Notes on a new volume of old Assyrian texts.
The Prague collection of ca. 420 texts (numbers I 426-847), eight of which are now missing (for a few, transliterations made by L. Matous could be used) and a further nine of which are forgeries, goes back to the archaeological activities of Bedrich Hrozny, who excavated at Kultepe in 1925. Detailed information on their origin is missing, but it is clear that the group comprises both tablets excavated in Kultepe and documents purchased there or elsewhere in Turkey. Evidence for the former are texts which can be joined with those excavated and published in ICK I and II, such as KKS 4 + ICK II 189 + Ka 519; KKS 38 + Ka 630 + ICK II 39; KKS 45b + ICK I 46 + II 76/77; I 513 + ICK II 221; I 579 + ICK II 10 (case); I 588 + (case) ICK II 160 + 162 (case); I 536 duplicates ICK II 145. More examples are now listed by G. Kryszat in Veenhof AV, 268-73. Purchased texts include those belonging to "old" archives, such as that of Pushuken, discovered by local diggers during the first decades of the previous century, and the forgeries.
Due to the nature of the excavations and to the loss of documentation on the find-spots of many tablets (see the remarks in ICK II, 5 and the observations in Larsen 1982), and the lack of information on the origin of those purchased, assigning the Prague tablets to individual archives is an important but difficult task. The introduction to this volume takes an important step in that direction by linking about one hundred and fifty documents with particular traders, families, files, or archives, notably those of Imdilum (at least sixty texts), Innaja (ca. thirty-five texts), and Pushuken (ca. forty texts). This information is supplemented by notes on individual texts, which offer prosopographic information and mention parallel or related documents.
The texts of Pushuken (1) can now be used for a full edition of his correspondence and a study of his business and family firm (also after his death--see below on I 680), a project planned and prepared long ago by the reviewer and to be completed in the near future by J. G. Dercksen. The documents from and about Innaja, son of Elali, are a welcome addition to Michel 1991. The archive of Imdilum, partly excavated by Hrozny, analyzed by Larsen 1982, and reconstructed and edited in Ichisar 1981, is now in need of a completely new reconstruction, which should incorporate not only the new texts from the volume under review, but also those in Istanbul, edited by Donbaz in KTS II (1989), those in Berlin published by the reviewer in VS 26 (1991), and those scattered in various other recent text publications. My remarks will not dwell on problems of archival assignment and reconstruction, since these will be the focus of a forthcoming review by J. G. Dercksen.
The texts are presented in a sequence based not on typology (letters, contracts, judicial records, memos, etc.), prosopography, or archival origin, but on their collection numbers (I 426ff.). This practical solution is debatable, but must have been suggested by the fact that at least sixty of the tablets are already known by their I-numbers (from quotations, in sixteen cases of the complete text of a tablet, mostly by L. Matous). Moreover, any typological and archival arrangement would leave unclassifiable texts and fragments. Since the sealed contracts of the collection were published separately (KKS), those in the volume under review contain only a small number of eponym datings, notably a few memorandums (I 427 and 438) and a dozen debt-notes in the form of tablets without envelopes. (2) The years attested range from no. 78 to no. 133 of the new Old Assyrian Eponym List (Veenhof 2002), with the earliest years in the memorandum I 427 and the latest in I 438: 46 and I 446: 39.
The volume is well organized and nicely printed, and typographical errors are rare (I 440: 26, ma-su; I 639: 1": sa-pi-ik). On plate LXVI the numbers I 531 and 532 should be exchanged. What is shown on pl. XCVII as the damaged reverse of I 642 is ignored on p. 223, but appears on p. 226 as the reverse of I 645, which cannot be true, since this tablet is said to be an "einseitiges Fragment."
