Sumerian Epics and Myths

TitleSumerian Epics and Myths
Publication TypeBook
Year of Publication1934
AuthorsChiera, Edward
Series TitleOriental Institute Publications
Series Volume15
PublisherThe University of Chicago Press

Our knowledge of man’s past can be increased by two main approaches. On the one hand, scientifically controlled excavations show by stratum the progress of civilization. On the other hand, materials already safely housed in museums must be published and made accessible for detailed study. This is notably true of written records. Dependable reproductions of these involve extreme accuracy and rare skill. Both of these qualities were possessed by Edward Chiera. He had long been deeply interested in the cuneiform tablets found by the University of Pennsylvania at Nippur in ancient Babylonia and had participated in making them public. At his death some additional volumes were practically ready for press and had been delayed only by his conscientious effort to correlate all the known parallels. The present volume contains his facsimiles of Sumerian epics and myths. Texts here reproduced add especially to our knowledge of the ancient epic of Gilgamesh, of myths concerning Sumerian deities, and of early “wisdom literature.”