworld when she - having failed in her attempt to seize the rule over the Underworld for herself - is released from the Underworld on condition of the promise of a (human) substitute. Dumu-zi is captured by the demons of the Underworld; however, his siste…

Ophir

(141 words)

Author(s): Renger, Johannes (Berlin)
[German version] (Hebrew Ōfīr, Ōfir; LXX: Οὐφειρ/ Oupheir, Σωφαρα/ Sōphara, Σωφειρ(α)/ Sōpheir(a), Σωφηρα/ Sōphēra, Σωφιρα/ Sōphira, Σουφειρ/ Soupheir, Σουφιρ/ Souphir, Σοφειρ/ Sopheir). According to the OT, O. was the land of origin of gold (1 Kg 9:28, 22:49) and semi-precious stones (1 Kg 10:11, Job 28:16), which Solomon had shipped over the Red Sea to Israel. Gold from O. is also mentioned in a Hebrew ostracon (epigraphically dated between the 8th and 6th cents. BC) [2]. The location of O. is disputed: both southern Arabia (or the eastern African coast) and India (because of a Supara…

Latage

(33 words)

Author(s): Renger, Johannes (Berlin)
[English version] Nach Ail. nat. 16,10 indische Stadt im Land der Prasioi, bei deren König der Grieche Megasthenes Gesandter war. Renger, Johannes (Berlin) Bibliography O. Wecker, s.v. L. (2), RE 12, 892.

Altorientalische Philologie und Geschichte

(4,632 words)

Author(s): Renger, Johannes (Berlin) RWG
Renger, Johannes (Berlin) RWG [English version] A. Name und Definition (RWG) Die APG ist Teil der Altorientalistik (Ancient Near Eastern Studies), die neben Philol. und Geschichte auch die Arch. des Alten Orients (AO) einschließt. Der Begriff “altoriental.” bezieht sich im Kontext westeurop. und amerikanischer Wiss. auf den geogr. Raum Vorderasien und dessen vorchristl. bzw. vorislamische Kultu…

Andriaka

(55 words)

Author(s): Renger, Johannes (Berlin)

Oikos-Wirtschaft

(597 words)

Author(s): Renger, Johannes (Berlin)
[English version] Als idealtypisches Konzept einer Wirtschaftsform des Alt. wurde die O. zuerst von Rodbertus, später von M. Weber beschrieben: Als Oikos wird der autarke Haushalt (eines Herrschers) bezeichnet, in dem alles, was innerhalb des Oikos gebraucht und konsumiert wird, bis auf wenige Ausnahmen (Metalle, Luxusprodukte, in Mesopotamien auch Hölzer) selbst erzeugt wird. In der mesopot. O. des 4. und 3. Jt., die sich unter den Bedingungen eines umfassenden, weitgehend zentral organisierten R…

Ištar

(160 words)

Author(s): Renger, Johannes (Berlin)
[English version] Die semit. Göttin I. ist etym. mit Astarte ( Aṯtarat) zu verbinden; gramm. ist der Name mask. (zu vergleichen mit west-semit. Aṯtar). Im südl. Mesopot. wurde sie mit der sumer. Stadtgöttin von Uruk, Inanna, gleichgesetzt, ihre Verehrung dort ist bis in achäm. Zeit bezeugt. Im nördl. Babylonien und Assyrien wurden I.-Gestalten in zahlreichen Städten verehrt (I. der Stadt NN; u.a. der Städte Akkad, Arbela [1], Niniveh) und z.T. mit anderen Göttinen gleichgesetzt. Daraus ist zu erklären, daß der Name als Ištar(t)u in Mesopot. als genereller Terminus für Göttin …

Enlil

(56 words)

Author(s): Renger, Johannes (Berlin)
[English version] (sumer. “Herr Wind”). Stadtgott von Nippur und höchster Gott des sumer.-akkad. Pantheons im 3. und in der 1. H. des 2. Jt.v.Chr., an dessen Stelle im 1. Jt. Marduk, der Stadtgott von Babylon getreten ist. Seine Gemahlin ist Ninlil (Mylissa). Marduk; Mesopotamien; Nippur Renger, Johannes (Berlin) Bibliography …

