Possible Future Projects
Orsokon Statuette from Byblos (Phoenician)
The statuette was dug up in Byblos (Gubla in Akkadian) north of Sidon by an unknown person and then transported to Naples, Italy where it was found by Wiederman in 1881. Wiederman then published a translation of the statuette's hieroglyphic inscription found on its chest.
These Egyptian hieroglyphics on this statuette identify it Pharaoh Orsokon. The problem is that four Orsokons reigned at different times. They were Libyan Egyptians, that is, their ancestry is at least partly Libyan. These were invaders from the west of Egypt who ended up ruling parts of Egypt during and just prior to the Third Intermediate Period (945-715 BCE). Orsokon the elder reigned from 984-978 BCE (Shaw 2000). Two others reigned during the first half of the Third Intermediate Period while the fourth was the last Pharaoh during that period.
Now at the Louvre. Number AO 9502. Online at: https://collections.louvre.fr/en/ark:/53355/cl010120348
Many other Phoenician as well from Byblos
Bureij (Melqart) Stele
This stele originally seems to have been at the entrance to a high place which was located near the main east-west trade route between the Levant and northern Mesopotamia. The inscription is found on a meter high stele depicting a walking priest. Because an earlier incorrect translation thought it mentioned some god named Melqart it is also called the Melqart Stele.
It is now at the Aleppo Museum in Syria. Photo from: https://www.wikiwand.com/en/National_Museum_of_Aleppo#Media/File:Melqart_or_Bir_Hadad_stele.jpg
Latest paper on it:
Jo Ann Hackett and Aren M. Wilson-Wright(2022) Revised Interpretation of the Melqart Stele. Online at:
Previous Translation Attempt
William Albright attempted a Hebrew Translation shortly after the stele was found. As the reader can see it does not work with many letters left out and other letter forming new words not found in standard Hebrew. Again, the excessive use of proper names hints that it is a failed translation even before the details are examined. Albright's translation is:
- The stela which Bir-Hadad
- The son of ‘Attarhamek ….
- King of Aram set up for his lord Melquart
- To whom he made a vow and who heard his voice
Details Top Line (each word is numbered)
(all letters from Pitard 1988)
- ŠM (somehow these three words mean one word: “stela”)
- BRH[D] - (Bir-Hadad with the DD letters taken from the next line but such word splitting does not happen in alphabetic texts.
Details Line Two
- DD (last part of "Hadad"
- BR (the word for “son” would be BN)
- 'TRHMK (“Attarhamek” with the ayin being used as an aleph
Details Line Three
- MLK - king
- ARM - Aram
- LMRAH - set up for? (this is a pure guess)
- LMLQR L Melqar (Where are the letters B’L which means “lord”? The ending /t/ on Melquart is on the next line. Such word splitting does not happen in alphabetic texts)
Details Line Four
(this line is pure guesswork as nothing matches standard Hebrew in (Brown, Driver, and Briggs 1906)
- T - (the ending /t/ for “Melqart.” Word splitting does not happen in alphabetic texts)
- ZY (no such word in Biblical Hebrew)
- NZR (“lamp” or more allegorically “happiness, delight”)
- LH (adverbial negation)
- LQL (no such word in Biblical Hebrew)
Pitard, W.T. (1988) The Identity of the Bir-Hadad of the Melqart Stele. Bulletin of the American Schools of Oriental Research 272, pages 8-32.
Text Photos at: https://digitallibrary.usc.edu/Archive/InscriptiFact----an-image-database-of-inscriptions-and-artifacts-2A3BF1OL6PW?Flat=1#/SearchResult&VBID=2A3BXZST5S39R&PN=1&WS=SearchResults
Preliminary Translation (Feb 2020)
- To be nourished by magic anoint the nourishment. Enemies are tinkering-with treacherous envious-feelings and the Controllers are blocking the blessings.| Are not the fertility-fluids cursed by the coating (astrological night sky)? Shouldn’t we be opening-up the fertility-fluids with the Aku-owls to interfere with the elimination of the fertility-fluids by eagle-vultures? Shouldn’t we be releasing the fertility-fluid-revealer (Yahu)?
