Temple Building in Sumeria-Gudea Cylinder A


Agamism constitutes that component of Hinduism that centres on Temple building and temple worship as its central impulse. We see that this impulse and the metaphysical understanding that underlies it, is not only NonVedic but also PreVedic. Sumerian which is Archaic Tamil, contains many documents related to temple  building. Even the earliest Sumerian historical documents now dated to around 4000 B.C. disclose the presence of Temple building activity , in which interestingly enough the womenfolk participated actively , a tradition that continues to this day. Around 2200 B.C. we have En Hudu Anna ( The Heavenly Star) , the daughter of Sargon , the Great  Emperor,  writing not only a philosophically profound Exaltations to Innana ( that I have named Siirbiyam) but also many hymns to the temples of Sumer in which the Kes Temple Hymns also provide an ANALYSIS of the functions of Temple in the metaphysical journey of the  human spirit.

In order to RECAPTURE this History and provide a true understanding of Hinduism, I shall provide some texts related to temple building activities that are available in C.J Gadd's " A Sumerian : Reading Book"  published in Oxford at the  Clarendon Press, 1924. I shall add my Tamil commentary, elucidating the hidden meanings wherever possible.

The First Text is given as Plate xii, an edict that was issued by Gudea (~ 2200 B.C.) the governor or Pate-si  of Lagash and contains 51 lines only.


1. sa(g)-ma-mu-da-ka (in the dream )  lu-1-am (there was one man)

sag, sa ,san : head, person etc Ta. san (as in san-am), taan, cenni etc

ma-mu Ta. mammar: a state lacking in alertness, Ta. mabbu: unclear as in states of intoxication. Also Ta. marmam: secretive, hidden, concealed etc.

The state of dreaming here is understood as a state in which CONSCIOUS FUNCTIONING and hence vigilance and attention are lost.

sa(g)-ma-mu: may also mean "the head being not clear" and derivatively the state of dreaming and hence dream itself.

lu :  Ta. aaLu: person. am Ta. aam: a particle of emphasis: current to this day.

2. an-gim (as heaven)  ri-ba-ni (was his span )  ki-gim (as earth)  ri-ba-ni (was his span)

an . Ta. aan, vaan : sky, the heavenly world.e.g vaan-ulakam etc. -gim = ingim: Ta. inna anna , a-ngin, i-ngin : a particle of comparison.  -gim, -gin> Ta. - in

ri-ba Ta. iri, iru: great, big etc.  iribba: something huge , large , great etc.

ni. Ta. nii: second person sing. pronoun.  But here as a suffix serves as a possessive pronoun: his

ki: Ta. kiz, ku: land. world etc.

3. a-gi-sag-ga-ni ( by the crown upon his head) dingir-ra-am (he was a god)

a-gi = a-ni, Ta. aNi: ornaments as in aNi-kalan: precious ornaments . Thus "the ornament on his head"

dinger : Ak. dimmer, diwer Ta. teyvam: god, Also Ta. tingkaL: the moon

 4. a-ni-su  ( at his side)  (d) im-dugud(musen)-dam ( was the divine Storm-bird)

a Ta. aal: spread out ; "su" probably a variant of "se" that corresponds to Ta. ku

The terms (d) i.e "dinger" and" musen ' are marks in Sumerian that indicate the category or genus. The " musen" here is a generic term for creatures with protruding face. We have many words in Tamil as derivative of this.

Ta. musel, muyal: rabit, muunjci: face; muukku: nose; mukam : face ; muusikam : mouse, rat Ta. muucu: insects that fly around as in  muucu vaNdu etc. Cf with Malay: muusaang: a kind of small deer.

im-dugud-dam : Ta. iim tongku tham: that which hangs in the sky: garuda?

5. sig-ba-ni-a-su ( at his feet)   a-ma-ru-kam (was a tempest)

sig Ta. singki, sikku : low lying land : so perhaps "sig-ba-ni-a-su" : below on the ground

a-ma-ru Ta. amirtam, amutu : divine nectar: Ta. amuri : water . Thus amaru-kam= amaru-akam: the source of divine nectar or simply waters. Perhaps just a river with nourishing waters.

