THE BEGINNINGS OF TRUE HISTORY
(Tiglath Pileser I)
We shall begin, then, our detailed study of the sources for Assyrian history with the data for the reign of Tiglath Pileser I (circa 1100 B.C.). Taking up first the Annals, we find that the annalistic documents from the reign may be divided into two general groups. One, the Annals proper, is the so called Cylinder, in reality written on a number of hexagonal prisms. [Footnote: Photographs of B and A, Budge-King, xliii; xlvii; of the Ashur fragments, of at least five prisms, Andr?, _Anu-Adad Tempel_, Pl. xiii ff. I R. 9 ff.; Winckler, _Sammlung_, I. 1 ff.; Budge-King, 27 ff., with variants and BM numbers. Lotz, _Inschriften Tiglathpilesers_ I, 1880; Winckler, KB. I. 14 ff. Rawlinson, Hincks, Talbot, Oppert, JRAS. OS. XVIII. 150 ff.; Oppert, _Histoire des empires de Chaldée et d'Assyrie, 1865, 44f; Menant, 35 ff.; Rawlinson, Rp1, V. 7 ff. Sayce RP², I. 92 ff.; Muss-Arnolt in Harper, llff.; MDOG. 25, 21f; 28, 22; 29, 40; 47, 33; King, _Supplement_, 116; Andr?, _Tempel_, 32 ff.] First comes the praise of the gods and self praise of the ruler himself. Then follow the campaigns, not numbered as in the more developed style of later rulers, but separated into six sections, for the six years whose events are narrated, by brief glorifications of the monarch. Next we have the various hunting exploits of the king, and the document ends with an elaborate account of the building operations and with threats against the later ruler who should destroy the inscription or refuse credit to the king in whose honor it was made.
No relationship has been made out between the fragments, but the four-fairly complete prisms fall into two groups, A and C, B and D, as regards both the form of writing and the character of the text. All date seemingly from the same month of the same year, though from separate days. The most fragmentary of these, D, seems the best, as it has the smallest number of unique readings and has also the largest number of omissions, [Footnote: II. 21b-23a; III. 37b-39a; IV. 36.] all of which are clearly interpolations in the places where they are given. This is especially true of the one [Footnote: IV. 36.] which refers to the Anu-Adad and Ishtar temples, for not only is the insertion awkward, we know from the Obelisk [Footnote: II. 13.] that the Anu-Adad temple was not completed till year five, so that it must be an interpolation of that date. In spite of its general resemblance to D, especially in its omissions, B is very poorly written and has over two hundred unique readings. One of its omissions would seriously disarrange the chronology, [Footnote: IV. 40-42.] others are clearly unwarranted, [Footnote: II. 79081; V.4; VIII. 29b-33.] and one long addition [Footnote: VII. 17-27; also I. 35; different in VI. 37.] further marks its peculiar character. Our conclusion must be that it is a poor copy of a good original. C is between A and B, agreeing with the latter in a strange interpolation [Footnote: III. 2a-c.] and in the omission of the five kings of the Muski. [Footnote: I. 63b. King, _Supplement_, 116 follows C.] A is the latest but best preserved, while the character of the text warrants us in making this our standard as it has but few unique readings and but one improbable omission. [Footnote: VII. 105-8.] The same account, in slightly different form and seemingly later in date [Footnote: K.2815 is dated in the eponomy of Ninib nadin apal, the LAH MA GAL E official. He probably is after the rab bi lul official in whose year the hexagons are dated.] is also found in some tablet inscriptions. [Footnote: Budge-King, 125 n.3; K.2815, with different conclusion; 81-2-4, 220, where reverse different; K.12009; K.13840; 79-7-8, 280; 89-4-26, 28; Rm. 573: Winckler, AOF. III. 245.]
A second annalistic group is that postulated as the original of the so called Broken Obelisk. Of documents coming directly from Tiglath Pileser himself, the only one that can with any probability be assigned to this is the tiny fragment which refers to the capture of Babylon. [Footnote: K. 10042; Winckler, AOF. I. 387.] But that such a group did exist is proved by the extracts from it in the obelisk prepared by a descendant of Tiglath Pileser, probably one of his sons, Shamshi Adad or Ashur bel kala. [Footnote: Photograph, Budge-King, li; Paterson, _Assyr. Sculptures_, 63. I R. 28; III R. 4, 1; Budge-King, 128 ff. Lotz, _op. cit._, 196 ff.; Peiser, KB. I. 122 ff.; Talbot, JRAS. OS. XIX. 124 ff.; Houghton-Finlay, RP(1), XI. 9 ff.; Oppert, _Hist._, 132 ff.; Hommel, _Gesch._, 532 ff.; Menant, 49 ff. Proved to Tiglath Pileser, Lotz, _op. cit._, 193 f.; cf. Budge-King, 131 n. 4, though Streck, ZA. XVIII. 