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ABZU

What is Abzu?

Abzu is a guide to networked open access data relevant to the study and public presentation of the Ancient Near East and the Ancient Mediterranean world.

The editor of Abzu is Charles E. Jones, Head Librarian Institute for the Study of the Ancient World, New York University.Contact the editor directly at cejo@uchicago.edu.

Abzu has been available on the Internet since 5 October, 1994.The current Abzu resource has been made possible with a grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation

© 1994-2010. The Oriental Institute Research Archivesand Charles E. Jones.

 

What Abzu means

The most frequently asked question from users of Abzu is about the meaning of the word "Abzu". The publication in the early Summer of 1995 of the third fascicle of the Pennsylvania Assyrian Dictionary

Sjöberg, Åke, [Editor]. The Sumerian Dictionary of the University of Pennsylvania. Volume 1: A, Part II. With the collaboration of Hermann Behrens, Antoine Cavigneaux , Barry L. Eichler, Margaret W. Green, Erle Leichty, Darlene M. Loding, Steve Tinney. Philadelphia: The Babylonian Section of the University Museum; 1995. 1 volume (xlii + 202 pages). ISBN: 0-924171-35-9.

offers the opportunity to give an explanation. That volume defines the word Abzu in an extended article running from page 184 to page 202. Their heading reads as follows:

abzu wr. ab-su, ab-zu, ab2-zu, absu(SU.AB), abzu(ZU.AB), abzu2(DE2)

1. the abzu as Enki's shrine / temple in Eridu 2. the abzu in locations other than Eridu 3. the abzu as a (partly?) subterranean structure 4. the abzu as a mythical place where the life influencing powers reside and where their results, as well as the means to influence their effects, originate 5. the abzu described as incomprehensible, unfathomable, secret 6. the abzu as a place producing raw materials 7. abzu in DN 8. abzu in TN 9. abzu in PN; Archaic, Presarg., Gudea, Ur III, OB, Post-OB

For those who need a fuller explanation, track down this volume and read the whole article or see the entry for Abzu in the ePSD .

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