SAA 16 078. The Matter of the ‘Third Man’ of the Palace Scribe (ABL 0211)

o 1o 1

a-na LUGAL EN-ia ARAD-ka [mman-nu]kiURU.ŠÀURU

(1) To the king, my lord: your servant [Mannu-k]i-Libbali. Good health to the king, my lord! May Bel (and) Nabû bless the king, my lord.

o 22

lu DI-mu a-na LUGAL EN-ia

o 33

dEN dPA a-na LUGAL EN-ia lik-ru-bu

o 44

ina UGU v.03.U₅Š.PA-MEŠ ša v.A.BAKUR

(4) As to the matter of the 'third man' and the chariot driver of the palace scribe, about whom the king, my lord, wrote to his servant, saying: "Tell me the truth!" how could I speak dishonestly to the king, my lord? What have I been able to give to my lord in exchange for this favour that the king, my lord, has shown his servant? Would the patronage of the palace scribe have had such an influence over me that I would still be obliged to him? (No), I shall tell to the king, my lord, the thing that I have seen and heard.

o 55

ša LUGAL be- a-na ARAD-šú -pu-ra-an-ni

o 66

ma-a ina ket-te qi-bi-a a-ke-<e> a-na-ku

o 77

TAv LUGAL EN-ia la ket-tu ad-da-bu-ub

o 88

ina ŠÀ MUN an-ni-te ša LUGAL be- a-na ARAD-šú e-pu-šú-u-ni

o 99

a-na-ku ina ku-me mi-i-nu a-na EN-ia ú-sa-ḫi-ir

o 1010

MUN-ú ša v.A.BAÉ.GAL ina UGU-ḫi-ia te-te-qe

o 1111

IGI.2-MEŠ-šú a-da-gal a-bu- ša a-mur-u-ni

o 1212

áš-mu-u-ni a-na LUGAL EN-ia la-aq-bi

o 1313

TAv UD-MEŠ am-ma-te a-ki ina IGI-šú a-za-zu-ni

(13) The king, my lord, knows from those times when I was (still) in his service how he used to regard me and what trust he used to place in me. (But) ever since the king, my lord, appointed me to his household, it has been intolerable to him. [In fact, he told] the king, my lord, not to appoint me. He regards me as a mortal enemy. He has gone [...] (and) he has been spreading tales about me [the king], my lord, should ask the [...]s and the servants of the palace scribe.

o 1414

LUGAL be- ú-da a-ki i-da-gal-an-ni-ni

o 1515

ù pa-ni-šú ina UGU-ḫi-ia-a-ni TAv mar LUGAL be-

o 1616

ina É-šú ip-qid-an-ni-ni ina IGI-šú la maḫ-ri

o 1717

[ù ina] UGU la pa-qa-di-ia a-na LUGAL EN-ia

o 1818

[i-da-bu-ub] a-ki ENda-me i-da-gal-an-ni

o 1919

[x x x]-šú it-ta-lak us-sa-ta-ʾi-da-ni

o 2020

[a-na x x]+x-MEŠ ù v.ARAD-MEŠ-šú ša v.A.BAKUR

o 2121

[LUGAL] be- liš-ʾa-al

b.e. 22b.e. 22

[ida]-a-te ú-ma-a a-ki GÉME-MEŠ

(22) Hence, now that we have settled the Kushite girls in the royal palace a matter about which I wrote several times to the king, my lord Kanunayu, the deputy, has made me out to be even more hateful to him, and he (now) regards me as very much of a mortal enemy indeed.

b.e. 2323

[KUR.ku]-sa-a-a-te nu-šá-aṣ-bat-u-ni

b.e. 2424

[ina] UGU É ša LUGAL ša 02-šú 03-šú

r 1r 1

a-na LUGAL EN-ia áš-pur-an-ni

r 22

mITI.AB-a.a v.02-ú ina IGI-šú

r 33

us-sa-an-zi-ir-an-ni ša adan-niš

r 44

a-ki ENda-me-šú id-da-gal-an-ni

r 55

ina UGU an-ni-te LUGAL be- lu-ki-in-ma

(r 5) It is in this light that the king, my lord, should determine what the truth is.

r 66

šúm-ma a-bu- an-ni- ú-du-ni

(r 6) I swear that I did not know (and) did not learn about this matter, that I am not implicated in it, that I have told the king, my lord, (the truth about) what I heard in the inner precinct of Calah, what the wife of the 'third man' speaks against me, and (why) I refused to litigate with her, saying, "Let the king determine my veracity."

r 77

áš-mu-u-ni ina ŠÀ-bi qur-ba-ku-u-ni

r 88

a-na LUGAL EN-ia la aq-bu-u-ni

r 99

ina UGU ša ina qab-si URU.kàl-ḫa áš-mu-u-ni

r 1010

-šú ša v.03-šú ina UGU-ḫi-ia ta-da-bu-bu-u-ni

r 1111

la a-ma-gúr-u-ni is-si-šá la a-da-bu-u-ni

r 1212

mu-uk LUGAL lu-ki-na-an-ni-ni

r 1313

dEN u dAG uz-nu ra-pa-áš-tu

(r 13) Bel and Nabû have given vast insight to the king, my lord. If I am implicated in this matter, let the king, my lord, punish me.

r 1414

a-na LUGAL EN-ia it-ta-nu

r 1515

aki-ma ina ŠÀ a-bi-te an-ni-te

r 1616

qur-ba-ku LUGAL be-

r 1717

a-na ši-ip-ṭi liš-kun-an-ni

rest uninscribed

Adapted from Mikko Luukko and Greta Van Buylaere, The Political Correspondence of Esarhaddon (State Archives of Assyria, 16), 2002. Lemmatised by Mikko Luukko, 2012, as part of the AHRC-funded research project “Mechanisms of Communication in an Ancient Empire: The Correspondence between the King of Assyria and his Magnates in the 8th Century BC” (AH/F016581/1; University College London) directed by Karen Radner. The annotated edition is released under the Creative Commons Attribution Share-Alike license 3.0. Please cite this page as