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Assyrian Epic of Creation: Part 1

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Fifth Tablet of the Story of the Creation


He prepared the twin mansions of the great gods. He fixed the stars, even the twin-stars, to correspond with them. He ordained the year, appointing the signs of the Zodiac over (it). For each of the twelve months he fixed three stars, from the day when the year issues forth to the close. He founded the mansion of (the Sun-god) the god of the ferry-boat, that they might know their bonds, that they might not err, that they might not go astray in any way. He established the mansion of Bel and Ea along with himself. Moreover, he opened the great gates on either side, he strengthened the bolts on the left hand and on the right, and in the midst of it he made a staircase. He illuminated the Moon-god that he might be porter of the night and ordained for him the ending of the night that the day may be known, (saying:) "Month by month, without break, keep watch in thy disk. At the beginning of the month light up the night, announcing thy horns that the heaven may know. On the seventh day, (filling thy) disk thou shalt open indeed (its) narrow contraction. At that time the sun (will be) on the horizon of heaven at thy (rising). Thou shalt cut off its … (Thereafter) towards the path of the sun thou shalt approach. (Then) the contracted size of the sun shall indeed change (?) … seeking its path. … descend and pronounce judgment.

The rest of the obverse and the first three lines of the reverse are destroyed.


[First line of the next tablet:] When the assembly of the gods had heard him.

5. Fifth tablet of the (series beginning) "When on high."

6. The property of Assur-bani-pal the king of hosts, the king of Assyria.


143:1 Lu-masi, literally "the twin oxen," of which seven were reckoned.

143:2 Mizrâta, which is the same word as the mazzarôth of Job xxxviii. 32.

144:1 The mutilated condition of the tablet makes the translation of this line extremely doubtful. There may be a reference in it to the star Al-tar or Dapinu.

The sixth tablet missing

The Seventh Tablet of the Story of the Creation


At that time the gods in their assembly created (the beasts). They made perfect the mighty (monsters). They caused the living creatures (of the field) to come forth, the cattle of the field, (the wild beasts) of the field and the creeping things (of the field).  (They fixed their habitations) for the living creatures (of the field). They distributed (in their dwelling-places) the cattle and the creeping things of the city. (They made strong) the multitude of creeping things, all the offspring (of the earth).  …… in the assembly of my family. …… Ea the god of the illustrious face. … the multitude of creeping things did I make strong.  … the seed of Lakhama did I destroy.

The Following Fragment (K 3449) Belongs to the Story of the Creation, but its Position is Uncertain


The snare which they had made the gods beheld. They beheld also the bow, how it had been stored up. The work they had wrought they lay down, and Anu lifted (it) up in the assembly of the gods. He kissed the bow; it … and he addressed the arch of the bow, (saying) thus: "The wood I stretch once and yet again. The third time is the … of the star of the bow in heaven. I have established also the position of …  Since the fates" …

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