Tennes

(247 words)

Author(s): Zimmermann, Sylvia | Renger, Johannes (Berlin)
[German version] [1] Eponym of the island of Tenedos (Τέννης/ Ténnēs, also Τένης/ Ténēs). According to Plutarch (Quaest. Graec. 28) the eponym of the island of Tenedos, son of king Cycnus [2]; Apollo is often given as his father. Stepson of Philomene, who after an alleged rape has T. and his sister Hemithea put out at sea in a chest. Under the protection of Poseidon they land on the island of Leucophrys near Troy, where T. becomes king. The island is named after him. Later Cycnus recognises the truth and sai…

Inn

(1,837 words)

Author(s): Renger, Johannes (Berlin) | Dräger, Michael
[German version] I. Ancient Orient So far, evidence of inns comes mainly from Mesopotamia. There the inn was usually also the place where - outside institutional households -  beer was brewed. Inns normally served beer, with only one mention of the operator of a  wine tavern (ancient Babylonian period, 17th cent. BC; [3]). The running of an inn by a landlord or landlady or a hot-food stall by a cook was registered and licensed by royal edict in the ancient Babylonian period [5. 85]. Both had to pay a regular …

Adamas

(81 words)

Author(s): Peter, Ulrike (Berlin) | Renger, Johannes (Berlin)
(Ἀδάμας). [English version] [1] Thraker (4.Jh. v. Chr.) Thraker, der in den 370er Jahren v. Chr. von Kotys abfiel (Aristot. …

Issedones

(66 words)

Author(s): Renger, Johannes (Berlin) | Treidler, Hans (Berlin)
[English version] (Ἰσσηδόνες, Ἰσσηδοί, Ἐσσηδόνες). Skythisches Volk asiatischer Herkunft. Nach Hdt. (1,201; 4,13-26) südöstl. des Aralsees zu lokalisieren; der Schwerpunkt ihrer Wohngebiete lag aber in Mittelasien. Ptolemaios (6,16,5; 16,7; 8,24,3; 24,5 N) rechnet ihnen die im chinesischen Ost-Turkestan (Tarimbecken) an …

Bilingual inscriptions

(1,899 words)

Author(s): Renger, Johannes (Berlin) | Neumann, Hans (Berlin)
[German version] A. Definition Bilingual inscriptions (or ‘bilingues’) are inscriptions that present the same text in two languages so as to be comprehensible to different readerships. Thus, bilingual inscriptions (BI), with closely corresponding texts, are distinguished from others in which one of the texts only summarizes the other. -- ‘Quasi-BI’ do indeed differ in their text format but treat the same subject matter or the same personalities. BI are only such texts as are composed contemporaneou…

Assemblies

(2,182 words)

Author(s): Renger, Johannes (Berlin) | Eder, Walter (Berlin)
[German version] I. Ancient Near East There was at various periods and in various regions of the ancient Near East a spectrum of manifestations of collective bodies with diverse powers of decision-making  and capacities for implementation. Crucial to the role of such collective bodies was on the one hand the nature of their historical genesis, and on the other hand the nature of their integration into the prevailing system of rulership. There were no popular assemblies as in the Classical Mediterranea…

Adamas

(93 words)

Author(s): Peter, Ulrike (Berlin) | Renger, Johannes (Berlin)
(Ἀδάμας; Adámas). [German version] [1] Thracian (4th cent. BC) Thracian, who in the 370s BC seceded from Cotys (Aristot. Pol. 5,10,1311b). The identification with A. in IG XII 5,245 is doubtful (SEG 34, 1984, 856). Peter, Ulrike (Berlin) [German version] [2] River of India on the Gulf of Bengal A river of India on the Gulf of Bengal mentioned only in Ptol. 7,1,17; 41, identical with the current Subarna rekha. The name means ‘River of Diamonds’. Inland, to this day the diamond mines of Chota Nagpur are known. Renger, Johannes (Berlin)

