Living in Truth:
Archaeology and the Patriarchs

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by Charles N. Pope
Copyright ©1999-2004 by Charles Pope
United States Library of Congress
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Chapter 5
"Biblical Dark Ages"
(From Nimrod to Sargon)

Grafted onto the Root of Adam

In previous chapters, two fundamental types of twisting in the Torah were unraveled. The first involved the identity of Biblical Jehovah as a composite of multiple deities, primarily the gods Ea and Enlil, but also the primeval goddess Gaia. The second type of twisting in the Torah derives from the intermarriage of "the sons of god" with "the daughters of men." These so-called human offspring were described in the Book of Genesis as "the mighty men of old." They were also the great heroes of Mythology. One such prodigy was Noah (Adapa), who alone was found "righteous" in the last generation before the Deluge. After the Flood, Noah's great-grandson the "mighty hunter" Nimrod (Narmer/Bilak) carried on the tradition of tyranny in the Middle East. His own strength was based on a combined inheritance from both Ham (Utu) and Shem (Etana).

Nimrod is handled with extreme discretion in the Genesis account. His wide-ranging exploits are presented in only five verses. Nothing at all is said about his sons or successors. The master weaver of the Torah considered the kings after Nimrod to be nothing more than dull and idolatrous oppressors. They followed the example of Nimrod in lording over men, but not in their devotion to the Lord Ea-Ptah. Nimrod/Narmer was apparently not succeeded by a true son, but possibly by a brother or son-in-law within the house of Cush (see Chart 14a). Soon after the reign of Nimrod, the Old Kingdom pharaohs replaced Ea-Ptah with Marduk-Re as supreme god of Egypt. Therefore, these kings were themselves judged and suppressed by the author of Genesis. No redeeming qualities were found to compensate for their unpardonable "error." The portion of the scarlet thread corresponding to the Old Kingdom was removed. The Middle Kingdom pharaohs, who are representing by the second genealogy of Adam through Seth, were then grafted onto the "loose end" of Nimrod's reign by forming a knot in the narrative of Genesis 10.

The "generations" of the first Adam listed in Genesis 4:1-24 are identified as:

Genesis 4 Mesopotamia Egypt
Adam - Atum
Cain Anu Anubis
Enoch Enki Ptah
Irad Marduk Re
Mehujael Dumuzi Osiris
Mehushael Adad Horus the Elder
Lemekh Tutu Thoth
Noah Utna-pishtim / Adapa Nut-jeren / Ny-netjer
Shem Etana Semerkhet
Ham Utu Khem
Cush Agga Aha
Nimrod Enmerkar Narmer

Nimrod (Narmer/Enmerkar) was in the direct line of descent from the first Adam, the god Atum. He was the natural son of Cush (Agga) and a grandson of Ham (Utu). However, starting with Genesis 4:25 and continuing through the end of Genesis 5, another line of descent from Adam is introduced. This new succession is through a son of Adam called Seth, which means "substituted." We are told that the second line of Adam was granted by God to replace that of the martyred Abel. The reader takes for granted that the two lines of Adam through Cain and Seth are contemporary and collateral.

Original Ordering Re-Ordering for Comparison
Gen. 4:1-24 Gen. 4:25-5 Gen 4:1-24 Gen 4:25-5
Adam Adam Adam Adam
Cain Seth   Seth
Enoch Enosh Enoch Enosh / Enoch
Irad Kenan Cain Kenan
Mehujael Mahalalel Mehujael Mahalalel
  Jered Irad Jered
Mehushael Methuseleh Mehushael Methuseleh
Lemekh Lemekh Lemekh Lemekh
Noah Noah Noah Noah

The two lists are almost identical. They both begin with an Adam and end with a Lemekh and a Noah. With the exception of Seth, the names are also very closely matched - they have only slightly different spelling and ordering. Enosh is a variant of Enoch. Kenan is a variant of Cain. Jered is a variant of Irad. Mahalalel is a variant of Mehujael. Methuseleh is a variant of Mehushael. It has previously been suspected that the two "genealogies" of Genesis 4 & 5 are not unique but two different versions of the same Patriarchal line. However, the dual bloodlines cry out from the ground of archaeology for justice. It can now be proven that they were unique lists, and that the Patriarchs of each list are named in their correct order. The two dynasties were not contemporary, but widely separated in time. They represented two different portions of the same Patriarchal line. The later set of Patriarchs, which corresponds to the second genealogy of Adam, was considered to be a more righteous "repetition" of the first line of Adam. The comparison between the two sets of kings was made more compelling by juxtaposing the two in the text of Genesis.

Side-by-side, the two lines of Adam enter the "splice" of Genesis 10. Only the line of the second Adam emerges. We are deliberately told that the sons of Shem listed in Genesis 10:21-31 do not pertain to an elder brother Shem but are those of a younger brother named Shem. The second Patriarch named Shem was not an eldest son. He was instead the younger "brother" and successor of the second Noah, and only a distant son of the first Noah. In the days of that later Noah, there was also a great flood, especially in Egypt where it brought an end to the Egyptian Middle Kingdom. Excessive high waters associated with the inundation of the Nile did not last 40 days, but ravaged Egypt annually over a period of 40 years. The reoccurrence of devastating floods provided a convenient and logical post on which to tie together the histories of the two lines of Adam.

At this juncture in the narrative, an abrupt change in time period and king-list takes place. The first Shem (Etana) did not have any royal sons to speak of, at least not biologically or Biblically. Nimrod was considered to be the legal son and heir of Shem (Etana). However, he was the natural son of Ham. For this reason, the famous "Table of Nations" found in Genesis 10 does not start with the sons of Shem. Instead, the descendants of Noah's younger sons Japheth and Ham are given precedence. Moreover, when the sons of Shem do finally get named in Genesis 10:21-31, they are most certainly not those of Etana. In verse 21, the author uses a subtle gloss to fool the na ve and school the initiate. The Shem referred to in this verse was not the son of the first Noah but of a second and much later Noah.

God-Kings Pharaohs (M.K.)
Adam Adam II
Cain Seth
Enoch Enosh
Irad Kenan
Mehujael Mahalalel
  Enoch II
Mehushael Methuseleh
Lemekh Lemekh II
Noah Noah II
(Great Flood) (Nile Flood)
Shem Shem
Nimrod Arphaxad
  . . .

With the profuse red of the "mighty hunter" Nimrod, the rhetoric of the first Adam suddenly dries up in the Genesis narrative. After Nimrod, the veneration of Ea-Ptah began to be neglected in Egypt. It did not become prominent again until the advent of the second Adam, founder of the Egyptian Middle Kingdom. The Egyptian name, Inyotef, and Mesopotamian name, Tudiya-Adamu, of this founding father both contain forms of Ea. Inyotef means "Born of Yo." Tudiya-Adamu means "Born or Beloved of Ya, Adam." Tudiya was transliterated into Egyptian as Inyotef. Yo and Ya are both common Biblical (Hebrew) short forms of Jehovah. This cherished champion Tudiya stands at the head of both the Babylonian and Assyrian king-lists. He also represents the historical origin of the second and later line of Adam given in Genesis.

