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Chapter Summary

This is the introductory chapter of the book, which proposes that the Yale Tablet and the nine other Huwawa texts represent evidence of a once-independent tale that is called the "Akkadian Huwawa narrative". It also proposes that there were at least two major acts of composition. The Gilgamesh Epic began above all with the Huwawa story, which we understand to have been known in Sumerian before any Akkadian rendition appeared. Between the Sumerian Huwawa story and the OB epic, there was an intermediate compositional stage in which the Sumerian tale alone was reimagined in Akkadian. The primary goal of the book is to identify and interpret the Akkadian Huwawa narrative for the first time on its own terms. The book aims to calculate the relationship of this first Akkadian OB Gilgamesh tale both to its new epic offspring and to its Sumerian predecessor.

Keywords: Akkadian Huwawa narrative; OB Gilgamesh; Sumerian text; Yale Tablet



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