Armenernes plass i verden
 

Do you know the word message is the same as in Messiah – It is coming from the older word me or mesh which is the word used about the gifts the gods gives to the humans - civilization ...

 

It is the same as in Gilgamesh and Enkidu

Gil means great - mesh - you know what is the meaning of

Enkidu is humans - the ones to follow the god Enki

It was Enlil, who was angry at people for making trouble, who made the great flod

du or tu - means tribe - just like in Urartu, the old Armenian country, or Ararat

 

The armenians or the hays means Noah or father/leaders has also been known as Mushki - from me. Historically, the name Armenian has come to internationally designate this group of people. It was first used by neighboring countries of ancient Armenia. It is traditionally derived from Armenak or Aram (the great-grandson of Haik’s great-grandson, and another leader who is, according to Armenian tradition, the ancestor of all Armenians). However, Armenians call themselves Hay. The word has traditionally been linked to the name of the legendary founder of the Armenian nation, Haik, which is also a popular Armenian name. Hayasa-Azzi or Azzi-Hayasa was a confederation formed between the Kingdoms of Hayasa located South of Trabzon and Azzi, located North of the Euphrates and to the South of Hayasa.

 

Armenia lies in the highlands surrounding the Biblical mountains of Ararat, upon which, according to Judeo-Christian history, Noah’s Ark came to rested after the flood (Gen. 8:4). In the Bronze Age, several states flourished in the area of Greater Armenia, including the Hittite Empire (at the height of its power), Mitanni (South-Western historical Armenia), and Hayasa-Azzi (1600-1200 BC). Soon after the Hayasa-Azzi were the Nairi (1400-1000 BC) and the Kingdom of Urartu (1000-600 BC), who successively established their sovereignty over the Armenian Highlands. Each of the aforementioned nations and tribes participated in the ethnogenesis of the Armenian people. Yerevan, the modern capital of Armenia, was founded in 782 BC by king Argishti I.

 

Armenians has connection to all people around the Armenian highland. Armenians lived in Khabur River valley of the Northern Euphrates and was known as Hurrians in Urkesh, Hattians in Hattusa, the Chaldeans in Ur. Chaldean language in old references refers to the Urartian language and peoples. Armenians was also known as Etruscans in Italy and Sumerians in Mesopotamia.  The Armenians, who spoked the Hurro-Urartian languages, was the creators of Semitic and Indo-European languages. Armenians has the language of the phrygians, who became kings and queens ...

 

The Khabur River Valley

 

The Khabur River Valley (also Habur, Habor, Kebar, Chebar, Chaboras) is a river that begins in southeastern Turkey and flows south to eastern Syria, where it empties into the Euphrates River near the town of Busayrah. The river, with its several branches, such as the Aweidj, Dara, Djirdjib, Jaghjagh, Radd and Zergan Rivers, is not a major water course, and during most of the year is represented by wadis (dry riverbeds).

 

Another Khabur river begins in Şırnak, Turkey, flows through Zakho, Iraq, and empties into the River Tigris at the tripoint between Turkey, Iraq and Syria; see Khabur (Tigris). In Sumerian mythology, the Habur is equivalent to the River Styx in Greek myth. Important ancient sites such as Tell Halaf, Tell Brak, Tell Leilan (ancient Shekhna) and Urkesh, have been excavated in the Khabur river basin. It has given its name to a distinctive painted ware found in northern Mesopotamia and Syria in the early 2nd millennium BC., called Khabur ware. The region of the Khabur River is also associated with the rise of the kingdom of the Mitanni that flourished c.1500-1300 BC. In classical times the river was known as Chaboras.

 

Old Europe

 

Because of its strategic location at the intersection of Asia and Europe, Anatolia has been the center of several civilizations since prehistoric times. Eastern Anatolia contains the oldest monumental structures in the world. For example, the monumental structures at Göbekli Tepe were built by hunters and gatherers, a thousand years before the development of agriculture. Eastern Anatolia is also a hearth region for the Neolithic revolution, one of the earliest areas in which humans domesticated plants and animals. Neolithic sites such as Çatalhöyük, Çayönü, Nevali Cori, Mersin and Hacilar represent the world’s oldest known agricultural villages.

 

Belbaşı culture shows indications of an early connection to the Kebaran industry assemblages of Palestine. Their settlements were stable, typical of Natufian culture sites in this respect, and many later evolved into agricultural villages, similar to Jericho’s forerunner Tell es-Sultan, settled around 7800 BC. Their most lasting effect was felt not in the Near East, where they seem to have left no permanent mark on the cultural development of Anatolia after 5000 BC, but in Europe, for it was to this new continent that the neolithic cultures of Anatolia introduced the first beginnings of agriculture and stockbreeding and a cult of Mother Goddess.

 

Old Europe is a term coined by archaeologist Marija Gimbutas to describe what she perceives as a relatively homogeneous and widespread pre-Indo-European Neolithic culture in Europe, particularly in Malta and the Balkans.

 

In her major work, The Goddesses and Gods of Old Europe: 6500–3500 B.C. (1982), she refers to these Neolithic cultures as Old Europe. Archaeologists and ethnographers working within her framework believe that the evidence points to migrations of the peoples who spoke Indo-European languages at the beginning of the Bronze age (the Kurgan hypothesis). For this reason, Gimbutas and her associates regard the terms Neolithic Europe, Old Europe, and Pre-Indo-European as synonymous.

 

Caucasus

 

Shulaveri-Shomu culture is a Late Neolithic/Eneolithic culture in the Transcaucasus region. The culture is dated to mid-6th or early-5th millennia BC. Archaeologists refer to the Shulaveri-Shomu culture of the central Transcaucasus region, including present day Georgia and the Armenian Highlands, as the earliest known Neolithic culture in the south-eastern Caucasus, radiocarbon-dated to roughly 6000 - 4000 BC.

 

Shulaveri culture predates the Kura-Araxes culture of the Armenian Highland and surrounding areas, which is assigned to the period of ca. 4000 - 2200 BC, and is believed to have subsequently developed into the Trialeti culture (ca. 2200 - 1500 BC). Sioni culture of Eastern Georgia possibly represents a transition from the Shulaveri to the Kura-Arax cultural complex.

 

In around ca. 6000-4200 BC the Shulaveri-Shomu and other Neolithic/Chalcolithic cultures of the Southern Caucasus use local obsidian for tools, raise animals such as cattle and pigs, and grow crops, including grapes. Many of the characteristic traits of the Shulaverian material culture (circular mudbrick architecture, pottery decorated by plastic design, anthropomorphic female figurines, obsidian industry with an emphasys on production of long prismatic blades) are believed to have their origin in the Near Eastern Neolithic (Hassuna, Halaf).

 

The Kura-Araxes culture or the Early trans-Caucasian culture, was a civilization that existed from 3400 BC until about 2000 BC. The earliest evidence for this culture is found on the Ararat plain; thence it spread to Georgia by 3000 BC., and during the next millennium it proceeded westward to the Erzurum plain, southwest to Cilicia, and to the southeast into an area below the Urmia basin and Lake Van, down to the borders of present day Syria. Altogether, the early Trans-Caucasian culture, at its greatest spread, enveloped a vast area approximately 1000 km by 500 km.