In what is primarily a text edition, the interpretative notes to individual texts are understandably selective and usually short. But they contain a lot of welcome prosopographical data, accessible through the huge index of personal names. Interesting new or rare names are Adad-ribi, Ennum-Assur son of Sarrum-kin (LUGALGI.NA), Assur-nemedi, Assur-GA-DI-ka, Emqum, Ersummalik, DINGIR-mudammiq, Istar-puzri, Kutbakanum, Ledis-Istar, Paspasum, and Samas-dugul. The rapid increase of such data (also through recent editions of texts in Ankara) makes a comprehensive prosopographical data bank an urgent desideratum. New geographical names are BA-GA-ri-me (occurs with Puhidar), mat El-me-el-me, Hab/pnuk "on the river bank," Harg/ka (a source of wool), and ... haz/sum (between Assur and Qattara).
The notes also contain many lexical observations which have been digested into a word index (pp. 407f.) containing several new or rare items (at least for Old Assyrian): ana abi, arinis, aZuraru, bardi/utum, garisum, hamasum, hirimmum, issabtam rasaum, isi u qatia, iskarum, kakardinnum, g/kamarum, kul(l)itannum, murappidum, padallum, qaddusum (with taqdisum), sakkukum, sallutum, taksirtum, turuhtannum, uqru atum, ziadum. Remove, however, we asum, since I 687: 15 (and parallels) has to be interpreted as u essanumma, "and anew."
Even a team of experts encounters problems in reading and interpreting the at times difficult or damaged Old Assyrian documents. The following notes on individual texts offer the reader a number of observations, proposals, and corrections, which resulted from the study of this stimulating volume.
I 428: 16: perhaps rather "our naruqqu-capital is sufficient" (imassi); 44: lu niati zuza, perhaps "it truly belongs to us; divide (it)."
I 430: 9f., 14: in view of the context I would rather expect a meaning "to earn a profit, to grow" for isabtam rasa um, which suggests a link between isabtum and the verb wasabum; cf. itertum from watarum?
I 437: 33: atta ma-la-ak is probably for malaka, "it is up to you."
I 438: 46: the eponym is a very late one, ca. five years before the end of level II of karum Kanish, which is confirmed by the prosopography: in line 39 we find a grandson of Pushuken.
I 439: 19: I assume that pat utum means "far off" (as in umu patiutum, "long-term"), hence not involved and impartial, like the more frequent qualification ahiutum, "outsiders," used of members of a team of inspectors or arbitrators. In 22 simam esarum means "to fix a price."
I 440: 25f.: "Is your father's house unable to feed you?"; 32: isi u qatia, cf. TC 3, 66: 22, i-su E abikunu; 36: perhaps 1! GIN.TA.
I 441: 24: read (with the translation) [l]a-si-ma.
I 442: 19 saqil da-ti-ni = datim + ni of the subjunctive, "(since) he is a 'datum-payer'." This reference confirms the special status of traders so designated (see Veenhof 1972: 274ff.), who are also referred to as "men with an account" (awilum sa nikkassi) in the karum-office.
I 443: 13: read ik-ri u-la-![ka-i-ni], "deny or acknowledge it to me."
I 444 18f.: "(if) they seize you, may the oath (= curse) you swear come upon me!"
I 445: 4ff.: the same three persons are involved in a legal dispute in ICK I, 2.
I 446: 34: that a debt-note and its quittance (tuppum sa saba e) cancel each other out, is expressed by "one tablet will smash the other" (tuppum tuppam imahhas), which suggests physical destruction of the written evidence.
I 447:13: "you must stay in the City and ..."; 21-24 are difficult: in 24 u-sa-bi-e-ma must be a verbal form with the acc. suffix 1st pers. sing., "he satisfied me and"; 26f. is probably a saying or proverb: "A man who finds money also finds brotherhood"; 34 end: supply [epusma].
I 466: 2'f.: "there is plenty of silver (to be borrowed) at an interest of (only) 5 shekels per mina (per year?)," which is a rate of only 8 1/2 percent per year.
I 447: 23: read certainly ana sep ummianika mu-<qu>-ut-ma, "throw yourself at the feet of your principal"; no OA occurrences of this expression are recorded in CAD M/1, 242,c, but note kt n/k 128: 10: ana sep tamkarim nimtaqqutma, and kt 92/k 176: 21f.: e-ni-na!(MA)-ma ana sep PN amqut, "have mercy on me (eninamma); I have thrown myself at the feet of PN"; 25 end: probably di-<i>n, "sell."