Issedones

(90 words)

Author(s): Renger, Johannes (Berlin) | Treidler, Hans (Berlin)
[German version] (Ἰσσηδόνες; Issēdónes, Ἰσσηδοί; Issēdoí, Ἐσσηδόνες; Essēdónes). A Scythian people of Asian origin. According to Herodotus (1,201; 4,13-26), they lived southeast of the Aral Sea; however, the heaviest population centres within the regions of their habitation lay in Central Asia. Ptolemy (6,16,5; 16,7; 8,24,3; 24,5 N) ascribes to them the cities of Ἰσσηδὼν Σκυθική (modern Kucha) and Ἰσσηδὼν Σηρική (modern Charqliq), which were located on the Silk Road in Chinese East Turkistan (Tarim Basin, Xinjiang), to the southwest of Lobnor.  Scythians Renger, Johannes (Ber…

Secret police

(629 words)

Author(s): Renger, Johannes (Berlin) | Eder, Walter (Berlin)
[German version] A. Ancient Near East Xenophon (Cyr. 8,2,10ff.) tells of undercover informants, the “eyes and ears of the king”, who reported to the Persian king. Antecedents of this Achaemenid institution can be found in Mesopotamia: soothsayers (Mari 18th cent. BC) and state officials (Assyria 8th/7th cents.) undertook in their oath of office to report to the king any moves or actions against him. The extent to which fear of the “eyes and ears of the king” was an encumbrance to contemporaries can be…

Authors

(1,908 words)

Author(s): Renger, Johannes (Berlin) | Schmitzer, Ulrich (Berlin)
[German version] I. Ancient Orient and Egypt As a rule, literature in the Ancient Orient and in Egypt was anonymous. It was produced in schools by the  scribes. However, a number of important literary or scholarly works in special list-like compilations are attributed to certain authors, as e.g. the Egyptian wisdom literature [1] or the  Epic of Gilgamesh. The author of the latter, Sîn-leqe-unnīnī [2; 3] rewrote, probably in the 12th cent. BC, traditional material dating from the 18th cent. BC into the…

Bull cults

(379 words)

Author(s): Renger, Johannes (Berlin) | von Lieven, Alexandra (Berlin)
[German version] I. Mesopotamia In historical times, bull cults were of no significance in the religions of Mesopotamia which were mainly anthropomorphic in character. Enlil was metaphorically referred to as a bull, and the roaring of the weather god Hadad compared to the bellowing of a bull. The fact that bulls (and other animals) served as pedestals for the statues of gods (in Syria-Palestine and Hittite Anatolia) is no argument for an actual bull cult. The 'golden calves' in Ex 32 and 1 Kg 12,28-32 are also interpreted as pedestals for the invisible Yahweh. Renger, Johannes (Berlin) …

Punt

(437 words)

Author(s): Quack, Joachim (Berlin) | Renger, Johannes (Berlin)
[English version] [1] Land in Afrika Äg. pwn.t, ab dem NR durch sprachliche Neuanalyse als p-wn.t aufgefaßt, woraus unter Weglassung des scheinbaren Artikels ein neuer Name wn.t kreiert wird, der in einigen Quellen aus griech.-röm. Zeit erscheint. Nach äg. Quellen ein Land im fernen SO; h. meist im Bereich von Būr Sūdān (Port Sudan) [6] oder um Eritrea und das Horn von Afrika [1; 2] gesucht. Im AR könnten Handelsgüter aus P. über Zwischenstationen entlang des Nils nach Äg. gelangt sein, auch direkte Handelsfahrten sind …

Hieros Gamos

(786 words)

