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Issue Number 32: First quarter for 2003

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An Introduction to the SUMERIANS: Works Cited (Semi-Annotated)

Books and Articles

Algaze, Guillermo, "The Uruk Expansion", Current Anthropology, Dec. 1989.

Barton, George. A. "Inscription of Entemena #7" in: The Royal Inscriptions of Sumer and Akkad (New Haven, CT; Yale Univ., 1929)

Black, Jeremy and Green, Anthony, Gods, Demons and Symbols of Ancient Mesopotamia: An Illustrated Dictionary, University of Texas Press, Austin, 1992. However, not that it is not clear whether information in an entry is applicable to the Sumerian, Akkadian, or both versions of a particular deity or hero.

Burney, Charles, The Ancient Near East, 1994

Clive, Irving, Crossroads of Civilization.

Clough, Shepard B., The Rise and Fall of Civilization.

Crawford, Harriet, Sumer and the Sumerians, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 1991.

Crowe, Ivan. The Quest for Food: Its Role in Human Evolution & Migration, 2000

Fagan, B. M., People of the Earth, Glenview Il, Scott Forsman, 1989

Hooke, S. H. Middle Eastern Mythology, Penguin Books, New York, 1963. This work covers Sumerian, Babylonian, Canaanite/Ugaritic, Hittite, and Hebrew mythologic material in brief and with comparisons.

Jacobsen, Thorkild, The Treasures of Darkness, Yale University Press, New Haven, 1976. Jacobsen explores Mesopotamian religious development from early Sumerian times through the Babylonian Enuma Elish. Most of the book centres on the Sumerians.

Kramer, Samuel Noah, Sumerian Mythology, Harper & Brothers, New York, 1961. This slim volume contains much of the mythological material that wound up in The Sumerians but concentrated in one spot and without much cultural or historical detail. Many of the myths are more developed here, some of which are only glossed over in The Sumerians, however in some cases The Sumerians holds the more complete or updated myth.

Kramer, Samuel Noah, The Sumerians -- Their History, Culture and Character, The University of Chicago Press, Chicago,1963 and 1971

Kramer, Samuel Noah, History Begins at Sumer, 1981 & 3rd edition 1989

Kramer, Samuel Noah, and Maier, John, Myths of Enki, the Crafty God, Oxford University Press, New York,1989. Probably the most recent work by Kramer. They translate and analyze all of the available myths which include Enki.

Lamott, Anne, Bird by Bird, New Publishing, 1996

Nagle, D. Brendan and Burstein, Stanley M. Burstein, The Ancient World: Readings in Social and Cultural History (Englewood CLiffs, NJ; Prentice Hall, 1995)

New American Bible (The), Catholic Book Publishing Co., New York, 1970.

Oppenheim, A.L. Ancient Mesopotamia (1964; revised 1977)

Pagels, Elaine, Adam, Eve and the Serpant.

Pritchard J. B., Ancient Near Eastern Texts Relating to the Old Testament, Princeton, 1969.

Saggs, H.W.F., Civilization before Greece and Rome.

Saggs, H.W.F, Babylonians, 1999. This Includes Ubaid period and the Sumerians to 500 BCE.

Shanks, Edward, Ancient Israel: From Abraham to the Roman Destruction of the Temple.

Sitchin, Z. When Time Began: The First New Age, Avon, 1993.

Stephenson, Neal, Snowcrash, Bantam Books, New York, 1992. A kind of Cyberpunk meets "Inanna, Enki, and the Me".

Wells, Peter S., Farms, Villages and Cities: Commerce and Urban Origins in Late Prehistoric Europe

Wilford, John Noble Civilization's Cradle Grows Larger The New York Times, May 28, 2002

Wolkstein, Diane and Kramer, Samuel Noah, Inanna: Queen of Heaven and Earth, Harper & Row, NY, 1983. Ms. Wolkstein's verse translations of the Inanna/Dummuzi cycle of myths are excellent, but differ somewhat Kramer's originals. Kramer gives a 30 or so page description of Sumerian cosmology and society at the end.

Wooley, C. Leonard, Excavations at Ur, 1954. This is one of the earlier works on the subject, and as such is not as complete as the others although it is of historical interest.

Wooley, C. Leonard, The Sumerians, The Norton Library, 1965

Online Resources

See also the Bilgelik E-zine's links page

Sanders, John C. & Oriental Institute, University of Chicago, from his Linguistics Lectures, Lecture 20 at

"Sumerian Writings," Oxford University.

"Sacrifices in Sumerian Culture," by Lillian Helstad

"Mesopotamia," by John Heise

Humanity's Beginnings, by Dr. E at Victor Community College (Victorville, California).

"The Women Warriors," by Lawrence Osborne

Sumerian Mythology FAQ by Christopher Siren.

Rise and Fall of Ancient Sumer


Ancient History Sourcebook


Elizabeth Burke, Lecturer at Sheffield University, Psychoanalytic Studies for her e-mail contribution


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