Passover and Ritual at Emar

The Biblical Review

fnd_Matzo-for-Passover_s4x3_lgAfter reading Festivals and Calendars in the Ancient Near East by Mark Cohen, I’ve become intrigued by the relationship between the zukru festival at Emar and Pesach, otherwise known as Passover. And what better day to write about Passover than today? Essentially Cohen draws on a few similarities between the calendars of Emar and ancient Israel to demonstrates how both festivals are similar:

  • Both festival occur “at the full moon of the first month and lasted seven days” (335).
  • Both festival concern the fertility of the herds.
  • Similar ritual inscriptions.
  • Smearing of blood on sacred stones by the city entrance (Emar) and smearing of blood at entrance of households (ancient Israel).
  • Linguistic similarities.

Connections have also been explored by Daniel Fleming (Time at Emar, 2000), R. Hess (“Multiple-Month Ritual Calendars in the West Semitic World: Emar 446 and Leviticus 23”, 2004), and B.C. Babcock (Sacred Ritual

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Published by Vincent S Artale Jr

Biblical studies, Health and Nutrition, Biology, Fitness, Hiking, Reading. Re-blogging doesn't equal agreement.

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