Babylonia map (at the time of Hammurabi)

The Chronicle of Aššur-reš-iši is a fragment of an Assyrian chronicle; the tablet was found in Aššur. It describes the war of king Aššur-reš-iši (r.1133-1115) against the Babylonian king Ninurta-nadin-šumi (r.1132-1126).


[1′] […]

… against them … their … an alliance … the merchants … he inflicted a defeat on them.


[2′] … conquest. Aššur-reš-iši, king of Assyria, … in this fortress … the residence of Aššur, his lord, … of bronze … the towns … the majesty of Aššur … of his bravery … and the lands of Assyria … the sides ….


[3′] … the lands … the other side … he killed. … the desert … he killed. That year, Aššur-reš-iši, king of Assyria, took his soldiers and his chariots and marched on Arbela. Ninurta-nadin-šumi, the king of Karduniaš, heard of the march of Aššur-reš-iši, king of Assyria. He [recalled?] his troops. The forces and the king of Karduniaš fled … with hum … he sent … against …


The Chronicle of Tiglath-Pileser I is a tablet from Aššur that contained an Assyrian chronicle; the Chronicle of Enlil-nirari may have been part of the same tablet. It describes the unfriendly relations between Assyria, the Aramaeans, and Babylonia during the last years of the reign of Tiglath-pileser I (r.1115-1076).


[1′] […]


[2′-9′] In the limmu-ship of …, the people ate one another’s flesh to save their lives. Like a flood’s ravaging water the Aramaean “houses” increased, plundered the crops of Assyria, conquered and took many fortified cities of Assyria.

People fled toward the mountains of Habruri to save their lives. The Aramaeans took their gold, their silver, and their possessions. Marduk-nadin-ahhe, king of Karduniaš, died.note
Marduk-šapik-zeri entered upon his father’s throne. Eighteen years of reign of Marduk-nadin-ahhe.


[10′-13′] In the limmu-ship of …, all the harvest of Assyria was ruined. The Aramaean tribes increased and seized the bank of the Tigris. They plundered … Idu, the district of Nineveh, Kilizi. In that year, Tiglath-pileser I, king of Assyria, marched to Katmuhu.

[14′] […]

CM 41 (Chroniques Mésopotamiennes 41): fragmentary text that appears to belong to the Chronicle of Early Kings (ABC 20).

Fragment A

[A.i.1′-3′] […] the temple of Ninurta […] he […], lavishly, the arm […]. He erected […] to the astonishment of all the people.

[A.i.4′-10′] […] king of Isin, the sukkalmah, Lipit-Ištar, […] offered sacrifices to Enlil and himself saying: “May it be so!” He came, bearing his official sacrifices to the Ekur, his heavy tribute. Being in bed, he had a dream. Enlil having received […] he took […] not being able to approach.

[A.ii.1′-7′] Enlil […] did not […] the king […] when […] before […] territory […] in front

[A.iii.1′-4′] […] for […] his wall […]

[A.iv.1′-9′] […] for […] bearer […] took fire and […] he set fire to that house […] Enlil went and […] having entered and [….] the fire to the […] he entered into Babylon and […]

Fragment B

[B.obv.i.1′-6′] […] he thus made […] them […] was changed […] and […] Enlil […]

[B.obv.ii.1′-8′] […] Isin […] Enlil-bani, the gardener, in the […] of Erra-imitti, in order to seize the throne […] clever and […] rose up and […] according to Enlil’s order […] note
[B.rev.ii.1′-6′] To obstruct the flow of the Tigris, […] Iluma-ilu, the enemy […] on the order of the great lord Enlil […] for the obstruction of the flow of the Tigris. […] Iluma-ilu, the enemy […] note
[Broken off]

Chroniques Mésopotamiennes 42 (CM 42) is a fragment of a larger chronicle on the Kings of the Sealand.


[1′] […] the decree

[2′] […] the chapels of Sin, Šamaš, and Adad […]

[3′] […] who gives the scepter, the throne and the mantle

[4′] […] his work, according to the decision of the great gods.

[5′] […] during the reign of Apil-Adad he governed the Sealand

[6′] […] he lifted up and the reign of Apil-Adad […] in the Sealand

[7′] […] whom Marduk cursed, up to the Sealand and […] of the Sealand

[8′] […] he assigned forced labor to Babylon, because of the throne […]

[9′] placed in the Ekur he told, he told the inhabitants

[10′] of Babylon, in the plain […]

[Broken off]]

Chroniques Mésopotamiennes 43 (CM 43) is a fragment of a larger chronicle dealing with Babylonian king Samsuiluna (r.1750-1712), the successor of Hammurabi.


