Sunday, 6 June 2021

Rain and flood


Sumerian, Early Dynastic seal, from Ur. Source: L. Legrain, Archaic Seal-Impressions, New York, 1936 (Ur Excavations III), plate 28, 492.

Description: Crescent-shaped boat with two boatmen equipped with round paddles...That's it...

That's it? Of course not...




As I explained in my article "Shamash young and old", Enki is the god of the source of fresh water...And the god of flood...Annual flood of the Tigris and Euphrates. Which is why he is depicted with two streams of water full of fish (rivers) coming out of him...


Enki is standing on the bull, because the annual flood peaks in Apr/May. Annual flow charts:

Tigris

Euphrates




In Taurus...





But this taurus has nothing to do with stars. This is an ancient animal calendar marker which marks the time when wild Auroch cattle start to calve...I talked about this in this post "Ram and bull". 

Here is the original Taurus marker from Tell Barak, Syria...



BTW, on the above image of Enki standing on a bull, with streams of water pouring out him, we can also see an eagle descending from above to land upon Enki's outstretched right arm...Eagle with a snake in its beak...

This is another animal calendar marker that marks the beginning of the annual flood...This eagle is Short-toed Snake-eagle (Circaetus gallicus) is found throughout the Mediterranean basin, into Russia and the Middle East, and parts of Asia...


And here is the important bit: This eagle is a summer visitor to Northern Iraq where it nests in Apr/May. In Taurus...At the peak of Enki's flood...Hence eagle with the snake in its beak landing on the hand of the good of flood, who is standing on a bull...

So back to the flood...The time of the flood is when large tracts of Mesopotamia used to be submerged, making boats the only viable means of transport...So Enki, the god of flood, in a boat...


This is also the main boat transport season in the area. You can read more about it in Marsh Dwellers of the Euphrates Delta...

The time of the flood is when large tracts of Mesopotamia used to be submerged, making boats the only viable means of transport...So Enki, the god of flood, in a boat...

Flood...Hence central zigzag line, symbolizing flowing water...

But what about the two animals above? The first one, leading, is Ibex goat. The second one, following, is an Auroch bull...Does that mean anything? Of course it does. (BTW Aurochs are extinct 🙁 so instead a cool looking Spanish bull acting as a stunt double 🙂)


The climatic year in Mesopotamia is divided into two halves: summer, hot and dry half (Apr/May-Oct/Nov) and winter, cool and wet half (Oct/Nov-Apr/May)...


The two most important natural events in Mesopotamia are the arrival of the rains, end of hot dry season / start of cool, wet season (Oct/Nov). And the arrival of the flood (peak Tigris, Euphrates water levels), at the end of cool wet season / start of hot dry season (Apr/May)...

The arrival of the rains coincides with the beginning of the mating season of the wild Ibex goats (Oct/Nov). And the arrival of the flood (peak water level in Tigris and Euphrates) coincides with the beginning of the calving season of the wild Auroch cattle (Apr/May)...



It is the rain (and snow) season, Winter, which lasts between the mating of the wild goats and the calving of the wild cattle that is the source of the Enki's flood...

The "Debate between Winter and Summer" says exactly that: "By hand Winter guided the spring floods, the abundance and life of the Land, down from the edge of the hills. He set his foot upon the Tigris and Euphrates like a big bull and released them into the fields"...

And so finally, this is what the original seal depicts, in full:

Rain (and snow) during the cool wet season, which starts in (leading) goat and ends in (following) bull, is the source of the flowing water in Tigris and Euphrates (zigzag line) and Enki's flood (boat)...

Do you think someone is going to update the description of this seal after this? I doubt it...

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