6. zi-da (on the right )  gub-na (on his left)  ug ( a lion)  i-na(d)-nad (lay)

zi-da also the true and hence truly. Ta. cattu: true and undying Sk. sattiya: true

gub. Ta. kuvi ; to pile up . Ta. kuntu: to squat;  sit with the bottoms on ground.

ug Ta. ukku: to kill Ta. ukra: fiery, fierce violant.  Probably here the meaning of lion is derivative: the beast that kills ferociously

i-na(d)-nad " The prefix "i" here is actually the main verb Ta. ii: to give; nad Ta. to plant , to put firmly etc. Thus lit. i-nad-nad: give that of being there

Thus the sentence can also be read as " Truly there was a lion  squating and lying there"

7.  e-a-ni (his house )   du-da (  to build)  ma-an-dug ( he commanded)  sa(g)-ga-ni (Its meaning ) nu-mu-zu (I know not)

e Ta. il : house , Ta. koo-il: temple

du Ta. edu: to build ; du-da > eduttida : in order to built: edu-tu-ida

ma-na-dug : Ta. maan : person as in Ceeramaan, atikaimaan etc. Ta. tuukku: to sing, to praise

Note: the ma-an here could also be  a variant of mu-un Ta. mun:  the verb "to bring forth"

sa(g)-ga Ta. caangki: something auspicious, good omens

nu-mu-zu : na> la> Ta.  ila,  ala: the particle of negation .  The original 'na"  is rettained in Sk. but has become obsolete in Tamil. Also na=naa> Ta. aa: a particle of negation

zu Ta. cuu, cuuz: to reflect, to understand . Ta. cuuttiram: that which announces a deep understanding. Also note Ta. col:  to tell , a word, speech, utterance etc.

8. u(d) ( the light)  ki-sar-ra (over the world)  ma-ta-e (rose)  sal-1-am (and there was one woman)

u(d) , also u: light . Ta. uL, oL, oN : light. Also Ta. uti: to arise, to radiate . Note Su. utu: sun Ta. utayam: sun rise

sar-ra Ta. carva: all; ki-sar-ra> Ta. kuu sarva: all over the world.

ma-ta-e > Ta. mii-atu-ee: to arise above Ta. mii: above . See also meedu< mii-u-du: that which has rise up?

sal Ta. caal: softness; Ta. caalbu: high level of culture.

9. a-ba (who)   me-a-nu  ( was she not? )  a-ba (who)  me-a-ni ( was she-?)

a-ba Ta. yaaba(n): who . Note: Malay : apa: what? si-apa: who?

me-a Ta. meyya, meyyaaka, meyyee etc. : truly Ta. mey: truth . me-a-nu= nu-me-a  : is not really?

10. sag-ga-e (pre-eminent ) ki-kinda ( her brow?)   mu-ag  (she bore)

sag-ga : Ta. caanga, caangkiiya: good , auspicious Note. sag-ga > Ta. tangga> tangmaana ; taken perhaps wrongly as "golden" but normally means something excellent , good ,noble etc.

It may be possible that terms such as  Samkhya, Cangkiiya Kaarikai etc are derivatives of this. For ex. "Caangkiiyak Kaarikai" the name of a philosophical text may mean: that which establishes (kaar: to establish ( <Su. gal, kal) one in excellence ( caangkiiyam)

kinda Ta. kaNdu (< kaN- idu) : to see ; ki-kinda Ta. kiiz kaNdu: lowering the seeing. Su. kin : to see

mu-ag Ta. aaku: to make, to bring forth. The 'mu" could either be the pronominal "moo" ( he,she , you etc) or a truncated form of 'mun" , an adverb and hence "mun-aakku" : to bring forth

11. gi-dub-bu ku-be-a ( a bright stilus)     su-im-mi-gal ( she held)

gis =gi Ta. kiicam: plants . Here a kind of reed  the stalks of which were  used as stilus for writing (scratching: kiiRu) on clay tablets.

dub, dub-ba: clay tablets Ta. tuppu: something that requires deciphering as in tuppu -tulangkaL: unraveling

ku Ta. koo  (ku< su) ; something bright and hence  the heavenly deities. ku-be-a =ku-bi-a: something bright

su-im-mi-gal:  su Ta. suur: something radiating out ; suur> kuur : to develop and move onwards. kuur> Ta. karam: hands

im-mi = ib-bi : the verb to cause ; retained in O.Ta. as -bi-/-vi-

gal Ta. kaal: to establish ( kal =kaal > kaar: to establish, do etc.) Note  Su. gar-u : to set up

12. dub (the tablet )   mul-an-dug-ga  im-mi-gal ( showed the favour of the stars)

mul: stars  Ta. mul: something bright, white ; Ta. min: the stars

an. Ta. aan, vaan . mul-an : the bright objects in the sky.