 

The name of the culture is derived from the Kura and Araxes river valleys. Its territory corresponds to parts of modern Armenia, Georgia and the Caucasus. Inhumation practices are mixed. Flat graves are found, but so are substantial kurgan burials, the latter of which may be surrounded by cromlechs. This points to a heterogeneous ethno-linguistic population. Hurrian and Urartian elements are quite probable. One can also argue for at least an outpost of an early Semitic language, and certainly the presence of an early representative of the Kartvelian languages is not unreasonable. An influence of Indo-European languages was also likely present. It may have given rise to the later Khirbet Kerak ware culture found in Syria and Canaan after the fall of the Akkadian Empire.

 

Hurrians

 

Like most aspects of Hurrian society, their origins are still a mystery. By about 2400 BC, the Hurrians may have expanded from the foothills of the Caucasus. In the following centuries, Hurrian names occur sporadically in northern Mesopotamia and the area of Kirkuk in modern Iraq. Their presence was attested at Nuzi, Urkesh and other sites. They eventually infiltrated and occupied a broad arc of fertile farmland stretching from the Khabur River valley to the foothills of the Zagros Mountains.

 

The question of Indo-Aryan cultural influences, or even a ruling aristocracy, among the Hurrians is an ambiguous issue. Early scholars were convinced the Hurrians were dominated by an elite of foreign rulers. These foreigners spoke an Indo-Iranian language from Central Asia related to Avestan and even more closely related to Vedic Sanskrit (for example, the word for one in this language was aika, similar to Sanskrit eka vs. Avestan aeva). Archaeologists have attested a striking parallel in the spread to Syria of a distinct pottery type associated with what they call the Kura-Araxes culture, however the dates they usually assign for this are somewhat earlier than the Mitanni are thought to have first arrived.

 

In a treaty between the Hittites and the Mitanni (between Suppiluliuma and Matiwaza, ca. 1380 BC), the deities Mitra, Varuna, Indra, and Nasatya (Ashvins) are invoked. Kikkuli's horse training text includes technical terms. They introduced the cremation of their dead, and introduced the use of the horse and chariot in the battlefield — a situation that has obvious similarities to the events in northern India at about the same time. While this foreign aristocracy eventually abandoned their language in favor of that of their Hurrian subjects, they retained Indo-Iranian names, they invoked Vedic gods in some of their treaties, and some words from their Indo-Iranian language survived as loanwords in Hurrian, particularly technical terms related to horses and their training (Mayrhofer, 1974).

 

Particularly the state of Mitanni, itself believed to be an Indo-Aryan word, was connected with the Indo-Aryan culture. Most rulers of Mitanni seem to have had Indo-Aryan names, and the ruling aristocracy was called maryanni, meaning young warrior in Sanskrit marya. Mar or Mor is a title of respect in Syriac, literally meaning my lord. It is given by custom to all bishops and saints.

 

Mitanni (Hittite cuneiform Mi-ta-an-ni, also Mittani Mi-it-ta-ni) was a loosely organized Hurrian-speaking Hittite vassal state in northern Syria from ca. 1500 BC-1300 BC. This kingdom was known as the Maryannu, Nahrin or Mitanni to the Egyptians. The Assyrians called the lands of Mitanni Hanigalbat (Assyrian Hanigalbat, Khanigalbat cuneiform a-ni-gal-bat ) while to the Hittites it was the land of the Hurrians. All three names were equivalent and interchangeable. Tushratta, who styles himself King of Mitanni in his Akkadian Amarna letters refers to his kingdom as Hanigalbat.

 

Nairi is an Assyrian term from the 13th to 10th centuries BC (Late Bronze Age to Early Iron Age) given to a people located around Lake Van, in what is now East Anatolia, Turkey. They were considered a force strong enough to contend with both the Assyrians and Hittites during the Bronze Age collapse.

 

There are insufficient primary sources for a definite description of their ethnic roots and territorial distribution. By some opinions, they may have been a Hurrian tribe, related to contemporary Mitanni (Götze 1936). Others take this hypothesis skeptically; e.g., Benedict (Benedict 1960) points out that there is no evidence of the presence of Hurrites in the vicinity of Lake Van. An early, documented reference to Nairi is a tablet dated to the time of Adad-nirari I (13th century BC), which mentions the purchase of 128 horses from the Nairi region.

 

The names of twenty-three Nairi lands were recorded by Tiglath-Pileser I (1114–1076 BC). Their southernmost point was Tumme, known to have been south-west of Lake Urmia, and their northern one Daiaeni. These lands are known from the list of defeated kings: "the king of Tumme, the king of Tunube, the king of Tuali, the king of Kindari, the king of Uzula, the king of Unzamuni the king of Andiabe, the king of Pilakinni, the king of Aturgini, the king of Kulibarzini, the king of Shinibirni, the king of Himua, the king of Paiteri, the king of Uiram, the king of Shururia, the king of Albaia, the king of Ugina, the king of Nazabia, the king of Abarsiuni, and the king of Daiaeni. The Nairi fought against the southern incursions of the Assyrians and would later unite into Urartu.

 

Sumerians

 

The Sumerians were a non-Semitic people and were at one time believed to have been invaders, as a number of linguists believed they could detect a substrate language beneath Sumerian. However, the archaeological record shows clear uninterrupted cultural continuity from the time of the Early Ubaid period (5300 – 4700 BC C-14) settlements in southern Mesopotamia. The Sumerian people who settled here farmed the lands in this region that were made fertile by silt deposited by the Tigris and the Euphrates rivers.

 

Despite the lack of corroborating written records, it is generally agreed that Sumerian speakers were farmers who moved down from the north, after perfecting irrigation agriculture there. The Ubaid pottery of southern Mesopotamia has been connected via Choga Mami Transitional ware to the pottery of the Samarra period culture (c. 5700 – 4900 BC C-14) in the north, who were the first to practice a primitive form of irrigation agriculture along the middle Tigris River and its tributaries. The connection is most clearly seen at Tell Awayli (Oueilli, Oueili) near Larsa, excavated by the French in the 1980s, where 8 levels yielded pre-Ubaid pottery resembling Samarran ware. Farming peoples spread down into southern Mesopotamia because they had developed a temple-centered social organization for mobilizing labor and technology for water control, enabling them to survive and prosper in a difficult environment.

 

Egypt

 

Gerzeh, also Girza or Jirzah, was a predynastic Egyptian cemetery located along the west bank of the Nile and today named after al-Girza, the nearby present day town in Egypt. Gerzeh is situated only several miles due east of the lake of the Al Fayyum.

 

The Gerzean culture, named after the site of Gerzeh, is a material culture identified by archaeologists. The Gerzean is the second of three phases of the Naqada Culture, and so is called Naqada II stage in Egyptian cultural development. It was during this time that the foundation for Dynastic Egypt was laid.

 

It is preceded by the Amratian (Naqada I) and followed by the Protodynastic or Semainian (Naqada III). yo Though varying dates have historically been assigned by sundry authorities, Gerzean culture as used as follows distinguishes itself from the Amratian culture and begins circa 3600BC lasting through circa 3200 BC or the end of the Naqada II period. This era lasts through a period of time when the desertification of the Sahara had nearly reached its present state.

 

Gerzean culture is largely an unbroken development out of Amratian Culture, starting in the delta and moving south through upper Egypt, however, failing to dislodge Amratian Culture in Nubia. The primary distinguishing feature between the earlier Amratian and the Gerzean culture is the extra decorative effort exhibited in the pottery of the period Artwork on Gerzean pottery features stylised animals and environment at a greater degree than earlier Amratian artwork Further, images of ostriches in the pottery artwork possibly indicate an inclination these early peoples may have felt to explore the desert of the Sahara. Some symbols on Gerzean pottery resemble traditional hieroglyph writing, contemporaneous to pre-cuneiform Sumerian script.