In the dynasty of the second Adam, Ea-Ptah was incorporated into a new super cult, that of Amen. This was of great importance to the Genesis author - for it was not from Ea-Ptah directly, but from Amen that the Biblical Jehovah was ultimately to emerge. Genesis 4:26 declares that men first "began to call upon the name of the Lord" in the time of Enosh son of Seth, who was the second successor of Adam II. The second successor of Inyotef in Egypt was pharaoh Amenemhet, who is the historical identity of Patriarch Enosh. The name Amen-em-het means "Amen (is) in the Forefront." He was not only the first king of the legendary Egyptian 12th Dynasty, but also the first king to include the god Amen in his royal name. His foremost god was not that of the Old Kingdom pharaohs, Re, but emphatically the Biblical "Lord" - yes and Amen! For the Genesis author, this marked a crucial turning point in both history and theology.

With the introduction of the second line of Adam, another type of twisting becomes apparent in the text of the Torah. It derives from the phenomenon that "history repeats itself." The first two turnings convolve gods and race. The third involves royal persons who were of a different time but lived in the same place. This third type of twisting consumes most of the actual narrative of the Torah and is analyzed in detail in Chapters 8 through 16. The new thematic element represents the "scarlet thread" of kingship. There was only one Patriarchal line from the first god-man Adam to the last king Zedekiah. This thread was often frayed but never broken. However, one portion of the royal line is not discussed in the Genesis narrative. The omitted rulers belong to the period between Narmer (Nimrod), founder of the Egyptian Old Kingdom, and Inyotef, founder of the Egyptian Middle Kingdom. Twisting the later line of Adam together with the earlier one allowed the Genesis author to skip over Old Kingdom pharaohs.

Suffering Serpent

The fall from grace of Nimrod's line began with pharaoh Djoser of the Egyptian 3rd Dynasty. The root Dj in Egyptian signifies "serpent" or "backbone of Osiris." The root oser (of Dj-oser) also relates to Osiris, which was written as Asar or Ser in Egyptian. The name Dj-oser would then connote "serpent lord" or "spine of Osiris." Through a uniting of Egyptian and Sumerian records with Biblical records, we can raise our consciousness of this serpent king. In the Sumerian king-list,a Pharaoh Djoser corresponds to Gilgamesh. Immortality of the gods was denied him, however through identification with Osiris his wish was symbolically granted. Another Mesopotamian name of Djoser is King Labasher.b The Hebrew root asher/osher denotes "happy, honest, prosperous." The root lab has many possible meanings.1 Because it was converted to Dj in Egyptian, the primary meaning of lab must have been as in the name Leviathan. In Hebrew, Leviathan is Libh-yethen or Livyathan. Strong's concordance defines Leviathan (3882) as "a wreathed animal, i.e. a serpent (espec. the crocodile or some other large sea-monster); fig. the constellation of the dragon; also as a symbol of Babylon:-- leviathan, mourning."

In Egypt, the "dragon-king" Djoser was not happy and blessed, but in a state of misery like the tortured Osiris. During his reign the Nile did not overflow its banks for seven straight years. This extreme and extended drought brought bitter suffering to Egypt and its people. In desperation, Djoser turned to a man of princely birth, Imhotep, in whom it was said resided the spirit of Thoth. Like his role model Thoth, Imhotep was also called "son of Ptah," god of the waters. In the form of Khnum, Ptah was thought to control the annual floodwaters of the Nile. Imhotep directed Djoser to seek the help of Khnum, which is not surprising. However, he also advised him to reinstate the "throne of Re."c In addition to the honorary title, "son of Ptah," the base of a statue names Imhotep as the "High Priest of Heliopolis" (Biblical On), the holy city of Re the sun god.

For a prince patterned after Thoth, the distinctions of "High Priest of Re" and "son of Ptah" are perfectly consistent. Re had been appointed by Ptah to rule over Egypt in a time of sustained drought. When Re was subsequently banished for murder, Thoth became his most faithful and active supporter. Thoth eventually was able to bring the "fugitive" Re back from exile and even restore his kingship. Because of their close relationship, Thoth was called the "heart and tongue of Re." In the 3rd Dynasty, it was not Thoth, but Imhotep who expressed the will of Re. According to both archaeology and legend, Imhotep aped Thoth in every possible way. Imhotep officiated not only as high priest, but also as a lector (oratory) priest within the cult of Re. In addition to "son of Ptah" and "High Priest of Re," Imhotep was also renowned as an architect, stargazer, wise man, healer and teacher in the tradition of Thoth. Djoser counted on Imhotep for everything. Imhotep even kept track of the king's wealth. In fact, "Treasurer of the King" was listed as the first of his official titles.

The Book of Ecclesiastes reveals the ancient mindset that compelled Imhotep to emulate Thoth: "What has been will be again, what has been done will be done again; there is nothing new under the sun. Is there anything of which one can say, 'Look! This is something new'? It was here already, long ago; it was here before our time. There is no remembrance of men of old, and even those who are yet to come will not be remembered by those who follow."d

The little that has endured from the time of Imhotep is still more than sufficient to reconstruct his role in 3rd Dynasty Egypt. The typecasting of Imhotep is very strong. His mission could not have been any clearer. As it had been in the time of the gods, so it was destined to be among men. Before the Deluge, Thoth architected the return of his "father" Re. It was the role of Imhotep to reinstate the cult of Re as pre-eminent in Post-Flood Egypt. The first tangible evidence of this renewal is the sudden interest in pyramids. Imhotep is credited with building the Step Pyramid of Djoser. However, as with the cult of Re, it was only restored by the counsel of Imhotep. It is extremely doubtful that any major stone pyramids were constructed from scratch during the Egyptian Old Kingdom. The Egyptian Delta was only one corner of the world that these kings ruled. Egypt was a place of seasonal "sojourn" for the royal court. A prestigious burial in Egypt was certainly a high priority, but they would not have devoted all of their time and resources to it.

The correct date for the reign of Djoser is not earlier than 1450 BC. However, recent carbon dating of the Giza Pyramids place their construction between 2700 and 2500 BC.2 This means that the Old Kingdom pharaohs did not in any way build the Giza Pyramids, and they did not claim to have done so. Most if not all of the larger pyramids, including the Step Pyramid of Djoser, would also have been built in the time of the gods. They were as much as 1000 years old by the time of Imhotep and would have been badly in need of repair! When the cult of Re was revived, the many pre-existing pyramids were reclaimed by the pharaohs and refurbished as grand centerpieces for administrative and mortuary complexes.

