Sunday, November 15, 2020

Law and Trade in Ancient Mesopotamia and Anatolia: Selected Papers by K.R. Veenhof

Edited by N.J.C. Kouwenberg |
Paperback ISBN: 9789088909153 | Hardback ISBN: 9789088909160 | Imprint: Sidestone Press | Format: 210x280mm | 418 pp. | Language: English | 16 illus. (bw) | 2 illus. (fc) | Keywords: Assyriology; Akkadian; Assyrian; Mesopotamia; Ancient Near East; Anatolia; law; Bronze Age trade; ancient texts; cuneiform; Assur; Babylon; Kültepe

This book contains a selection of nineteen articles published by K.R. Veenhof, focusing on his main field of study: law and trade in the Old Babylonian and Old Assyrian society of the early second millennium B.C. They were originally published in journals, conference proceedings and collective volumes over the past fifty years. Their reissue here is motivated by their lasting value and their fundamental importance to the study of these subjects.

It includes both “broad” articles, which give an introduction to or an overview of a specific subject, e.g. Old Assyrian trade and the practice of justice in Babylonia in the early second millennium B.C., and “narrow” ones that give an in-depth study of a single issue or a single text, such as a problematic paragraph of Hammurabi’s law code or the meaning of the noun iṣurtum. The first two articles provide a general introduction to the subject; the next nine focus on Old Assyrian society, and the final eight concern Old Babylonian.

The inclusion of “broad” and “narrow” articles makes this publication of interest both to the well-informed general reader interested in the Ancient Near East and to the specialist working on Old Babylonian and Old Assyrian society.


1. Justice and Equity in Babylonia
2. Old Assyrian and Old Babylonian Law: Some Comparative Observations
3. Ancient Assur: The City, its Traders and its Commercial Network
4. The Archives of Old Assyrian Traders: Their Nature, Functions and Use
5. “In Accordance with the Words of the Stele”: Evidence for Old Assyrian Legislation
6. Trade and Politics in Ancient Assur
7. Silver and Credit in Old Assyrian Trade
8. Old Assyrian and Ancient Anatolian Evidence for the Care of the Elderly
9. Redemption of Houses in Assur and Sippar
10. Old Assyrian Iṣurtum, Akkadian Eṣērum and Hittite GIŠ.ḪUR
11. A Deed of Manumission and Adoption from the Later Old Assyrian Period
12. Before Hammurabi of Babylon. Law and the Laws in Early Mesopotamia
13. The Interpretation of Paragraphs t and u of the Code of Hammurabi
14. The Relation Between Royal Decrees and ‘Law Codes’ of the Old Babylonian Period
15. Fatherhood is a Matter of Opinion. An Old Babylonian Trial on Filiation and Service Duties
16. The Dissolution of an Old Babylonian Marriage According to CT 45, 86
17. Three Old Babylonian Marriage Contracts Involving Nadītum and Šugītum
18. Trade with the Blessing of Shamash in Old Babylonian Sippar
19. Assyrian Commercial Activities in Old Babylonian Sippar – Some New Evidence

Bibliography of Publications by K.R. Veenhof


Prof. dr. Klaas R. Veenhof (1935) was a teacher at the Catholic University of Nijmegen, professor at the Free University of Amsterdam and from 1982 until his retirement in 2000 professor at the University of Leiden. Key publications are his dissertation “Aspects of Old Assyrian Trade and its Terminology” (1972), “The Old Assyrian list of year eponyms from Karum Kanish and its chronological implications” (2003), and several editions of Old Assyrian texts, especially “Altassyrische Tontafeln aus Kültepe” (1992) and Kültepe Tabletleri 5 and 8 (2005 and 2010).

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