THE IDEA OF MAN AND DIVINITY IN ANTIQUITY PART I: Divine boats má dnin-líl-la and má-gur8 mah dEn-líl-lá dNin-líl in the light of Sumerian literary texts

Marcin Z. Paszke 1
1 - Uniwersytet Gdański
2014; 15 (3):
ICID: 1134321
Article type: Original article
IC™ Value: 3.00
Abstract provided by Publisher
The article refers to the two so-called divine boats: the first dedicated to the goddess Ninlil (má dnin-líl-la), the second dedicated to the divine couple, Enlil and Ninlil (má-gur8 mah dEn-líl-lá dNin-líl). These ceremonial barges are known from Sumerian cuneiform sources, attested mainly in the reign of the Third Dynasty of Ur (2123–2004 BC). Texts related to the divine boats testify that they were made of precious materials and stand out from ordinary vessels, since their main purpose was to carry statues of particular gods and cultic offerings respectively. The paper tries to summarize knowledge about those objects, focusing on their relation to cultic festivals and riverine pilgrimages performed in Nippur and Tummal. These cultic activities speak about the traditional mythological motif focused on the vivid plot in which Ninlil was seduced by Enlil in Tummal. All textual sources prompt to the conclusion that the divine boats played an important role in cultic performance mirroring a well-defined mythological reality.
DOI: 10.5604/20842937.1134321

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