Back to Home Page or Contents Page or People or Index

Ashurbanipal


Ashurbanipal, 668-627 BCE, was an Assyrian king who fought defending frontiers of the Assyrian empire which encompassed all of Mesopotamia and Palestine and extended into northern Egypt during the reign of his father Esarhaddon. He himself conquered all of Egypt, stopped a widespread rebellion led by his brother Shamashumukin, conquered Elan, and brought Arabia and Armenia under Assyrian control. Unlike other Assyrian kings, he was a scholar as well as a warrior and during the peaceful years toward the end of his reign he devoted much of his time toward literary and historical pursuits.

The reason for his importance in the history of magic lies in his efforts to systematically collect clay-tablet records from Babylonian and Sumerian towns. Tablets copied by his scribes, and discovered in his palace ruins in the Assyrian capital of Nineveh, compose a large portion of the literature of Mesopotamian magic.

It is uncertain whether Ashurbanipal personally practiced any of the material saved, but indications are some was employed. A set of five terra-cotta statues of dogs was found buried in the west wing of his Nineveh palace: their colors, and the inscriptions on their shoulder blades, matched perfectly the instructions for manufacturing magical guardian statues from a clay-tablet ritual text from his library. A.G.H.


Source:

Greer, John Michael. "cunning men/women." The New Encyclopedia of the Occult. St. Paul, MN, Llewellyn Worldwide. p. 41

Home    Alchemy    Ancient Beliefs    Buddhism    Christianity    Demonology    Divination    Goddess and witchcraft    Great Mysteries    Hinduism    Islam     Judaism    Magic    Neo-paganism    Other    Paranormal    Past and present Beliefs    People    Religions and sects    Rituals and texts    Shamanism    Stones    Theosophy African Mythology    Asian Mythology    Buddha Mythology    Egyptian Mythology    Greco-Roman Mythology    Greek Mythology    Hindu Mythology    Native American    Persian Mythology    Roman Mythology    South American Mythology