Note : Ta. muni: an illustrious person, Ta. muulan: a bright person shining forth in divine wisdom? . Ta. munaivan: a scholar with faultless understanding.

dug-ga Ta. tungka: high and noble.  Note:  tungka karimukattu tuumaNiyee:   The Vinayaka of the divine or lofty  elephant face

13a.    ad-im-da-gi-gi ( and she studied( it))

gi-gi = ngi-ngi Ta. mii-mii : repeatedly, over and over again.

ad Ta. atu : that

ad-im-da-gi-gi : atu  iyam idu  mii-mii : she recited it repeatedly

13. b.  min-kam ( ( There was)  a second )  ur-sag-ga-am  (who was a warrior)

min :  two ;  minkam-ma : the second.

While kam > Ta. aam  as in onR--aam , iraNd--aam is retained , there does not appear to be a derivative of min in Tamil (as far as I know)

ur-sag, ur-sag-ga . Ta. caan-oor> caanRoor: great people. Also Ta. uyar canam : people of higher level

The meaning "great person"  appears to be more suitable.  However it may be possible that in those days it was the warrior who was great

 Note : Kes temple hymn:(line 60)

sa-bi ur-sag-ur-sag-e-ne si mu-un-si-sa-e-ne ( Into its (temple's) interior the heroes go straight way)

Thus it may be possible that there were a group of privileged people , the ur-sag, the caanRoor who were said to go straight into the heavens without any obstacles on the way. Perhaps here we have the birth of the notion of Brahmanah which in Ta. means he who bathes  (Ta. maN: to bathe ) in supreme radiance ( Ta. pari,  parai, paru  : clear and bright light; see pariti, paruti : sun)

ur-sag : mahaviiraa?, the great heroes?

14. a.      a  (with strength )  mu-gur ( endued)

a. Ta. aa:  to open the mouth ;  mu-gur Ta. moo kuuRu: he said, uttered etc.

Thus the sentence  may mean: He opened his mouth and said.

14.b. li-um-za-gin ( A tablet of lapis-lazuli)   su-im-mi-du ( he held)

li  Ta. ilibi, libi : script

gin Ta. kan, kanal: to glister, to radiate heat and lustre: za-gin = sa-gin: that which glistens

su im-mi-du Ta. suur iduyimmee?

Note : In the   lines (17) & (18) below  I note the presence of philosophically important terms "nam-tar-ra" i.e Ta. tarumam (. Sk dharma) and Ta.civam .


e-a  (Of the temple ) gis-har-bi (its plan )   im-ga-ga (he set down (thereupon))

e-a Ta. il-l-a : the deictic " -a"  serves as the possessive case marker ( udamaip poruL veeRRumai urubu) , one of the functions of ' -a " in Cangam Tamil

har Ta. varai: outline . Possibly karai> varai where' karai' means the banks and hence derivatively the bounds, limit etc.

gis : here it may be the lines scratched. Such plans of cities scratched on clay tablets have been dug up by the archeologists. It can be a secondaory derivative from gis Ta. kiisu, kiicum etc. Also perhaps Ta. kucci: stick, twig etc

im Ta. ii-um (>im) : the "-um"  here also exists in Ta. to this day both  as the conjuctive praticle as well as the preposition "also"

ga-ga =gal-gal Ta. kaal-kaal : established.

16. igi.mu-su (before me)   dusu-ku  ( a clean carrying -pad )   i-gub ( stood)

igi = ingi Ta. imai : eyes Also Ta. akki: eyes  Note Sk aksa: eyes.

dusu Ta. tuucu, tuuci > uuci :  needle, a sharp weapon like spear;  hence "dusu-ku" here probably a clean stilus

17. gis-u-sub-ku (a clean brick-mould)    si-ib-sa (was prepared)

u-sub Ta. u ceppu : something (u)  red (ceppu).  Note Ta. cembu, ceppu : copper,  Ta. civappu : red.  In Sumerian se-ib and its variants also mean burnt brick, perhaps a name that originates from the red colour of the  burnt bricks that the Sumerians invented and used extensively in building temples palaces  houses and so forth. Note cengkal: red bricks (< cem-kal)

si-ib-sa Ta. cii ibbu caar: caused it to be there  .  Ta. caarbu : environment. The "cii" here means simply "being" : coming to birth as there,  as light, as presence.

This primordial and abstract sense is retained as the meaning of the ci-kaaram in the mantra ci-va-ya-na-ma. Also note si> ci: Ta. civan: the BEING who gives being-there for everything: the LIGHT that violates the primordial darkness ie. Civam etc. We also have " si-ba sag gig-ga " the saviour of the black headed people (i.e the Sumerians). The "si-ba" here probably "zi-ba" Ta. jiiba= ciiba : one who nourishes sustenance, gives life.