- To nourish the fertility-fluid-revealer shouldn't we opening-up the divine-threads. To be nourished by the pouring-out of the fertility-fluids shouldn't we be opening the same the eagle-vultures for the fertility-fluid-revealer (Yahu)? To authorize the eagle-vulture's fertility-fluids shouldn't we be opening-up the fertility-fluids with the Aku-owl’s. To interfere with the elimination of the fertility-fluids by the eagle-vultures shouldn’t we be releasing the fertility-fluid-revealer (Yahu)? Shouldn’t the astrologer's coastal-region not be eliminating the divine-threads?
- To be nourished by Yahu (I') the magical divine-threads need to make good the purity of the openings which are being cursed by the fertility-fluids. To help the sweetness of the fertility-fluids make good their emotional-power. Divine threads shuttle the opening's nourishment. Consider opening-up the nourishments from Hu. Do not eliminated divine-threads run-off with the heavenly-bodies?
- To be nourished by the manifestations of the fertility-fluids the Aku-owls (of Ayu or emotional magic) need to make good the divine threads for the fertility-fluid-revealer (Yahu). The magic's expectations are not opening everything. Are not the thread-openers (owls) and the winnowers (eagle-vultures) controlling the fertility-fluids? Ayu's magic is dominating Hu. Atu is burning due to the opening's nourishment being eliminated because
- an aroused Ayu is removing the fertility-fluid-revealer's (Yahu) nourishment. The fertility-fluid-revealer (Yahu) are opening up to this magic due to the fertility-fluids making-good the fresh-water's support. Ayu is disciplining those. Atu’s divine-threads are respecting the burning due to opening-up to the magical nourishment and Ayu grazing-together-with the fertility-fluids.
- Su (full moon god) is being a nourishment-revealer for fertility-fluids due to opening-up the nourishment of the oven (atmosphere). Is not the burning handing-back the nourishment? By tinkering with the life-growth-powered magic of the Reed-Boat's control, the fertility-fluids are being murdered by the authorities. Eagle-vultures are filtering Ayu's divine-threads due to pushing-away nourishment. The healing eagle-vulture's openings are not opening-up the fresh-water. Shouldn't we be opening up the divine-threads and
- not be opening up the fertility-fluids from the life-growth-priests? The magic of the Aku-owls is dominating Hu’s eagle-vultures. Are not the divine-threads being chastised? To open-up the divine-network the Reed-Boat’s Aku-owls are disciplining those of Atu's divine-threads from Hu. Are not the divine-threads being chastised for opening-up-to the house? The Reed-Boat’s Aku-owls are grazing-together-with the active fertility-fluids. The nourishment-revealer for the fertility fluids
- is handing-back the nourishment to eliminate Ayu's magic. Don't winnow the fertility-fluids to chastise the openings. Nourish those eagle-vulture divine-threads without the Reed-Boat so that Ayu acknowledges seeing the rebellious evening. Ayu’s magic is veiling the good emotional-powers and eliminating the Shepherd (Su).
- Divine-threads are mixing up the life-growth-powers. Utu is being troubled by eagle-vultures in revealing the fertility-fluids. Not one of their divine-eyes is aware of the fertility-fluids pouring-in. The fertility-fluids are being burned. The fertility-fluids are controlled by the coating (night sky). The eagle-vultures [and] Aku-owls are being chastised by the enemies of the fertility-fluid-revealer (Yahu). Shouldn't the life-growth-powers
- be topping-off the fertility-fluid-revealer (Yahu)? Atu is drying-out the fertility-fluids. Are not the Thread-Openers from the Reed-boat (Ayu) controlling the fertility-fluids? Not one of those magical Aku-owls (emotional) are being dominated by Hu’u owls (astrological). Is not the burning handing back the eliminated nourishment? The Reed-Boat’s Aku-owls are disciplining those divine-threads of Atu.
- To respect the eliminated divine threads and Atu’s divine-threads eliminate everything from the Shepherd (Su). Are not the divine-threads for Ea (Yahu) controlled by the Reed-Boat (crescent moon, Ayu)? Everything is supervising those divine threads. Is not magic winnowing the irrigated-fields which is pouring-in emotional-powers from the grinding-of-children?
