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Understanding the History of Ancient Israel$
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H. G. M. Williamson

Print publication date: 2007

Print ISBN-13: 9780197264010

Published to British Academy Scholarship Online: January 2012

DOI: 10.5871/bacad/9780197264010.001.0001

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Akkadian Sources of the Ninth Century

Akkadian Sources of the Ninth Century

(p.229) 12 Akkadian Sources of the Ninth Century
Understanding the History of Ancient Israel


British Academy

Scholars interested in the history of Israel often select for study relevant passages from Akkadian historical inscriptions, annals, and chronicles referring to biblical events. This process has become more sophisticated of late, particularly with the Texte aus der Umwelt der Alten Testaments series and COS, in which much more of Akkadian and even Sumerian literature is taken into account as directly or indirectly relevant to the Bible. However, the ‘scriptures in context’ approach often pays less attention to the nitty-gritty side of Assyriology, namely, the everyday contracts, administrative documents, lists, letters, receipts, and economic texts. There is a lot to learn from such material, which comprises the bulk of the thousands of Mesopotamian tablets. Biblical scholars tend to concentrate on those sections of the Kurkh and Black Obelisk inscriptions that mention Ahab and Jehu and the regional struggles against Assyria. The questions raised are valid, namely, how solid or fragile was the coalition of states fighting against the Assyrians, and at what point did the coalition break down?

Keywords:   Assyriology, history, Israel, inscriptions, annals, Bible, Assyria, Assyrians, coalition, biblical events

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