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Ninshubur (also known as Ninshubar, Nincubura or Ninšubur) was the sukkal or second-in-command of the goddess Inanna in Sumerian mythology. Ninshubur, however, was not merely Inanna's servant. She was also a goddess in her own right and her name can be translated from ancient Sumerian as "Queen of the East." Much like Iris or Hermes in later Greek mythology, Ninshubur served as a messenger to the other gods.
Ninshubur accompanied Inanna as a vassal and friend throughout Inanna's many exploits. She helped Inanna fight Enki's demons after Inanna's theft of the sacred me. Later, when Inanna became trapped in the Underworld, it was Ninshubur who pleaded with Enki for her mistress's release.
Ninshubur was an important figure in ancient Sumerian mythology and she played an integral role in several myths involving her mistress, the goddess, Inanna.
The Theft of the Mes
In the Sumerian myth of "Inanna and Enki," Ninshubur is described as the one who rescues Inanna from the monsters that Enki has sent after her. In this myth, Ninshubur plays a similar role to Isimud, who acts as Enki's messenger to Inanna.
Inanna's Descent to the Underworld
In the Sumerian myth of Inanna's descent into the Netherworld, Ninshubur is described as the one who pleads with all of the gods in an effort to persuade them to rescue Inanna from the Netherworld.
- http://www.halexandria.org/dward386.htm Account of Inanna's descent into the Underworld
- http://www.gatewaystobabylon.com/myths/texts/inanna/ts94.htm Various descriptions of Inanna and Ninshubur
- Getty, Adele (1990). Goddess Mother of Living Nature. Thames and Hudson. ISBN 978-0-500-81033-0.
- Wolkstein, Diane; Kramer, Samuel Noah (1983), Inanna: Queen of Heaven and Earth: Her Stories and Hymns from Sumer, New York City, New York: Harper&Row Publishers, ISBN 0-06-090854-8
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