When in the height heaven was not named, and the earth beneath did not yet bear a name, and the primeval Apsu, who begat them... Full text of the Enuma Elish.
|The Enuma Elish|
|SERMONS, ESSAYS AND OPINIONS||
The Enûma Elish has about a thousand lines and is recorded in Akkadian on seven clay tablets. The majority of Tablet V has never been recovered, but aside from this lacuna the text is almost complete.
This epic is one of the most important sources for understanding the Babylonian worldview, centered on the supremacy of Marduk and the existence of mankind for the service of the gods. Its primary original purpose is to elevate Marduk, the chief god of Babylon, above other Mesopotamian gods.
The Enûma Elish has existed in various versions and copies from Babylonia as well as from Assyria. The version from Ashurbanipal's library dates to the 7th century BC. The story itself probably dates to the eighteenth century BC on account of the fact that this is the time when the god Marduk seemed to have a prominent status. Some scholars date it later (14th to 12th centuries BC).
Summary of the myth
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