Cuneiform Texts and the Writing of History (Approaching the by Marc Van de Mieroop

By Marc Van de Mieroop

Cuneiform Texts and the Writing of heritage discusses how the ample Mesopotamian cuneiform textual content assets can be utilized for the research of varied elements of heritage: political, social, financial and gender. Marc Van De Mieroop offers a student-friendly creation to the topic and:* criticises disciplinary methodologies that are frequently knowledgeable by way of a wish to write a historical past of occasions* scrutinises the highbrow heritage of historic writings* examines how Mesopotamia's place because the 'other' in Classical and Biblical writings has encouraged scholarship* illustrates ways with examples taken from the whole lot of Mesopotamian historical past.

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Most often the use of cuneiform only survived temporarily outside the periods of direct Mesopotamian contacts, but sometimes the technique was adapted for the recording of the local language, survived, and developed independently. The regions involved were western Iran, Anatolia, Syria-Palestine and Egypt. In western Iran we see a use of cuneiform writing to record the local Elamite language that parallels what we see in Mesopotamia proper. Politically and culturally the regions were closely related, and thus it is not such a surprise that changes in the local Elamite script reflect those seen in Mesopotamia.

The discussion above has focused on the material from Mesopotamia itself, which indeed dominates the cuneiform record. But the writing system was exported to other regions of the Middle East through processes of political expansion and cultural influence. Most often the use of cuneiform only survived temporarily outside the periods of direct Mesopotamian contacts, but sometimes the technique was adapted for the recording of the local language, survived, and developed independently. The regions involved were western Iran, Anatolia, Syria-Palestine and Egypt.

The final category in Grayson’s account is the purely mythological, including such texts as the Creation myth (Enuma elish), the myth of Anzu, and the tale of Nergal and Ereshkigal. Even stories of this nature have been included as historical sources by some scholars. Thus the famous flood story has been seen as a metaphoric remembrance of the invasion of the Mesopotamian lowlands by Amorite nomads in the twenty-eighth or twenty-seventh centuries (cf. Renger 1996:43). ru, and the Akkadian name of a group of nomads, Amurru, were sustainable, it would clearly tell us very little of historical value.

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