Who Built the Pyramids, P'Re Tell?

In the third dynasty, Djoser and Imhotep restored the Step Pyramid. Snofru, the first pharaoh of the fourth dynasty, restored as many as four pyramids. These included the Bent Pyramid and the Red Pyramid at Dahshur, which are both larger than the third Giza Pyramid. Collectively, this effort is thought to have been a greater enterprise than the building of the largest Giza Pyramid, greater than that of the Great Pyramid itself. However, it again only points to a program of renovation, and not original construction. Snofru was performing a service for Re, in whose name these pyramids would have been originally built. Evidently, Snofru felt that his sacrifices were being accepted. He gave one of his sons the name of Ra-hotep ("Re is appeased/expatiated"). The matching statues of Rahotep and his wife Nofret are among the masterpieces of the Old Kingdom (assuming that they were not also reworked relics from the time of Re).

The name of the next pharaoh was Khnum-khuefui, "Khnum is Protecting Me", or Khufu for short.e He is thought to have been a son of Snofru by the daughter of Huni.f The choice of this name suggests that the annual flooding of the Nile, or lack thereof, was still a pressing concern. In the Drought Legend, Djoser was promised in a dream that the Nile would never again fail, and that harvests would always be plentiful. A good annual flood obviously did return after the 7th year, however the general trend toward desertification in Africa continued. Khufu must have felt betrayed by his namesake, because in his reign the temples were closed. The temple of Ptah built by Narmer/Huni would have been among these, and this event must have followed almost immediately upon the death of Narmer/Huni. In the drought years of the Egyptian New Kingdom, the pharaoh Amenhotep IV would also reject his namesake god in favor of Re (Aten). He changed his name to Akhen-aten, and shortly after the death of his predecessor Amenhotep III he closed the temples of Amun and other gods. The suppression of Ptah/Khnum in Khufu's time would have been equally unpopular. Unlike Djoser and Snofru, Khufu did not seem to have a genuine concern for the welfare of Egyptians. Khufu (Greek Cheops) was not remembered as the builderrenovator of the Great Pyramid, but as a hated oppressor. Likewise, Akhenaten was not hailed as a reformer, but libeled as "The Heretic."

Khufu was not content with the lesser pyramids. He had the audacity to claim the Great Pyramid for himself. However, a tale written down during the Hyksos Period (part of the Westcar Papyrus) reveals that Khufu not only did not build the Great Pyramid of Giza, he could not even figure out how to get inside! In this legend, Khufu consults the wise men concerning how to enter "the secret chambers of the sanctuary of Thoth," but is only frustrated in his quest.g He is told a descendant of his would succeed in this task, but that he could not. In the ancient mindset, because Khufu tried and failed it must have been his fate. The tale indicates that a 5th Dynasty pharaoh did break into the Great Pyramid, therefore this was not only divinely ordained but considered to have been a fulfillment of prophesy.

There is presently a controversy over several cartouches belonging to Khufu (Cheops) and/or his second successor Khafre (Chephron) who may have buried him. These cartouches were purportedly found on the walls of two inner chambers of the Great Pyramid in the 19th Century. Zecharia Sitchin argued that they were forged by Howard Vyse, the man who discovered them.h Sitchin also argued that the "Inventory Stela" of Khufu is genuine, and that this work confirms that both the Great Pyramid and the Sphinx predated the reign of Khufu. Conversely, Egyptologists generally consider the Great Pyramid cartouches to be legitimate, but the Stela to be a later pastiche. Whether the cartouches and Stela were fashioned during the reign of Khufu, by Khafre upon his death, by a 5th Dynasty pharaoh in honor of him, or at any time afterward is now a moot point. It is proved here that Khufu was not the builder of the Great Pyramid based on chronological grounds alone. Apart from the ruined mortuary temple ("Temple of Isis") adjoining the Great Pyramid in which the Stela was found archaeology has uncovered almost nothing of Khufu's reign. Instead, Khufu emerges as an absentee landlord. Rather than go to the effort of building new monuments, the Great Pyramid was merely adopted by him. His living interests lay elsewhere within the four quarters of the world he ruled, or perhaps even beyond.

Djedefre, a co-regent of Khufu who likely predeceased him, was the first pharaoh to assume the title, "Son of Re." Djedefre (a.k.a. Rededef) dutifully helped with the mortuary complex of Khufu. However, his own mortuary complex and pyramid was located well to the north of Giza at Abu Rawash. It may have been unfinished when he died after a reign (or co-reign alongside Khufu) of only eight years.i Djedefre wrote a primer for scribes called the "Instruction," and also delved into theology. In appreciation for the favor Ptah had shown mankind, the traditional role of Atum as the primeval, self-created god had earlier been transferred to Ptah. In the theology of Ptah, Atum (called Nefer-tem) was made the heir of Ptah rather than the other way around. However, from the time of Djedefre, Re superseded Ptah and Atum as "Father of the Gods." In Egypt, the self-begotten god Ptah who had saved them from certain destruction became a shelved and forgotten dod.j

The radical theology of Khufu and Djedefre was further refined by pharaoh Khafre who succeeded them. In retrospect, the rise of the cult of Re after a period of "exile" can only be seen as inevitable. It may have been argued that Ptah even required it. Was it not Ptah himself who had made his "first born" son Marduk-Re the ruler of Egypt? Hadn't his dominion in Egypt been honored by all of the other gods? There would have been some discontent among the populous in Egypt with the renewed status of Re as Supreme God. It may have even been made an issue in dynastic power struggles. However, the recognition that different gods were entitled to sovereignty over different regions of the "world" is accepted both in Mythology and in the Old Testament.k The idea even carries over strongly in the New Testament theology of Paul.l After the Flood, a single royal family ruled over both Egypt and Mesopotamia. Although Re was made "All-Lord" in Egypt, he was not a lord at all in Mesopotamia. Throughout the Egyptian Old Kingdom, the deities of Anu, Enlil (Shu), Enki (Ptah) and Ninhursag (Tefnut/Hathor) continued to be the most revered in Sumer, and by the very same family that ruled over Egypt. Other gods and goddesses were also worshipped to a lesser degree in Mesopotamia, such as Ninurta (Geb) in the district of Lagash.

Pharaoh Khafre (Chephron) claimed the 2nd Giza Pyramid for his mortuary complex. His successor, Menkaure followed by taking the third and smallest Giza Pyramid. His devotion to Re was also smaller than that of Khufu and Khafre. Menkaure is most noted for authorizing the reopening of Egyptian temples. Rather than being celebrated for his tolerance, Menkaure was later censured. He was adjudged by posterity to be in defiance of the gods, who had declared that the temples should be permanently closed in Egypt. Egypt suffered a further 150 years of inadequate annual floods. In hindsight, Menkaure was conveniently made the scapegoat.