Author(s): Graf, Fritz (Princeton) | Renger, Johannes (Berlin)
(ἱερὸς γάμος, Heilige Hochzeit). [English version] I. Begriff Ein Terminus, der zur Bezeichnung einer rituellen sexuellen Vereinigung in der neuzeitlichen Forsch. seit dem Aufkommen des Fruchtbarkeitsparadigmas im 19. Jh. (Mannhardt, Frazer) eine große Bed. erlangt hat. Ausgehend von dem im homer. Epos erzählten Geschlechtsverkehr zwischen Demeter und ihrem sterblichen Liebhaber Iasion ‘auf einem dreimal gepflügten Feld’ (Hom. Od. 5, 125-128; Hes. theog. 969-971), der in Analogie mit nordeurop. Bräuchen…

Bevölkerung, Bevölkerungsgeschichte

(2,605 words)

Author(s): Wiesehöfer, Josef (Kiel) | Renger, Johannes (Berlin)
[English version] A. Forschungsgegenstand und Methode Gegenstand der B.s-Geschichte ist die Beschreibung und Erklärung von Strukturen und Entwicklungen von (ant.) B. in ihrem Verhältnis zum Lebensraum. Ausgehend von qualitativ und/oder quantitativ auswertbaren, aber nicht unproblematischen ant. Zeugnissen sowie unter Berücksichtigung moderner Modellsterbetafeln und ethnologischen Vergleichmaterials hat die B.s-Geschichte der Ant. bislang vor allem die ant. Sicht der B.s-Entwicklung, die zahlenmäßige …

Polytheismus

(1,196 words)

Author(s): Bendlin, Andreas (Erfurt) | Renger, Johannes (Berlin)
I. Allgemein und Klassische Antike [English version] 1. Begriffsgeschichte Das Adj. πολύθεος/ polýtheos bezeichnet in der griech. Dichtersprache das, was einer Mehrzahl von Göttern zukommt: der Altar als Sitz ( hédra) vieler Gottheiten (Aischyl. Suppl. 424) oder die von einer großen Zahl besuchte Götterversammlung (Lukian. Iuppiter Tragoedus 14). Erst die jüd. und christl. Lit. (Apologien) verwendet das Begriffsfeld zur Rechtfertigung der Herrschaft ( monarchía) eines einzigen Gottes: Philon [12] von Alexandreia prägt δόξα πολύθεος/ dóxa polýtheos (Phil. de decalogo 65…

Bisutun

(337 words)

Author(s): Renger, Johannes (Berlin) | Wiesehöfer, Josef (Kiel)
[English version] (altpers. bagastāna “Götterplatz”, Βαγίστανα, Βαγίστανον ὄρος, Behistun). Felswand 30 km östl. von Kermanschah an der Straße von Babylon nach Ekbatana am Choaspes (Seidenstraße [3. 11]), an der Dareios I. seine Taten seit ca. 520 v.Chr. bildlich und inschr. - ca. 70 m über dem Straßenniveau - in mehreren Phasen festhalten ließ. Wegen ihrer dreisprachigen Form (elam., babylon., altpers.) bildete die Inschr. [1] die Grundlage für die Entzifferung der Keilschrift (Trilingue). Das Rel…

Liste

(566 words)

Author(s): Renger, Johannes (Berlin) | Cavigneaux, Antoine (Genf)
[English version] A. Definition Die L. ist eine graphisch-sprachliche Technik zur Darstellung von Sachverhalten und Konzepten unterschiedlicher Komplexität. Sie stellt Sachverhalte herausgelöst aus ihrem schriftlich oder mündlich vorliegenden (narrativen/beschreibenden) Kontext asyntaktisch und enumerativ dar. L. können ausschließlich - mit einem Anspruch auf Vollständigkeit - bzw. offen sein. Neben einfachen L. (Aneinanderreihung von Begriffen und/ oder Zahlen in einer Kolumne oder Zeile bzw. Reihe…