- Without the Shepherd's pushing would not those troops be authorizing Hu’s magic? Undermining Hu's divine-threads is binding the handing-back of the considerations (motion potential). The openings are revealing the intimidation on the coastal-region's eliminations. Shouldn’t we be commanding I’u (Yahu) to end the nourishment for the fertility-fluid-revealer's (Yahu) motion-creator (Su)?
- The opening's magic affects everything. To murder the naked divine-threads Ayu is undermining the favors opening-up the [filter]. In considering the openings the Aku-owl's fertility-fluids are interfering with the eliminations. Don't emotionally-release to open-up the divine-choir. The fertility-fluid-revealer (Yahu) is making good
- the fertility-fluids. The coating is commanding the pouring-away of the fertility fluids. Shouldn't we be opening-up the divine-choir? The fertility-fluid-revealer is making-good the nourishment's fertility-fluids. Shouldn’t we be opening-up the Aku-owl’s fertility-fluids to interfere with the eliminations by the eagle-vulture’s magic? Shouldn’t we be releasing the fertility-fluid-revealer? Their rainstorms are making anarchic Atu's divine-threads which nourish the life-growth-powers.
- Open-up to change envious-feelings. On account-of calling-fate on the divine-thread's authorities jealousy is being supervised by the coating to command the burning. The coating's Aku-owls interfere with the fertility-fluids to eliminate emotional-release.Is not the foundation-stone of the fertility-fluid-revealer's (Yahu's) eagle-vultures the anarchy of these-sorts of rainstorms which are commanding the life-growth-powers.
- Ayu is revealing the those fertility-fluids to replace ... [9 letters missing] ... The Cat (self-centeredness) is controlling the net's fertility fluids. The magical openings are diminishing which is revealing Atu's envious-feelings over the fertility-fluids. Calling-fate is burning everything. To control the eagle-vulture's support, favor (their) intimidation.
- Aku-owls to make good the nourishment-revealing by the divine-threads. Are not the Aku-owls ... [8 missing and orphaned letters] ... revealing fertility-fluids from the Shepherd's (Su's) enemies? Awareness and discipline are making good magic. To bind the fertility-fluids control the emotional-releasing without considering intimidation. Aku-owls are making-good the nourishment-revealing of the divine-thread's fertility-fluids.
- Is not Ayu emotionally-energizing the eagle-vultures? The fertility-fluid-revealer (Yahu) is being nourished by cats. To control the net's fertility-fluids, nourish the divine-threads. Is not the blocking confusing the eagle-vultures to abandon the nourishment's openings from I'u (Yahu)? Due to the divine-threads being sent-away the bindings are not being blocked. Misery is being set by jealousy. The vulture-eyes are controlling the fertility-fluid-revealer (Yahu) who is not an opener for the fertility-fluids
- call-fate on Atu? Those eagle-vultures for Utu are without the magic which controls the topping. Falseness is stilling the Controllers (Atu & Ayu) which sends away the Aku-owl's nourishment which is diminishing the wine. Omens are rejecting them which is undermining the fluid-bird Aku-owls. Are not the divine-threads and magic baiting the anarchy in the fertility-fluids?
- Ayu's divine-threads nourish abundance. Are not the Controllers doing it? The coating is making anarchic the fertility-fluids. Are not the same eagle-vultures healing Yahu (I’u). Are not crafters murdering expectations about emotionally-empowered openings for the fertility-fluids? (Yet) are not the divine-thread openings and Yahu's (Ia) openings being emotionally-released? Ayu is replacing the divine-threads of the Hu'u owls. Are not the magical divine-threads
- and Ayu grazing-together-with the Shepherd (Su)? Are not the magical divine-threads and Ayu grazing together with the night? The nourishment-revealer for the fertility-fluids is handing back the eliminated nourishment because Ayu is disciplining those. Atu's divine-threads are being respected. The burning is handing-back the nourishment. Hostile emotionally-empowered magic is assaulting the fertility-fluid-revealer (Yahu).
- Ayu is revealing drunkeness. The life-growth powers are pouring-in those fertility-fluids. Are not Utu's oozing life-growth powers being authorized by the fertility-fluids? The coating's divine-threads for Ea (Yahu) and Ea's eagle-vultures supervise everything. Jealousy is eliminating the Shepherd (Su). Fertility-fluids emotionally-empower Yahu (I'u)!
