Sumerian Religion Essay, Research Paper

Sumerian Religion, spiritual beliefs of the peoples of ancient Sumer. The Sumerians believed that the existence was ruled by a pantheon consisting a group of life existences, human in signifier, but immortal and possessing superhuman powers. These existences, they believed, were unseeable to mortal eyes and guided and controlled the universe in conformity with well-laid programs and duly prescribed Torahs.

The Sumerians had four taking divinities, known as making Gods. These Gods were An, the God of Eden ; Ki, the goddess of Earth ; Enlil, the God of air ; and Enki, the God of H2O. Heaven, Earth, air, and H2O were regarded as the four major constituents of the existence. The act of creative activity, it was held, was accomplished through vocalization of the Godhead word ; the making divinity had simply to do programs and articulate the name of the thing to be created. To maintain the universe in uninterrupted and harmonious operation and to avoid confusion and struggle, the Gods devised the me, a set of cosmopolitan and unchangeable regulations and Torahs that all existences were obliged to obey.

Other Sumerian Gods included those in charge of rivers, mountains, and plains ; of the metropoliss, Fieldss, and farms ; and of tools such as pickaxes, brick casts, and ploughs.

Sumerians believed that human existences were fashioned of clay and were created for the intent of providing the Gods with nutrient, drink, and shelter, so that the Gods might hold full leisure for their Godhead activities. Life was considered humanity & # 8217 ; s most cherished ownership, even though it is beset with uncertainness and haunted by insecurity ; for when human existences dice, it was believed, their liquors descend to the Hell, where life is more deplorable than on Earth.

During the fifth millenary BC a people known as the Ubaidians established colonies in the part known subsequently as Sumer ; these colonies bit by bit developed into the main Sumerian metropoliss. After about 3250 BC, another people migrated from its fatherland, located likely nor’-east of Mesopotamia, and began to intermarry with the native population. The fledglings, who became known as Sumerians, spoke an polysynthetic linguistic communication unrelated seemingly to any other known linguistic communication.

In the centuries that followed the in-migration of the Sumerians, the state grew rich and powerful. Art and architecture, trades, and spiritual and ethical idea flourished. The Sumerian linguistic communication became the predominating address of the land, and the people here developed the cuneiform book, a system of composing on clay. This book was to go the basic agencies of written communicating throughout the Middle East for about 2000 old ages.

The first Sumerian swayer of historical record, Etana, male monarch of Kish ( flourished about 2800 BC ) , was described in a papers written centuries subsequently as the adult male who stabilized all the lands. Shortly after his reign ended, a male monarch named Meskiaggasher founded a rival dynasty at Erech ( Uruk ) , far to the South of Kish. Meskiaggasher, who won control of the part widening from the Mediterranean Sea to the Zagros Mountains, was succeeded by his boy Enmerkar ( flourished about 2750 BC ) . The latter s reign was noteworthy for an expedition against Aratta, a city state far to the nor’-east of Mesopotamia. Enmerkar was succeeded by Lugalbanda, one of his military leaders. The feats and conquerings of Enmerkar and Lugalbanda form the topic of a rhythm of heroic poem narratives representing the most of import beginning of information on early Sumerian history.

At the terminal of Lugalbanda s reign, Enmebaragesi ( flourished about 2700 BC ) , a male monarch of the Etana dynasty at Kish, became the taking swayer of Sumer. His outstanding accomplishments included a triumph over the state of Elam and the building at Nippur of the Temple of Enlil, the taking divinity of the Sumerian pantheon. Nippur bit by bit became the religious and cultural centre of Sumer.

Enmebaragesi s boy Agga ( likely died before 2650 BC ) , the last swayer of the Etana dynasty, was defeated by Mesanepada, male monarch of Ur ( Florida. about 2670

BC ) , who founded the alleged 1st Dynasty of Ur and made Ur the capital of Sumer. Soon after the decease of Mesanepada, the metropolis of Erech achieved a place of political prominence under the leading of Gilgamesh ( flourished about 2700-2650 BC ) , whose workss are celebrated in narratives and fables.