Egypt was a land of extremes, and lent itself to extremes in religion. The jealous veneration of Ptah was displaced by an even more zealous "monotheism." Egypt once again became the all-encompassing realm of Re. Any tolerance of 4th Dynasty pharaoh Menkaure was eschewed by the time of pharaoh Unas in the 6th Dynasty. This pharaoh boasted that he "ate the biggest and best gods for breakfast," and Ptah was as large and lauded as any of the tabled champions of Egypt. Unas is the first pharaoh who can be said for sure to inscribe the inner walls of "his" pyramid. The practice that he initiated became known as the Pyramid Texts. Drought was depicted in the Pyramid Texts of Unas, but there was no mention of the Great One Ptah. In fact, there are only a handful of references to either Ptah or Khnum in any of the Pyramid Texts of later pharaohs.

Unity Breeds Division

The names of the 5th Dynasty pharaohs who preceded Unas are easily shown to be variations of the names of contemporary rulers in Mesopotamia (2nd Dynasty of Kish). The equivalence between the 5th Dynasty Egypt and 2nd Dynasty Kish is even more obvious than that of 3rd Dynasty pharaohs, e.g., pharaoh Dj-oser in Egypt and king Lab-asher of Sumer. (See Chart 12.)

Old Kingdom Egypt reached the pyramidion of its greatness by the end of the 5th Dynasty. However, the prosperity was due more to sustained unification of the "world" rather than devotion to Re or the beneficence of the Nile in Egypt. Likewise, the collapse of the Old Kingdom should not be attributed to a failure of the annual flood, but to a rupture in the royal family. The feud began during the long reign of Mesilim (Egy. Djedkare), the final ruler of the 2nd Dynasty of Kish. The reign of Djedkare possibly extended over four decades in Egypt. Reigns of this length invariably led to succession battles. While Mesilim was alive, the rival princes Ur-Nanshe of Lagash and Ush of Umma accepted terms of peace, and a "standing stone" was placed as a boundary between their respective inheritances. This stela was uprooted by Ush, presumably upon Mesilim's death, who then founded the independent dynasty of Umma. In succeeding generations, an uneasy parity was maintained between the two territories and inter-related royal houses. Ur-Nanshe had been the designated successor to the greater throne of Mesilim (Djedkare-Isesi). Ur-Nanshe assumed the similar sounding name of Unas in Egypt. Judging from the vain boasting of Unas in the Pyramid Texts mentioned above, he had something to prove. He was the first pharaoh in many generations who did not possess absolute power over the "four quarters of the world."

The third pharaoh of the 6th Dynasty, Pepi, called his pyramid Mn-nefer, "Pepi is established and good."o The architectural wonder of Eannatum, third king of the Lagash Dynasty in Mesopotamia, was a grand canal, which he dubbed "Lumma-gimdug, 'Good (?)- like-Lumma,' Lumma being Eannatum's Tidnum name."p Eannatum re-enforced the boundary with Umma and allowed the king of Umma to cultivate the border region in exchange for payment. This seems to have amounted to a socially acceptable form of tribute, as Eannatum (Pepi I) was clearly the dominant king of Mesopotamian and even extended his claims to Elam (proto-Persia) during this time period. He also called himself the King of Kish, which traditionally signified rule over all of Sumer.

For most of his 50-year reign, the co-regent of E-annatum (Pepi I) was En-annatum, who corresponds to Pepi II in Egypt. Upon the death of E-annatum, En-annatum in turn appointed Entemena as his co-regent, who corresponds to Menenre in Egypt. In Mesopotamia, Entemena (Menenre) defeated the rival king of Umma and became ruler of both Lagash and Umma. This put an end to the independent line of kings at Umma. Pepi I is presently thought by Egyptologists to have been succeeded first by Menenre and then by Pepi II. A synthesis with the Mesopotamian history indicates that Menenre was indeed appointed as pharaoh upon the death of Pepi I, however only as co-regent. He then died before Pepi II. Technically, Pepi II did not succeed Menenre, but was forced to name a new co-regent to replace Menenre. (See Chart 14a for the chronology of this period.)

There was possibly a short-lived prince named En-annatum (Merenre II?) who ruled alongside the elder En-annatum (Pepi II). However, the final co-regent of En-annatum can be identified as a prince named Enetarzi. Upon the death of En-annatum (Pepi II), Enetarzi then took the throne in his own right. Enetarzi may have been an elderly man upon his succession, and would have had no shortage of rivals who protested that succession after the 64-year reign of En-annatum. To help secure his authority, Enetarzi claimed the title King of Kish. In Kish proper, Enetarzi was known as Ur-Zababa (an epithet of Ninurta, patron god of Lagash). According to protocol, Enetarzi/Ur-Zababa also established his dynasty by appointing a co-regent of his own named Lugal-anda. Little record of Lugal-anda's tenure at Lagash has been found. It seems likely that this prince was required by an unsettled Ur-Zababa to resign his post in Lagash and accept the lesser domain of neighboring Umma. In Umma, this "disgraced" prince became known as Lugal-zaggesi.. He was replaced as ensi of Lagash (and as co-regent) by another prince named Urukagina.

Sargon, the Water Boy who would be Lord of the Seas

It was at this time that Ur-Zababa and Urukagina were both attacked and defeated by the angry Lugalzaggesi of Umma. Lugalzaggesi destroyed Kish. He also sacked Lagash and spoiled her temples. During the twenty or so year reign of Lugalzaggesi bitterness over the desecration of Kish and Lagash began to fester. It was at least a convenient justification for another rival prince to begin plotting the overthrow of the usurper. While Lugalzaggesi was away, the capital was seized by an interloper named Sargon. When the unsuspecting Lugalzaggesi returned, Sargon overwhelmed his personal forces and led him away in a collar to be harangued by royalty and commoners alike.q

The assumed name Sar-gon (Sharru-ken) connotes "ruler (by/of) right(eousness)/ knowledge/judgment." In Egyptian terms, Sargon was claiming to be the "true Horus," the rightful heir to kingship. Horus the Younger, the "legitimate" but persecuted heir of Osiris, had been secreted away in the Egyptian marshland by Isis. Horus the Elder was even earlier hid by his mother Hathor to protect him from an aggressive but less worthy rival. In identification, Sargon recorded that he also had been placed in a reed basket as an infant and hidden by his mother in the river. In the same inscription, Sargon states that he did not know his natural father. It can be inferred that he did not know him personally, because his father was of a collateral and rival royal line. His father and his father's kinsmen were certainly not unknown. Sargon named his "adoptive" or legal father as "Akki, drawer of water," that is, a royal steward in charge of irrigation works.

