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(Sumerian text, around 2500 BC, Universit=
Oxford translation, The Electronic Text Corpus of Sumerian Literature) =
In those days, in the days when heaven and earth were created; in those nights, in the nights when heaven and earth we= re created; in those years, in the years when the fates were determined; when = the Anuna gods were born; when the goddesses were taken i= n marriage; when the goddesses were distributed in heaven and earth; when the goddesses ...... became pregnant and gave birth; when the gods were obliged ...... their food ...... dining ha= lls; the senior gods oversaw the work, while the minor gods were bearing the toi= l. The gods were digging the canals and piling up the silt in Harali. The gods, crushing the clay, began complaining about this life.<= /span>
At that time, the one of great wisdom, the creator of all the senior gods, Enki lay on his= bed, not waking up from his sleep, in the deep engur= , in the subterranean water, the place the inside of which no other god knows. The gods said, weeping: "He is the cause of the lamenting!" Namma, the primeval mother who gave birth to the seni= or gods, took the tears of the gods to the one who lay sleeping, to the one who did not wake up from his bed, to her son: "Are you really lying there = asleep, and ...... not awake? The gods, your creatures= , are smashing their ....... My son, wake up from your= bed! Please apply the skill deriving from your wisdom and create a substitute for the gods so that they can be freed from their toil!"=
At the word of his mother Namma, Enki rose up from his bed. In Hal-an-kug, his room for pondering, he slapped his thigh in annoyance. The wise and intelligent one, the prudent, .= ..... of skills, the fashioner of the design of everything brought to life birth-goddesses. Enki reached out his arm over = them and turned his attention to them. And after Enki, the fashioner of designs by himself, had pondered the matter, he said to his mother Namma: "My m= other, the creature you planned will really come into existence. Impose on him the work of carrying baskets. You should knead clay from the top of the abzu; the birth-goddesses<= span style=3D'mso-spacerun:yes'> will nip off the clay and y= ou shall bring the form into existence. Let Ninmah= act as your assistant; and let Ninimma, Cu-zi-ana, Ninmada, Ninbarag, Ni= nmug, ...... and Ninguna stand= by as you give birth. My mother, after you have decreed his fate, let Ninmah impose on him the work of carrying baskets.&qu= ot;
5 lines fragmentary ...... she placed it on grass and purifi= ed the birth.
Enki ...... brought joy to their heart. He se=
feast for his mother Namma and for Ninmah. All the princely birth-goddesses ...... ate
delicate reed and bread. An, Enlil, and Lord
Nudimmud roasted holy kids. All the senior gods prais=
him: "O lord of wide understanding, who is as wise as you? Enki, =
lord, who can equal your actions? Like a corporeal father, you are t=
one who has the me of deciding destinies,=
fact you are the me."
Enki and Ninmah d= rank beer, their hearts became elated, and then Ninmah said to Enki: "Man's body can be either go= od or bad and whether I make a fate good or bad depends on my will."
Enki answered Ninmah: "I will counterbalance whatever fate, good or bad, you happen to decide." Ninmah took clay from the top of = the abzu in her hand and she fashioned from it fir= st a man who could not bend his outstretched weak hands. En= ki looked at the man who cannot bend his outstretched weak hands, and decreed = his fate: he appointed him as a servant of the king.
Second, she fashioned one who turned back= the light, a man with constantly opened eyes. Enki = looked at the who turned back the light, the man with constantly opened eyes, and decreed his fate allotting to it the musical ar= ts, making him as the chief ...... in the king's presence.
Third, she fashioned one with both feet b= roken, one with paralysed feet. Enki looked at the one= with both feet broken, the one with paralysed feet and ...... him for the work of ...... and the silversmith and .......
Fourth, she fashioned one who could not h=
back his urine. Enki looked at the one who coul=
hold back his urine and bathed him in enchanted water and drove out the
Fifth, she fashioned a woman who could no=
birth. Enki looked at the woman who could not g=
birth, and decreed her fate: he made her belong to the queen's household.
Sixth, she fashioned one with neither pen= is nor vagina on its body. Enki looked at the one with neither penis nor vagina on its body and gave it the name 'Nibru eunuch', and decreed as its fate to stand before the king.
Ninmah threw the pinched-off clay = from her hand on the ground and a great silence fell.
The great lord Enki<= /span> said to Ninmah: "I have decreed the fates of yo= ur creatures and given them their daily bread. Come, now I will fashion somebo= dy for you, and you must decree the fate of the newborn one!"<= /span>
Enki devised a shape with head, ...... and mouth in its middle, and said to Nin= mah: "Pour ejaculated semen into a woman's womb, and the woman will give bi= rth to the semen of her womb." Ninmah stood by= for the newborn ....... and the woman brought forth ...... in the midst ....... In return, this was Umul: its head was afflicted, its place of ...... was afflicted, its eyes were afflicted, its neck was afflicted. It could hardly breathe, its ribs were shaky, its lungs were afflicted, its heart was afflicted, its bowels were afflicted. With its hand and its lolling head it could not not put bread into its mouth; its spine and head were dislocated. The weak hips and the shaky feet could not carry it on the fiel= d -- Enki fashioned it in this way.
Enki said to Ninmah: "For your creatures I have decreed a fate, I have given them their dai= ly bread. Now, you should decree a fate for my creature,= span> give him his daily bread too." Ninmah look= ed at Umul and turned to him. She went nearer to Umul asked him questions but he could not speak. She offered him bread to eat but he could not reach out for it. He could not li= e on ......, he could not ....... Standing up he coul= d not sit down, could not lie down, he could not ...... a house, he could not eat bread. Ninmah answered Enk= i: "The man you have fashioned is neither alive nor dead. He cannot suppo= rt himself."
Enki answered Ninmah: "I decreed a fate for the first man with the weak hands, I gave him br= ead. I decreed a fate for the man who turned back the light, I gave him bread. I decreed a fate for the man with broken, paralysed feet, I gave him bread. I decreed a fate for the man who could not hold back his urine, I gave him br= ead. I decreed a fate for the woman who could not give birth, I gave her bread. I decreed the fate for the one with neither penis nor vagina on its body, I g= ave it bread. My sister, ......."
Ninmah said to Enki:
"You entered ....... Look, you do not dwell in heaven, you do not dwel=
earth, you do not come out to look at the Land. =
you do not dwell but where my house is built, your words cannot be heard. W=
you do not live but where my city is built, I myself am silenced. My city is
ruined, my house is destroyed, my child has been=
captive. I am a fugitive who has had to leave the E-
kur, even I myself c=
escape from your hand."
Enki replied to Ninmah= span>: "Who could change the words that left your mouth? Remove Umul from your lap .......= Ninmah, may your work be ......, you ...... for me wh= at is imperfect; who can oppose this? The man whom I shaped ...... after you ....= .., let him pray! Today let my penis be praised, may your wisdom be confirmed! = May the enkum and ni= nkum ...... proclaim your glory ....... My sister, the heroic strength ....... The song ...... the writing ....... The gods who heard ...... let Umul build my house ......."
Ninmah could not rival the great l= ord Enki. Father Enki, your p= raise is sweet!