R: Balaams Kittim ships

Michael Banyai Banyai at t-online.de
Mon Dec 16 17:24:00 EST 2002


Ian we are as usually misunderstanding each other.

I never stated that Musri is Egypt in this stance. As usually you are doing this job for me and than try to convince me how wrong this idea (which I never had) is.

To put it plain. Musri is an identically named regional Levantine coalition, which mainly filled the Syrian desert from the south of Bit-Agusi and Bit-Adini till to the Egyptian border.  Mainly the region called the Mishor plateau (but also the Bishri mountains) running behind Moab, Gilead, etc. It was dominated by two main tribes: in the north, the Ishmaelites (first heard of in the Mari letters and not just in late Neo-Assyrian texts as wished by Knauf) Bene Shimal (Mari) or Shumuil (Sanherib) and by the Amalekites in the south. According to the bible they both ruled from Hawila (an oldish name of Guzana) till to the border of Egypt.

The Musri coalition coined its name on Egypt following its long domination thereof, known as the Hyksos period.

Apes and so on is a present typical for Amurru, for Bit-Adini, for Musri on the black obelisk (which is once more our petty Arabian coalition) and for Musri in the Ashur-Bel-Kala text.

So it is no fault or fake of Ashur-Bel-Kala but a typical Musri-Arabian present.

The big female ape, called Bazitu after the North-Arabian city of Bazu is represented on the black obelisk.

> Famous last words. You haven't even looked at the 
> data, being convinced of your argument from 
> linguistic appearances in transliteration. You 
> will note as you seem to be using Grayson's ARI, 
> that he uses the name "Egypt" when talking about 
> ABK's gift. He doesn't use it when talking about 
> Musri. He doesn't think that it is Egypt. What 
> extra knowledge have you got? None.

I am not intersted for what Grayson thinks Musri is this time a couple of lines lower in the same inscription. I posess my own head and I would preferr, when something is doing a translator job, that he should leave out his own presuppositions from the translation. The same awfull job is he doing by transliterating Hunusu once he is translating the list of cities of Kumanu (a Kumanu he situates east of the Tigris) and replacing the same term with Kanish, when he translates the well known reference to Kanish-oak (Tiglat-Pileser I said to have brought from his conquests during the first 5 regnal years). This presupposition of Grayson creates enormous problems, since there is nothing in the whole list of countries (except Kumanu which he consigned east of Tigris) to document a move to Kanesh or till the shore of the Mediteranean (as the inscription boasts to) already in the first 5 years.

You both, Grayson and you have fallen prey to the fault to identify Uqumenu with Kumanu. 
Uqumanu is near Mehru. Kumani / Komana is near Musri. But that´s all and here stop the similarities.

This is the famous "Syrene des Gleichklangs". There are at least 2 different well known Kumanus in East-Anatolia only. One the famous Komana (our Kumani), part of Kizzuwadna lost by the Sunassura treaty, another one, Comana pontica, on the Iris river. They are not the same even if they are called identically. If the Assyrians make an orthographic difference between Uqumanu and and Kumani, than they had a good reason to hold to the difference.

Thank you for the needless quotes from Grayson. It would have been enough to read the list of cities pertaining to Kumani to know which Kumani TP 1 meant:

Kumani >>>>>>> Comana
Hunusu >>>>>>> Kanish (identified also by Grayson as such in the expression Kanish-oaks)
Kipushna >>>>> Hupishna

battle by the mountain Tala = Tiliura/Atallura (probably is the -ura in the Hethite name of the muntain but a residual of a semitic hor=mountain) by Aleppo, thus not far from Arne/Arinu where the troops of Musri coalised with those of Kumani fled. 

Should you need maps I can provide you with some.

Many thanks, point made. 

The region described here, as pertaining to Kumani is known in Greek sources as Kataonie. Don´t know, what Kittim was, but the name is good.

> Whatever that means, thank you. As it was the 
> Kittim which was my main interest in the 
> original query, and you have abandoned your 
> musing in that direction, the major basis of 
> factual contention is over.

Well, actually you have opened a new field for linguistics, with your investigation of the prehistory of the name of Kition, before its first literal attestation in the 5-th century BC. 

We should call it phonetical archaeology. It opens infinite possibilities, since most Tells in the ANE are still circulating nameless in the scientific literature.

All the best,

Bányai Michael



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