Sargon does not name his own mother, but simply refers to her as a "changeling." This word can be translated as "high priestess." However, the title has a deeper meaning that connects to the nature of Sargon's birth and character. Although Sargon was not raised by his real father, he was not necessarily born out of wedlock. In the tradition of the ancient royal court, a "barren" wife could discretely consort with one or more close male relatives in order to produce an heir for her husband. The mother of Sargon was compelled to "change" sexual partners. As a result, she was venerated by Sargon as an Inanna (Isis-Ishtar) figure. Inanna became the patron goddess of Sargon and his dynasty. So much so that the dynasty of Sargon was called the "Dynasty of Ishtar."

The adjective changeling could be interpreted as "possessing a unique or unusual physical trait." There was probably "something different" about this woman. Alternatively, changeling may suggest "agent or proponent of change." Inanna/Ishtar was the goddess of impudence, rebellion, change and innovation. Sargon was a "son of Ishtar" who "rebelled" against his master. He would bring sweeping changes to the Middle East and to kingship. He also changed the capital from Lagash and Kish to a new city called Agade. The temple of Ishtar was the most prominent one of Agade.

The dynasty of Sargon was noted not only for the construction of a new capital, but for changes in administration, agriculture, language, religion and especially warfare. The population of Mesopotamia was growing rapidly. At the same time, the region was becoming more arid and the soil was losing its fertility. Only innovation could rescue a society on the verge of collapse. Sargon began his career as an engineer over irrigation works. However, his wars would ultimately do more to alleviate the problems of over-crowding. During his reign, Sumerian was replaced with the Akkadian language as the lingua franca. Sumerian language remained important in the royal court, however Sargon viewed the former culture of Sumer with some contempt.

According to his own autobiography, the young Sargon did not seem destined to be anything other than a glorified water boy. In the modest account of his origins, Sargon tells us that his legal guardian Akki appointed him as "gardener." In the Sumerian king-list, the "father" of Sargon was also called a gardener.r Like father, like son. However in this humble station, Sargon somehow caught the eye and favor of his majesty Ur-Zababa, King of Kish. Ur-Zababa duly appointed Sargon to be his personal "drawer of water," that is the Royal Cupbearer. With the mention of his royal title in the Sumerian king-list, the "rags to riches" autobiography of Sargon ceases to hold water. Commoners were rarely if ever appointed to official posts. They certainly did not rise to positions with intimate access to the king of Kish, who was the nominal "king of the world." The mother and adoptive father of Sargon were part of the immediate family of this lofty king. Sargon was a bona fide prince from birth.

Sargon was an assumed epithet. There is only one record of his princely name. It is found on a tablet written by a scribal apprentice as a school exercise.s The assignment of this student was to list the various priest-kings of Lagash and summarize their great irrigation works. It preserved a most valuable succession list within the dynasty of Sargon. Akki, the adoptive father of Sargon, is named as A-ki-gal-a-gub-a. This name connotes "water reservoir," or "director of irrigation" (from the Sumerian roots: a - "water"; ki -"ground/earth"; gal - "big/great"; and gub - "to stand").t Sargon was the legal son of "Steward Aki." Sargon himself was named on the tablet as Ningirsu-ki-ag, "beloved (of the god) Ningirsu. Ningirsu (Lord Girsu) was the local name of the god Ninurta/Nergal at Lagash.

Sargon Dynasty Kings of Lagash
Akki A-ki-gal-a-gub-a (Urukagina)
Sargon Ningirsu-ki-ag
Rimush Enlile-ki-ag
Manishtutshu Ur-Bau
Naram-Sin (not named as an ensi of Lagash)
Gudea Gudea

Akki, the father of Sargon, was likely an elder brother or male relative of the king. In Akkadian (and later Hebrew), the name Aki or Akki would have connoted "brotherly or brother of." In fact, difficulty in producing an heir may have spoiled Akki's own bid to be king. Instead, he had to content himself with the role of tanist, i.e., the "twin" or "double" or the king. By the time Sargon was born, a younger prince had already fathered a son and thereby "stole the birthright." It is a frequently reoccurring theme in the royal court. What made this instance special was the trouble to which Akki and his wife were willing to go to in order to finally gain an heir. The namesakes of the Sargon dynasts not only honored former kings of Lagash, but also of Umma.u This is another indication that the biological father of Sargon was not among the princes of Lagash, but of Umma. It would have been a factor against Sargon as a young prince. However, the mixed lineage worked to his advantage later in life when he assumed the role of unifier. As a scion of two rival houses, Sargon was better able to build a coalition.

Putting two and two together, Akki the adoptive father of Sargon, that is, ensi Aki, must have also been known as ensi Urukagina,v the designated heir or tanist of Ur-Zababa of Kish. Prior to the coup of Lugalzaggesi, his own legal son and heir Sargon would have been a leading candidate for the greater throne. The assumed name of Sargon ("rightful ruler") is generally considered to be propaganda, but it now becomes evident that it was not unfounded. Sargon was being groomed to succeed his father as ensi of Lagash. Ur-Zababa had also taken the young prince under his wing, and made him Royal Cupbearer. The title given to Sargon in the backwater of Egypt was not nearly as understated. There he was made the rightful ruler of an entire province or nome, i.e., a nomarch.

In Egypt, Sargon assumed the name of Inyotef (A). At the great temple of Karnak in Egypt, this Inyotef was the earliest to be venerated in the "Hall of Ancestors."w On the other hand, the Akkadian rulers of Mesopotamia recalled a king named Tudiya as their great ancestor. The name Tudiya means "Beloved or Born of God." The name Inyotef is generally not translated by Egyptologists. However, it means "Born (literally, spit out) of Yo." Inyotef is easily recognizable as an Egyptian transliteration of the Akkadian name Tudiya. The Hebrew roots tef and tud are synonymous, and mean "cherished." These roots are also equivalent to the name of Sargon at Lagash, Ningirsu-kiag, "Beloved (of) Ningirsu." Tudiya is therefore an epithet of Sargon/Ningirsu-kiag and the source of his Egyptian name Inyotef. As mentioned above, Sargon does not name is own father, only his legal guardian Akki. He also does not name his own mother (Ittibel?), but calls her a "changeling." In Egypt, the father of Inyotef (legal or otherwise) is not known. Instead, Inyotef is singularly distinguished as the son of the high-ranking princess Ikui.

