Akkadian

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kalemiye
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Akkadian

Postby kalemiye » 2007-01-27, 20:59

Is anybody here learning or already knows Akkadian?

I'm taking classes of it at university, along with old Aramaic (10th century Aramaic) and I'm looking for somebody who knows a bit or already knows the language to learn something besides what I learn in class and talk about old Mesopotamia.

My knowledge of Akkadian is very basic and I don't have any grammar or dictionary, does anybody know if there are any resources on-line for Akkadian?

Thanks!
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Postby Erol » 2007-01-28, 0:18

I find this language absolutely fascinating . It is the oldest known semitic language and it used the cuneiform of Sumerian .

For me Sumerian , is the supreme goddess of all the languages , as an written civilization spreader agglutinative language . Since Akkadian language was used on the grand Babylonian-Assyrian culture , which deeply influenced by fading phenomenal Sumerian culture , it really has a high value on my part.
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Postby Erol » 2007-01-28, 0:19

Unfortunately for centuries the ancient semitic languages were ignored largely for ignorant perceptions of religious & socio-political polarizations .

Since democracies around the world has been more evolving the ignorant perceptions about this ancient outstanding semitic languages- that had a great contributions to our ancient roots of today's civilization- is changing.

I am ready to discuss about things related to Mezopotamia , carry on...

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Postby kalemiye » 2007-01-28, 12:25

I'm interested in Middle East's history, both old and contemporary.

I've been learning Arabic for a year and i wanted to know how other Semitic language were, that's why i took Aramaic and Akkadian. Akkadian is very similar to Arabic in its grammar, though sometimes it is even easier (no broken plurals, etc.). I'm not good at reading cuneiform, though.

The region south of actual Iraq is the region of Súmer which to me is the beginning of western culture (myths such as that of Adonis come from the Sumerian myth of Tammuz/Dumuzi). Also is the beginning of writing, literature, astronomy, and so on. Thank god most of the relics of that ancient culture are in western museums, since after the war of Iraq all that remained there was broken or stolen.
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Postby Erol » 2007-01-29, 8:27

I was also overjoyed to see the priceless , outstanding Babylonian palatial walls with friezes on them & other artefacts in Pergamon Museum of Berlin , due to the volatile situation of their motherland.

The classical or standard Arabic & Hebrew or a version of Syriac would be great choices to sail towards to the ancient lost semitic languages. I would learn one of them in the future ,as well.

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Postby kalemiye » 2007-01-29, 10:16

Erol wrote:I was also overjoyed to see the priceless , outstanding Babylonian palatial walls with friezes on them & other artefacts in Pergamon Museum of Berlin , due to the volatile situation of their motherland.

The classical or standard Arabic & Hebrew or a version of Syriac would be great choices to sail towards to the ancient lost semitic languages. I would learn one of them in the future ,as well.


Last year when I went to Berlin I was amazed... I had seen a lot of pictures, but seeing actually the whole thing was just... omg! I felt like I was walking through Babylon!

I'm going for classical Arabic, which I like a lot though actually I don't have much spare time to study it. Maybe in the future I'll try Hebrew, which comes from the same branch of Semitic languages Aramaic does.

Do you know what are the difference between Akkadian and the Assyrian and Babylonian dialects?

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Postby Erol » 2007-01-30, 0:08

I know that the "Lisanum Akkaditum" diverged into two dialects ,due to the geographical divergence , after that they used standard Akkadian or some call it Standard Babylonian , which was an artificial language , like standard Arabic , which is not spoken by any natives , but used in education , trade , communication , etc.

dingir.dingir.gal = ilü rabütu 'the great gods', or:
dingir.gal.gal = ilü rabütu 'the great gods'
Dingir in Akkadian is coming from agglutinative Sumer and is not semitic.

In Bulgarian Turkic Tengir/Tenger , in Ancient Turkic tengri , in Oghuz Turkic tanri ,as agglutinative languages.