Sidon Sarcophagus 2 - So called Sidon Sarcophagus of King Eshmunazor II (Levant Text 18)
(jan 17, 2023) This sarcophagus was discovered in Sidon by Beirut's French consulate chancellor, Aimé Péretié, on February 20, 1855. It was purchased in the same year by Honoré Théodoric d'Albert de Luynes, and donated to the Louvre in Paris. It dates to the time of the 850 BCE
It is now at the Louvre. Number: AO 4806
BTRBYBKNQ'SRUARB'G | YMYPTMYPAKMN'ZRMYPNM
Previous Failed Translation Attempt from Hebrew by Jean-Claude Haelewyck in 2012
This is the most recent and most honest attempt at a Hebrew-like translation in that it provides a word by word translation. Yet the word definitions are certainly not standard Hebrew and much time is spent trying to justify the anomalies. Because of this, most of the words are just guesses to fill in the blanks between a few recognizable Hebrew words. His translation mostly follows the earlier one from Julius Oppert from 1877.
- In the month of Bul, in the fourteenth year of the reign of king Eshmunazar, king of the Sidonians,
- son of king Tabnit, king of the Sidonians, king Eshmunazar, king of the Sidonians, said as follows: I was carried away
- before my time, son of a limited number of short days (or: son of a limited number of days I was cut off), an orphan, the son of a widow, and I am lying in this coffin and in this tomb,
- in a place which I have built. Whoever you are, king or (ordinary) man, may he (sic!) not open this resting-place
- and may he not search in it after anything because nothing whatsoever has been placed into it. And may he not move the coffin of my resting-place, nor carry me
- away from this resting-place to another resting-place. Also if men talk to you do not listen to their chatter. For every king and
- every (ordinary) man, who will open what is above this resting-place, or will lift up the coffin of my resting-place, or will carry me away from
- this resting-place, may they not have a resting-place with the Rephaïm, may they not be buried in a tomb, and may they not have a son or offspring
- after them. And may the sacred gods deliver them to a mighty king who will rule them in order
- to exterminate them, the king or this (ordinary) man who will open what is over this resting-place or will lift up
- this coffin, and (also) the offspring of this king or of those (ordinary) men. They shall not have root below or 12. fruit above or appearance in the life under the sun. For I who deserve mercy, I was carried away
- before my time, son of a limited
- number of short days (or: son of a limited number of days I was cut off), I an orphan, the son of a widow. For I, Eshmunazar, king of the Sidonians, son of
- king Tabnit, king of the Sidonians, grandson of king Eshmunazar, king of the Sidonians, and my mother Amo[t]astart, priestess
- of Ashtart, our lady, the queen, daughter of king Eshmunazar, king of the Sidonians, (it is we) who have built the temples
- of the gods, [the temple of Ashtar]t in Sidon, the land of the sea. And we have placed Ashtart (in) the mighty heavens (or: in Shamem-Addirim?). And it is we
- who have built a temple for Eshmun, the prince of the sanctuary of the source of Ydll in the moutains, and we have placed him (in) the mighty heavens (or: in Shamem-Addirim?). And it is we who have built temples
- for the gods of the Sidonians in Sidon, the land of the sea, a temple for Baal of Sidon, and a temple for Ashtart, the Name of Baal. Moreover, the lord of kings gave us
- Dor and Joppa, the mighty lands of Dagon, which are in the Plain of Sharon, as a reward for the brilliant action I did. And we have annexed them
- to the boundary of the land, so that they would belong to the Sidonians for ever. Whoever you are, king or (ordinary) man, do not open what is above me
- and do not uncover what is above me and do not carry me away from this resting-place and do not lift up the coffin of my resting-place. Otherwise,
- the sacred gods will deliver them and cut off this king and those (ordinary) men and their offspring for ever.
