This is the sixth volume of ancient cuneiform texts being prepared under the auspices of The Royal Inscriptions of Mesopotamia, and the first volume for the Babylonian periods. The purpose of the project is to locate and publish standard editions of the texts known as the Royal Inscriptions from ancient Mesopotamia (Sumer, Akkad, Babylonia, and Assyria). Since the texts were first deciphered in the nineteenth century, the close affinity between them and events and people in the Bible has stirred great interest.
The texts presented in this volume are from the important transitional period extending from the fall of the Kassite dynasty in the middle of the twelfth century BC to the collapse of Assyrian power towards the close of the seventh century. During these five centuries there were a number of short-lived dynasties in Babylonia, and for a time the area was controlled by its northern neighbour, Assyria. The first part of this period has been described as a 'Dark Age' in Babylonia's history, and the nadir of its political existence occurred in the early seventh century when the capital, Babylon, was captured and destroyed by the Assyrian ruler Sennacherib. Nevertheless, in the final century and a half of this period conditions in Babylonia improved and various forces built up the momentum that was to bring about the formation of the Neo-Babylonian empire and the shift of hegemony over western Asia from Assyria to Babylonia.
This volume contains a short introduction for each ruler. Every inscription is accompanied by an introductory statement, a catalogue of exemplars, a brief commentary, a bibliography, a transliteration and translation, and notes. Appropriate introductory materials and indexes are included. 'Scores,' originally published on microfiche, are located at the back of the book.