Tag Archives: Assyrians

Fascinating Facts of Europe’s Oldest Writing

Galerie d'Appolllon Le Triomphe de Cybèle par Guichard

Joseph Guichard [Public domain or CC BY-SA 4.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0)], via Wikimedia Commons – Triumph of goddess Cybele

In modern day Turkey, known as the kingdom of Anatolia in ancient times, archaeologists recently discovered a variety of weights used by traders over 4,000 years ago. These were found in one of the 14 layers of the mound of Aemhoyuk. One of these was a piece of rock crystal, which– lo and behold—boasts an actual inscription. This marvelous discovery turns out to be the oldest written document in Anatolia and Europe as a whole. The cuneiform letters have not yet been deciphered, nor is it known whether the writing is in Anatolian or a more widespread international language used for trading purposes.

Antichambre de la reine-BELLONE, DÉESSE DES COMBATS, BRÛLE AVEC UN FLAMBEAU LE VISAGE DE CYBÈLE

By VIGNON, Claude-François (1633-1703) (RMN) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons – goddess Cybele

The Assyrians of Mesopotamia, in the region now known as Iraq, established trade routes and centralized locations for traders to congregate and sell their wares. Purushattum in Anatolia became one of these centers. The civilized world of that time coveted the silver of Purushattum as a prized commodity. Tin and luxurious fabrics were among other items traded.

I look forward to the day when this ancient writing, one lonely line from so long ago on one small rock crystal, is translated. What do you think it is? I’m wondering if it refers to the amount and type of material the weight stood for, e.g., one measure of silver or the like. Trade talk and measurements are among the most common reasons for ancient writing. I remember that was the case for Linear B in Mycenaean and Cretan times.

Cheers & Happy Reading!
Flossie Benton Rogers, Conjuring the Magic in Romance

Fae Friday: Surprising Secrets of Lamassu

Illustrerad Verldshistoria band I Ill 034

By Ernst Wallis et al (own scan) [Public domain or Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Entrance to temple

By Frederick Charles Cooper (1817- ?) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

A Lamassu is a fascinating Assyrian deity that protects a kingdom, city, building, or home. Often it has the head of a human, the body of a lion, bull, or ox, 4 legs, and the wings of a bird. When viewed from the front in raised stone reliefs, the front may appear to be complete, but go around to the side and you see the full 3D effect. When they were placed at the entrance to a palace or city, they appeared as a pair of colossal protectors. A Lamassu is strong, supernatural, and amazing. I get the shivers from a Lamassu and here’s why.

The most famous is the Sphinx in Egypt.
Lammasu are also known as Shedu.
They are thought of as winged bulls and winged lions.
They first began to appear around 5,000 years ago.
The Epic of Gilgamesh features various Lamassu.

The Lamassu exemplifies:

  • The 4 cardinal directions east, south, west, and north
  • The 4 seasons spring, summer, fall, and winter
  • The 4 cardinal zodiac signs which currently are Aries, Cancer, Libra, and Capricorn (long ago ages saw different starting points for the ecliptic or apparent path of the sun as it traveled the celestial sphere)
  • Each individual zodiacal / historical age (such as the Age of Aquarius), lasting 2,160 years (a result of the earth’s precessional rotation)
  • The totality of the zodiacal ages (all 12 from Capricorn to Sagittarius), meaning 2,160 X 12 = approximately 26,000 years, a period of time also called a Great Year. Anthropologist Robert Sepehr is one who has studied this.

In other words the Lamassu emerges from the depths of time and depicts the long tail of the earth. It tells the story of earth, including humans, all living creatures, survival, art, mathematics, spirituality, immanence, transcendence, and power. Not bad for a winged bull.

Cheers & Happy Reading!
Flossie Benton Rogers, Conjuring the Magic in Romance