Sometime before the twenty-fifth century BC the Sumerian Empire, under the leading of Lugalanemundu of Adab ( flourished about 2525-2500 BC ) , was extended from the Zagros to the Taurus mountains and from the Persian Gulf to the Mediterranean Sea. Subsequently the imperium was ruled by Mesilim ( Florida. about 2500 BC ) , king of Kish. By the terminal of his reign, Sumer had begun to worsen. The Sumerian city states engaged in changeless internecine battle, wash uping their military resources. Eannatum ( Florida. about 2425 BC ) , one of the swayers of Lagash, succeeded in widening his regulation throughout Sumer and some of the adjacent lands. His success, nevertheless, was ephemeral. The last of his replacements, Uruinimgina ( Florida. about 2365 BC ) , who was notable for establishing many societal reforms, was defeated by Lugalzagesi ( reigned about 2370-2347 BC ) , the governor of the adjacent city state of Umma. Thereafter, for about 20 old ages, Lugalzagesi was the most powerful swayer in the Middle East.

By the twenty-third century BC the power of the Sumerians had declined to such an extent that they could no longer support themselves against foreign invasion. The Semitic swayer Sargon I ( reigned about 2335-2279 BC ) , called The Great, succeeded in suppressing the full state. Sargon founded a new capital, called Agade, in the far North of Sumer and made it the richest and most powerful metropolis in the universe. The people of northern Sumer and the conquest encroachers, blending bit by bit, became known ethnically and linguistically as Akkadians. The land of Sumer acquired the composite name Sumer and Akkad.

The Akkadian dynasty lasted about a century. During the reign of Sargon s grandson, Naram-Sin ( r. about 2255-2218 BC ) , the Gutians, a aggressive people from the Zagros Mountains, sacked and destroyed the metropolis of Agade. They so subjugated and laid waste the whole of Sumer. After several coevalss the Sumerians threw off the Gutian yoke. The metropolis of Lagash once more achieved prominence, peculiarly during the reign of Gudea ( circa 2144-2124 BC ) , an inordinately pious and capable governor. Because legion statues of Gudea have been recovered, he has become the Sumerian best known to the modern universe. The Sumerians achieved complete independency from the Gutians when Utuhegal, male monarch of Erech ( reigned about 2120-2112 BC ) , won a decisive triumph subsequently celebrated in Sumerian literature.

One of Utuhegal s generals, Ur-Nammu ( r. 2113-2095 BC ) , founded the 3rd Dynasty of Ur. In add-on to being a successful military leader, he was besides a societal reformist. Ur-Nammu s boy Shulgi ( r. 2095-2047 BC ) was a successful soldier, a adept diplomat, and a frequenter of literature. During his reign the schools and academies of the land flourished. During this period a jurisprudence codification, which antedates that of the Babylonian male monarch Hammurabi ( see Hammurabi, Code of ) by about three centuries, was drafted. The codification is attributed diversely to Shulgi or Ur-Nammu.

Before the beginning of the 2nd millenary BC the Amorites, Semitic nomads from the desert to the West of Sumer and Akkad, invaded the land. They bit by bit became Masterss of such of import metropoliss as Isin and Larsa. The attendant widespread political upset and confusion encouraged the Elamites to assail ( circa 2004 BC ) Ur and to take into imprisonment its last swayer, Ibbi-Sin ( r. 2029-2004 BC ) .

During the centuries following the autumn of Ur acrimonious intercity battle for the control of Sumer and Akkad occurred, foremost between Isin and Larsa and subsequently between Larsa and Babylon. Hammurabi of Babylon defeated Rim-Sin of Larsa ( r. about 1823-1763 BC ) and became the exclusive swayer of Sumer and Akkad. This day of the month likely marks the terminal of the Sumerian province. Sumerian civilisation, nevertheless, was adopted about in its entireness by Babylonia

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