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Myths from Mesopotamia: Creation, the Flood, Gilgamesh, and Others (Oxford World's Classics) Paperback – February 15, 2009

ISBN-13: 978-0199538362 ISBN-10: 0199538360 Edition: Revised
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Editorial Reviews

Review


"Fresh, authoritative English translations from the sources."--Classical World


"A careful, scholarly edition of a variety of important texts from ancient mesopotamia. Dalley's scrupulous care in showing lacunae makes this a harder narrative for classroom use but her annotations are thorough and her insights illuminating."--Nick Humez, Montclair State
University


"[Dalley] obviously controls the material as a scholar."--Comparative Civilizations Review


About the Author

Stephanie Dalley is Shillito Fellow in Assyriology at the Oriental Institute, Oxford and a Senior Research Fellow, Somerville College, Oxford.
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Product Details

  • Series: Oxford World's Classics
  • Paperback: 368 pages
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press; Revised edition (February 15, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0199538360
  • ISBN-13: 978-0199538362
  • Product Dimensions: 7.7 x 0.9 x 5.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (25 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #30,100 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

3.9 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

24 of 25 people found the following review helpful By Howard Schulman on May 2, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
For a course on Mesopotamian Religion I read most of the myths in this book. Each myth has a short introduction and frequent interesting and helpful footnotes. Although I am not an expert in this area, I thought the translations were easy to read. I also appreciated the way the stories were laid out. I also appreciated a glossary of god names, places, and key terms at the back and referred to it frequently. The myths included in the book cover many of the most essential myths of that era.

As an aside, I would not attempt to read these myths without the guidance of a class and teacher. They frequently take study and rereading many times to get the story. They're between 3000 and 4000 years old and really need some solid background information in order to fully understand them, as well. Also, keep in mind that many of these stories were meant to be chanted or otherwise performed at public functions, so that simple reading them on the page probably doesn't do them full justice.

Good luck!!
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17 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Rick on January 3, 2014
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Stephanie Dalley should be commended on this work. Her comments and notes are as valuable as the myths themselves and i prefer reading the Epic of Gilgamesh in her work over Andrew Georges' the Epic of Gilgamesh which seems to have been influenced more by the Joseph Campbell hero archetype. I would agree that this is the most up to date translation and in Stephanie Dalley's own words, "such huge strides have been made in our understanding of the cuneiform script and the Akkadian language during the past three decades that new translations need no justification."
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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Bucky Ball on August 5, 2012
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A must for anyone interested in Biblical origins, and the general mythological climate of the Ancient Near East. Nicely laid out, artistic look and feel, so one see's the poetic nature of the myths. Excellent resource.
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18 of 19 people found the following review helpful By SELDAB on December 27, 2012
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This book might not include everything, or be the newest and best, but if you are looking to purchase just one book on the Sumerians/Akkadians/Ancient Babylon, it has to be this one. All of the popular and must read classics are here and I think these are the kinds of things we should have read in grade school, instead of some of the other useless rubbish crammed down our throats!
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19 of 24 people found the following review helpful By Raymond Zachary on December 18, 2012
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This book is almost an encyclopedia of different translations of the same or correlated but fragmentary tablet texts. One has to marvel that the complete story was ever extracted. However, it is a good study in the difficult work of piecing together historical material to get the intended story. The story itself is corroborated from other sources and is part of the demythologized records of creation, the flood, and the activities of the main players most of whom were extraterrestrials of the Annunaki variety. It was a somewhat difficult task to wade through the book but on the whole was worth the effort.
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9 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Paul Shortis on October 18, 2010
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This wasn't the easiest book I have read but then you wouldn't expect it to be, for such a dry subject, but it was very interesting to see the comparisons between religious paths and how they have, or may have, incorporated these stories into their own and to extrapolate how these stories have come down into many other cultures not mentioned but be able to see the themes as they may have transformed even up to the present day.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Jared R Towler on January 22, 2015
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I am not Mesopotamian scholar, but I really like this book. If you are a fan of Gilgamesh, I would say this is a must. It contains original translations of even scraps of Akkadian writings. I will be adding much more to my teaching of Gilgamesh now that I have read this book.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By cyber.snow on January 5, 2015
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If you are curious as to the myths that spawned a number of the books of the Old Testament, here is the book that explains a lot of the disconnects that you may have thought about.
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