His letter assignments:
- BYRI BL BŠNT ‛SR W’RB‛ 14 LMLKY MLK ’ŠMN‛ZR MLK ṢDNM
- BN MLK TBNT MLK ṢDNM DBR MLK ’ŠMN‛ZR MLK ṢDNM L’MR NGZLT
- BL ‛TY BN MSK YMM ’ZRM YTM BN ’LMT WŠKB ’NK BHLT Z WBQBR Z
- BMQM ’Š BNT QNMY ’T KL MMLKT WKL ’DM ’L YPTH ’YT MŠKB Z W
- ’L YBQŠ BN MNM K ’Y ŠM BN MNM W’L YŠ’ ’YT HLT MŠKBY W’L Y‛M
- SN BMŠKB Z ‛LT MŠKB ŠNY ’P ’M ’DMM YDBRNK ’L TŠM‛ BDNM KKL MMLKT W
- KL ’DM ’Š YPTH ‛LT MŠKB Z ’M ’Š YŠ’ ’YT HLT MŠKBY ’M ’Š Y‛MSN BM
- ŠKB Z ’L YKN LM MŠKB ’T RP’M W’L YQBR BQBR W’L YKN LM BN WZR‛
- THTNM WYSGRNM H’LNM HQDŠM ’T MMLK<T> ’DR ’Š MŠL BNM LQ
- TNM ’YT MMLKT ’M ’DM H’ ’Š YPTH ‛LT MŠKB Z ’M ’Š YŠ’ ’YT
- HLT Z W’YT ZR‛ MML<K>T H’ ’M ’DMM HMT ’L YKN LM ŠRŠ LMT W
- PR LM‛L WT’R BHYM THT ŠMŠ K ’NK NHN NGZLT BL ‛TY BN MS
- K YMM ’ZRM YTM BN ’LMT ’NK K ’NK ’ŠMN‛ZR MLK ṢDNM BN
- MLK TBNT MLK ṢDNM BN BN MLK ’ŠMN‛ZR MLK ṢDNM W’MY ’M‛ŠTRT
- KHNT ‛ŠTRT RBTN HMLKT BT MLK ’ŠMN‛ZR MLK S DNM ’M BNN ’YT BT
- ’LNM ’YT [BT ‛ŠTR]T BṢDN ’RṢ YM WYŠRN ’YT ‛ŠTRT ŠMM ’DRM W’NHN
- ’Š BNN BT L’ŠMN [Š]R QDŠ ‛N YDLL BHR WYŠBNY ŠMM ’DRM W’NH N ’Š BNN BTM
- L’LN ṢDNM BṢDN ’RS YM BT LB‛L ṢDN WBT L‛ŠTRT ŠM B‛L W‛D YTN LN ’DN MLKM
- 'YT D’R WYPY ’RST DGN H’DRT ’Š BŠD ŠRN LMDT ‛SMT ’Š P‛LT WYSPNNM
- ‛LT GBL ’RṢ LKNNM LṢDNM L‛L[M] QNMY ’T KL MMLKT WKL ’DM ’L YPTH ‛LTY
- W’L Y‛R ‛LTY W’L Y‛MSN BMŠKB Z W’L YŠ’ ’YT HLT MŠKBY LM YSGRNM
- ’LNM HQDŠM ’L WYQṢN HMMLKT H’ WH’DMM HMT WZR‛M L‛LM
Haelewyck, Jean-Claude (2012) The Phoenician Inscription of Eshmunazar - An Attempt at Vocalization, BABELAO 1 p. 77-98. Online at: https://www.academia.edu/75490428/The_Phoenician_Inscription_of_Eshmunazar_An_Attempt_at_Vocalization
Oppert, Julius (1877) An Inscription on the Sarcophagus of King Esmunazar, translated by Julius Oppert. In Records of the Past, vol IX, Assyrian texts, page 109; London: Samuel Bagster and Sons under the sanction of the Society of Biblical Literature. Online at: https://archive.org/stream/recordsofpastbei09sociiala#page/109/mode/1up
Kuttamuwa Stele from Zincirli
Now at the Gaziantep Archaeology museum. It was found in Sam'al, in southeastern Turkey, in 2008, by the Neubauer Expedition of the Oriental Institute at the University of Chicago.
New Excavations at Zincirli Höyük in Turkey (Ancient Samʾal) and the Discovery of an Inscribed Mortuary Stele. J. David Schloen and Amir S. Fink. Bulletin of the American Schools of Oriental Research. No. 356 (Nov., 2009), pp. 1-13 (13 pages). Published By: The University of Chicago Press
It is currently located in the Vorderasiatisches (Pergamon) Museum Berlin. The Kilamuwa Stele was discovered in Sam'al during the 1888–1902 German Oriental Society expeditions led by Felix von Luschan and Robert Koldewey