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The Royal Chronicle of Lagaš

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Mask of a Sumerian. Louvre, Paris (France). Photo Jona Lendering.
Mask of a Sumerian
(Louvre)
The Royal Chronicle of Lagaš is a fragment of a Babylonian chronicle and appears to be some sort of addition to the Sumerian King List, which does not the city of Lagaš. The text is written in Sumerian.

For a very brief introduction to the literary genre of chronicles, go here. More information can be found in Jean-Jacques Glassner, Mesopotamian Chronicles (Atlanta, 2004), in which this is text CM 6.

Translation

After the Flood had swept over and caused the destruction of the earth, when the permanence of humanity had been assured and its descendants preserved, when the black-headed people had risen up again from their clay, and when, humanity's name having been given and government having been established, [the gods] An and Enlil had not yet caused kingship, crown of the cities, to come down from heaven, and by Ningirsu, they had not yet put in place the spade, the hoe, the basket, nor the plow that turns the soil, for the countless throng of silent people - at that time the human race in its carefree infancy had a hundred years. Coming into an advanced age, it had another hundred years. But without the ability to carry out the required work, its numbers decreased, decreased greatly. In the sheepfolds, its sheep and goats died out.

At this time, water was short in Lagaš, there was famine in Girsu. Canals were not dug, vast lands were not irrigated by a shadoof, abundant water was not used to dampen meadows and fields, because humanity counted on rainwater. Ašnan did not bring forth dappled barley, no furrow was plowed nor bore fruit! No land was worked nor bore fruit! No country or people made libations of beer or wine, [...] sweet wine [...], to the gods. No one used the plow to work the vast lands.

(...)

The canals [...]. Their fields [...]. In order to dig the canals, in order to dredge the irrigation ditches, in order to irrigate the vast lands by a shadoof, in order to utilize abundant water so that the meadows and fields were moistened, An and Enlil put a spade, a hoe, a basket, a plow, the life of the land, at the disposal of the people. After this time, human beings gave all their attention to making the barley grow. Before the Young Lady, in front of her they stood upright, ready to work. Day and night, whenever necessary, they were attentive. They bowed down before Ašnan who produces barley seed and began to work. Before Ašnan who produces the late barley, they [...].

(...)

[...] reigned [...].

Igi-huš[...] dug the canal ["..."]; he reigned 2,760 years.

En-a-kigala-guba, whose god was [...], dug the canal "He bend an ear to Sirara"; he reigned 1,200 years. At that time there was still no writing [...], no canals were dug, no baskets were carried. At that time, in the manner of a royal [...], humanity presented offerings of polished gold, red, [...].  The faithful shepherd brought forth [...] to the [...] people, the steward offered him fish.

En-Ningirsu-ki'ag, son of En-a-kigala-guba, reigned 1,230 years.

Ur-Baba, son of En-Ningirsu-ki'ag, reigned 900 years.

Agal, whose god was Igalim, reigned 660 years.

KUe, son of Agal, reigned 1,200 years.

Ama-alim, son of KUe, reigned 600 years.

Dan[...] reigned [...] years.

[...] reigned [...] years.

A[...] reigned [...] years.

'A[...], son of [...], reigned [...] years.

[...] dug canal ["..."]; he reigned [...] years.

[...], son of [...], dug the Eminent canal, the ["..."] canal, the "Canal that moves like a lion", the ["..."] canal, the "Lion Canal" at the mouth of the Royal Canal, the canal "Field, heaven's delight", the ["..."] canal, and the canal "Choice of Nanše". To take care, alone, of the vast watered areas, he dug irrigation ditches [...]. He reigned 2,220 years.

Ur-Nanše, son of [...]ma, who built E-sirara, the residence that was his heart's joy, and Sirara, his beloved city, reigned 1,080 years.

Ane-tum, son of Ur-Nanše, on the [...] on which the gods stood upright, the [...] of Enlil [...], whose god was Šulutula, reigned 690 years.

[...]gibil, son of Ane-tum, reigned N+360 years.

En-entar-zi, whose god was Mes-an-DU, seed of days of old who grew up with the city, reigned 990 years.

[...]enda-insi, son of En-entar-zi, dug the "Ferocious lion" canal and canal "[...] is canal inspector"; his god was Mes-an-Du. His king Ningirsu enjoined him to build his temple; he reigned 960 years.

En-Enlile-su reigned 600 years.

En[...], the son of En-Enlile-su, whose god was Ninasu, reigned 660 years.

[...]du reigned 1,110 years.

Puzur-Ninlil reigned Nx60+1 years.

En-Mes-an-DU, son of Puzur-Ninlil, whose god was [...],reigned 120 years.

Dadu, son of En-Mes-an-DU, reigned 160 years.

TUG-GUR, the son of Dadu, reigned 160 years.

La[...] reigned 120 years.

Puzur-Mama, Ninki's scribe, whose goddess was Zazaru, reigned [...] years.

LAM-KU-nigina, Puzur-Mama's administrator, the one who constructed the wall of Girsu, his residence, and the Tiraš palace in Lagaš, reigned 280 years.

Hengal, son of LAM-KU-nigina, whose god was [...]-bilsag, reigned 140 years.

[...], son of Hengal, reigned 144 years.

Ur-Nin-MAR.KI, scribe and expert [...], whose gods were Haya and Nisaba, reigned N+20 years.

Ur-Ningirsu, son of Ur-Nin-MAR.KI, reigned Nx60 years.

Ur-Baba, scribe of Ur-Ningirsu, the one who [...] in the assembly, reigned N+30 years.

Gudea, younger brother of Ur-Baba, [...] who was not the son of either his mother or father, reigned [...] years.

Written in the Academy. Praise to Nisaba.

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Online 2006
Latest revision: 31 March 2006
 
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