18.sig -nam-tar-ra (the brick of detiny)   gis-u-sub-ba (in the mould)    ma-an-gal (was)

sig Ta. cakam: world  (Sk. jagam, jagad)) : nam-tar-ra =  tar-ra-nam  Ta. tarumam : the giveness . Ta. , taar,  taru: to give.  Ta.  tarumam > Sk.  dharma

Hence sig-nam-tar-ra: the destiny of the world

ma-an-gal Ta. munkaal: is established.

Here we have a profound metaphysical notion, the notion Dharma as a givenness from BEING that determines the destiny of mankind. It also reveals that there was a believe that perhaps in the foundation stone of a temple it was WRITTEN the fate of the people, the world. This may account for the current practice of elaborate rituals associated with laying the foundation stone of a temple etc.

19. a-am-zi-da ( ...........) igi-mu before me )   gub-ba  (standing)

The untranslated phrase  'a-am-zi-ta"  may be seen as :Ta. ai aam citta : truly amazing Ta. ai:  amazing, bewildering  etc
zi-ta Ta. citta> catta : true and undying Also Ta. cuttam: pure, divine.    Note Sk : satyam : true

20. TI.BU.HU (undeciphered script)  lu a  u(d) ni-ib -za(l)-zal-e (....................)

This untranslated line may be read as follows: near the person  strong light was shining on its own

a Ta. aal:  Ta. aaRRal: strong, u(d) Ta. uti : sun, light

za(l)-zal Ta. coli-coli:  to shine forth  . Perhaps related to this  is. Ta. caalam, jaalam: magical play. Also Ta. saal> caay: caayai: forms made of light ; the caayaaruupam.

ni-ib- > Ta. nii-ba: on its own. The 'nii" here in the general sense of  "self" and hence anma.

(Note : words and phrases already discussed are left undiscussed)

 21. an-su-nitah  ( a he-ass)     a-zi-da-lugal-ma-ge ( the right hand of my king)   ki-ma-ha(r)-har-e (was drawing upon the ground

an-su= an-se  Ta. asvam, asuvam : horse, (Sk asva);  nitah: Ta. naatan : the male leader, the husband

ki-ma Ta. kiizma: on the ground; the (-m)-a  here is locative case marker.

har-har-e . Ta. varaivariyee: draws ; kar> var : Ta. varai, vari, vaari etc.

I think the translation of an-se  as "ass"  by sumeriologists may not be accurate. For we have "anse-pirig " x-striped and which may mean the zebra. This creature is known in Ta. as 'vari-k-kutirai" a stripped horse. If we take this term to be a variant  rendering of 'anze-pirig" then "anse" would mean "horse"!


Note: Here we have a divine male horse drawing the outlines of the temple on ground. Has this something to do with asvameedha yaagam? Recall that the Pandian kings in Sangam times conducted asvamedha.  Also "asva " turns out to be Dravidian with the meaning " a creature that runs fast". Also Ta. mettu, mottu: to beat, to pound etc; Ta. mootu: to attack

There is a practice in primitive societies that the sacred living object (sometimes even a person) must be sacrificed and eaten up , a practice that I understand still survives in some parts of india.

22. pa-te-si-ra ( To the governer)  ama-ni (his mother)   (d) nin-a (nina)

23.a.   mu-na-ni-ib-gi-gi (replied)

pa-te Ta. pati: lord, God  (> Sk pate);  - si =-zi (=ji) the honorific particle that exists to this day in all Indian languages. Ta. jiiyar: a honoured person. si > Akkadian.  si-ri  > Sk sri and Ta. tiru. In Tamil 'cii" on its own means also 'sri'  as in  ciirangkam (Srirangkam) cii-t-talai caattan : caattan,   the great leading scholar.

ama Ta. amma:  mother ; nina= nin-a : someone great,  lit. tall Ta. nim, niv: to rise  up. Ta. nil: to stand erect .  In Su. nin also means sister, a deity

-ib- = -ab- : to say? ta. avvai: to speak , also assembly. Ta. aap: to open up the mouth (> Sk sabha)

mu-na-ni Ta. moonnanin : for him; gi-gi= ngi-ngi Ta. miiL miiL : repeatedly. Ta. mO> mOn: son. person.

