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T Dirty to Me in Sumerian alk

by Jennifer Ball February 10, 2011

flesh uzu

musician nar

donkey anshe/dusu/eme

foot/stag ngri

These cuneiform inscriptions (rotated 90 clockwise for viewing ease) are the only characters in Sumerian to be depicted frontally with a semblance of a body. They are used in other meanings, but these meanings and pronunciations are the most attested. What do flesh, musician, donkey, and foot have in common? Early man appears to have revered them. Revere can also mean fear, and the foot (far right) also signified for stag, an animal that staggers as you kill it and is angry (note the pronunciation ngri) in the midst of rutting. Feet that trample can seem to have an identity of their own. Early humans were figuring out what was conscious and what wasnt. Flesh on the far left looks like a mummy and also signified for body, entrails, omen. There were probably a lot of uses for a body back in 3,000 B.C. Nar, the musician (second from left), seems to have meant nurse, but it also signifies for liar. If you were in the desert, and you saw this graffiti telling you, Nooky here, and then you didnt get any milk, you would call the woman a liar. Which is why the donkey meant so much to early writers and has so many names. Eme meant female donkey, and the same sound pattern (though different cuneiform) meant wet nurse as well, so the donkeys probably performed many functions.

The Sumerian language was written using cuneiformwhich means wedge-shaped inscriptionsand if you were thinking cunt-shaped you wouldnt be wrong. Wedge, vagina, Vshaped, U-shaped, C-shaped, cunei-, cunt: theyre essentially all the same form: a sack. And that form is so important that the worlds first writing started with it. The word cunt tends to make people flinch because using slang speech when referring to generative and excremental parts of the body reminds humans that we are animals. The rise of civilization has succeeded due to the squelching of our animalistic tendencies. Earlier cultures didnt have these restrictions however, so if we want to understand their languages, we cant use our puritanical attitudes and limited lexicon when examining their scripts. I have looked through the entire Pennsylvanian Sumerian Dictionary, and only these four characters above are depicted face forward. To depict something with a face is to give
Cuneiform depictions with definitions are from the Pennsylvania Sumerian Dictionary (http://psd.museum.upenn.edu/epsd/index.html). Depictions without definitions are from UCLAs Cuneiform Digital Library Initiative (http://www.cdli.ucla.edu/tools/SignLists/protocuneiform/ archsigns.html)

Talk dirty to me in Sumerian - Jennifer Ball Feb. 10, 2011

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it reverence (please refer to Cats vs. Sheep: Their Significance in the Chinese Language: http://www.scribd.com/doc/48145936/Cats-vs-Sheep-Their-significance-in-the-Chineselanguage). Youll notice the foot/stag has no eyes however. A foot or a stag is an entity of which to be wary. Revere means to have fear again. The depiction of the stag is more of a target, with no eyes, but a center spot at which to shoot. Nar is a musician. The first musicians were probably birds, which the Sumerians called mushen. But next were probably mothers as they sang to console their children. Or even wet nurses, who had to be better singers because wet nurses dont just work for poor people. They work for kings and wealthy, important people who dont want to hear their babies crying. Wet nurses were called musheniqtu in Akkadian. (The upside down caret on the s means it has an sh sound.) Nar seems to mean nurse and it shows up in words for goddess, heart, murder, liar, extreme liar, and treachery.

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Talk dirty to me in Sumerian - Jennifer Ball Feb. 10, 2011

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(My note: This means water-tongue-harmony: kissing?)

Here hamun means harmony, a very close connection, and it also means bird (see next page) and in Akkadian female mourner, bird, insect. Below dalhamun would seem to mean disharmony in the form of a storm.

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Talk dirty to me in Sumerian - Jennifer Ball Feb. 10, 2011

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nar/kaa musician/fox/nurse?
musician, goddess, prostitute, fox rotated 90 cw To the Sumerians, goddesses were musicians with milk. This looks like a woman holding her breast up. This woman is nar 643 times. Could this word mean nurse?

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From UCLA

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uzu flesh/body

ngri foot/stag/trample

From UCLA

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anshe/dusu/eme equid/donkey/jenny

All cuneiform depictions seen here are from the Pennsylvania Sumerian Dictionary (http:// psd.museum.upenn.edu/epsd/index.html) The Pennsylvania Sumerian Dictionary Project is carried out in the Babylonian Section of the University of Pennsylvania Museum of Anthropology and Archaeology. It is funded by the National Endowment for the Humanities and private contributions.

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