Cover image for The Babylonian Theodicy By Takayoshi Oshima

The Babylonian Theodicy

Takayoshi Oshima

BUY

$39.95 | Paperback Edition
ISBN: 978-952-10-1343-0

128 pages
10" × 7"
2013
Distributed by Penn State University Press for Neo-Assyrian Text Corpus Project

State Archives of Assyria Cuneiform Texts

The Babylonian Theodicy

Takayoshi Oshima

The Babylonian Theodicy is a lengthy dialogue between two learned men, the “Sufferer” and the “Friend,” taking the form of an acrostic poem divided into 27 stanzas. Each stanza is exactly 11 lines long and represents a speech by one of the two speakers mainly on social injustice and piety, those of the Sufferer alternating with counterarguments of the Friend. The text unquestionably is a literary masterpiece and, as one of the most important pieces of Mesopotamian wisdom literature, a must for every aspiring Assyriologist. Because of its many affinities with the biblical book of Job, it also is of obvious interest to biblical scholars, theologians, and students of Ancient Near Eastern religions.

 

  • Description
  • Table of Contents
  • Subjects
The Babylonian Theodicy is a lengthy dialogue between two learned men, the “Sufferer” and the “Friend,” taking the form of an acrostic poem divided into 27 stanzas. Each stanza is exactly 11 lines long and represents a speech by one of the two speakers mainly on social injustice and piety, those of the Sufferer alternating with counterarguments of the Friend. The text unquestionably is a literary masterpiece and, as one of the most important pieces of Mesopotamian wisdom literature, a must for every aspiring Assyriologist. Because of its many affinities with the biblical book of Job, it also is of obvious interest to biblical scholars, theologians, and students of Ancient Near Eastern religions.

This volume, based on nine different manuscripts (two of them new) and numerous new joins, offers the most complete edition of the text available so far. It is now possible to fully or partially recover 272 of the original 297 lines of the composition. The cuneiform text, sign list and glossary attached to the edition make it possible for the first time to read the entire composition in class. The volume also contains an up-to-date introduction to the text, a bibliography of previous studies, and a detailed philological commentary.

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

INTRODUCTION

Remarks on the Literary Style

The Author and the Date of Composition

The Story

The Message of the Babylonian Theodicy I: The Three Major Points of the Friend

II: The Last Argument of the Sufferer and the Friend’ s Response III: The Prayer of the Sufferer

The Source of the Adversity

The Position of the Author

The ‘Readers’ of the Babylonian Theodicy

The ummânus

Apprentices

The Person Qualified for the ‘Scriptures’

Concluding Remarks

MANUSCRIPTS

BIBLIOGRAPHY

CUNEIFORM TEXT

TRANSLITERATION

TRANSLATION

PHILOLOGICAL NOTES

GLOSSARY AND INDICES

SIGN LIST

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