[1′] […]

[2′-8′] […] signs […] that he poured on my head […] in anger […] will be furious at him […] answered them and […] made the unpleasant matter go away […] them, before Nuska and Girra […].

[9′-13′] Before Nuska, the sukkalmah, Samsuiluna […]. He did not attack nor […] of blood. His dagger did not […] you, you took wine […]

[Broken off]

Chroniques Mésopotamiennes 44 (CM 44) is a fragment of a larger chronicle dealing with Babylonian king Samsuiluna (r.1750-1712), the successor of Hammurabi.


[Column A] [Unintelligble]

[Column B] […] for […] Samsuiluna […] was given you […] If a favor was granted […]

[Broken off]

CM 48 (Chroniques Mésopotamiennes 48): chronicle of the reign of king Šulgi of Ue.

Translation obverse

[Obv] At the command of [the gods] Anu and Antu, I hope I may succeed in everything that I undertake and enjoy it fully.

[…] Ur-Nammu reigned eighteen years.note
The divine Šulgi, son of a daughter of king Utu-hegal of Uruk, with the blind Lu-Nanna, the scholar […] – there was spitefulness in their hearts! – improperly tampered with the rites of the cult of Anu, Uruk’s regulations, the secret knowledge of the wise, and put down in writing the forced labor exacted by Sin, lord of Ur.

During his reign, he composed untruthful stelae, insolent writings, concerning the rites of purification for the gods, and left them to posterity.

But Anu, the king, whose decisions are venerable, regared him with anger and […] his grave faults […] he covered his body with […].

Translation reverse

[Rev] […] predictions of Aku-batila […] have not […] the divine Šulgi reigned forty-eight years.note
Amar-Sin reigned nine years.note
Written according to its original, checked, revised, and edited.

Copy of a wooden tablet, property of Anu and Antu.

Tablet of Anu-aha-ušabši, son of Kidin-Ani, descendant of Ekur, zakir, the exorcist of Anu and Antu, the šešgallu-priest of the Bit-reši temple at Uruk.

Hand of Anu-balassu-iqbi, his son.

He wrote it to fulfill his education, the long duration of his days, his life, the perpetuity of his office and placed it in the Bit-reši, the temple of his lord in Uruk.

Uruk, month Abu, twenty-first day, sixty-first year, Antiochus II, king of all lands.note

The following, very fragmentary text from Uruk, is a chronographic document dealing with the history of Babylonia in the eighth century BCE, and especially the demise of king Nabû-šuma-iškun, who died in 748, after he had broken all written and unwritten laws of his civilization. The text was already damaged in Antiquity: the scribe notes several breaks in the original he was copying.

Translation of Column i

[i.1′] Marduk-apla-usur …] the Chaldaean.

[i.2′] ‘… the Tigris …

[i.3′] … a messenger … he killed and ….

[i.4′] …

[i.5′] Forced labor and corvée were imposed and … slave.

[1.6′] and bread, the food offering for the fifth day that he had seized, he used up and ..

[i.7′] the boat Idhedu … for the Esagila.

Translation of Column ii

[ii.2′] …
On a propitious day, from Babylon, Nabû-šuma-iškun turned his attention toward his country but

[ii.3′] on the order of the BREAK lords Nabû and Marduk, he went into the … inside the house and

[ii.4′] no longer went into battle nor started into the field.

[ii.5′] In the third year, again, he brought the statue of Nanaya, the goddess of the Ezida, the beloved of Nabû, into the Bit mummi but

[ii.6′] kept Nabû in Babylon and had the ceremonies of the evening before and those of the day if the eššešu-festival celebrated in only one day.

[ii.7′] He covered the fine garment of Nabû with the fine garment of Bêl of the month Šabatu.

[ii.8′] Dressed as the latter, he proposed Bêl’s marriage to Tašmetu.

[ii.9′] Unshaven, he mutilated the fingers of his apprentice scribe, and, wearing fine gold, he entered into Bêl’s cella of offering ….

[ii.10′] A leek, a thing forbidden in the Ezida, he brought to the temple of Nabû and gave to eat to the one “entering the temple” (i.e., the priest).

[ii.11′] Ea, the lord of wisdom, whose dwelling place was founded with pure heaven and earth,

[ii.12′] he made him get up from the dwelling place, which befitted his great divinity, and made him sit in the exalted gateway of Bêl.

[ii.13′] He removed Madanu, “Bêl of Babylon”, his favorite god, from his seat and made him leave.

[ii.14′] Without the authority of …  this city, he did as he pleased,

[ii.15’] of …-ri, son of …, who

[ii.16] He … BREAK …

[‘ii.17′] … she who sits on the throne … seven lions.