Spilling a River of Blood, Drowning in a Whirlpool

After humbling Lugal-zaggesi, Sargon and a younger son named Rimush recaptured Lagash and the other leading cities of Sumer. Rimush was first made ensi of Lagash. When he was appointed as co-regent of Sargon in Mesopotamia, his "older brother" Manishtushu-Irba3 (Ur-Bau) was possibly then designated as his tanist and given the title ensi of Lagash. It was Ur-Bau4 who first began restoration of Lagash, however he eventually departed with many ships and men for "Magan and Meluhha." In his classic work, The Sumerians, Samuel Noah Kramer notes that in the preceding Sumerian period, these were lands of the Nile, i.e., Egypt and Ethiopia. They were again considered to be such in the 1st Century BC. However, during the intervening period of the great Akkadian ("Semitic") dynasties of Mesopotamia in the 2nd Century BC, scholars presently associate Magan with the lower Persian Gulf and Meluhha with the Indus Valley. Kramer disagreed and passionately argued that a consistent identification of these regions should apply throughout ancient times. Consequently, Kramer believed that the conquest of Egypt and Ethiopia was undertaken by Sargon and his dynasty.x Magan and Meluhha can also be associated with Egypt and Ethiopia on linguistic grounds.5 Charts 14a & 15 show the relationship between the Sargon Dynasty and the Egyptian 11th Dynasty.

Manishtushu sailed beyond the Persian Gulf and defeated 32 kings in battle.y By virtue of his triumph, Manishtushu assumed the pharaonic name Montuhotep (I), and called himself Tepy-aa, "The First One." He was indeed the first one of Sargon's dynasty to become a pharaoh. He appointed his son as his co-regent, and also gave him the Egyptian name of Montuhotep (II). It was the second Montuhotep who consolidated both Upper and Lower Egypt, after which he appended a new epithet to his throne name, "Uniter of the Two Lands." At least part of the conquest of Egypt must have occurred in Sargon's own lifetime, as he boasted that the ships of Magan and Meluhha moored at his capital city Agade. Although he was remembered for having united Egypt, Montuhotep II caused division back in Mesopotamia. The story is preserved in Judges 3:15-31, where Montuhotep II is called Ehud, meaning "Uniter."

After conquering Egypt, Montuhotep II declared his independence from Mesopotamia and burned his bridges behind him. The statue of Montuhotep II represents a man of imposing size and strength. His uncle Rimush (Montuhotep A) was in his younger days a mighty champion and military hero. However, as his empire expanded, he also became great in girth. In the Judges account, Rimush (Ri-mu) is called Eglon, meaning "vitulant," i.e., calf-like or rotund.z Eglon was king of Moab, which in those days referred to the "Father-Land" of Mesopotamia, and not the Trans-Jordan. On a trip back home, Ehud presented his tribute to Eglon. He then returned to deliver a personal message, as though he had forgotten to tell the king of some urgent matter before leaving. Having already received the tribute of Ehud, the reassured Eglon sent away his attendants. Ehud then revealed to Eglon a long dagger, which was urgently thrust through Eglon's bulging belly! After killing Eglon (Rimush), Ehud (Montuhotep II) quickly fled to Canaan, where he had the protection of his own army and a secure kingdom. From there, the Book of Judgesaa indicates that Ehud was able to dominate "Moab" for a long time.

A Mesopotamian record speaks obliquely of Rimush, referring to him as the one "whom his servants killed with their tablets."ab The particular servant who killed him turns out to be the son of Manishtushu. However, the above phrase indicates that propaganda carved out by the scribal pen was mightier than Ehud's sword in destroying the legacy of Rimush and his reign. It also suggests a larger conspiracy against him. Rimush was not succeeded by a true son, or by the "twin" Manishtushu-Irba. Rather, a younger brother Naram-Sin was elevated to the greater throne in Mesopotamia. Naram-Sin may not have acted in concert with the son of Ur-Bau, but he was the beneficiary. The daughter of Ur-Bau was eventually removed as high priestess in Ur. However, Ur-Bau apparently remained the nominal ensi of Lagash. Naram-Sin was eventually able to mount successful campaigns as far west as the Mediterranean Sea and into the Taurus Mountains of modern day Turkey. On the island of Cyprus he was proclaimed a god. To the north he subdued Armenia, and to the east he annexed Elam.

Naram-Sin was then able to turn his attention to Ur-Bau (Manishtushu) and his rebel son. One would think that the assassin Montuhotep II would have been the primary object of his revenge. However, this may not have been the case. Manishtushu (Montuhotep I) may have been the target instead. In his inscriptions, Naram-Sin claimed to have captured the king of Egypt, who is variously called Manium and Mannu-Dannu. These names could refer equally to Manishtushu or his son.6 Man is a variant of Mon or Dan or Dannu means "Judge." The lot of Manishtushu and his heir was to rule or judge Magan and Meluhha as "servants" to the greater throne. Ehud is one of the first judges of Israel mentioned in the Book of Judges. In a chronological sense, he was the first along with his father. Possibly both Montuhotep's were either captured or killed by Naram-Sin. The same enigmatic account mentioned above in connection with the death of Rimush speaks of Manishtushu as he "whom his palace killed."ad Presumably, the killing of Manishtushu in his palace was carried out by order of Naram-Sin.

After disposing of Manishtushu (Montuhotep I), Naram-Sin became pharaoh in Egypt under the name of Inyotef (I). Naram means "beloved," therefore Inyotef (as a transliteration of Tudiya, "Beloved of God") was the expected Inyotef had also been the Egyptian name of Sargon. An inscription of Naram-Sin boasts that he quarried stones in Magan (Egypt) and carried back other spoils from his campaign. From this moment forward, he referred to himself as "the divine Naram-Sin, the mighty, the god of Akkad, king of the four quarters."af It was a status that he would not vaunt for long. Despite, or inspite, of his self-deification, Naram-Sin was overthrown suddenly by a horde of mountain men from the north.

Mesopotamian King-List Egyptian King-List
Sargon / Tudiya Inyotef A ("The Ancestor")
Rimush / Adamu Montuhotep A
Manishtushu / Manishtu Ur-Bau Montuhotep I / Manium Tepy-ya, "The First One"
Namaghami? Montuhotep II / Mannu-Dannu?
Naram-Sin Inyotef I
Gudea Inyotef II
Ur-Ningirsu Inyotef III
Ugme Montuhotep III
Nam-hani Amenemhet I

The Guti, as these people were called, did not descend upon Naram-Sin from the Zagros Mountains on their own accord. They were marshaled there by Gudea, a younger brother or half-brother of Naram-Sin. Gudea was not a noble savage. He was no more Gutian than Gulliver was a Lilliputian. It would not even be proper to call him a noble. He was a pure blooded royal. He was a younger son of Sargon and the son-in-law of the murdered Ur-Bau. The Guti tribe had earlier been subdued by Sargon (who was himself repeating the exploit of Lugal-anne-mundu/Nimrod). From that time forward, the kings of the Sargon Dynasty ruled over the Guti, and assumed Gutian names. In the case of Gudea, his name was so similar to the tribe name of Guti that it probably was not necessary for him to adopt a Gutian name, per se.

