- Paperback: 510 pages
- Publisher: Yale University Press; New Ed edition (14 Oct. 1997)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0300072783
- ISBN-13: 978-0300072785
- Product Dimensions: 15.9 x 3.8 x 24.1 cm
- Average Customer Review: 3 customer reviews
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 791,808 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
The Harps that Once...: Sumerian Poetry in Translation Paperback – 14 Oct 1997
- Choose from over 13,000 locations across the UK
- Prime members get unlimited deliveries at no additional cost
- Find your preferred location and add it to your address book
- Dispatch to this address when you check out
Customers who bought this item also bought
Customers who viewed this item also viewed
Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
This volume presents translations of ancient Sumerian poems, including a number of compositions that have never before been published in translation.
About the Author
The late Thorkild Jacobsen was professor of Assyriology emeritus at Harvard University
What other items do customers buy after viewing this item?
Top customer reviews
There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.
Most helpful customer reviews on Amazon.com
Ironically, I believe one could truly call this book a "page-turner" in that the poetic style means you have very few words per page--with the exception of a few lengthy footnotes. Even though it's 484 pages long even slow readers (like myself) can finish this book in about 2-3 days.
Although much escaped my understanding there were quite a few interesting observations I was able to make:
--I found it interesting how it described them using counterweights to offset front-heavy jewelry pieces.
--Mention of a Deluge (outside of the Epic of Gilgamesh) which is a common theme in many ancient cultures.
--Mention of a Babel-like scenario from Genesis.
--There appear to be some Biblical parallels that have escaped the author's attention. A good example is this part of "In the Desert by the Early Grass" on page 65 . . .
"I am the mother who gave birth! Woe to that day, that day! Woe to that night!"
O Mother of the lad, Woe to that day, that day! Woe to that night!
The day that dawned for my provider, that [dawned] for the lad, my Damu!
A day to be wiped out, that I would I could forget!"
Compare that wording and content to that of Job 3 (NKJV):
"May the day perish on which I was born, and the night in which it was said, 'A male child is conceived.' May that day be darkness."
--The descriptions of sacrifices bring to mind both those of the Israelites and Vedic Hinduism.
--Temple building instructions also bring to mind those found in the Old Testament.
--There is a theory (not mentioned in this book) that Abraham could not have come from the Ur in Southern Iraq because it was destroyed during his time--this book has "The Lament for Ur" that talks about that destruction.
--In regards to the Deluge accounts, one has to keep in mind that just because an account was written earlier than other accounts does not mean that it is the "true account" and all others are false or inferior. If the Sumerians were the first to document the Deluge then it means only that--other accounts may be more accurate even if they were written much later.
--Finally, having recently read "Ancient Wine" by Patrick McGovern I couldn't help but notice more than a few references to wine and beer in Sumerian culture.
In closing, I'm admittedly not as interested in Sumerian history or poetry as some other reviewers might be, but even as a casual reader I was able to find some things of interest. This would be an excellent book for anyone who wants to broaden their horizons outside of the Epic of Gilgamesh.