 

Burial sites in Gerzeh have uncovered artifacts such as Cosmetic palettes, a bone harpoon, an ivory pot, stone vessels and several meteoritic iron beads. Technologies at Gerzeh also fine ripple-flaked knives of exceptional workmanship. The meteoritic iron beads discovered in two Gerzean graves by Egyptologist Wainwright in 1911 are in fact the earliest artifacts of iron known. Lapis lazuli trade, in the form of beads, from its only known prehistoric source - Badakshan, in northeastern Afghanistan – also reached ancient Gerzeh. The end of the Gerzean period is generally regarded as coinciding with the unification of Egypt.

 

Gerzean sites are identified by the presence of pottery which is assigned values from S.D. 40 through 62, and is distinctly different from Amratian white cross-lined wares or black-topped ware. Gerzean pottery was painted mostly in dark red with pictures of animals, people, and ships, as well as geometric symbols which appear to derive from pictures of animals. Furthermore, the handles became wavy and reached a nearly totally decorative phase (although technically wavy handles can be found as early as S.D. 35).

 

Gerzean culture coincided with a significant drop in rainfall, and farming produced the vast majority of food, although paintings from this time indicate that hunting was not entirely forgone. With increased food supplies, Egyptians adopted a greatly more sedentary lifestyle, and larger settlements grew to cities with about 5,000 residents. It was in this time that Egyptian city dwellers stopped building out of reeds, and used the mud-brick, which was developed in the Amratian Period, en masse to build their cities.

 

Egyptian stone tools, while still in use, moved from bifacial construction to ripple-flaked construction, copper was used to make all kinds of tools as well, and also for the first time, copper weaponry turns up. Silver, gold, lapis, and faience were used ornamentally, and the grinding palettes used for eye-paint since the Badarian period began to be adorned with relief carvings.

 

Tombs also begin to be constructed in classic Egyptian style, being modeled to resemble normal houses, and sometimes composed of multiple rooms. Although excavations in the delta have still to be meticulously undertaken, these traits are interpreted as having come largely from the north, and are probably not indigenous to Upper Egypt.

 

Although the Gerzean Culture is now clearly identified as being the continuation of the Amratian period, significant amounts of Mesopotamian influences worked their way into Egypt during the Gerzean which were interpreted in previous years as evidence of a Mesopotamian ruling class, the so called Dynastic Race, coming to power over Upper Egypt.

 

Distinctly foreign objects and art forms entered Egypt during this period, indicating contacts with several parts of Asia. Objects such as the Gebel el-Arak knife handle, which has patently Mesopotamian relief carvings on it, have been found in Egypt, and the silver which appears in this period can only have been obtained from Asia Minor.

 

In addition, Egyptian objects are created which clearly mimic Mesopotamian forms, although not slavishly. Cylinder seals appear in Egypt, as well as recessed paneling architecture, the Egyptian reliefs on cosmetic palettes are clearly made in the same style as the contemporary Mesopotamian Uruk culture, and the ceremonial mace heads which turn up from the late Gerzean and early Semainean are crafted in the Mesopotamian pear-shaped style, instead of the Egyptian native style.

 

The route of this trade is difficult to determine, but contact with Canaan does not predate the early dynastic, so it is usually assumed to have been by water. During the time when the Dynastic Race Theory was still popular, it was theorized that Uruk sailors circumnavigated Arabia, but a Mediterranean route, probably by middlemen through Byblos is more likely, as evidenced by the presence of Byblian objects in Egypt.

 

The fact that so many Gerzean sites are at the mouths of wadis which lead to the Red Sea may indicate some amount of trade via the Red Sea (though Byblian trade potentially could have crossed the Sinai and then taken to the Red Sea). Also, it is considered unlikely that something as complicated as recessed panel architecture could have worked its way into Egypt by proxy, and at least a small contingent of migrants is often suspected.

 

The Naqada III period is generally taken to be identical with the Protodynastic period, during which Egypt was unified. Naqada III is notable for being the first era with hieroglyphs (even though it is sometimes said to be later), the first regular use of serekhs, the first irrigation (water routed for farming), and the first appearance of royal cemeteries.

 

Iran

 

Elam was centered in the far west and southwest of modern-day Iran, stretching from the lowlands of Khuzestan and Ilam Province (which takes its name from Elam), as far as Jiroft in Kerman province and Burned City in Zabol, as well as a small part of southern Iraq. Situated just to the east of Mesopotamia, Elam was part of the early urbanization during the Chalcolithic. The emergence of written records from around 3000 BC also parallels Mesopotamian history. The earliest levels (22-17 in the excavations conducted by Le Brun, 1978) exhibit pottery that has no equivalent in Mesopotamia, but for the succeeding period, the excavated material allows identification with the culture of Sumer of the Uruk period. The earliest known historical figure connected with Elam is the king Enmebaragesi of Kish (c. 2650 BC?), who subdued it, according to the Sumerian king list. However, real Elamite history can only be traced from records dating to beginning of the Akkadian Empire in around 2300 BC onwards.

 

Indus Valley Civilization

 

The Indus Valley Civilization (mature period 2600–1900 BCE), abbreviated IVC, was an ancient civilization that flourished in the Indus River basin. Originally and primarily centered in western part of the Indian Subcontinent. The civilization encompassed most modern-day Pakistan (along the Indus river), mainly the Pakistani provinces of Sindh, Punjab and Balochistan, as well as extending into modern-day Indian states of Gujarat, Haryana, Punjab and Rajasthan. Remains have been excavated from Afghanistan, Turkmenistan and Iran, as well. The mature phase of this civilization is technically known as the Harappan Civilization, after the first of its cities to be unearthed: Harappa in Pakistan. Excavation of IVC sites have been ongoing since 1920, with important breakthroughs occurring as recently as 1999.

 

The civilization is sometimes referred to as the Indus Ghaggar-Hakra civilization or the Indus-Sarasvati civilization. The appellation Indus-Sarasvati is based on the possible identification of the Ghaggar-Hakra River with the Sarasvati River mentioned in the Rig Veda, but this usage is disputed on linguistic and geographical grounds.

 

The IVC has been tentatively identified with the toponym Meluhha known from Sumerian records. It has been compared in particular with the civilizations of Elam (also in the context of the Elamo-Dravidian hypothesis) and with Minoan Crete (because of isolated cultural parallels such as the ubiquitous goddess worship and depictions of bull-leaping). The mature (Harappan) phase of the IVC is contemporary to the Early to Middle Bronze Age in the Ancient Near East, in particular the Old Elamite period, Early Dynastic to Ur III Mesopotamia, Prepalatial Minoan Crete and Old Kingdom to First Intermediate Period Egypt.

 

Etruscans

 

The origins of the Etruscans, a non-Indo-European population of preclassical Italy, are unclear. There is broad agreement that their culture developed locally, but the Etruscans’ evolutionary and migrational relationships are largely unknown. In this study, we determined mitochondrial DNA sequences in multiple clones derived from bone samples of 80 Etruscans who lived between the 7th and the 3rd centuries b.c. In the first phase of the study, we eliminated all specimens for which any of nine tests for validation of ancient DNA data raised the suspicion that either degradation or contamination by modern DNA might have occurred. On the basis of data from the remaining 30 individuals, the Etruscans appeared as genetically variable as modern populations. No significant heterogeneity emerged among archaeological sites or time periods, suggesting that different Etruscan communities shared not only a culture but also a mitochondrial gene pool. Genetic distances and sequence comparisons show closer evolutionary relationships with the eastern Mediterranean shores for the Etruscans than for modern Italian populations. All mitochondrial lineages observed among the Etruscans appear typically European or West Asian, but only a few haplotypes were found to have an exact match in a modern mitochondrial database, raising new questions about the Etruscans’ fate after their assimilation into the Roman state.