Like the man himself, the name Gudea is both short and extremely rich. His name would have had a natural appeal to Gutians. It was equally winsome to both Sumerian and Akkadian speakers. One Sumerian scholar defines Gu-dea as "the one who is called to power"ag Within the multi-lingual royal court, gu-dea (deo) would also signify "(the one who is ) proclaimed (as) God," or in a Biblical sense, declared to be Israel. The name probably reflected the newly won status of Sargon at the birth of this son, however Gudea made both the name and the title his own.ah Taken as Gu-de-a, the name suggests "Verbosity."ai If archaeology is any indication, Gudea was a prolific communicator. Two cylinder scrolls containing almost 1400 lines of text commemorate the painstaking process and intense passion with which Gudea built and dedicated the main temple of Lagash in Girsu. It is the lengthiest of all surviving Sumerian texts.aj Another Sumerologist interprets the name Gudea as something akin to "prophet."ak The "Guda" was an important type of Sumerian priest.

Broken down as Gud-e-a, this name connotes "Rampaging Bull."al This interpretation reflects the rage with which Gudea led the Gutian horde against Naram-Sin. Gudea is also very similar in form to the Akkadian names Tudiya and Dudu, both meaning "beloved of God." An even more liberal translation would be as a hybrid Sumerian-Akkadian name, that is, Gud-ea, "Bull of Ea." Ea/Enki was called the "Bull of Eridu." In Egypt, the sacred bull of Ptah (Ea/Enki) was the renowned Apis Bull. At this time, a transition from Sumerian to Semitic language was taking place. The Susa monument of Manishtu(shu)-Irba, father-in-law of Gudea, was inscribed "in a language which is a mixture of Sumerian and Semitic." It was also in the form of pyramid and made from Egyptian diorite (see Endnote 3).

The death of Montuhotep I (Ur-Bau) and/or Montuhotep II was avenged by his son-in-law Gudea. At least this would have been one justification for the coup. Once in power in Mesopotamia, Gudea also usurped the Egyptian name of his vanquished predecessor, He is known today as Inyotef II. Just as Naram-Sin had done, he brought back diorite stone from Magan (Egypt) for use in his own monuments. Gudea rebuilt at least 16 temples in his beloved district of Girsu. In addition to stone from Egypt, he gathered exotic and precious materials from many other locations. Sadly almost nothing remains other than the seals and a number of the statues of Gudea that were carved from the diorite of Egypt. Experts are divided in their opinion of the artistic excellence of the statues. To some they are considered bland, others call them exquisite.7 Those who depreciate the quality of the statuary likely do so because Gudea is presently not considered to have been a Sumerian prince, but a barbarian with unknown antecedents.

  2. Djoser (variants Zoser and Zeser) is the popular Egyptian name of the Biblical Mizraim, the brother of Cush (Horus-Aha/Scorpion). See Chapter 4 for discussion and notes. The Egyptian 1st Dynasty only contains two unique names, that of Aha (Cush) and Semerkhet (Shem). The other 1st Dynasty kings are listed under alternate names in the 3rd and 4th Dynasty king-lists. See Chart 14a for the chronology of the early dynastic period in Egypt.
  3. "The Tradition of Seven Lean Years in Egypt," from the Drought Stela (Ptolemaic Period), Ancient Near Eastern Texts, James B. Pritchard, ed., p 31.
  4. Ecclesiastes 1:9-11 (NIV). The philosophy of Ecclesiastes is connected to the Egyptian notion of neheh, cyclical time. Until the Egyptian 19th Dynasty, it was believed that all things were destined to repeat. For an expanded definition of neheh, see Jan Assmann,The Mind of Egypt, pp 18, 242-246. See also Meeks and Favard-Meeks, Daily Life of the Egyptian Gods, p 19.
  5. Nicolas Grimal, A History of Ancient Egypt, p 69.
  6. Huni ("Smiter") is the name of Narmer in the 3rd Dynasty king-list. The reign of Huni/Narmer was contemporary with that of a half-brother Snofru, who possibly also became his son-in-law and the father of his successor.
  7. Nicolas Grimal, A History of Ancient Egypt, p 70.
  8. The Stairway to Heaven, pp 256-282; The Wars of Gods and Men, pp 136-7.
  9. Miroslav Verner, The Pyramids, pp 217-223.
  10. The Hebrew epithet dod means "loved one."
  11. Daniel 10:13,20
  12. See Romans 8:28; Ephesians 3:10, 6:12; Colossians 1:16, 2:15.
  13. kak ~ usi = support/strength
  14. Ish-me = Me-ish ~ me-shi/mesi
  15. Peter Clayton, Chronicle of the Pharaohs, p 66.
  16. S.N. Kramer, The Sumerians, p 55.
  17. S.N. Kramer, The Sumerians, p 59.
  19. "Rulers of Lagash."
  20. See on-line Sumerian Lexicon by John A. Halloran,
  21. The throne names of the immediate successors of Sargon, viz., Rimush and Manishtushu, both point back to Ush, the aggressive founder of the Umma Dynasty.
  22. There is at least some phonic resemblance between Sharuken (Sargon) and the name Urukagena. (uruk ~ sharuk; ken ~ gen/gena/gina)
  23. Nicolas Grimal, A History of Ancient Egypt, p 143.
  24. S.N. Kramer, The Sumerians, pp 276-288.
  25. S. N. Kramer, The Sumerians, p 61.
  26. Compare the Sumerian root mu, meaning "fattened."
  27. Judges 3:30
  28. Lost Civilizations, Sumer: Cities of Eden, p 124, by the editors of Time-Life Books, Alexandria, Virginia.
  29. The Semitic Rim/Aram/Man are closely related to the Egyptian Montu.
  30. Lost Civilizations, Sumer: Cities of Eden, p 124.
  31. Naram might also connote N'aram, "serpent-king of the mountains." Also, compare Nar and na'ar, "overthrow."
  32. Lost Civilizations, Sumer: Cities of Eden, pp 124-5.
  33. Lost Civilizations, Sumer: Cities of Eden, p 139.
  34. See Chapter 7 for further discussion of Gudea.
  35. "Flowing speech" from gu, "throat, eat, swallow, speak" and de-a, "to pour"
  36. S. N. Kramer, The Sumerians, p 67.
  37. Jean Bottero, Mesopotamia, p 295.
  38. "Breaking out (of the) Bull" from gud, "bull" and e-a, "emerge, take out" (See on-line Sumerian Lexicon by John A. Halloran,
  39. The name Gudea is an obvious variant of the Akkadian name Tudiya/Dudu, which is in turn equivalent to the Egyptian Inyotef.

