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Aramaic Graffiti from Hatra

A Study Based on the Archive of the Missione Archeologica Italiana


Marco Moriggi and Ilaria Bucci

Graffiti are an often neglected but crucial witness to everyday life of ancient civilizations. The Aramaic graffiti from Hatra (North Iraq) can make an invaluable contribution in this sense, distributed as they were in various buildings throughout this city which flourished between the 1st and the 3rd century AD. Thanks to an effective interaction between epigraphy and archaeology, Marco Moriggi and Ilaria Bucci offer a thorough analysis of the Aramaic graffiti from Hatra as documented by the Archive of the Missione Archeologica Italiana (Turin). In addition to the edition of 48 published and 37 unpublished graffiti, this study further includes the concordances of numbers of all Hatran texts published so far and full archaeological information about the graffiti.

Bernard A. Taylor

The Poet and the Historian

Essays in Literary and Historical Biblical Criticism

Edited by Richard Friedman


Elizabeth Agaiby

In The Arabic Life of Antony Attributed to Serapion of Thmuis, Elizabeth Agaiby demonstrates how the redacted Life of Antony, the “Father of all monks and star of the wilderness”, gained widespread acceptance within Egypt shortly after its composition in the 13th century and dominated Coptic liturgical texts on Antony for over 600 years – the influence of which is still felt up to the present day. By providing a first edition and translation, Agaiby demonstrates how the Arabic Life bears witness to the reinterpretation of the religious memory of Antony in the Coptic Orthodox Church.

The Babylonian Disputation Poems

With Editions of the Series of the Poplar, Palm and Vine, the Series of the Spider, and the Story of the Poor, Forlorn Wren


Enrique Jiménez

In The Babylonian Disputation Poems Enrique Jiménez studies a group of ancient Babylonian poems that feature discussions between animals and trees. Using intertextual parallels and comparison with similar works in other literatures, he espouses a new classification of the Babylonian disputation poems as parodies. After examining neighboring traditions of literary disputation, he argues that the Babylonian poems influenced them, and that some may have been translated from Akkadian to Aramaic, from Aramaic and Syriac to Arabic.

In addition, The Babylonian Disputation Poems provides editions of several previously unpublished Babylonian disputations, such as Palm and Vine and the Series of the Spider. It also offers the first edition of the latest known Babylonian fable, The Story of the Poor, Forlorn Wren.


J. Cale Johnson and Markham J. Geller

In The Class Reunion—An Annotated Translation and Commentary on the Sumerian Dialogue Two Scribes, J. Cale Johnson and Markham J. Geller present a critical edition, translation and commentary on the Sumerian scholastic dialogue otherwise known as Two Scribes, Streit zweier Schulabsolventen or Dialogue 1. The two protagonists, the Professor and the Bureaucrat, each ridicule their opponent in alternating speeches, while at the same time scoring points based on their detailed knowledge of Sumerian lexical and literary traditions. But they also represent the two social roles into which nearly all graduates of the Old Babylonian Tablet House typically gained entrance. So the dialogue also reflects on larger themes such as professional identity and the nature of scholastic activity in Mesopotamia in the Old Babylonian period (ca. 1800–1600 BCE).

He Has Opened Nisaba's House of Learning

Studies in Honor of Åke Waldemar Sjöberg on the Occasion of His 89th Birthday on August 1st 2013


Edited by Leonhard Sassmannshausen

In He has Opened Nisaba’s House of Learning twenty-six scholars honor Åke Sjöberg, professor emeritus of Assyriology at the University of Pennsylvania and former editor of the Pennsylvania Sumerian Dictionary. The twenty-one studies included focus on Mesopotamian wisdom literature, religious texts, cultural concepts, the history of writing, material culture, society, and law from the invention of writing to the Hellenistic period. The volume includes editions of several previously unpublished texts.

The Letter of Mara bar Sarapion in Context

Proceedings of the Symposium Held at Utrecht University, 10-12 December 2009


Edited by Annette Merz and Teun L Tieleman

The Letter of Mara bar Sarapion to his son – preserved in a single Syriac manuscript (7th. cent. CE) – still speaks to its readers, evocatively depicting the dramatic situation of a nobleman imprisoned after the Roman capture of Samosata, capital of Commagene. The letter is best known today for a passage on the “wise king of the Jews,” which may be one of the earliest pagan testimonies concerning Jesus Christ. Ongoing controversy over the letter’s date, nature, and purpose has, however, led to the widespread neglect of this intriguing document. In the present volume, Merz and Tieleman have brought together cutting-edge research from an interdisciplinary team of leading experts that significantly advances our appreciation of the letter and its historical context.