SOAS University of London

Department of the Languages and Cultures of the Near and Middle East

Letter of Kurkurtum to Erīb-Sîn (AbB XII 89), read by Wilfred van Soldt

The translation below is taken from the reader's edition in Altbabylonische Briefe vol. 12. The transcription is based on the transliteration in the same work.

Original TranscriptEnglish Translation
1-3 ana erīb-sîn qibī-ma umma kurkurtum ahātka-ma Speak to Erīb-Sin: Thus (says) Kurkurtum your sister.
4-6 šamaš u bēlī adad aššumiya liballiṭūka šalmāku May Šamaš and my lord Adad keep you in good health for my sake.
6-7 anāku u attā-ma nirtēh You and I, we are (the only ones) left.
7-8 išanni-ma ummī ulladanni Will my mother give birth to me a second time?
9-10 ana mīnim ina lā āliya u šumiya attanaqqi u pilakki mehertiy[a] ukāl Why am I offering sacrifices again and again in a city and under a name that are not mine?
12-17 anumma sîn-erība ibbi-šamaš u ibni-šērum šita’’al ša īteppušāni Now, ask Sin-erība. Ibbi-Šamaš and Ibni-Šērum in detail everything they have done to me.
18-20 ina bītim rēqim wašbāku u mūt matí amât I live in an empty house and I will surely die! (Lit. ‘I will die a death of dying’)
20-22 ina puhur sābî itabbiam-ma umma šū-ma Were he to get up in the assembly of the innkeepers, this (is what) he (would have to say):
22-25 mārat nukkusti mārat huttupti ša bellet tahnuqā “You (pl.) have strangled the daughter of a slaughtered woman, the daughter of a butchered woman, one who is a lady.”
26-28 ūmam mārat sîn-māgir bēlik[a] ātahaz(?) Today I have taken hold of the daughter of Sin-māgir, your lord.
29-32 alkam-ma warkatī purus šumma lā kī’am-ma abī aṣabbat Come and take care of my case!  Otherwise, I will seize my father.
33-35 lā ana mê amaqqut u pištam ašakkakka I do not want to fall into the water, but I will put you to shame.
36-37 atta balṭata u anāku mūt i-ta-[x] amât You are alive, but I am dying a ... death!