I 475: 15ff.: correct the translation, because the subject of erabum is not the debtor "entering" as pledge into debt-servitude, but the creditor, who stipulates his right to borrow from a money-lender what is owed to him by a defaulting debtor, see Veenhof 1999: 66ff.
I 479: 10: if reading and emendation are correct, the translation should be "the god has indeed rejected me and...." The writer probably wanted to say "God truly knows (is my witness) that this is true...." The difficult husahham a-BA-is in line 19 is not translated.
I 483: 14f.: the parallel in I 523: 17f. shows that the golden cup serves as a pledge.
I 489: 25: the parallel letter VAS 26, 13 suggests restoring [4 2/]3 mana. The text and its parallel mention payments to three limu-eponyms, but Assur-dan (line 28) does not occur in the eponym list.
I 491: the case of this tablet is ICK II, 52 (Kryszat).
I 495: 19: from Ka 1044 it is clear that the person to whom goods are entrusted is Puzur-Assur, who is also the subject of "I entrusted" in I 471: 24.
I 499: 25, 31: the iterative form here and in similar contexts refers to repeated or continued attempts to achieve something. Line 28 means "that I offer him 1 mina of silver (the remainder of the debt), but that he...."
I 500: see also L. Matous in Rocznik Orientalistyczny 41 (1980): 74.
I 501: 32: rather [i]p-qi-[id].
I 502: 23f.: muri qablitim, whatever its precise meaning, refers to a buyer, see TC 2, 2: 12f. and the remarks by Garelli in RA 58 (1964): 127f. on line 5.
I 517: 12': see Veenhof 1972: 409f. for this use of be alu (N-stem!) + ablative accusative, and translate "may (the silver you will send me) not be at your disposal for one year."
I 519: 12: perhaps better E! karim.
I 521: 12: another example (see also AKT 3, 47: 29, CCT 4, 27a: 15 and many unpublished occurrences) of suffixed -BA (summa-BA, minam-BA, missu-BA, etc.) which gives particular emphasis to a question or statement: "why, then, did you not...."
I 525: 20': parallels (CCT 3, 16a: 12; 34a: 27f.; 4, 3b: 15) suggest a reading [ma-a]l-a-nu-um (adverb) pakunu di[na-su-um], "promise him full compensation in/for the gold."
I 537: 17f.: note that six donkeys, taken as security (kata um) by a plaintiff, are used by him for the transport (zabalum) of salt. Lines 25-31 show the contrast between ka unum + personal dative (ana) + personal object (suffix), to express that a person sued presents to his plaintiff the person who is actually liable or can bring proof, and the Dt-stem kuta unum isti PN, to express that the latter person himself confronts the plaintiff and provides him with the evidence asked for.
I 544: the case of this tablet is ICK II 206 (Kryszat).
I 574: 4: either adi 20-[su] or adi [20.sup.[es-ra]]; cf. I 637: 23; 2', "wenn sie mit euch streiten."
I 554: 13f.: for the conditions for contracting an OA attorney, see RIA 8 (1993-97): 182f.
I 577: 9-13: istena (without mimation) must be distributive, "each one (servant)"; cf. BIN 4, 158: 5; BIN 6, 114: 20; EL 287: 30; TC 1, 43: 30; and ZA 72 (1982): 105. In 13 ezziba is most probably an imperative of the D-stem, used because of the plural subject.
I 580: improved edition of KKS, pp. 80f.; in 13 the best reading is su-mi! PN ... ilapputu, "they will book in PN's name."
I 588: the case ICK II, 162 shows that the two persons mentioned in lines 4f. are brothers, sons of Sal-ma-[sup.d]IM = Salamadad (cf. Salmah for Salim-ahum).
I 591: see also L. Matous, ArOr 46 (1978): 218 n. 9. The occurrence of the (anonymous) successor of the previous eponym in the seventh month of the year is exceptional.
I 597: 7f.: perhaps mala a-wa-at tamkarim.... lepus-ma a-ba-r[i-ni] lu?-si-a-am, "I will act in accordance with the order of the trader (boss), so that (results) may come forth for our common benefit."
