Edin (Sumerian term)

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Edin (Sumerian: 𒀀𒇉𒂔 ÍDEDIN, "steppe" or "plain";[1] Akkadian: 𒉌𒋾𒈝 i3-ti-num2)[2] is a placename featured on the Gudea cylinders as a watercourse from which plaster is taken to build a temple for Ningirsu:

Clay plaster, harmoniously blended clay taken from the Edin canal, has been chosen by Lord Ningirsu with his holy heart, and was painted by Gudea with the splendors of heaven, as if kohl were being poured all over it.[3]

Thorkild Jacobsen suggested this "Idedin" canal was an as yet unidentified "Desert Canal", which "probably refers to an abandoned canal bed that had filled with the characteristic purplish dune sand still seen in southern Iraq".[4] Friedrich Delitzsch and numerous other scholars of linguistics and Assyriology believe the Jewish and Christian term Eden traces back to this term.[5] A few scholars of Judaism posit the word may originate from Aramaic.[6]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Konrad Volk; Annette Zgoll (1997). A Sumerian reader. GBPress Pont. Ist.Biblicum. pp. 82–. ISBN 978-88-7653-610-6. Retrieved 27 June 2011.
  2. ^ "eden (PLAIN)". ePSD. Retrieved 5 May 2017.
  3. ^ The building of Ningirsu's temple., Cylinder A, Lines 738-758, Black, J.A., Cunningham, G., Robson, E., and Zólyomi, G., The Electronic Text Corpus of Sumerian Literature, Oxford 1998-. Archived 2011-07-16 at the Wayback Machine
  4. ^ Thorkild Jacobsen (23 September 1997). The Harps that once--: Sumerian poetry in translation, p. 423. Yale University Press. ISBN 978-0-300-07278-5. Retrieved 21 June 2011.
  5. ^ Dexter E. Callender (April 2000). Adam in myth and history: ancient Israelite perspectives on the primal human, p. 42. Eisenbrauns. ISBN 978-1-57506-902-9. Retrieved 27 June 2011.
  6. ^ Cohen, Chaim (2011). "Eden". In Berlin, Adele; Grossman, Maxine (eds.). The Oxford Dictionary of the Jewish Religion. Oxford University Press. p. 228-229. ISBN 9780199730049.