 

The origins of the Etruscans, a non-Indo-European population of preclassical Italy, are unclear. There is broad agreement that their culture developed locally, but the Etruscans’ evolutionary and migrational relationships are largely unknown. In this study, we determined mitochondrial DNA sequences in multiple clones derived from bone samples of 80 Etruscans who lived between the 7th and the 3rd centuries b.c. In the first phase of the study, we eliminated all specimens for which any of nine tests for validation of ancient DNA data raised the suspicion that either degradation or contamination by modern DNA might have occurred. On the basis of data from the remaining 30 individuals, the Etruscans appeared as genetically variable as modern populations. No significant heterogeneity emerged among archaeological sites or time periods, suggesting that different Etruscan communities shared not only a culture but also a mitochondrial gene pool. Genetic distances and sequence comparisons show closer evolutionary relationships with the eastern Mediterranean shores for the Etruscans than for modern Italian populations. All mitochondrial lineages observed among the Etruscans appear typically European or West Asian, but only a few haplotypes were found to have an exact match in a modern mitochondrial database, raising new questions about the Etruscans’ fate after their assimilation into the Roman state.

 

The Architecture of the ancient Etruscans adopted the external Greek architecture for their own purposes, which were so different from Greek buildings as to create a new architectural style. The two styles are often considered one body of classical architecture. The Etruscans absorbed Greek influence, apparent in many aspects closely related to architecture. The Etruscans had much influence over Roman architecture.

 

Etruscan architecture made lasting contributions to the architecture of Italy, which were adopted by the Romans and through them became standard to western civilization. Rome itself is a repository of Etruscan architectural features, which perhaps did not originate with the Etruscans, but were channeled by them into Roman civilization. Some scholars also see in Urartean art, architecture, language and general culture traces of kinship to the Etruscans of the Italian peninsula.

 

Haplogroups

 

Armenians mostly includes haplogroup J2, R1b Armenian Modal and G.

 

Haplogroup J2

 

In human genetics, Haplogroup_J2 (M172) is a Y-chromosome haplogroup which is a subdivision of haplogroup J. It is further divided into two complementary clades, J2a-M410 and J2b-M12. Haplogroup J2 is widely believed to be associated with the spread of agriculture from the Mesopotamian regions of the Levant and Anatolia. The age of J2 has been estimated as 18,500 +/- 3,500 thousand years ago. Its distribution, centered in West Asia and Southeastern Europe, its association with the presence of Neolithic archaeological artifacts, such as figurines and painted pottery, and its association with annual precipitation have been interpreted as evidence that J2, and in particular its J2a-M410 subclade belonged to the agricultural innovators who followed the rainfall. However, Di Giacomo stressed the role of post-Neolithic migratory phenomenon, specifically that of the Greeks, as being even more important in the dispersal of Hg J2.

 

Another important fact about the distribution of Haplogroup J2 is that it appears to have dispersed from a Middle Eastern homeland to the west through a primarily maritime or littoral route, as it is found in high concentrations among the populations of the coasts of the Mediterranean Sea in both Eurasia and Africa, and particularly along the coasts of the eastern Mediterranean in Europe. This distribution may be more consonant with a Neolithic or post-Neolithic maritime dispersal from the Middle East, such as through Greek colonization or Phoenician commercial and colonial activities.

 

In Italy, J2 is found in about 19.3% of Italians. Turkey is one of the countries with major J2 population. 24% of Turkish men are J2 according to a recent study, with regional frequencies ranging between 10% and 31%. Combined with J1, one third of the total population of Turkish people belongs to Haplogroup J. Haplogroup J2 is also common in neighboring Greece, with regional frequencies ranging between 11% and 46%.

 

It has been proposed that haplogroup J2a-M410 was linked to populations on ancient Crete by examining the relationship between Anatolian, Cretan, and Greek populations from around early Neolithic sites. Haplogroup J2b-M12 was associated with Neolithic Greece (ca. 8500 - 4300 BCE) and was reported to be found in modern Crete (3.1%) and mainland Greece (Macedonia 7.0%, Thessaly 8.8%, Argolis 1.8%).

 

Haplogroup J2 has been shown to have a more northern distribution in the Middle East, although it exists in significant amounts in the southern middle-east regions, a lesser amount of it was found when compared to its brother haplogroup, J1, which has a high frequency southerly distribution. This suggests that, if the occurrence of Haplogroup J among modern populations of Europe, Central Asia, and South Asia does reflect Neolithic demic diffusion from the Middle East, the source population is more likely to have originated from Anatolia, the Levant or northern Mesopotamia than from regions further south.

 

Haplotype of R1b

 

Haplogroup R1b is thought to have originated in Central Asia. It is prolific in Western Europe, where frequencies of 70% or more have been found in populations from Ireland, Spain, and the Netherlands. It is also present at lower frequencies throughout Eastern Europe, with higher diversity than in western Europe, suggesting an ancient migration of R1b from the east. R1b is also found at various frequencies in many different populations near the Ural Mountains and Central Asia, its likely region of origin. It is also found in North Africa where its frequency surpasses 10% in some parts of Algeria.

 

One haplotype of R1b, with DYS393=12, has been referenced in the literature as Haplotype 35 or ht35. They can be found in high numbers in Southeastern Europe and Western Asia. The members of this haplotype are thought to be descended from early R1b’s who found shelter in Anatolia during the Last Glacial Maximum instead of in Iberia. Descendants can be found in high numbers in the Armenian Highland and Armenia with smaller numbers throughout the Middle East, in Jewish populations, in Southeastern Europe, and in the Caucasus Mountains. There is also a sizable pocket of ht35 in Uyghur populations in western China, which is theorized to be a remnant of the Tocharians, an Indo-European speaking people that inhabited the Tarim Basin in Central Asia until later being absorbed by various Turkic peoples. Ht35 is also present in Britain in areas that were found to have a high concentration of Haplogroup J, suggesting they arrived together, most likely with the arrival of Roman soldiers.

 

Haplogroup G

 

Haplogroup_G_(Y-DNA) (M201) is a branch of Haplogroup F (M89). Haplogroup G has an overall low frequency in most populations but is widely distributed within many ethnic groups of the Old World in Europe, Western Asia, northeastern Africa, Central Asia, South Asia, and Southeast Asia (including parts of China and the Malay Archipelago). Various estimated dates and locations have been proposed for Haplogroup G. The National Geographic Society places its origins in the Middle East 10-20,000 years ago and presumes that people carrying the haplogroup took part in the spread of the Neolithic. Two scholarly papers have also suggested an origin in the Middle East, while differing on the date. Semino et al suggested 17,000 years ago. Cinnioglu et al reduced that to 9,500 years ago.

 

The haplogroup is the most frequent in the Caucasus (found at over 60% in ethnic North Ossetian males and around 30% in Georgian males). The Kabardinian and Balkarian peoples of the northwestern Caucasus are known to be 29% G. Armenians are known to have around 11% of their males in HgG.