Mitra

(356 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg) | Renger, Johannes (Berlin)
[English version] [1] Teil der Rüstung (μίτρα, μίτρη). (1) Nach Homer (Hom. Il. 4,137; 187; 216; 5,857) zum Schutz des Unterleibes getragener Teil der Rüstung, der von der arch. Forsch. mit bes. auf Kreta gefundenen, halbkreisförmigen Bronzeblechen der früharcha. Zeit identifiziert wird. Ebenfalls m. heißt das in seiner Funktion entsprechende Rüstungsteil der Salier (Salii; Dion. Hal. ant. 2,70; Plut. Numa 13,4). (2) Gürtel der jungen Frauen (Theokr. 27,55, vgl. μιτροχίτων/ mitrochítōn, Athen. 12,523d) und Göttinnen (Kall. h. 1,120; 4,222, epigr. 39), nach einer s…

Amulett

(410 words)

Author(s): Renger, Johannes (Berlin) | Grieshammer, Reinhard (Heidelberg)
[English version] A. Alter Orient Im Alten Orient finden sich seit prähistor. Zeit zahlreiche als Anhänger geformte und zum Anlegen, Umbinden oder Aufhängen geeignete Objekte (figürlich oder symbolhaft-abstrakt), Ketten oder sonstige Gebinde, die allg. als A. gedeutet werden [1]. Vor allem akkad. und hethit. Texte aus dem Bereich der Experten für magische Rituale beschreiben Material, Gestalt und den Prozeß des Anfertigens von Amuletten und den Zweck, für den sie gebraucht werden. Steinen und Pflanze…

Pfandrecht

(1,042 words)

Author(s): Renger, Johannes (Berlin) | Schiemann, Gottfried (Tübingen)
[English version] I. Alter Orient Pfand(=Pf.)-Bestellung zur Vertragssicherung ist in den altorientalischen Rechten unterschiedlich gut bezeugt. Die Pf.-Bestellung spielt eine große Rolle im Verschuldungsprozeß in agrarischen Ges. Wenn z.B. Pächter mit ihren Abgabeverpflichtungen in Rückstand geraten waren, führte der Verfall eines Personen-Pf. oft zu Schuldknechtschaft [1; 2; 15. 179f.] mit den sich daraus ergebenden negativen Folgen für das soziale Gleichgewicht einer Ges. (Pacht I.). Pf.-Bestellung ist im Keilschriftrecht seit der 2. H. des 3. Jt. für di…

Lied

(1,275 words)

Author(s): Renger, Johannes (Berlin) | Fuhrer, Therese (Zürich)
[English version] I. Alter Orient Zahlreiche L.-Gattungen sind in Mesopot. (seit ca. 2600 v.Chr.), in Äg. (seit dem 24./23. Jh.v.Chr.), bei den Hethitern (14./13. Jh.), aus Ugarit (14./13. Jh.) und dem AT (s.u.) bezeugt. Die gattungsmäßige Zuordnung wird uneinheitlich gehandhabt, da sich häufig Mischformen finden. Die ant. Nomenklatur ist nur bedingt hilfreich. Die als Oberbegriff verwendete Bezeichnung “Kultlyrik” bezieht sich auf die lit., d.h. lyrische Form der L. Die Bezeichnung “Lied” orientiert…

Rationen

(469 words)

Author(s): Renger, Johannes (Berlin) | Schneider, Helmuth (Kassel)
[English version] I. Alter Orient In der altorientalischen Oikos- oder Palastwirtschaft waren - je nach Region und Epoche - die Mehrheit oder (große) Teile der Bevölkerung in die institutionellen Haushalte von Tempel und/oder Palast als direkt Abhängige integriert. Sie wurden durch Natural-R. (Getreide, Öl, Wolle), die das für ihre Reproduktion nötige Existenzminimum garantierten, versorgt. In Mesopotamien wurden diese Natural-R. durch Zuweisung von Unterhaltsfeldern (ca. 6 ha), die das Existenzminimum einer Familie sicherstellten, partiell supplem…