I 600: 13ff.: presumably "32 shekels (of silver) per 1 mina (invested) accrued to me and I collected. My share (kisdatum) in the yield of the wool of Harka was 3 5/6 minas (of silver)." The wool invested hence amounted to one talent. See for the rendering of ana ab/pi as "per," the note on I 607: 17, KTB 3: 9f. and CCT 4, 23a: 6.
I 609: 4: see for sakkukum also CAD S, 363.d.
I 633: the file dealing with Puzur-Assur's inheritance also includes AKT 1, 10; CCT 6, 15a and 30a; LB 1284; TPK 1, 190 (with its case 186!); and BIN 6, 188, which is a duplicate of I 633. Variants in BIN 6, 188 are: 13, Wa-ah-; 15, tup-pe-e lu ta-ma-la-ke-e; 25f. are duplicated and restored by OIP 27, 57 and CCT6, 15a; 12': taag-. Lines 4'b-8'a in I 633 are a parenthesis and the sentence continues with a repeated maskatti at the end of 8'.
I 637: 28: mala luqutum illuku means "(for) how much the merchandise goes" and refers to the current price. Once he learns it, the writer will send that amount of silver to Assur.
I 638: 7': translate "lest they come and sell them for a low price" (a-batqim): 17': probably [n]a-pa-al-tu-su, "his answer."
I 641: 16'f.: perhaps [sa]-la-as-tu-ma tuppen [u-la-p]i-ta-ku-um, "I wrote you no fewer than three letters."
I 642: the reverse of this damaged tablet is edited as the reverse of I 645; 11': "Sein (investiertes) Gold wird kein Gewinn [erzielen]."
I 645: 6, 11: not a "besondere Verwendungsweise der Negation e," since e-2 stands for essina < el-sina, "apart from two (shekels of silver)." Assimilated el- is a short form of ellan-, attested in forms like ellanukka, "beside you." Compare e-sa sattim isten, AKT 3, 62: 8; e-l GU; TC 3, 44: rev. 4'; e-ku-nu-ti; ICK 1, 14: 4, "apart from you"; and kt 92/k 207: 40: e-sa-du-a-tim sa ... mimma saddu atam watartam la isu. Note the spelling i-la-nu-ka, "but for you," in I 482: 15'.
I 650, 11ff.: a nice example of a solemn statement under oath, expressed by pum ikribam ublam (the same in CCT 4, 21a: 28, as a proof of resentment), also expressed ikribam ina pim nada um (AKT 3, 63: 13f., Ntn-stem!); ikribum ina pim wasa um + personal dative (KTS 15, 25, mahar ilim; kt n/k 1452: 20f.); and mahar ilim ikribam sakanum (kt n/k 67: 9f.; Donbaz in VeenhofAV, 90). Note that this statement can be a promissory or asservative oath or even a curse. Since an oath is sworn, the verbal form in line 18 is probably in the subjunctive i-su-a-[ku-ni].
I 651: 12'ff.: note the oath by Assur, Ana, the ruler, and the rabi sikkatim, sworn by Assyrians, perhaps because, as the authors suggest (p. xviii n. 46), the divorce between Pushuken and his wife Lamassi recorded in this tablet was effectuated in Anatolia. Notwithstanding this (rather surprising) divorce, Pushuken probably still designates Lamassi as "wife" in TC 1, 30: 4, where he writes about her death.
I 663: 14: the person who enters another man's service in exchange for an interest-free loan of half a mina of silver, if he breaks his contract (samahum) and returns the capital, is still obliged to serve or support (qatam sabatum; see reviewer in Akkadica 94/5 : 35) his boss for five years. A similar arrangement is probably to be found in I 729, where, after the silver borrowed has been returned, "he (the boss/creditor) will hold his hand for twelve years." Such heavy penalties reflect concern about caravan personnel leaving their job by returning their loan.
I 1670: 5'-11': kiamma also means "just," "simply" (see RA 70 : 33); kiamma tadanum, "to give simply," contrasts with habbulum, "to give as interest-bearing loan" (fine 8').