 

One modern people, the Ossetians of the Caucasus, trace their descent from the Scythians via the Alans and speak an Eastern Iranian language, in contrast to the other peoples of the Caucasus, who speak Caucasian languages. They have the highest level so far discovered of Y-DNA haplogroup G (approximately half of North Ossetians). This has led some to conclude that the Scythians were similarly high in G. Yet there was no G at all in the (admittedly small) sample of skeletons from the Andronovo culture. Nor is G notably high overall in the steppe regions once home to the Scythians. Instead levels decline as one moves away from the Caucasus. Nasidze and colleagues came to the conclusion that, although the mtDNA of the Ossetians indicated an Iranian origin, their Y-DNA was the result of inter-mixture with their neighbours in the Caucasus, where they settled in the medieval period. Other groups in the Caucasus region are about 30% G: the Georgians, Azerbaijanis and Kabardinians. Alternatively, the Ossetians may represent just that small segment of the Alans conscious of distant ancestry in the North Caucasus, to which they could return.

 

In Southwest Asia, haplogroup G is found at a rate of 10% among Iranian Persians, Pashtuns,Turkish males are in haplogroup G, similar to Armenians, and Kalash, and at a lesser percentage among some other populations. In nearby Northeastern Africa, the haplogroup reaches 9% in Egypt; 8% in Libya

 

In Central Asia, G is found in small percentages in a belt extending from the Caucasus through the Central Asian steppes out to the Uyghurs of Xinjiang Province in western China. It has an overall frequency of 4.17% around Central Asia. The Belt then diverges and weakens; Haplogroup G is found at an average of 0.5% in North Asia and 0.25% in far East Asia (i.e. around 1,250,000 Han Chinese).

 

Smiths in Mesopotamia apparently discovered that arsenic mixed with copper made a harder alloy - the first type of bronze. The first cities in the world appeared in Mesopotamia around 3,600 BC. Civilization had a huge appetite for metal. That craving brought wealth and knowledge of this type of bronze-making to the Maikop Culture (c.3,700-3,000 BC) of the mineral-rich North Caucasus. The high level and diversity of Y-DNA haplogroup G in the Caucasus suggests that it arose there. In which case its distribution may be partly explained by the spread of the metal-working and mining that made the Maikop Culture astonishingly wealthy. Chiefdoms sprang up in the Caucasus which spread their influence south, apparently controlling the metal trade in the Levant and Mesopotamia. The Hurrians of northern Mesopotamia and the Hatti of Anatolia both appear in history in approximately 2,500 B.C. and apparently spoke Caucasian languages. The former were famed for their metallurgy. Cinnioglu and colleagues* found that the present-day distribution of haplogroup G in Anatolia correlates with the Hattic culture.

 

So where had the copper technology come from? Y-chromosome haplogroup G is generally found at low levels across Europe. Hotspots coincide with early copper-working in the Alps, Caucasus, Balkans, Sardinia and southern Portugal. Although men from Maikop could not have brought metal-working to Sardinia c. 4,000 BC, G-men could have worked there later, in the revival of European metal-working, after a long decline presumably resulting from the collapse of Old Europe.

 

Although haplogroup G arose long before Proto-Indo-European, most of its distribution across Eurasia would fit the spread of the Indo-European-speakers, including those few who traded along the Silk Road to China. The earliest G arrivals in Western Europe could be reflected in G2a found in Italy, Iberia and Sardinia. So perhaps smiths from the North Caucasus were recruited by Yamnaya bands and their descendants moved with the migrations east and west, or even ahead of them, as prospectors. It should be stressed that not all of G's distribution can be explained in this way. (A probable earlier spread into Anatolia has already been mentioned.) That any of it can be so explained remains a hypothesis to be tested. So far dating estimates for G2a seem somewhat too late for this scenario, and certainly too late for the Neolithic, which has been considered a major period for its spread. It has been suggested that the mountainous terrain in which several G hotspots occur points to sheep and goat herding. G may well have travelled with herders, but that does not rule out a copper connection. Interestingly it seems that in one area of the Balkans at least, the Early Copper Age brought a steady increase in sheep and goat husbandry and a decrease in cattle herding compared to the Late Neolithic.

 

The Hurrians had a reputation in metallurgy. The Sumerians borrowed their copper terminology from the Hurrian vocabulary. Copper was traded south to Mesopotamia from the highlands of Anatolia. The Khabur River Valley had a central position in the metal trade, and copper, silver and even tin were accessible from the Hurrian-dominated countries Kizzuwatna and Ishuwa situated in the Anatolian highland. Gold was in short supply, and the Amarna letters inform us that it was acquired from Egypt. Not many examples of Hurrian metal work have survived, except from the later Urartu. Some small fine bronze lion figurines were discovered at Urkesh.

 

Part 2

 

Abraham

 

The semitic/hurrian Abraham of the Abrahamic religions came from Ur of the Chaldeans ... Abraham features in the Book of Genesis as the founding patriarch of the Israelites, Ishmaelites and Edomite peoples. He is widely regarded as the patriarch of Jews, Christians, and Muslims and the founder of monotheism.

 

According to Genesis, Abraham was sent by God from his home in Ur of the Chaldees to Canaan, the land promised to his descendants by Yahweh. There Abraham entered into a covenant: in exchange for recognition of YHWH as his God, Abraham will be blessed with innumerable progeny and the land would belong to his descendants.

 

At Nuzi, a city located in the northeast section of the fertile crescent, and then named Gasur, in Mesopotamia, documents from the household of an official named Tehiptilla record a number of Habiru voluntarily entering long-term service in exchange for food, clothing, and shelter. The local population was predominantly Hurrian, while approximately 2/3 of the Habiru names are Semitic; of these, all are East Semitic (Akkadian), none West Semitic. When the Amarna letters were translated, some scholars eagerly equated these Apiru with the Biblical Hebrews. Besides the similarity of their spellings, the description of the Apiru attacking cities in Canaan seemed to fit, loosely, the Biblical account of the conquest of that land by Israelites under Joshua.

 

Few cities that are not mentioned in the Old Testament contribute to its understanding as significantly as Nuzi (modern Yorghan Tepe). Its most relevant history, as far as the Old Testament is concerned, is its revival as part of the Hurrian kingdom, situated in the state of Mitanni, about 1500 B.C., about the time of the Israelites' bondage in Egypt. Twenty thousand Akkadian documents have been found at Nuzi that reflect primarily the legal, social, and economic situation of Mesopotamian culture about 2000-1400 B.C. The sociological importance of this discovery is estimated differently among scholars. Most scholars accept the value for general Near Eastern studies and biblical background, and some use the information to determine the date of the patriarchs and the literature about them according to biblical parallels with Nuzi customs. Some parallels are more exact than others, but the following examples can be cited as relevant to patriarchal and later Israelite culture.

 

Idrimi

 

Idrimi was a Hurrianised Semitic son of the king of Aleppo, also known as Armi, who had been deposed by the new regional master, Barattarna, king of the Mitanni. Nevertheless he succeeded in regaining his seat and was recognized as a vassal by Barattarna. Idrimi founded the kingdom of Mushki, and ruled from Alalakh as a vassal to the Mitanni. He also invaded the Hittite territories to the north, resulting in a treaty with the hurrian-luwian country Kizzuwatna.