Lisanum Akkaditum = The Akkad language in Akkadian .
It is amazing that after thousands of years the same word "Lisan" means "language" in classical & in standard Arabic , as well.

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Postby Erol » 2007-01-30, 1:13

Also I wanted to touch to a point that you made earlier . I totally aggree that Mesopotamia which gave birth to ancient Western civilization , had been a child play within the hands of Western European historians starting from Middle Ages to today. They created artificial entities , like " Near East " , " Middle East " , which Roman Empire called the Mediterrenean "Mare Nostrum" , " Our Sea" but post-zealot catholic-protestant zealotry in the history- writing distorted every kind of scientific common Western origins that comes to mind , just to feel superior , which especially done by Northern Europeans with their unbearable inferior complex to Southern European & Mediterrenean people . This is not a hypothesis . It is proven by many documents.
Caesar , the Roman emperor even told himself that smth like "When are these barbarians will be civilized" referring to some Nordic tribes . Other roman & hellenistic , arabic historians had similar comments , as well.

Since they didn't have a grand civilization pre-roman encounter nor they were "Western" .

World history & other historical sciences have to be filtered from that vicious religious , gigantic devastation , because Mesopotamia is WEST , absolutely , not East . It is one of the proto-mothers of our common Western origins , even though there happened to be divergences between , which is natural , due to many variables

Because if the people from Western World , ex- European colonies , like all American continent Eurasia (not Fareast), Central Asia , Eastern & Southern Mediterrenean countries embrace their Western heritage , which Mediterrenean-Mesopotamian ancestors created originally . They will feel closer to the other Europeans & North Americans and will be proud of their common heritage & don't feel alienated , as much. This needs big effort by historians that are funded by civic organizations & governments .

Segregation , bigotry , etc. in history-writing always created animosities in the past , today and this will be so in the future!

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Postby cynsanity » 2007-01-31, 23:37

Hey rvs87,

I've been studying Akkadian at my university for 5 semesters now, and dare to say I'm not too bad at it. I unfortunately don't know about any online sources for Akkadian, by which I mean "sources that can actually be used and are not made up by people who had one glimpse at a text and claim to be experts". A friend of mine, who's doing Akkadian with me, told me of an online-dictionary, although she said it's not that great. I'll ask her for the link, if you want to.

Generally, I'd suggest that you stick with the "traditional" grammar. The best one I can recommend is the GAG (Grundriss der Akkadischen Grammatik, by Wolfram von Soden, 3rd edition). Other than that, I have a PDF version of "Introduction to Akkadian" by Richard Caplice, as well as a PDF of the AHW (Akkadisches Handwörterbuch) and several Akkadian cuneiform texts. If you're interested, just mail me (is my mail somewhere available here?! *confused* :shock: - if not, because I can't see it... cynsanity at gmx.at). You should either be able to read German, or have access to a really good German dictionary though, as most of the stuff on Akkadian grammar and the dictionaries are in German.

If you are earnest about learning Akkadian, I suggest you get yourself an edition of the "Concise Dictionary of Akkadian" (CAD) by Black, George and Postgate (2nd corrected printing). As for the grammar, I'd stick with von Soden, but the Caplice-book is not too bad - although, if you want to become an Assyriologist, I'd rather recommend von Soden. Then again, not everyone aspires to becoming a weird person :)

As for the artifacts of Sumer... Meh. I had the pleasure of talking to the guy who's responsible for the Museum of Baghdad at the last RAI ( http://www.uni-muenster.de/Altoriental/RAI52/RAI52.html ), and he held a surprise-lecture on the state of the museum and the (remaining) relics... Thousands of cylinder seals have been stolen, and at the moment, the museum is surrounded by a thick wall of concrete in order to stop the tanks and suicide-bombers. Most of the artifacts have been severely damaged, though... :(

