SX4: Canal Fight

(Feb 13, 2023) Black Hematite (hard iron oxide) cylinder seal showing a fight around a canal involving deities. Now at the British Museum. Number 32572001. Online at:

The above cylinder seal dates to about 2100 BCE. It has all the Sumerian connective level life deities gathered together to fight an irrigation canal demon. The far right shows a two faced Yahu between Hu with the bow and Ba'al spewing water. The text reads (right to left, top to bottom) 

Starting in the left-middle and standing over the canal is winged Inanna (Ayu, Ishtar) swinging a bag likely filled with pollen (alternately it could be a pine cone also filled with pollen). Bees with their pollen carrying ability also transported life powers and so corresponded to Ayu. She is carrying arrows on her back for use by Hu.

To her right and left is her masculine complements, the rain storm god Ba'al spouting streams of water and sun god Hu holding a bow. Attacking the canal demon from Ba'al is an eagle vulture. Below Ba'al is a young unicorn storm bull who being young is not promoting stormy chaos.

Hu is shown with long curly hair. Here he is shown as a hunter with a yellow lion which represents order and the sun. This leaves the far right two-faced god to be identified as Nudimmud (Isimud, Yahu, Ea, Enki). In Sumerian culture two faces represents a translator. As a manifestation god he translates divine things into material things. This seal dates to about 2100 BCE based upon the cuneiform style.

Image is Adda seal from British Museum (museum number 89115). As usual they provide a false translation. It is online at:

Lexicon used for this translation: About This Early-Sign Sumerian Lexicon  



(verb in middle makes ongoing form)
  1. AD X19  (text SX 4.1)
  2. DUB SAR  (text SX 4.2)

English Translation

  1. Rejoice over the canals
  2. The pests are ejected