 

An inscription on a statue found at Alalakh in southeastern Anatolia, the Mitanni prince Idrimi of Aleppo (who lived from about 1500 BC to 1450 BC), tells that, after his family had been forced to flee to Emar, with his mother’s people, he left them and joined the "Hapiru people" in Ammija in the land of Canaan where the Hapiru recognized him as the son of their overlord and gathered around him; after living among them for seven years, he led his Habiru warriors in a successful attack by sea on Alalakh, where he became king.

 

Some scholars have seen the Habiru legacy preserved in the place-names of Iranian Kabira, the Khabur River valley of the Northern Euphrates and perhaps also the Hebron valley, although the Hebrew and Arabic root for Hebron more likely derives from the word for friend (haver/habib)named for Abraham as a friend of God.

 

Joshua, Jehoshuah or Yehoshua, born in Egypt, was a biblical Israelite leader who succeeded Moses. His story is told in the Hebrew Bible, chiefly in the books Exodus, Numbers and Joshua. He was one of the twelve spies sent on by Moses to explore the land of Canaan who would later lead the conquest of that land, the Bible’s Promised Land.

 

There is a possibility that Idrimi and Joshua is the same person. There is no archeological evidence that Joshua ever existed but, according to conventional bible chronology, the events he is associated with would have happened around 1450-1370 BC, or sometime in the late Bronze Age. He is noted as being Moses' apprentice and the leader of the Israelites during the Conquest of Canaan.

 

Jerusalem

 

The Semitic root of the name was sometimes thought to be s-l-m meaning peace, harmony or completeness. A city called Rušalimum or Urušalimum appears in ancient Egyptian records as one of the first reference to Jerusalem. These Egyptian forms are thought to derive from the local name attested in the Amarna letters, eg in EA 287 (where it takes several forms) Urusalim. The form Yerushalayim (Jerusalem) first appears in the book of Joshua.

 

Abdi-Heba (Abdi-Kheba, Abdi-Hepat, or Abdi-Hebat) was king of Jerusalem (called Urusalim at that time) during the Amarna period (mid-1330s BC). Abdi-Heba’s name can be translated as servant of Hebat, a Hurrian goddess. Unless a different ethnic group occupied Jerusalem in this period, this implies that the Jebusites were Hurrians themselves, were heavily influenced by Hurrian culture, or were dominated by a Hurrian maryannu class. Whether Abdi-Heba was himself of Hurrian descent is unknown, as is the relationship between the general populace of pre-Israelite Jerusalem (known as Jebusites in the Bible) and the Hurrians.

 

Maryannu is an ancient word for the caste of chariot-mounted hereditary warrior nobility which dominated many of the societies of the Middle East during the Bronze Age. The term is attested in the Amarna letters written by Haapi. Robert Drews writes that the name maryannu although plural takes the singular marya, which in Sanskrit means young warrior, and attaches a Hurrian suffix. He suggests that at the beginning of the Late Bronze Age most would have spoken either Hurrian or Aryan but by the end of the 14th century most of the Levant maryannu had Semitic names.

 

According to the Hebrew Bible, the Jebusites were a Canaanite tribe who inhabited the region around Jerusalem prior to its capture by King David; the Books of Kings state that Jerusalem was known as Jebus prior to this event. According to some Biblical chronologies, the city was reconquered by King David in 1003 BC, or according to other sources 869 BC.

 

According to Genesis, the ruler of Jerusalem in the time of Abraham was Melchizedek, and that as well as being a ruler, he was also a priest; later, Joshua is described as defeating a Jebusite king named Adonizedek. The first parts of their names mean king and lord, respectively, but though the zedek part can be translated as righteous (making the names my king is righteous and my lord is righteous), most Biblical scholars believe that it is a reference to a deity named Zedek, who was the main deity worshipped by the Jebusites (making the names my king is Zedek and my lord is Zedek). Scholars are uncertain, however, whether Melchizedek was himself intended in the Genesis account to be understood as a Jebusite, rather than a member of another group in charge of Jerusalem prior to the Jebusites - Jerusalem is referred to as Salem rather than Jebus in the passages of Genesis describing Melchizedek.

 

Another Jebusite, Araunah (referred to as Ornan by the Book of Chronicles) is described by the Books of Samuel as having sold his threshing floor to King David, which David then constructed an altar on, the implication being that the altar became the core of the Temple of Solomon. Araunah means the lord in Hittite, and so most scholars, since they consider the Jebusites to have been Hittite, have argued that Araunah may have been another king of Jerusalem; some scholars additionally believe that Adonijah is actually a disguised reference to Araunah, the r having been corrupted to d. The narrative itself is considered by scholars to be aetiological and of dubious historicity; Melchizedek, as a priest as well as king, was likely to have been associated with a sanctuary, probably dedicated to Zedek, and scholars suspect that the Temple of Solomon was simply a natural evolution of this sanctuary.

 

Prior to modern archaeological studies, most Biblical scholars held the opinion that the Jebusites were identical to the Hittites, which continues to be the case, though less so. However, an increasingly popular view, is that the Jebusites were most likely an Amorite tribe; Lipinski identified them with the group referred to as Yabusi'um in a cuneiform letter found in the archive of Mari, Syria.

 

 

The city state of Urkesh still had some powerful neighbors, however. At some point in the early second millennium BC the Amorite kingdom of Mari to the south subdued Urkesh into a vassal state. Mari, an ancient Sumerian and Amorite city, located 11 kilometers north-west of the modern town of Abu Kamal on the western bank of Euphrates river, some 120 km southeast of Deir ez-Zor, Syria, was classified by the archaeologists as the most westerly outpost of Sumerian culture. The city flourished since it was strategically important as a relay point between Sumerian cities of lower Mesopotamia and the cities of northern Syria. Sumer required building materials such as timber and stone from northern Syria, and these materials had to go through Mari to get to Sumer.

 

The era of the Amorite kingdoms, ca. 2000–1600 BC, is sometimes known as the Amorite period in Mesopotamian history. In the continuous power struggle over Mesopotamia another Amorite dynasty made themselves masters over Mari in the eighteenth century BC. The principal Amorite dynasties arose in Mari, Yamkhad, Qatna, Assur (under Shamshi-Adad I), Isin, Larsa, and Babylon. This era ended with the Hittite sack of Babylon (ca. 1595 BC) which brought new ethnic groups, particularly Kassites and Hurrians, to the forefront in Mesopotamia.

 

Tower of Babel – Confusion of Languages

Enmerkar and the Lord of Aratta is a legendary Sumerian account, of preserved, early post-Sumerian copies, composed in the Neo-Sumerian period (ca. 21st century BC). It is one of a series of accounts describing the conflicts between Enmerkar, king of Unug-Kulaba (Uruk), and the unnamed king of Aratta (probably somewhere in modern Iran or Armenia). It is notable for its strong parallels to the Tower of Babel narrative of Genesis.

 

Near the beginning of the account, the following background is provided: In those days of yore, when the destinies were determined, the great princes allowed Unug Kulaba's E-ana to lift its head high. Plenty, and carp floods-(fish aplenty, barley abundance), and the rain which brings forth dappled barley were then increased in Unug Kulaba. Before the land of Dilmun yet existed, the E-ana of Unug Kulaba was well founded.

 

E-ana was a ziggurat in Uruk built in honour of the goddess Inanna, the lady of all the lands (E-ana is House of Ana, or Temple of Ana). Similarly, the lord of Aratta has himself crowned in Inanna's name, but she does not find this as pleasing as her brick temple in Uruk.