As for the difference between the Babylonian and the Assyrian dialects of Akkadian...
At our university, we start with Old Babylonian (around the time of Hammurapi of the 1st dynasty of Babylon); as far as I gathered (I am more into Sumerology than into Assyriology), the Assyrian dialect has been influenced more by west- and northwest-semitic languages, such as Amorite. As it's quite late now, and I am practically celebrating the end of the semester at the moment, I am too lazy to look up the exact differences at the moment (although I can do so later), so don't quote me - but as far as I remember, in Assyrian there has been a shift from /sh/ to /s/ in a lot of the roots. Anyways, I'll look it up (I can imagine the comment of my Akkadian prof... "YOU ARE NOT ABLE TO PINPOINT THE DIFFERENCES AT NIGHT, SLIGHTLY DRUNK? FOR SHAAAAAAAAME! Here, translate this astronomical text.")...

As for Erol's points in this discussion...
Ancient Semitic Philosophy and Oriental Archaeology (yes, I still try to figure out where Sumerian fits into that name of the institute... then again, the name is long enough already)- as it's called here in Vienna - tries to avoid the "traditional" names of the lands of Greater Mesopotamia (like those you mentioned). Attempts to introduce students with the endemic names of "ki'engir" and ki'urim" have yielded desastrous results, though. To my utter horror, I witnessed a 9th semester student being unable to remember the word "Sumerians", instead saying "Hommerans"... Alas, that's just me actually listening to my colleagues.

Still, I agree with you completely that Mesopotamia gave birth to Western civilization ("ex oriente lux"). I really recommend articles by G.J. Selz in that regard - if you can access them somehow, it is really interesting how he, rather convincingly, shows how ancient Sumero-Akkadian roots lead to today's "religious terminology" and imagery. For a view on religious theory of Mesopotamia I'd recommend the writings of van Dijk. If you want to read something controversial, try Moortgat's "The Image of Tammuz" (if it wasn't Moortgat, I apologise - as mentioned, slightly drunk).

I hope I made some sense.

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Postby kalemiye » 2007-06-02, 18:24

Reviving this topic, i have some news :lol:. There's a new akkadian grammar released in spanish which is quite good (except when explaining the verbs, because they are explained in a very confusing way).

"Manual de Lengua acadia" de Fl Malbran-Labat y J.P. Vita. It has 2 books, the first one contains the grammar, the second one a glossary and exercises. It is published by the Instituto de Estudios Islámicos y de Oriente Próximo de la Universidad de Zaragoza. Is belongs to the "Próximo Oriente Antiguo" series.
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Postby kalemiye » 2007-09-15, 15:21

Hello,

I'm restarting my akkadian class next year, and also, as i stated in my previous post, i bought a akkadian grammar.

I might start a course on this thread, not to teach anybody because I don't think there will be anybody interested at all (and I'm sure there won't be any natives around :lol. also, I just know the basics of it so...), but as a reference thread to all of you interested in dead languages or in semitic langauges (I've seen many people here study either Arabic or Hebrew). Or in comparative linguistics.

If anybody is willing to help or interested in what i will be posting, please let me know.

Of course, I won't write here anything about cuneiform script, because i really doubt there is an unicode for that :lol:, and I can't scan the books because it's copyrighted material (and also, because I don't have an scanner myself :lol:), but if anybody wants to know how the akkadian cuneiform worked, please, let me know too and I'll try to gather enough information to explain you.

Thanks for reading this, it was quite a long post :lol:

edit: Hopefully, the pace of the course will be around 1 post per week if I'm not too busy with university.
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Postby Paokala » 2007-11-16, 15:17

Good to hear there are more people studying assyriology in here!

I'm studying Sumerian and Akkadian at the University of Helsinki at the moment. Last year we read the Codex Hammurapi, now we're reading Enûma Eliš.

