May 27, 2024 The sun rises from Anatolia

The first written evidence of the soul leaving the body in Anatolia: Kuttamuwa Stele

In the 8th century BC, a rich and powerful man named Kuttamuwa lived in the Gaziantep region of modern-day Turkey. Kuttamuwa served as a royal official.

The basalt Kuttamuwa Stele, which Kuttamuwa inscribed while he was alive, gives us information about the belief system of the time.

The inscription is written in Aramaic and Sam’al dialect and contains instructions for mourners after Kuttamuwa’s death.

Kuttamuwa Stele

The Kuttamuwa stele is an important work because it is the first written evidence that the people of the region believed that the soul and body were separate entities and that the soul migrated to another world.

It is also one of the oldest records of its kind in the world.

The inscription is one of the longest texts of the Sam’al dialect and has made significant contributions to the understanding of this dialect.

Photo: The site of Zincirli, ancient Sam’al, near the Amanus Mountains (view to the northwest)

The 800-pound basalt stele, three feet high and two feet wide, was found by the Oriental Institute’s Neubauer Expedition during the third season of excavations at Zincirli.

Zincirli is located near the town of Islahiye in Gaziantep province. The area was once controlled by the Hittite Empire, later becoming the capital of a small independent kingdom.

The full text of the stele, which is one of the first references to the soul being a separate entity from the body in Near Eastern culture, is as follows:

“I am KTMW, servant of Panamuwa, who commissioned for myself (this) stele while still living. I placed it in my eternal chamber and established a feast (at) this chamber: a bull for Hadad Qarpatalli, a ram for NGD/R ṢWD/RN, a ram for Šamš, a ram for Hadad of the Vineyards, a ram for Kubaba, and a ram for my “soul” (NBŠ) that (will be) in this stele. Henceforth, whoever of my sons or of the sons of anybody (else) should come into possession of this chamber, let him take from the best (produce) of this vineyard (as) a (presentation)-offering year by year. He is also to perform the slaughter (prescribed above) in (proximity to) my “soul” and is to apportion for me a leg-cut.”

Discovered in 2000, the Kuttamuwa stele is on display at the Gaziantep Archaeological Museum.

Banner
Related Articles

A rare 3,300-year-old bronze helmet from the Hittite Empire is on display at the Çorum Archaeology Museum

March 17, 2024

March 17, 2024

The 3,300-year-old bronze helmet unearthed during the excavations carried out in 2002 at the ruins of Şapinuva, one of the...

1000-year-old churches carved into rock in Erdemli Valley opened to visitors

March 19, 2024

March 19, 2024

Erdemli Valley with 1000-year-old rock churches and structures in Yeşilhisar district of Kayseri was opened to visitors. The canyon in...

Discoveries in the Hittite capital of Hattusa never cease

November 22, 2023

November 22, 2023

Discoveries never end in Hattusa, the capital of the Hittites who founded the magnificent empire of the Bronze Age. After...

A fossil of a creature living on the shores of the Pacific Ocean was found in the 1900-year-old rock church in Diyarbakır

March 4, 2024

March 4, 2024

In the 1900-year-old rock church, an important structure for the Christian world in the district of Eğil in Diyarbakır, studies...

Ancient cities in Anatolia, containing temple ruins of the enigmatic Mithras sun cult

May 14, 2024

May 14, 2024

The belief in Mitraism, which emerged in the 2nd century BC and was widespread in the Roman Empire and other...

Roman artifacts discovered during a drilling for a housing complex construction

March 9, 2024

March 9, 2024

Gold earrings, rings, tear bottles and lamps dating back to the Roman period were discovered during a drilling for a...

The monumental gate of the 1,900-year-old Mithras Temple in Zerzevan Fortress has been reached

November 5, 2023

November 5, 2023

The site of the main entrance gate of the 1,900-year-old underground temple belonging to the Mithras religion has been determined...

Stones inscribed with Allah in Arabic found in Byzantine church ruins

May 6, 2024

May 6, 2024

Stones inscribed with ‘Allah’ in Arabic were found among the ruins of a Byzantine church in the 1001 churches region...

Works continues in the ancient city of Epiphaneia

October 2, 2023

October 2, 2023

A project is being carried out for the promotion and development of the ancient city of Epiphaneia, located in the...

Rare talismanic healing bowl found in Hasankeyf excavations

December 4, 2023

December 4, 2023

During the ongoing excavations in Hasankeyf Mound, one of the oldest Neolithic settlements in Anatolia, an 800-year-old talismanic bowl used...

Urartian King Argishti’s bronze shield revealed the name of an unknown country

July 30, 2023

July 30, 2023

Urartian King Argishti’s bronze shield revealed the name of an unknown country. The bronze shield, which was purchased by the...

The 2,000-year-old golden crown of the Governor of Rome is on display at the İznik Museum

August 27, 2023

August 27, 2023

The 2,000-year-old golden crown of a Roman governor, which was unearthed during archaeological excavations in the historical city of Iznik,...

The massive stadium of Sillyon Ancient City is being uncovered

April 26, 2024

April 26, 2024

The 10 thousand-seat stadium of the ancient city of Sillyon in Antalya’s Serik district is being uncovered. The excavation team...

The 2000-year-old honorific inscription found in the ancient city of Metropolis has been deciphered

August 29, 2023

August 29, 2023

The 2000-year-old honorific inscription found in the ancient city of Metropolis, known as the ‘City of the Mother Goddess’ in...

The original of Philiskos’ famous dancing Muses statue has been uncovered

December 7, 2023

December 7, 2023

The original of the famous dancing Muses statue by Philiskos, one of the renowned sculptors of the Hellenistic period, has...

Comments
Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *