The Sumerian Deluge Myth

  title={The Sumerian Deluge Myth},
  author={Samuel Noah Kramer},
  journal={Anatolian Studies},
  pages={115 - 121}
  • S. N. Kramer
  • Published 1 December 1983
  • Political Science
  • Anatolian Studies
The Sumerian deluge myth is inscribed on a six-colume Nippur tablet in the University Museum, of which only the lower third is preserved. It was first published by Arno Poebel in 1914, in PBS V no. 1, and was edited by him with exemplary detail, care, and circumspection in the same year in PBS IV pp. 9–70. In 1950, I published a new translation of the text in ANET pp. 42–4 – except for a few modifications, it was based entirely on Poebel's edition. In more recent years, two scholars have made… 
Eridu, Dunnu, and Babel: A Study in Comparative Mythology
This essay focuses on some themes in two quite different myths from ancient Mesopotamia, one known commonly as the Sumerian Deluge or Flood story, discovered at Nippur and published around the turn


Give ear] to my instruction: 156. The me-endowed cities(:) -the flood
    An (and) Enlil swore by heaven (and) earth, it was joined with their za, 37 253. The ni'g-gil-ma, rising out of the earth, keeps rising out of it. 38 29 The speaker is probably Enki
      Prostrated himself before Utu, 211. The king slaughters oxen
        An (and) Enlil che[rish] Ziusudra, 257. Life like a god they give him 258. Breath eternal like a god
          The word commanded by An (and) Enlil
            To destroy the seed of mankind
              The preserver of the name of nig-gil-ma (and) the seed of mankind, 39 261
                Prostrated himself before An (and) Enlil
                  31 The rendering "thus it has been decreed" assumes that the end of the line is to be restored to read hur-gim nam ba-tar (cf. Jacobsen, loc. cit. p. 522 for a somewhat different suggestion)