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The Dynastic Chronicle (ABC 18)

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  The Dynastic Chronicle (ABC 18) is one of the historiographical texts from ancient Babylonia. Although it is called a chronicle, it is, in fact, a king list written on six columns. It starts with the antediluvian rulers and continued until at least the eighth century.

For a very brief introduction to the literary genre of chronicles, go here. The translation on this webpage was adapted from A.K. Grayson, Assyrian and Babylonian Chronicles (1975). Additions have been published by I. Finkel in the Journal of Cuneiform Studies 32 (1980), 65-80. More information can be found in Jean-Jacques Glassner, Mesopotamian Chronicles (Atlanta, 2004).

The text of the Akitu Chronicle is preserved on three fragments (called A, B, and C; indicated as yellow, pink, blue), which do not join but appear to belong to one, large tablet. The match is discussed at some length by Grayson. Restoration of the missing parts is facilitated by the existence of parallel texts (e.g., the Sumerian King List) and several repetitive formulas.
 
Column 1
Column 2
Column 4
Column 5
Column 6

Translation of Column 1

Lacuna (six lines?)
[Lost] [1] After the kingship descended from heaven, the kingship was in Eridu.
[Lost] Eridu, Alulim became king; he ruled for N years.
[Lost] Alaljar ruled for N years.
[Lost] Two kings of the dynasty of Eridu ruled for N years.
[Lost] They were called Kings from Heaven.
[Lost] Bad-tibira, Enmenluana ruled for N years.
A1' Enmegalanna ruled for N years.
A2' Dumuzi, the shepherd, ruled for N years.
A3' Three kings of the dynasty of Bad-tibira ruled for N years.
A4' The dynasty of Bad-tibira was terminated, its kingship was transferred to Sippar.
A5' Sippar, Enmeduranna ruled for N years.
A6' One king of the dynasty of Sippar ruled for N years.
A7' The dynasty of Sippar was terminated, its kingship transferred to to Larak.
A8' Larak, Ensipazianna ruled for N years.
A9' One king of the dynasty of Larak ruled for N years.
A10' The dynasty of Larak was terminated, its kingship transferred to Šuruppak.
A11' Šuruppak, Ubartutu ruled for N years.
A12' Ziusudra, son of Ubartutu, ruled for N years.
A13' Two kings of the dynasty of Šuruppak ruled for N years.
A14' Five cities, nine kings ruled for N years.
A15' Enlil [...] [2]
A16' Enlil [...]
A17'-18' The uproar [...]
A19' [...]
Lacuna
B1' [...]
B2' [...]
B3' [...]
Lacuna

Translation of Column 2

Lacuna
1' [...] [3]
2' Balihu, son of ditto, [...]
3' Enmennunna [...]
4' Melamkiššu [...]
Lacuna

Column 3 is completely missing.

Note 1:
These six lines are based on the Sumerian King List.

Note 2:
The Sumerian King List adds at this point "The Flood swept thereover". King Ziusudra is the hero of the Sumerian Deluge Story, the Eridu Genesis.

Note 3:
These kings belong to the so-called Dynasty of Kiš.

Assyrian and
Babylonian Chronicles

Literature

to part two (columns 4-6) >>

Online 2006
Latest revision: 12 May 2007
 
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