[ii.18′] … he unleashed and … allowed to roam freely.

[ii.19′] He had her grasp … he had her leashed.

[ii.20′] He had … of Ištar … disconnected.

[ii.21′] … to the granary of the verdant countryside he offered … a dust storm ….

[ii.22′] He presented … Belet-duri ….

[ii.23′] … Nabû, detained several nights in Babylon and … seated among … without destinies.

[ii.24′] … Babylon … which he destroyed by fire.

[ii.25′] … the great lord Marduk … he went to Marduk in place of the king and

[ii.26′] … he spoke … was placed.

[ii.27′] … kept in order …

[ii.28′] … the kneeling lord … he made sing.

Translation of Column iii

[iii.1] … Nin …

[iii.2] When the proud lord, the freedom of Babylon, Borsippa, and Cutha

[iii.3] and the sworn agreements of Enlil-ina-mati, the son of KU… BREAK, the governor of Larak, in their time had established

[iii.4] and when he had offered sacrifices at Babylon, Borsippa, and Cutha before Bêl, Nabû, and Nergal.

[iii.5] Year after year, he made unbearable their burden of slaughter, robbery, murder, corvée, and forced labor.

[iii.6] In only one day, he burned alive sixteen Cutheans at Zababa’s gate in the heart of Babylon.

[iii.7] He delivered inhabitants of Babylon to Hatti and Elam as a token of respect.

[iii.8] He made the inhabitants of Babylon with woman, children, and servants go out and settled them into the countryside.

[iii.9] He heaped up the houses of Babylon’s inhabitants BREAK BREAK into piles of rubble, and he turned them into royal property.

[iii.10] The main street, the avenue of Šarur, his lord’s beloved, who passes through the streets of his city in the month of Ululu,

[iii.11] its passage he blocked off and turned into royal property, making him pass into a cul-de-sac.

[iii.12] He seized Mudammiq-Adad, son of Adad-šuma-ereš, his court opponent, without having committed either a crime or a rebellion, and

[iii.13] his people, as many as there were, he carried off to the Chaldaeans and the Aramaeans, as a sign of respect.

[iii.14] His towns, his fields, his houses, his gardens, and everything that belonged to him, as many as there were, he appropriated for himself.

[iii.15] The man Iltagal-il of the town Dur-ša-Karbi, which is on the bank of the Euphrates, came to his presence and swore agreements and oaths, but

[iii.16] he committed insult and unspeakable slander, that are forbidden of princes, against him and counted his town as booty.

[iii.17] In the sixth year, he turned his attention toward the Esagila, the palace of the Enlil of the gods (i.e., Marduk), with a view to restoring it, but

[iii.18] the possessions of the Esagila, as much as was there, what earlier kings had brought there,

[iii.19] he took out, gathered them into his own palace, and made them his own:

[iii.20] silver, gold, choice and priceless stones, and everything that befits a deity, as much as was there.

[iii.21] According to his good pleasure, he made offerings of them to the gods of the Sealand, of the Chaldeans, and of the Aramaeans.

[iii.22] He would adorn the women of his palace with them, and would give them to Hatti and Elam as signs of respect.

[iii.23] At the beginning of the seventh year, he marched on the Bit-Dakkuri for evil.

[iii.24] Afterward, Nabû-šuma-iškun, the Dakkurean, in violation of the sworn agreements and the oath taken by the great gods,

[iii.25] ordered out horses, troops, and chariots and sent them to go on campaign with him.

[iii.26] He distributed bread, beer of the first quality, and flour to all his camp.

[iii.27] In the month of Addaru, the twentieth day, the days of games in honor of Šamaš and Marduk, he felt no fear with regard to the sworn agreements and oaths.

[iii.28] The people, as many as were lying like cattle in a meadow, made merry and celebrated.

Translation of Column IV

[iv.2′] …

[iv.3′] … Bêl …

[iv.4′] … Sin … he made get up.

[iv.5′] … in the room …

[iv.6′] …

[iv.7′] … Babylon … he … them.

[iv.8′] … Babylon.

[iv.9′] … he … and … they knelt.

[iv.10′] … they made go up …. “I want to send …”.

[iv.11′] … the great lord Marduk … looked angrily at … Ezida and

[iv.12′] … they made … attack him and he plundered its …

[iv.13′] … his survivors … confined and

[iv.14′] … the fugitives … he returned and

[iv.15′] … Akkad … he burned.

[iv.16′] … Borsippa, …, Dilbat, and Cutha.

[iv.17′] … toward those who are in the vanguard, … he stole their goods.