I 680: 13f.: a letter of Pushuken's daughter Ahaha, which belongs to the large (now thirty documents) and interesting file on the financial consequences of Pushuken's death. Ahaha's emotion, having discovered that "all of our father's fortune has been spent," makes this an interesting document also from a lexical point of view (the verb zi adum, ca. "to refuse," discussed by the authors). The restoration and meaning of ana karsisu kabasum is less convincing, because karsum is "belly" not "heart" (it might perhaps refer to Buzazu's wish "to fill his belly" instead of giving his sister what she is entitled to) and the reading [ik-b]u-sa-ni is not supported by the copy (see BU in lines 10-11). One might also think of emasum D-stem, discussed in the comments on I 603: 16. Note also paranomastic halluqam rabiam halluqum, "to cause a great ruin."
I 681 : the case of this tablet is ICK II, 272 (Kryszat).
I 681: 4: there are problems with the figures recorded in this document, as is often the case with such calculations. It seems likely that 42(!) textiles came out of the palace: 49 minus 2 1/2 given as excise and 4 1/2 (!, so with the copy) as pre-emption or tithe, although the amount of the balancing payments remain odd. Giving 2 1/2 textiles as excise instead of 2.45 (= 5% of 49), with balancing payment of 1 1/2 shekel, yields a price of 30 shekels apiece, but a tithe of 4 1/2 textiles instead of 4.65 (10% of 49 minus 2 1/2), with a balancing payment of 3/4 shekel, yields a price of 5 shekels apiece! In any case, the operations described in lines 11ff. refer to what happened to the 42(?) textiles after they had been cleared in the palace. On the basis of the figures given in lines 11-18 it is also likely that 36 (or 37, if one maintains the figure of 43 in line 4) textiles and one donkey remained in line 25.
I 684: this is a commercial loan of a specific type, as discussed in Veenhof 1999: 70f. The creditor probably makes silver available to a debtor on whom be already has a claim, hence the stipulation (lines 27f.) that the former's "hand rests on the silver" and that, on the return of the debtor from Assur, merchandise will be handed over (to the creditor) for the value of the loan.
I 684: this debt note is excerpted in the memorandum ICK II, 124: 1'-9', which adds the patronymic of the week eponym. While the original is dated to the eponymy of "the successor of Puzur-Nirah," whose name was not yet known in Anatolia, the later excerpt (line 6') mentions the new eponym (Amur-Assur), son of [Karria]), whose name had by then become known. This is further proof of this practice, which I first I noted in JEOL 2 (1983-84): 19, and which has to be taken into account when statistics on occurrences of "successor eponyms" are used for reconstructing the calendar (see my observations in Akkadica 119/120 : 143ff.).
I 685: the case of this tablet is ICK II, 31+34 (Kryszat). This debt-note has been excerpted in the memorandum ICK I, 187: 20-28, apparently from the unopened case, since the excerpt mentions patronymic not recorded on the tablet I 685.
I 688: 12: read probably [l]i-ba-am ... iddanam. For the same expression see line 23, where libbika dinam is ungrammatical and li-[bi.sub.4] probably reflects an expression like libbi la tulamman or libbi marus, not corrected when the writer switched to libbam (li-[bi.sub.4]-am!) dinam.
I 689: 19: read hubullam ina serika ... la-su-uh!, "I want to remove the burden of the debt from you"; cf. CCT 2, 30: 16, awatam isseria usuh, and L 29-588 = PAOT 29: 10(!), awilam lamnam isseria ushi.
I 709: 5: in view of the number of textiles, presumably 11! donkeys.
I 711: 12: awatuni rakba, also kt n/k 206: 11: awatni rakbat (courtesy S. Bayram), in a comparable context, but the exact meaning ("urgent," "riding" = "making progress," or "on top" = "successful") is not clear. Line 34f.: bastam jati tasakkini, with double object, "provide me with honor/vitality," also in kt m/k 135: 26: bastam ramakka sukun, and note also kt 74/k 2: 6 "assist ina bastika my representative."