 

Enmerkar, thus chosen by Inanna in her holy heart from the bright mountain, then asks Inanna to let him subject Aratta and make the people of Aratta deliver a tribute of precious metals and gemstones, for constructing the lofty Abzu ziggurat of Enki at Eridu, as well as for embellishing her own E-ana sanctuary at Uruk. Inanna accordingly advises Enmerkar to dispatch a herald across the mountains of Susin and Anshan to the lord of Aratta, to demand his submission and his tribute.

 

Enmerkar agrees and sends the envoy, along with his specific threats to destroy Aratta and disperse its people, if they do not send him the tribute - lest like the devastation which swept destructively, and in whose wake Inanna arose, shrieked and yelled aloud, I too wreak a sweeping devastation there. He is furthermore to recite the Incantation of Nudimmud, a hymn imploring Enki to restore (or in some translations, to disrupt) the linguistic unity of the inhabited regions, named as Shubur, Hamazi, Sumer, Uri-ki (the region around Akkad), and the Martu land:

 

”On that day when there is no snake, when there is no scorpion, when there is no hyena, when there is no lion, when there is neither dog nor wolf, when there is thus neither fear nor trembling, man has no rival! At such a time, may the lands of Shubur and Hamazi, the many-tongued, and Sumer, the great mountain of the me of magnificence, and Akkad, the land possessing all that is befitting, and the Martu land, resting in security - the whole universe, the well-guarded people - may they all address Enlil together in a single language! For at that time, for the ambitious lords, for the ambitious princes, for the ambitious kings, Enki, for the ambitious lords, for the ambitious princes, for the ambitious kings, for the ambitious lords, for the ambitious princes, for the ambitious kings - Enki, the lord of abundance and of steadfast decisions, the wise and knowing lord of the Land, the expert of the gods, chosen for wisdom, the lord of Eridug, shall change the speech in their mouths, as many as he had placed there, and so the speech of mankind is truly one.”

 

The land of Subar (Sumerian Su-bir4/Subar/Šubur) or Subartu (Akkadian Šubartum/Subartum/ina Šú-ba-ri, Assyrian mât Šubarri) was situated at the Tigris, north of Babylonia. The name also appears in the Amarna letters, and, in the form Šbr, in Ugarit.

 

The Hurrians were a people of the Ancient Near East, who lived in northern Mesopotamia and areas to the immediate east and west, beginning approximately 2500 BC. They probably originated in the Caucasus and entered from the north, but this is not certain. Their known homeland was centred in Subartu, the Khabur River valley, and later they established themselves as rulers of small kingdoms throughout northern Mesopotamia and Syria. The largest and most influential Hurrian nation was the kingdom of Mitanni.

 

The Sumerian mythological epic Enmerkar and the Lord of Aratta lists the countries where the languages are confused as Subartu, Hamazi, Sumer, Uri-ki (Akkad), and the Martu land (the Amorites). Similarly, the earliest references to the four quarters by the kings of Akkad name Subartu as one of these quarters around Akkad, along with Martu, Elam, and Sumer.

 

Subartu was listed as a province of the empire of Lugal-Anne-Mundu; in a later era Sargon of Akkad campaigned against Subar, and Naram-Sin listed Subar along with the Armani (Armenians), among the lands under his control. Ishbi-Erra of Isin and Hammurabi also claimed victories over Subar.

 

In Neo-Babylonian times (under Nabopolassar, Nebuchadrezzar II and Nabonidus), Subartu was used as a generic term for Assyria. The term was still current under Cambyses II, who mentions Subarian captives. Most scholars accept Subartu as an early name for Assyria proper on the Tigris, although there are various other theories placing it sometimes a little farther to the east, north or west of there. We can also notice a mention of "Subartu" in the Poem of Erra (IV, 132) with other lands which have harassed Babylonia.

 

The messenger arrives in Aratta, reciting this message to the king, and asks him for a reply to take to his lord Enmerkar, whom he calls "the scion of him with the glistening beard, whom his stalwart cow gave birth to in the mountain of the shining me, who was reared on the soil of Aratta, who was given suck at the udder of the good cow, who is suited for office in Kulaba.

 

The king of Aratta replies that submission to Uruk is out of the question, because Inanna herself had chosen him to his office and power. But the herald then reveals that Inanna has been installed as queen at E-ana and has even promised Enmerkar to make Aratta bow to Uruk.

 

Devastated by this news, the lord of Aratta finally gives his response: he is more than prepared for a military contest with Uruk, whom he considers no match for his might; however he will submit, on the sole conditions that Enmerkar send him a vast amount of barley grain, and that Inanna convince him that she has forsaken Aratta and confirm her allegiance to Uruk.

 

The herald returns to Enmerkar bearing this reply, and the next day Enmerkar actually sends the barley to Aratta, along with the herald and another demand to send even more precious stones.

 

The lord of Aratta, in a fit of pride, refuses and instead asks Enmerkar to deliver to him these precious stones himself. Upon hearing this, Enmerkar spends ten years preparing an ornate sceptre, then sends it to Aratta with his messenger. This frightens the lord of Aratta, who now sees that Inanna has indeed forsaken him, but he instead proposes to arrange a one-on-one combat between two champions of the two cities, to determine the outcome of the still-diplomatic conflict with Enmerkar. The king of Uruk responds by accepting this challenge, while increasing his demands for the people of Aratta to make a significant offering for the E-ana and the abzu, or face destruction and dispersal.

 

To relieve the herald who, beleaguered, can no longer remember all the messages with which he is charged, Enmerkar then resorts to an invention: writing on tablets. The herald again traverses the seven mountains to Aratta, with the tablets, and when the king of Aratta tries to read the message, Ishkur, the storm-god, causes a great rain to produce wild wheat and chickpeas that are then brought to the king. Seeing this, the king declares that Inanna has not forsaken the primacy of Aratta after all, and summons his champion.

 

The remainder of the text has many lacunae-(line text losses), and the following events are unclear, but the tablet seems to end with Enmerkar triumphant, possibly installed by Inanna on the throne of Aratta, and with the people of Aratta delivering the tribute to E-ana, and providing the materials to build the Apsû.

 

Dilmun

 

Dilmun, sometimes transliterated Telmun, is a land mentioned by Mesopotamian Civilizations as a trade partner, source of raw material, copper, and entrepot of the Mesopotamia and the Indus Valley Civilization trade route. Although the exact location of Dilmun is unclear, it might be associated with the islands of Bahrain, Eastern Province, Qatar, Oman and nearby Iranian coast in the Persian Gulf.

 

Dilmun, sometimes described as the place where the sun rises and the Land of the Living, is the scene of some versions of the Sumerian creation myth, and the place where the deified Sumerian hero of the flood, Utnapishtim (Ziusudra), was taken by the gods to live forever.

 

Dilmun is also described in the epic story of Enki and Ninhursag as the site at which the Creation occurred. Ninlil, the Sumerian goddess of air and south wind had her home in Dilmun. It is also featured in the Epic of Gilgamesh, and has been speculated to be the true location of the Garden of Eden.

 

However, in the early epic Enmerkar and the Lord of Aratta, the main events, which center on Enmerkar’s construction of the ziggurats in Uruk and Eridu, are described as taking place in a world before Dilmun had yet been settled.