Mitra

(396 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg) | Renger, Johannes (Berlin)
[German version] [1] Piece of armour (μίτρα/ mítra; μίτρη/ mítrē). (1) According to Homer (Hom. Il. 4,137; 187; 216; 5,857) a piece of armour worn to protect the lower body, identified by archaeological research with semicircular plates of bronze, dating from the early Archaic period and found particularly on Crete. Similarly, mitra is the name of a piece of armour worn by the Salii (Dion. Hal. Ant. Rom. 2,70; Plut. Numa 13,4). (2) Belt for young women (Theocr. 27,55, cf. μιτροχίτων/ mitrochítōn, Athen. 12,523d) and goddesses (Callim. H. 1,120; 4,222, Epigr. 39) and also for…

Cookery books

(807 words)

Author(s): Renger, Johannes (Berlin) | Schmitt-Pantel, Pauline (Paris)
[German version] I. Near East and Egypt Although there is copious epigraphical and graphic evidence for a highly developed  table culture at the courts of oriental rulers in antiquity, cooking recipes are known to us so far only from Mesopotamia: 34 from the 18th cent. BC (gathered from three clay tablets), one from the 6th/5th cents. BC. They offer practical instructions in the manner of medical prescriptions. The reason why the recipes were preserved in writing is not clear. They deal predominantly with stewed poultry and other meat, together with two recipes…

Empires, Concept of empire

(1,874 words)

Author(s): Renger, Johannes (Berlin) | Wiesehöfer, Josef (Kiel)
[German version] I. Ancient Orient The idea of a  rulership that encompassed the entire known world was expressed in Mesopotamia in various royal epithets ─ i.a. ‘Ruler of the Four Regions (of the world)’ ( šar kibrāt arbaim/erbettim), ‘Ruler over the Totality’ ( šar kiššatim), ‘Ruler of Rulers’ ( šar šarrāni). The title ‘Ruler of the Four Regions (of the world)’ is first documented for the Akkadian ruler  Naramsin (23rd cent. BC). However, the claim inherent in this title did not hold true according to contemporary documents, since Naramsin's…

Amulet

(478 words)

Author(s): Renger, Johannes (Berlin) | Grieshammer, Reinhard (Heidelberg)
[German version] A. Ancient Orient Since prehistoric times in the Ancient Orient there have been numerous objects made as pendants (either figurative or abstract symbols) which could be worn, tied on or hung and also chains or other arrangements, which were all referred to as amulets [1]. Particularly Akkadian and Hittite texts for experts in the area of magic rituals describe materials, shapes and the process for making amulets and the purpose for which they are used. Stones and plants are ascribed …

Kinship, Relatives

(1,915 words)

Author(s): Renger, Johannes (Berlin) | di Mattia, Margherita (Rome)
[German version] I. Ancient Orient and Egypt Both Sumerian and Akkadian kinship terms - other than basic words like father (Sumerian a.a, Akkadian abu), mother (Sumerian ama, Akkadian ummu), son (Sumerian dumu, Akkadian māru), daughter (Sumerian dumu.munus, ‘female son’, Akkadian mārtu), brother (Sumerian šeš, Akkadian aḫu), sister (Sumerian nin, Akkadian aḫātu, ‘female brother’) - are of an analytical character (e.g. Akkadian abi abi or abi ummi, paternal or maternal grandfather; father's brother = uncle). In Sumerian, šeš.bànda (literally ‘little brother’) …

Women rulers

(1,599 words)

Author(s): Renger, Johannes (Berlin) | AN.WI.
[German version] I. Ancient Orient In the societies of the Ancient Orient and Egypt with their rules regarding patrilineal inheritance and succession, women did not assume the role of rulers. The only exceptions to this occurred in cases when a female member of the ruling family - generally the queen mother - acted as regent for an underage heir to the throne. For example, Hatshepsut, half-sister and wife of Thutmosis [2] II, acted for 22 years as regent for her underage nephew Thutmosis [3] III.. In…

Polytheism

(1,339 words)

