Annals Edition 3 - The Kurba’il Statue, 839 BCE
Israel submits to Assyria
Click here for more on The Annals of Shalmaneser III.
Date: 839 BCE
Current Location: Iraq Museum, Baghdad, Iraq (IM 60497)
Language and Script: Assyrian?; cuneiform
• This copy of Shalmaneser’s annals was inscribed on a statue of his likeness that was found in Kalah (just south of Nineveh, along the Tigris River), yet dedicated to the god Adad of Kurba’il. Why was it in Kalah? Although the exact location of Kurba’il remains unknown, it is believed to be northwest of Nineveh. Various scenarios have been offered as to how it may have made its way from Kurba’il to Kalah, but it is likely that the statue was never in Kurba’il. It was common practice in the Ancient Near East for ruling states to take on parts of the pantheons of their vassal states. And, in this instance, we even have parallel evidence of such acceptance of Adad of Kurba’il by the Assyrians since we know of a shrine that was dedicated to him in Ashur, another Assyrian city.
• The inscription begins with paeans to Adad of Kurba’il and to Shalmaneser, describes Shalmaneser’s campaigns during his 18th through 20th years, and ends with a description of the statue. Since the annals portion of the inscription goes up through Shalmaneser’s 20th year, the inscription has been dated to 839 BCE. Though the Kurba’il Statue dates to the same year as the “Marble Slab” inscription from Ashur, its description of the events of Shalmaneser’s 18th year, including Jehu’s tribute, is more similar in wording to that of the Kalah Bull inscriptions from 841 BCE.