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Sumerian Mythology Paperback – October 1, 1998
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"A real addition to the body of world mythology."—American Anthropologist
"No people has contributed more to the culture of mankind than the Sumerians, and yet it has been only in recent years that our knowledge of them has become at all accurate or extensive. [This book is] our first authoritative sketch of the great myths of the Sumerians, their myths of origins, of creation, the nether world, and the deluge. The book . . . makes entrancing reading and for the general reader it opens up a whole new vista undreamed of before."—Theophile J. Meek
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Top Customer Reviews
However, this is quite a useful handbook, even if the author pointedly tells the reader that "History begins at Sumer" is more accurate. It has that touch that encompasses all ancient historical secondary sources written in the early part of the twentieth century - a narrative style, whereby it is just as important to provide both a description of actions and a background of the people and methods that got the several thousand clay tablets translated.
Given today's somewhat dry "facts, facts, facts" attitude of most ancient historians, it is most refreshing because understanding those who compiled the work gives a better understanding of the translation.
The book excellently gives a rundown of the pantheon of Sumerian Gods, the acculturation of Sumerian mythology into Semitic and translates a goodly portion (sometimes inaccurately as the preface warns!) of the tablets.
Whilst any serious Sumerian scholar must move on to latter translations and works, this is a good starting point, particularly for those wanting to see a 'decipherment' in progress.
However, like the author states some of the translations are not that accurate. Also, I wish this book was longer.
Besides those two things, this book is awesome and I recommend it to anyone just beginning to study Sumerian mythology.
The information is good, though brief, mostly covering what can be assumed with the little information that's there. There's quite a bit of background regarding the author's search for clues and how long it took to decipher the text as well as where each bit came from. It's good info, if you're an archaeologist, but annoying if you're looking for a book that in any way describes the myths or religion.
This guy spent way too much time explaining how much he knows about Sumerian Mythology.
"Yeah, yeah, yeah, now get to the point, please."
There are no pictures in the edition that I purchased. There are captions, however, that refer to maps and pictures.
I do like Kramer's writing, where it exists.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I feel so blessed that the cunniform has been translated and published in paperbacks. It insightful to learn how people lived almost 6,000 years ago. Read morePublished 11 months ago by Pompadour of the Wasatch
I was very disappointed in the fact that this version contained NONE of the Plates contained in the original printing. Read morePublished 13 months ago by Robert C. Eaton
This is a history book and cannot be described as requestedPublished 15 months ago by Ronald E. Grant
An interesting mithological approach about the beginning of history.Published 15 months ago by Jose Hernandez Laos
The text was easy to read and I very much enjoyed the pictures of sumerian tablets. One in particular shows Utu being a badass throwing his light rays all while with one leg... Read morePublished 16 months ago by blah blah
While the book is very informative, and gives great notations to other on other sources of further reading. The overall product is shotty at best. Read morePublished 19 months ago by chase reed
Kramer spent a lifetime piecing together the scattered cuneiform tablets of Sumer, translating them, and putting together the most coherent versions yet of the great myths of... Read morePublished 21 months ago by 4thranktensor