Nikkal

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Nikkal, Ugaritic 𐎐𐎋𐎍 nkl, full name Nikkal-wa-Ib, is a goddess of Ugarit/Canaan and later of Phoenicia. She is a goddess of orchards, whose name means "Great Lady and Fruitful" and derives from Akkadian / West Semitic "´Ilat ´Inbi" meaning "Goddess of Fruit". De Moor translates Ugaritic 𐎛𐎁 "ib" as "blossom" which survives in biblical Hebrew as אֵב (Strongs Concordance 3) and cites Canticles 6:11 as a survival of this usage[1]

She is daughter of Khirkhibi, the Summer's King, and is married to the moon god Yarikh, who gave her necklaces of lapis-lazuli. Their marriage is lyrically described in the Ugaritic text "Nikkal and the Kathirat". She may have been feted in late summer when tree fruits had been finally harvested. Her Sumerian equivalent is the goddess Ningal, the mother of Inanna and Ereshkigal.[2]

The oldest incomplete annotated piece of ancient music is a Hurrian song, a hymn in Ugaritic cuneiform syllabic writing which was dedicated to Nikkal. This was published upon its discovery in Ugarit by Emmanuel Laroche, first in 1955 and then more fully in 1968,[3] and has been the focus of many subsequent studies in palaeomusicology by, amongst others, Anne Draffkorn Kilmer, who gave it the title of "The Hymn to Nikkal" l.[4]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Johannes Cornelis de Moor. An Anthology of Religious Texts from Ugarit. E. J. Brill, 1987. ISBN 90-04-08330-8; page 142
  2. ^ Driver, Godfrey Rolles (1956, 2nd ed., 1971). Canaanite Myths and Legends (2nd ed.). Edinburgh: T. & T. Clark
  3. ^ Emmanuel Laroche, Le palais royal d' Ugarit 3: Textes accadiens et hourrites des archives Est, Ouest et centrales, 2 vols., edited by Jean Nougayrol, Georges Boyer, Emmanuel Laroche, and Claude-Frédéric-Armand Schaeffer, 1:327–35 and 2: plates cviii–cix (Paris: C. Klincksieck, 1955):; "Documents en langue hourrite provenant de Ras Shamra", in Ugaritica 5: Nouveaux textes accadiens, hourrites et ugaritiques des archives et bibliothèques privées d'Ugarit, edited by Claude-Frédéric-Armand Schaeffer and Jean Nougayrol, 462–96. Bibliothèque archéologique et historique / Institut français d'archéologie de Beyrouth 80; Mission de Ras Shamra 16 (Paris: Imprimerie nationale P. Geuthner; Leiden: E. J. Brill, 1968).
  4. ^ Kilmer, Anne Draffkorn, Journal of Cuneiform Studies, xxxviii (1986), 94-98

Bibliography[edit]

  • Driver, Godfrey Rolles (1956, 2nd ed., 1971). Canaanite Myths and Legends (2nd ed.). Edinburgh: T. & T. Clark
  • Kilmer, Anne Draffkorn. "The Cult Song with Music from Ancient Ugarit: Another Interpretation". Revue d'Assyriologie 68 (1974): 69–82.
  • Kilmer, Anne Draffkorn, Richard L. Crocker, and Robert R. Brown. Sounds from Silence: Recent Discoveries in Ancient Near Eastern Music. Berkeley: Bit Enki Publications, 1976. (booklet and LP record, Bit Enki Records BTNK 101, reissued [s.d.] with CD).