Here's some material (basic verb stems, noun declension and cuneiform syllabry etc.) from our last semester in case someone doesn't have any grammars but wants to review:
http://www.helsinki.fi/~whiting/intbab.html
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Postby kalemiye » 2007-11-16, 17:46

Cool! Thanks a lot. I'm not into assyriology but since I used to study arabic, I wanted to know how other semitic languages worked! Thanks a lot for the links!
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Postby Osias » 2007-11-16, 18:35

wow! My friends think I'm weird by learning Catalan! :shock:
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Postby ego » 2007-11-17, 9:14

osias wrote:wow! My friends think I'm weird by learning Catalan! :shock:


:lol:

I admire people who study Sumerian, Akkadian or Assyrian.. These languages must be so hard

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Postby kalemiye » 2007-11-17, 10:25

ego wrote:
osias wrote:wow! My friends think I'm weird by learning Catalan! :shock:


:lol:

I admire people who study Sumerian, Akkadian or Assyrian.. These languages must be so hard


Truth is akkadian, except for the cuneiform script, is quite easy to understand and pretty logical. It helped me a lot to know basic Arabic to study it. Assyria and Babylonian are the "evolution" of akkadian, but I can't remember if they are very different from Akkadian.

To me, getty the hang of Akkadian was easier than to understand old Aramaic.
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Postby Babelfish » 2007-11-17, 11:24

Paokala wrote:Good to hear there are more people studying assyriology in here!

I'm studying Sumerian and Akkadian at the University of Helsinki at the moment. Last year we read the Codex Hammurapi, now we're reading Enûma Eliš.

Here's some material (basic verb stems, noun declension and cuneiform syllabry etc.) from our last semester in case someone doesn't have any grammars but wants to review:
http://www.helsinki.fi/~whiting/intbab.html

Cool! 8) Not that I intend to get into Akkadian anytime soon (Hebrew, Arabic and Amharic are enough Semitic languages to know/learn :lol: ) but it's interesting to know, for instance, that Akkadian too had case-endings - in fact, almost identical to those of Standard Arabic. Hebrew has none whatsoever, and Amharic only has an accusative mark -n which in Arabic indicates definiteness... So it seemed to me peculiar to Arabic.

It's funny though how the grammars seem "German" in attitude :lol: giving Nominative, Accusative, Genitive and even "Dative" case-forms for pronouns, for example. I hope the following note would be more helpful than confusing: Semitic languages (at least those I know a bit of) don't really decline pronouns, but rather attach them to prepositions. Thus "to me" in Hebrew is the just the preposition "lə" + pronominal suffix "-i" = "li" :) In Amharic it's "lä" + "əne" = "läne", using the full pronoun.

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Postby Osias » 2007-11-17, 16:18

ego wrote:
osias wrote:wow! My friends think I'm weird by learning Catalan! :shock:


:lol:

I admire people who study Sumerian, Akkadian or Assyrian.. These languages must be so hard


Indeed, there's no Akkadian songs on youtube, anime dubbed in Akkadian or a wikipedia!
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Postby Osias » 2007-11-18, 13:55

I read there's no verb like "to be" in Arabic. A sentence like "I am student" is "ana talib", with no verb.

At first I thought it was a feature of semitic languages, but yesterday reading a French Bible I remembered God tells to Moses "My name is 'I Am'", so the thing exists in Hebrew.

What about Akkadian?
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Postby kalemiye » 2007-11-18, 14:46

osias wrote:I read there's no verb like "to be" in Arabic. A sentence like "I am student" is "ana talib", with no verb.

At first I thought it was a feature of semitic languages, but yesterday reading a French Bible I remembered God tells to Moses "My name is 'I Am'", so the thing exists in Hebrew.

What about Akkadian?


There [s]is[/s] verb "to be" but it isn't expressed in sentence that the verb time expresses present.

"Ana talib" = I student = I am a student"
"Kuntu ana talib" = Was I student = I was a student.

I can't remember how it was in Akkadian but as soon as I am at home I'll look it up in my grammar. I'm sure it isn¡t expressed in old aramaic though.
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