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Divination and Interpretation of Signs in the Ancient World

by Annus, Amar (ed.)

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The concept of sign, a portent observed in the physical world, which indicates future events, is found in all ancient cultures, but was first developed in ancient Mesopotamian texts. This branch of Babylonian scientific knowledge extensively influenced other parts of the world, and similar texts written in Aramaic, Sanscrit, Sogdian, and other languages. The seminar investigates how much we know about the Babylonian theory and hermeneutics of omens, and the scope of their possible influences on other cultures and regions. Table of Contents: Preface Introduction 1. Amar Annus (Chicago): On the Beginnings and Continuities of the Omen Sciences in the Ancient World 2. Francesca Rochberg: 'If P, then Q': Form and Reasoning in Babylonian Divinations 3. James Allen: Greek Philosophy and Signs 4. Ulla Susanne Koch: 'Three Strikes and You are Out!' A View on Cognitive Theory and the First-Millennium Extispicy Ritual 5. Edward L. Shaughnessy: Arousing Images: The Poetry of Divination and the Divination of Poetry 6. Niek Veldhuis: The Theory of Knowledge and the Practice of Celestial Divination 7. Eckart Frahm: Reading the Tablet, the Exta, and the Body: The Hermeneutics of Cuneiform Signs in Babylonian and Assyrian Text Commentaries and Divinatory Texts 8. Scott B. Noegel: 'Sign, Sign, Everywhere a Sign': Script, Power, and Interpretation in the Ancient Near East 9. Nils Heessel: The Calculation of the Stipulated Term in Extispicy 10. Abraham Winitzer: The Divine Presence and Its Interpretation in Early Mesopotamian Divination 11. Barbara Bock: Physiognomy in Ancient Mesopotamia and Beyond: From Practice to Handbook 12. Seth Richardson: On Seeing and Believing: Liver Divination and the Era of Warring States 13. Cynthia Jean: Divination and Oracles at the Neo-Assyrian Palace: The Importance of Signs in Royal Ideology 14. JoAnn Scurlock: Prophecy as a Form of Divination; Divination as a Form of Prophecy 15. John Jacobs: Traces of the Omen Series umma izbu in Cicero, De divination 16. Martti Nissinen: Prophecy and Omen Divination: Two Sides of the Same Coin




Divination, Ancient, Historical, Science

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