187 ff., still believes that it belongs to an earlier king. Found at Nineveh, though it deals with Ashur constructions.] Only the upper portion, probably less than half to judge by the proportions, is preserved, and even this is terribly mutilated. Fortunately, the parts best preserved are those relating to the years not dealt with in the Annals. The first half of the document is devoted to the campaigns of Tiglath Pileser, then come his hunting exploits, and only a bit at the end is reserved for the building operations of the unknown ruler under whom it was erected. Its source seems to have had the same relation to the earliest form of the Annals that the Obelisk of Shalmaneser III had to the Monolith, that is, it gave the data for the earlier part of the reign, that covered by the other source, very briefly, only expanding as it reached a period where the facts were not represented by any other document. That our earlier Annals, or perhaps rather, one of its sources, was a main source of our second type, is proved by the coincidences in language in the two, in one case no less than twenty signs the same, [Footnote: In year V we have _ishtu...adi alu Kargamish sha matu Hatte...isu elippe pl mashku tahshe_.] not to speak of the hunting expeditions. But this earlier Annals was not the only, or at least not the direct source for the Obelisk, nor was that source merely a fuller recension of it. Data for the first six years, not found in the earlier Annals, are given in the Obelisk, [Footnote: Obl. I. 17, reference to Marduk nadin ahe, King of Akkad; II. 1, one thousand men of land of...; II. 2, four thousand of them carried prisoner to Assyria, the position of which shows that it cannot, with Budge-King, 132 n., be referred to Ann. III. 2, the Kashi; II. 12, the Mushki (?); II. 13, temple of Ami and Adad. These all precede the Carchemish episode.] while our document also, for the first time in Assyrian historical inscriptions, dates the events by the name of the eponym for the year, and, still more unusual, by the month as well. That the Obelisk may be considered merely a resume of this original source is shown by the statement that he conquered other lands and made many wars, but these he did not record. [Footnote: Obl. IV. 37.] As they seem to have been given after the hunting feats, in the lost lower part of column IV, we may assume that all that preceded is taken from that source. Furthermore, we are given the other hunting exploits "which my [father] did not record." [Footnote: Obl. IV. 33.] The numbers of beasts killed, which the scribe intended especially to emphasize, have never, curiously enough, been inscribed in the blanks left for their insertion. [Footnote: E.g., Obl. IV. 4.]
Opposed to the Annals proper are the Display inscriptions in which chronological considerations and details as to the campaigns are subordinated to the desire to give a general view of the monarch's might. Two have been found in foreign lands, one at the source of the Tigris, [Footnote: Discovery, J. Taylor, cf. H. Rawlinson, _Athenaeum_, 1862, II. 811; 1863, I. 229. III R. 4, 6; Schrader, _Abh. K. Preuss. Akad._, 1885, I. Winckler, _Sammlung_, I. 30: Budge-King, 127 n. 1. Meissner, _Chrestomathie_, 6; Abel-Winckler, 5; Menant, 49. Winckler, KB. I. 48 f. Dated after the Arvad expedition as shown by reference to Great Sea of Amurru, and of same date as Melazgerd inscription, Belck, _Verh. Berl_.] the other near Melazgerd in Armenia. [Footnote: From Gonjalu, near Melazgerd, Belck-Lehmann, _Verh. Berl. Anthr. Ges._ 1898, 574. Photograph, Lehmann, _Sitzungsber. Berl. Akad._, 1900, 627. Is this one of the "cuneiform inscriptions near Moosh" reported to Taylor, _Athenaeum_, 1863, I. 229?] Drafts for similar inscriptions have been found on clay tablets, written for the use of the workmen who were to incise them on stone. Of these, one, which is virtually complete as regards number of lines, seems to date from year four as it has no reference to later events. [Footnote: S. 1874; K. 2805, Tabl. I of Budge-King, 109 ff. III R. 5; Winckler, _Sammlung_, I. 26 ff.; cf. Lotz, _op. cit._, 193; Tiele, Gesch., 159 n. 2; Meissner, ZA. IX. 101 ff. Meissner's restoration of these as parts of one tablet in chronological order will not stand in view of the fact that I is complete in itself while there are variations in the order of Nairi and totally different endings.] It would then be our earliest extant source. It is also of value in dating the erection of the palace whose mention shows that the tablet is complete. That the compiler had before him the document used by the Annals in its account of the Nairi campaign [Footnote: Ann. IV. 71 ff.] is proved by his writing "from Tumme to Daiene" for these are the first and last names in the well known list of Nairi states. The order of the tablet is neither chronological nor geographical. Another tablet dates from year five to which most of its data belong. In the first half, it follows the order of Tablet I, and in the remainder follows closely the words of its source in the Annals, merely abbreviating. [Footnote: K. 2806 with K. 2804, Tabl. II of Budge-King, 116 ff.] Possibly in its present form, it may be later than year five [Footnote: The badly damaged reverse of K. 2806 has one reference to the Euphrates which _may_ be connected with Obl. III. 24, probably of year IX.] for a third tablet of year ten duplicates this first part. [Footnote: K. 2804, Tabl. V of Budge-King, 125 f.] Unfortunately, this latter gives next to no historical data, but its reference to the "Lower Zab" and to the "Temple of Ishtar" may perhaps allow us to date to this same tenth year the highly important tablet which gives a full account of the campaign in Kirhi and Lulume and which also ends with the restoration of the Ishtar temple. [Footnote: K. 2807; 91-5-9, 196. III R. 5, 4; Tablet IV of Budge-King, 121 ff. Winckler, AOF. III. 246. Hommel, _Gesch._, 511 f.] Here too and not with the Annals must be placed the fragment with the Arvad episode. [Footnote: Scheil, RT. XXII. 157. Restorations, Streck, ZA. XVIII. 186 n. 2. First attributed to Tiglath Pileser, Peiser, OLZ. III. 476; Winckler, ibid. IV. 296; cf. AOF. III. 247.--Bricks I R. 6, 5; Scheil, _op. cit._ 37; Winckler, _Sammlung_, I. 31; Budge-King, 127. Other inss., King, _Supplement_, 453, 488.]