Note 1:

Lab-asher, "happy mouth, labor, fairness?" or "black and white?" i.e. mixed? leb, heart, flame

Lab, "white" or Leb, "heart, flame."

leb (3820) the heart, wisdom

laban (3835) to be (or become) white; also (as denom. from 3843) to make bricks.

lebenah (3843) a brick (from the whiteness of the clay)

labash (3847) wrap around, i.e. (by impl.) to put on a garment or clothe (oneself, or another), lit or fig.

libhyethen (Spelling from American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language) or livyathan (3882) from 3867 a wreathed animal, i.e. a serpent (espec. the crocodile or some other large sea-monster); fig. the constellation of the dragon; also as a symbol of Bab.:-- leviathan, mourning.

lavah (3867) prop. to twine, i.e. (by impl.) to unite, to remain; also to borrow (as a form of obligation) or (caus.) to lend

Lubbiy (3864) to thirst, i.e. a dry region

asher (833) aw-share'; or ashar , aw-shar'; to be straight (used in the widest sense, espec. to be level, right, happy); fig. to go forward, be honest, prosper

osher, o'sher; from 833; happiness, happy.

ashur (838) from 833 in the sense of going; a step

Cf The Step Pyramid of Djoser

Cf Ser/Asar, Osiris

Other connotations of the roots Esh/Ish/Ash would be "out pour" (793), "to flow out" (7640), to "grow out" (7641, 7644), to "branch out from" (7640), "foundation" (787, 803), "sacrifice" (801) "step forth/out" (838), "split into a forked tongue as a flame" (7632), "seventh" (7637), "black" (Ashur), and (784) "burning, fiery, flaming, hot."

Lab-Ashur would connote black and white, i.e., mixed or inter-racial.

Djoser is sometimes written as Zoser. Compare Zoser and zohar (6713) to dazzle; sheen, i.e. whiteness:-- white

Note 2:

The Middle Kingdom pharaohs built mud brick pyramids, a few of which have also been carbon dated. Quoting from an article written by members of the David H. Koch Pyramids Radiocarbon Project:

"Two samples from mud bricks and mud layers on the ruined core of the pyramidof Amenemhet I produced dates more than 800 years younger than the end of his reign in 1962 B.C. As Dieter Arnold of the Metropolitan Museum later informed us, there was settlement from Dynasty 13 through the New Kingdom Ramesside Period (Dynasties 19 and 20) at this pyramid. Here the radiocarbon dating gives a loud and clear signal of a mistaken sampling - apparently these two samples were material from the later settlement."

See, "Dating the Pyramids," Archaeology, Sept/Oct '99, p 31.

The "apparently mistaken" samples of the Koch study were actually quite consistent with the chronology proposed here. It was necessary for Koch to conclude that a later settlement at or near the site was responsible for material that was on the pyramid itself. The article goes on to say that they had "better luck" with straw samples taken from the pyramid of Senusret II. Samples were also taken from the pyramid of Amenemhet III, however the article does not mention any dates that may have been determined for this material. The only thing that comes across "loud and clear" is that the established chronology is so far off from reality that scientific dating cannot be reasonably conducted. Researchers are forced to throw out the good samples and collect a "statistically significant" group of "false" readings. This is a challenge in itself. However, to do otherwise would guarantee academic ridicule and possible discrediting.

Note 3:

Inscription linking the names Manishtu-shu and Ur-Bau

Memoires de la Mission, vol i., p l. ix.

Délégation en Perse, Memories publiès sous la direction de M. J. de Morgan, délégué-général (quarto, Leroux, editeur, Paris, 1905)

Note 4:

"Bau was a goddess worshipped almost exclusively at Lagash." (J. Black and A. Green, Gods, Demons and Symbols of Ancient Mesopotamia, p 39) More precisely, Bau would have been the name of Ninti/Ninhursag used almost exclusively at Lagash.

Ba-u, meaning "fertile, provider," was the local name of Ninhursag at the city of Lagash where she was considered the consort of her son Zababa (Ninurta), patron god of Lagash.

See ANET, pp 165, 533

Bau in Egyptian is the plural of Ba, the deceased soul. Manium could be interpreted as the plural of Mane, the deceased soul.

"Land of Thoth," "state of the spirits/deceased," Egypt was burial place of gods and god-kings.

Compare the Biblical Kirjaith Arba, "city of Arba" and Irba (Manishtushu)

Note 5:


magen (4043) maw-gane'; from 1598; a shield (i.e. the small one or buckler); fig. A protector; also the scaly hide of the crocodile:-- x armed, buckler, defence, ruler, + scale, shield.

magan (4042) maw-gan'; a denom. From 4043; prop. to shield; encompass with; fig. to rescue, to hand safely over (i.e. surrender):-- deliver

meginnah (4044) a covering (in a bad sense), i.e. blindness or obduracy:-- sorrow.

migereth (4045) reproof (i.e. curse):-- rebuke.

maggephah (4046) a pestilence; by anal. defeat:-- (x be) plague(-d), slaughter, stroke.


milluah (4396) mil-loo-aw'; fem. of 4394; a filling , i.e. setting (of gems):-- inclosing, setting.

millu (4394) mil-loo'; from 4390; a fulfilling (only in plur.), i.e. (lit.) a setting (of gems), or (techn.) consecration (also concr. a dedicatory sacrifice):-- consecration, be set.

mala (4390) maw-law'; to fill . be at an end, be expired, be fenced, . replenish, satisfy, set .

Ethiopia was considered the furthest extent of the "world" in which they had been commanded to "replenish," i.e., refill with their own descendants.

Mizraim (4714) dual of 4693; Mitsrajim, i.e., fortresses, defenses, figuratively Egypt.

Matsuwr (4693) maw-tsore'; the same as 4692 in the sense of a limit; Egypt (as the border of Pal.):-- besieged places, defense, fortified.

Note 6:

Mannu-dannu, king of Egypt." Dan means "judge," and this is possibly why Ehud is named as one of the first judges of Israel. Variously called Manium. The name Manium is rich in meaning.

Mannu-Dannu (Montu the Judge)

men (4482) mane; to apportion; a part

manah (4490) maw-naw'; division/lot/portion

Cf meniy (4507) apportioner

Dan (1835) dawn; from (1777); judge

duwn (1777) doon; to rule; by impl. to judge (as umpire); also to strive (as at law):-- contend, execute (judgment), judge, minister judgment, plead (the cause), at strife, strive.

Note 7:

Information and Images of Gudea on the Web: (Gudea of Lagash) (Classical Agade) (Seated statue of Gudea, prince of Lagash) (Mesopotamian votive 'nail' with the name of Gudea) (Rulers of Lagash) (The Building of Ningirsu's Temple) (Head of Gudea) (Guide to Sumerian Texts) (Slides of Mesopotamia)

Gudea in Classical Mesopotamian Studies:

Samuel Noah Kramer, The Sumerians: Their History, Culture, and Character
Hans J. Nissen, The Early History of the Ancient Near East
Georges Roux, Ancient Iraq

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