Author(s): Bendlin, Andreas (Erfurt) | Renger, Johannes (Berlin)
I. In general and in classical antiquity [German version] 1. History of the term The adjective πολύθεος/ polýtheos refers in poetic Greek to that which pertains to many deities: the altar as the seat ( hédra) of many gods (Aesch. Suppl. 424) or the divine assembly attended by many gods (Lucian. Iuppiter Tragoedus 14). It is only in Jewish and Christian literature (Apologists) that this concept is used to justify the rule ( monarchía) of a single deity. Philo [12] of Alexandria coined the terms δόξα πολύθεος/ dóxa polýtheos (Phil. De decalogo 65) and πολυθεΐα/ polytheḯa (Phil. De mutatione…

Votive offerings

(1,524 words)

Author(s): Renger, Johannes (Berlin) | Frateantonio, Christa (Gießen)
[German version] I. Ancient Near East and Egypt Votive offerings (VO) to a variety of deities played an important role in the religious practices of the Ancient Middle East and Egypt, as documented by inscriptions found on consecrated objects. In Mesopotamia, the oldest clearly identifiable VO date from the 24th cent. BC [14], and in Egypt from the prehistoric and Early Dynastic eras (end of the 4th/early 3rd millennia; e.g. the Narmer Palette). Most of the attested Mesopotamian offerings came from rule…

Rations

(515 words)

Author(s): Renger, Johannes (Berlin) | Schneider, Helmuth (Kassel)
[German version] I. Ancient Near East In the Ancient Near Eastern oikos or palace economy, the majority or (large) parts of the population were integrated into the institutional households of temples and/or palaces as direct dependents (the extent varied according to region and period). They were provided with the rations of natural produce (grain, oil, wool) guaranteeing them the level of subsistence necessary for their reproduction. In Mesopotamia, these rations of produce were in part supplemented, and in certain periods replaced, by the allocation of areas of land ( c. 6 ha.) as…

Leek

(608 words)

Author(s): Renger, Johannes (Berlin) | Hünemörder, Christian (Hamburg)
and other Alliaceae [German version] I. Mesopotamia, Egypt, Asia Minor The numerous Sumerian and Akkadian expressions for Alliaceae, not all of which can be definitely botanically identified, partly refer only to the subspecies leek, shallot, onion or garlic [1. 301]. Leek in its various forms - Sumerian *karaš, Akkadian kar( a) šu, Hebrew kārēš, Aramaic karrāttā, Arabic kurrāṯu - is a word of Oriental culture. Garlic is in Sumerian, sum, Akkadian šūmū, otherwise in Semitic languages ṯūm; the onion is in Akkadian šamaškillū, in Aramaic šmšgl (also as an ideogram in Pahlavi); the…

Deluge, legend of the

(716 words)

Author(s): Renger, Johannes (Berlin) | Stenger, Jan (Kiel)
[German version] I. Ancient Orient In Mesopotamia, the legend of the deluge is preserved in a Sumerian as well as an Akkadian version; the Akkadian one is transmitted in 17th-cent. BC copies of the  Atraḫasīs myth[3. 612-645]. Extensive passages reappear verbatim on the 11th tablet of the recension of the Epic of  Gilgamesh from Niniveh [3. 728-738], and the myth is later also transmitted by  Berosus [1. 20 f.]. The gods perceive the noisy behaviour of the humans as hubris, causing them to eliminate …

Interest

(2,129 words)

Author(s): Renger, Johannes (Berlin) | Andreau, Jean (Paris)
[German version] I. Ancient Orient and Egypt The early Mesopotamian documents (24th-21st cents. BC) that refer to  loans and advances from institutional bodies to private individuals allow us to surmise that interest was calculated, though without our being able to make any observations about the rates of interest. Instead of being made to pay interest, the debtor was often obliged to undertake agricultural work for the creditor [10. 117]. In the Early Babylonian period (19th-17th cents. BC) a sharp distinction was drawn between loans of grain (331/3 %) and loans of silver (20%…
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