Neo-Assyrian and Greek Divination in War focuses on all divinatory practices which were used in the ancient Near East and Greece in time of war. Divination was a practical way of discovering the will of the gods, and enabled human contact with the divine. Divinatory practices were crucial to decision-taking. The results of divination were especially important during war. This book concentrates on the methods used to obtain all possible information from the divine world which could impact on the results of war. Knowledge of divine plans, verdicts and favors would ensure victory, power and eternal glory.
This book is also about the convergence of the ancient Near East and Greek divinatory systems, methods and practices. Step by step, it points out that the Greeks treated divination in a very similar way to the Mesopotamians, and presents the possible routes of transmission of this divine knowledge, which was practiced in both cultures by a group of well-trained professionals.
Krzysztof Ulanowski, Ph.D. (2001) University of M. Curie-Skłodowskiej, is Assistant Professor at The Gdansk University. He has published monographs and many articles about divination, religion and civilization of the ancient Near East and Greece, including The Religious Aspects of War in the Ancient Near East, Greece, and Rome (ed.) (Brill, 2016).
Acknowledgments List of Abbreviations Introduction
4 Step by Step
1 Religion and War
1 Ritualization of War in Mesopotamia
2 The Phenomenon of War in the Greek World
2 Divination in Mesopotamia
1 The Third Millennium
2 Old Babylonian Period and Mari
3 Divination as a Divine Gift. The Enmeduranki Tradition
4 The Role of the Gods Shamash and Adad
5 Protective Action against Dangerous Signs. Namburbi Ritual
6 The God Enki/Ea
7 Diviners (between Gods and Humanity)
3 Greek Divination
1 Greek Heritage
3 The Greek Diviners – Manteis. The Meaning of the Term
4 The Role of Mantis during Military Campaigns
5 Diviner or King?
4 Varieties of Divination
2 Celestial Divination
3 Natural Catastrophes
4 Terrestrial Omens. Animals
5 Divination by Images. Statues
6 Teratological (Unusual) Births
9 Cledonomancy and Φήμη
10 Omens from Names
11 Prophecy and Oracles
13 Favorable and Unfavorable Days
5 Mesopotamian Influence on Greek Divination Conclusions Bibliography General Index
All interested in the history of religion: especially divination. For students and scholars who study the religious practices and rituals in ancient Near East and Greece and their mutual relations and influences.