 

Adamu son of Ea

 

Adapa or Adamu son of Ea was a mortal from a godly lineage, a son of Ea (Enki in Sumerian), the god of wisdom and of the ancient city of Eridu, the oldest city of Sumer, who brought the arts of civilization to that city (from Dilmun, according to some versions). Adapa is often identified as advisor to the mythical first (antediluvian) king of Eridu, Alulim. In addition to his advisory duties, he served as a priest and exorcist, and upon his death took his place among the Seven antediluvian Sages (Apkallū). (Apkal, sage, comes from Sumerian Abgallu (Ab=water, Gal=Great, Lu=man) a reference to Adapa, the first sage’s association with water.) He was portrayed as a man wearing the skin of a fish.

 

He is also merged with the Kassite-period apkal U-an, who is most familiar though Berossus’ recounting of the myth of Oannes. Oannes was the name given by the Babylonian writer Berossus in the 3rd century BC to a mythical being who taught mankind wisdom.

 

Enki was a god in Sumerian mythology, later known as Ea in Babylonian mythology. He was originally chief god of the city of Eridu, but later the influence of his cult spread throughout Mesopotamia and also to Hittite and Hurrian areas.

 

Enki

 

Enki was the deity of crafts (gašam); water, seawater, and lakewater (a, aba, ab), intelligence (gestú, literally ear) and creation (Nudimmud: nu, likeness, dim mud, make bear). He was assimilated to the zenith in the Sun's path at the winter solstice. His sacred number name was "40". In Sumerian astronomy, Enki also represented the planet Mercury, known for its ability to shift rapidly, and its proximity to the Sun, Sumerian Utu, Akkadian Shamash, the god of Justice. He was the keeper of the divine powers called Me, the gifts of civilization. His image is a double-helix snake. His symbols included a goat and a fish, which later combined into a single beast, the goat Capricorn, recognized as the Zodiacal constellation Capricornus.

 

The exact meaning of his name is uncertain: the common translation is Lord of the Earth: the Sumerian en is translated as a title equivalent to lord; it was originally a title given to the High Priest; ki means earth; but there are theories that ki in this name has another origin, possibly kig of unknown meaning, or kur meaning mound. The name Ea is allegedly Hurrian in origin while others claim that it is possibly of Semitic origin and may be a derivation from the West-Semitic root *hyy meaning life in this case used for spring, running water. In Sumerian E-A means the house of water, and it has been suggested that this was originally the name for the shrine to the God at Eridu.

 

The main temple to Enki is called E-abzu, meaning abzu temple (also E-engura, meaning house of the subterranean waters), a ziggurat temple surrounded by Euphratean marshlands near the ancient Persian Gulf coastline at Eridu. The pool of the Abzu at the front of his temple, was adopted also at the temple to Nanna (Akkadian Sin) the Moon, at Ur, and spread throughout the Middle East. It remains as the sacred pool at Mosques.

 

Enki was not perfect, as god of water he had a penchant for beer and as god of semen he had a string of incestuous affairs. The story symbolically reflects the way in which life is brought forth through the addition of water to the land, and once it grows, water is required to bring plants to fruit. It also counsels balance and responsibility, nothing to excess.

 

Ninti, is given the title of the mother of all living, and was a title given to the later Hurrian goddess Kheba. This is also the title given to Eve, the Hebrew Khavvah, the Aramaic Hawwah, who was supposedly made from the rib of Adam, in a strange reflection of the Sumerian myth.

 

Israelittes

 

Much of the written material found in Ebla which has been translated has a tendency among the inhabitants of Ebla to replace the name of El, king of the gods of the Canaanite Pantheon (found in names such as Mikael), with Ia (two syllables as in Mikiah). Ia in this case is a West Semitic (Canaanite) way of saying Ea, Enki’s Akkadian name. Ia (two syllables) is declined with the Semitic ending as Iahu and may have developed into the later form of Yahweh. Ia has also been confused with the Ugaritic Yamm (sea), (also called Judge Nahar, or Judge River) whose earlier name in at least one ancient source was Yaw, or Ya’a. Although both Ea and Yamm were water gods and are sometimes called storm gods, Ea was the creator and representative of the sweet beneficent waters from below the earth, and as Enki was responsible for fertilising the earth itself.

 

Yamm, however, in addition to being the deity of salt waters, and of storms that sank ships, flooded cities -- that is, had a more violent character than Ea, who generally avoided conflict. Indeed, ancient Ur during its hey day as a port city along the ancient coastline of the Persian Gulf (now far inland), maintained its most holy shrine to the life-giving essence of fresh water as against the life-threatening qualities of the salty seas. Thus Ea, the lord of the sweet waters, antagonist to his half brother, the storm god Enlil, who can be identified with the West Semitic storm god Baal Haddad, the King of heaven and creator of heaven and earth in West Semitic mythology. Yamm, although important to the maritime Canaanites, was comparatively a minor figure when compared to Ba'al Hadad, who in the West Semitic myths is always his foe.

 

Ebla’s close link to southern Mesopotamia, where the script had developed, further highlights the links between the Sumerians and Semitic cultures at that time. 3rd millennium Ebla was a polytheistic society. Some well-known Semitic deities appear at Ebla, including Dagan (written as {d}BE), Ishtar (Ashtar), Resheph (Rasap), Kanish, Hadad (Hadda), Shapash (Shipish), and some otherwise unknown ones (Kura, Nidakul), plus a few Sumerian gods (Enki and Ninki) and Hurrian gods (Ashtapi, Hebat, Ishara). The four city gates were named after the gods Dagan, Baal (Hadda), Rasap, and Utu. Overall, about forty deities are mentioned in the tablets as receiving sacrifices.

 

Among Pettinato's controversial claims, he has also suggested that there was a change in the theophoric names shown in many of the tablets found in the archive from *El to *Yah, indicated in the example of the transition from Mika’il to Mikaya. He regards this as evidence for an early use of the divine name Yah, a god who he believes later emerged as Yahweh (YHWH). Bottero has suggested that this shift may instead indicate the popular acceptance of the Akkadian god Ea, introduced from the Sargonid Empire. Archi and Rainey, on the other hand, have suggested that the -ya is actually a diminutive ending used in shortened forms of personal names, and Müller has argued that the cuneiform sign NI should be interpreted, in this case, as an abbreviation for ì(-lí) (god) rather than as ià (*Yah) - a view that Archi has since adopted with a modification, his reading been ì or lí. In any case, no list of gods or offerings mentions a deity by the name of Ya, and the connection with Yahweh is largely rejected today.

 

Many Old Testament Genesis names that have not been found in other Near Eastern languages have been reported to occur in similar forms in Eblaite (a-da-mu/Adam, h’à-wa/Eve, Jabal, Abarama/Abraham, Bilhah, Ishma-el, Isûra-el, Esau, Mika-el, Mikaya, Saul, David, etc.). A large number of Biblical locations (many of them known from other sources) have also been reported to occur in the texts: for example Ashtaroth, Sinai, Jerusalem (Ye-ru-sa-lu-um), Hazor, Lachish, Gezer, Dor, Megiddo, Joppa, Ur etc.

 

Mandaeans

 

Mandaeism or Mandaeanism is a monotheistic religion with a strongly dualistic worldview. Its adherents, the Mandaeans, revere Adam, Abel, Seth, Enosh, Noah, Shem, Aram and especially John the Baptist. Likewise, the Mandaeans believe that Abraham, Moses, and Muhammad were false prophets, but recognize other prophetic figures from the monotheistic traditions, such as Adam, his sons Hibil (Abel) and Šitil (Seth), and his grandson Anuš (Enosh), as well as Nuh (Noah), his son Sam (Shem) and his son Ram (Aram). The latter three they consider to be their direct ancestors.