[iv.18′] … he marched to Larak and … the governor of Larak.

[iv.19′] … sworn agreements and oaths before the great gods, seven times, … entered into with him.

[iv.20′] … those people, without having committed any crime … he seized and

[iv.21′] … he took them away and … made them live on the steppe.

[iv.22′] … toward the Bitter Waters … them.

[iv.23′] … he reached … and Nabû who, before … kept hold of Babylon.

[iv.24′] … he caused to be done … Ekur not … he made him do but

[iv.25′] Marduk, the great lord, and Nabû, the exalted crown-prince, commanded his scattering …

[iv.26′] …

[iv.27′] …

[iv.28’] … BREAK …


Upper edge

[Upper edge] [Remains of a colophon]

The Chronographic Document concerning Nabonidus is a cuneiform text that describes events from the second and third years of the reign of Nabonidus (r.556-539).

Chronographic Document concerning Nabonidus

[1] [The second year of Nabonidus:note  (…)

“an entu-priestess […] heaven and earth […] whom he asked me […] among the women of my country?”


“Is she […], whom a god will beget?”


“Is she […], whom a god will beget?”


“[…] Šamaš and Adad, the great gods?”


And the he wrote and […] Sin responded to him […].  (…)

[2] His face became pale. […] The scribes brought in front of him from Babylon the basket containing the tablets of the series Enuma Anu Enlil in order to consult them, but no one whatsoever heeded nor understood their content without his explanation. A stela of Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon, son of Ninurta-nadin-šumi, on which appeared the representation of an entu-priestess and were described the rites, rules, and ceremonies relating to her office, was brought with other tablets from Ur to Babylon, in ignorance of what Sin, lord of kings, wished in giving them to him. He took a good look at the tablets and was afraid. He was attentive to Sin’s commandment and […]. He dedicated, En-nigaldi-Nanna, his daughter, his child, to Sin, lord of the kings, whose word is unchangeable, in the office of entu-priestess.

[3] in the month of Ululu, […] of this same year, in the Ebabbar, the temple of  Šamaš, which is in Sippar, and in which kings among his predecessors had searched in vain for ancient foundation -the ancient dwelling place […] of his kingship that would make his heart glad- he revealed to him, to his humble servant who worshiped him, who was constantly in search of his holy places, the sacred enclosure of Naram-Sin, Sargon’s son, and, in this same year, in a propitious month, on a favorable day, he laid the foundations of the Ebabbar, the temple of  Šamaš, above the sacred enclosure of Naram-Sin, Sargon’s son, without exceeding or shrinking a finger’s breadth. He saw Naram-Sin’s inscription and, without changing its place, restored it and appended his own inscription there.

[4] He saw in this sacred enclosure a statue of Sargon, the father of Naram-Sin: half of its head was missing, and it had deteriorated so as to make its face hardly recognizable. Given his reverence for the gods and his respect for kingship, he summoned expert artisans, restored the head of this statue, and put back its face. He did not change its place but installed it in the Ebabbar and initiated an oblation for it.

[5] For Šamaš, the great lord, his lord, he constructed this Ebabbar in joy and gladness. He caused 6,000 strong cedar beams to be laid out for its ceiling. He made this temple shine like the day and raised its topmost height like a high mountain. For the entrance, he brought outstanding cedar doors, bronze doorsteps, bolts, and sockets, and he finished his work.

[6] In […] to Šamaš, the great lord, […], in the temple […], in the month of […], on the Nth day, after the offerings, he initiated an oblation according to the rite of his lord. They let him dwell in the dwelling place that makes his heart glad.

[7] A messenger arrived from Hatti land and repeated the information: “[…]”

[8] The great gods […] heart’s content […] distant, the road through the mountain […] a road of death, he donned his weapons against the people of Hatti.

[9] In the month of Ajaru, the third year,note he took the head of his troops at Babylon, and, having mustered them, in thirteen days he reached […], and he cut off the heads of the people who lived in Ammananumnote and their […] and he piled them up in a heap. He hung the king on a stake and […] he allocated the town […] of a mountain, Ammananum, which is situated in the middle of the mountains, orchards […], their shadow […] he let Girra burn all of it […] whose tops were distant […] he turned into ruins for all time […] entrance ways […] day, he left […].

[10] (…)

[…] his […] he listened and […] and fell upon him […], he spoke with him […], stretched his hand and […] his rites […] with him […] battle array […] his troops […] he bore arms and toward […] double hours, difficult roads, through territory full of difficulty, dwelling places, the crossing of which is impossible and where no foot is set […] at the mention of his name […] plants […] the king of Dadanu […] distant […] he wiped off and

[Broken off]

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