Enuma Elish, E.A.Speiser, Babylonian Creation Epic, Tablet V

Tablet V


He constructed stations for the great gods,

Fixing their astral likenesses as constellations.

He determined the year by designating the zones:

He set up three constellations for each of the twelve


After defining the days of the year [by means] of

(heavenly) figures,

He founded the station of Nebiru" to determine their

(heavenly) bands,

That none might transgress or fall short.

Alongside it he set up the stations of Enlil and Ea.

Having opened up the gates on both sides,

He strengthened the locks to the left

and the right. (10)


79 God of death.

80 This was an essential act of attestation in Mesopotamian society.

81 For this rendering cf. A. Schott, ZA, XLII (I934), 137.

82 i.e. the planet Jupiter. This station was taken to lie between the band (riksu; cf. 1. 6) of the north, which belonged to Enlil, and the band of the south, which belonged to Ea.




In her" belly he established the zenith.

The Moon he caused to shine, the night (to him) entrusting.

He appointed him a creature of the night to signify the


"Monthly, without cease, form designs with a crown. At the month's very start, rising over the land, Thou shalt have luminous horns to signify six days, On the seventh day reaching a [half ]-crown. At full moon" stand in opposition" in mid-month. When the sun [overtakes] thee at the base of heaven, Diminish [thy crown] and retrogress in light. (20) [At the time of disappearance] approach thou the course of the sun,

And [on the twenty-ninth] thou shalt again stand in

opposition to the sun."


(The remainder of this tablet is broken away or too

fragmentary for translation.)



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