I 716: 11f.: S. said "you have had my silver in your possession already a full year, and if you intend to keep it a additional five months, I will issue a valid debt-note," taking wasabum not as "to add (interest)," but as hendiadys in the combination wasabum+kallu um, "to keep longer
I 719: 15f.: kaspam kisdatia zuzma, "get the share of the silver to which I am entitled."
I 720: 10: kasapka 10 mana.TA ustanabsalakkum, the literal meaning of basalum S-stem, "to let cook, to melt," does not make sense here or elsewhere (kt c/k 47: 23: "five minas of silver from the merchandise of your father, which I myself usabsilu"; BIN 4, 157: 39, marnu atam nusabsilu). CAD B, 137, 8 and 9, proposes "to melt" with silver (now in I 483:18 with gold), and "to dye" with textiles as object, but I prefer a transferred meaning, "to produce" as result of commercial barter or conversion, presumably also when silver and gold are the object.
I 723: 23: litiktam (sa hurasim), probably rather "sample," which would also fit in CCT 5, 13a: 13 (said of meteoric iron). Is there a connection with litiktum in ARM 23, 90: 5, a tablet written assum ana litiktim amarim?
I 742: 2: awitum as the value of goods converted into silver also in TC 1, 70: 5. The awitum of a shipment consisting of 17 minas of silver and 2 minas of gold is 33 minas of silver.
I 751: a remarkable record that lists twenty persons by name, identified as judges or arbitrators, "men who passed a judgment" (da in dinim).
I 765: 1': in kt 88/k 1059: 1ff. (Donbaz, Veenhof AV, 92) the city also passes a verdict in the hamrum before 2 GIS.GAG.EN.GAL-en, which most probably, in view of the final -en, is a rare logographic writing for 2 sugarria en, the double weapon or symbol of the god Assur.
I 768: 15: since sasa um has a personal dative suffix, better "let him summon PN to you ... and make them swear the oath."
I 772: 6f.: sa qabi sa dannatim describes the contents of the tablet containers. They contain tablets recording "strong words spoken" (dannatam qaba um), see AKT 3, 49: 15; ICK 2, 145: 10f.; KTS 5a: 26; TC 1, 38 rev. 13. The term refers to "harsh conditions" set when a liability was denied and payment refused, whereupon a conditional "payment contract" (tarkistum) was made between creditor and debtor. See provisionally Veenhof 1999: 81.
I 796: 5': read muru[s] libbi.
I 804: an interesting record of expenses for transport from [Assur] via ... has/zum, Qattara, Apia (= Apum!), across the river (Euphrates), to Timilkia and Hurama. Ana tassiatim is better taken as "for/as means of transport," than as "transport costs." The loss (death) of a donkey ina GA-ZA-im hardly means "beim Anbinden," but perhaps refers to a geographical feature (cf. qasum, attested at Mari, "limite de la steppe"), or is instrumental, from kasa um, "to get cold."
I 837: for this text, also published as KKS no. 57 and in Kanissuwar: A Tribute to Hans Gustav Guterbock, ed. H. A. Hoffner and G. M. Beckman (Chicago, 1986), 141-50, see now the reviewer, in The Care of the Elderly in the Ancient Near East, ed. M. Stol and S. P. Vleming (Leiden, 1997), 146-57, where it figures as text A. Line 8: read ukassu, "they make profit" and in line 11 zittam isas[si], "'he demands his share." Line 12: i-di-nu-x must be an ancient mistake for i-du-nu, "they will sell"; lines 23 and 30: dagalum less "to demand" than "to own, to be entitled to."
(1) Veenhof 2002 now shows that his terms of office as week-eponym in the Assyrian colony at Kanish, mentioned p. xix n. 48, cover a period of no tess than sixteen years, between eponyms 83 and 98.
(2) A dozen others are dated by week-eponyms only or, in the Anatolian manner, give a season or festival as due dates.
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This is a review article of Kappadokische Keilschrifttafeln aus den Sammlungen der Karlsuniversitat Prag. By KARL HECKER, GUIDO KRYSZAT, and LUBOR MATOUS, Prague: FILOZOFICA FAKULTA, UNIVERZITA KARLOVA, 1998. Pp. xxiv + 408, plates.