Thursday, December 11, 2014

Figure 42

“Great Ziggurat of Ur” (Photo Public Domain)
Ur near Nasiriyah, Iraq with the sacred temple or “Great Ziggurat of Ur”, built in the Early Bronze Age (21st cent. BC). The façade of the lowest level and the monumental staircase were rebuilt by orders of the President of Iraq, Saddam Hussein (Photo PD). The Babylonian ziggurat (Akkadian ziqqurratu), located at the city of Ur III, dedicated to Marduk at Esagila, was called Etemenanki (Sumerian: “temple of the foundation of heaven and earth”). This man-made brick structure (62.5 m by 43 m at the base), built by Ur-Nammu, rose to three stories and was accessible by a prominent staircase. It contained a temple at its top, built to house and worship the gods of heaven (Akkadian: Ningal, Nanna, or Sin; Jean-cl. Margueron, “Ur (place),” ed. David Noel Freedman et al., trans. Stephen Rosoff, ABD (New York, N.Y.: Doubleday, 1996), 6:766). No priest resided in the structure as its only purpose was for the gods (Larry L. Walker, “Babel,” ed. Merrill C. Tenney and Moisés Silva, ZPEB (Grand Rapids, Mich.: Zondervan, 1975), 1:470).  It was rebuilt by Nabopolassar and Nebuchadnezzar II in the 6th century BC (Herodotus Hist. 1.181:2–5; Jub. 10:20–21; Josephus Ant. 1:115–117; 3 Bar. 3:5–8).

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