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Ancient History Sourcebook:
The Legend of Sargon of Akkadê, c. 2300 BCE

1. Sargon, the mighty king, king of Akkadê am I,

2. My mother was lowly; my father I did not know;

3. The brother of my father dwelt in the mountain.

4. My city is Azupiranu, which is situated on the bank of the Purattu [Euphrates],

5. My lowly mother conceived me, in secret she brought me forth.

6. She placed me in a basket of reeds, she closed my entrance with bitumen,

7. She cast me upon the rivers which did not overflow me.

8. The river carried me, it brought me to Akki, the irrigator.

9. Akki, the irrigator, in the goodness of his heart lifted me out,

10. Akki, the irrigator, as his own son brought me up;

11. Akki, the irrigator, as his gardener appointed me.

12. When I was a gardener the goddess Ishtar loved me,

13. And for four years I ruled the kingdom.

14. The black-headed peoples I ruled, I governed;

15. Mighty mountains with axes of bronze I destroyed (?).

16. I ascended the upper mountains;

17. I burst through the lower mountains.

18. The country of the sea I besieged three times;

19. Dilmun I captured (?).

20. Unto the great Dur-ilu I went up, I . . . . . . . . .

21 . . . . . . . . . .I altered. . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

22. Whatsoever king shall be exalted after me,

23. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

24. Let him rule, let him govern the black-headed peoples;

25. Mighty mountains with axes of bronze let him destroy;

26. Let him ascend the upper mountains,

27. Let him break through the lower mountains;

28. The country of the sea let him besiege three times;

29. Dilmun let him capture;

30. To great Dur-ilu let him go up.


Source:

From: George A. Barton, Archaeology and The Bible, 3rd Ed., (Philadelphia: American Sunday-School Union, 1920), p. 310.

Scanned by: J. S. Arkenberg, Dept. of History, Cal. State Fullerton. Prof. Arkenberg has modernized the text.


This text is part of the Internet Ancient History Sourcebook. The Sourcebook is a collection of public domain and copy-permitted texts related to medieval and Byzantine history.

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© Paul Halsall, Janaury 1999
halsall@murray.fordham.edu