23. b  sib-mu ( My sheperd)

Here the translation of "sib' seems to be inappropriate in view of the fact  that Nina is his mother. Perhaps  sib= ses Ta. cicu: a child. Also Ta. ceey : child; ceeyon ; The son of Civa? Murukan?


ma-mu-zu (thy dream)   ma (I )   ga-ma-ra-bu(r)-bur (will interprete to thee)

ma:  Ta. moo-a ; retained in Sk: ma: I.    Also see Ta. em-ma : our ;  num-ma : your (pl)

bur-bur Ta. puri : to  understand; Ta. pul: knowledge. Also Ta. piri: to open up , separate etc.

ga-ma-ra : ngan-mOn-Ra ; here  -Ra here is a variant Ta. -da: the locative/possessive case marker that is available in some  dialects in Tamil Nadu even today.  -n-Ra = -n-da

Note : the art of dream interpretation was widely practiced in Sumeria. We have another text " Dumuzi's ma-mu" where we have Dumuzi's sister gestin anna interpreting dreams too. It is  interesting also to note that the dream interpreters are all females. The word gestin-anna  lit. the women of wisdom has given us 'akastiya" (Sk . agastiya). The Tamil akattiyam (<akastiyam)  which  means Wisdom , also means the art of dream interpretation. The prefix a- here means "great"; akattiyas: great or divine knowledge

25. lu-an-gim-ri-ba-ki-gim -ri-ba-su ( as to the man whose span was heaven, whose span was as earth)

(see line 2. for discussions. The same for the following lines upto 28; already discussed above in detail)

26. sag-ga-su  (who  by his head )   dingir (was a god)  a -ni-su  ( at his side)

27. (d) im-dugud (musen) -su (was the divine Storm-bird)    sig-ba-a-ni-su-a-ma-ru-su (at his feet was tempest)

28. zi-da gub-na on whose right and left )  ug ( a lion)  i-na(d)-nad-a (lay)

29. ses-mu  ( My brother)  (d)nin-gir-su (ningirsu)   ga-nam-me-am ( he surely was)

ses: brother, child etc Ta. ceey, cicu (Sk sisya) .here probably "son" as Nin-a appears to the Mother Goddes herself.

Nin- gir-su  Ta. kiiri : something long and extended , u-kir; finger nails. gir-su: probably very extended and long feet. And hence Nin gir-su a deity with enormously long legs , someone who covers both the heavens and the earth. Hence probably Thirumaal, or VishNu also known in Su.  as "se -er-ma-al'  'en'lil" etc also with long legs.

Also note. sukiriivan: a name in Ramayana; perhaps a name of VishNu?

If this is acceptable then it would follow that Vishnu was considered the son of Mother Goddess Nin-a in Sumerian times. This Ningir-su may also be the Purusha of Purusha Suktam.

ga-nam=nga-nam= na-nam Ta. nanam: certainly ; me-am Ta. mey-aam: really ,  it is true. Ta. mey-aaka: truely

30. es-e-ninnu-na  ( the abode of his E-ninnu)   du-ba ( its building)    za-ra (unto thee)   ma-ra-an-dug (he commanded)

es: abode , also divine Ta. iisan : Lord    (Sk eesa as  : uta- amrtatvaya-eesaanah, Purusha Suktam -2)

e-ninnu : Ta. il ninnu: a tall or lofty temple

du-ba  Ta. eduppa: the ' -pp-a" here is purposive case marker.  Also note Sk: stuba, stubi   : a tall building Ta. tuubam; smoke: that which rises above?

za-ra = zi-a-ra Ta. jiianRa

ma-ra-an-dug :Ta. manRa aan tuukku: definitely he said. The "ma-ra" taken as Ta. manRa would turnout to be adverbial in function. aan > avan: he

31. u(d) ( The light )  ki-sar-ra (that over the world)   ma-ra-ta-e-a (rose)

ki sar-ra.  Ta. kiil carvam or ku carvam  .( >  Sk sarvam: all)

ma-ra-ta-e-a Ta, manRatta eeya. Ta. manram : the platform,  hall etc.  -tt-a : here  attu is saariyai, a verbal adjunt.

"manRa" can also be the adverb meaning definitely,  surely steadlily etc.

32. dingir-zu  ( was thy god)   (d) nin-gis-zi-da ( Ningishzida)    u(d)-gim  (like the light)

33. ki-sa-ra  ( over the world)  ma-ra-da-ra-te-e-a (he rose for thee)

nin-gis-zi-da Ta. Nin kiita citta: the Lord of  undying sayings : the Bhagavan of Giita

Note: perhaps we have here the presence of the notion of words of undying truths as disclosed by God, a feature very common in the Agamic and  Tantric traditions in India. This should be related to the phenomenon of possession of Gods and they taking over  the talking functions during such moments.

Also the notion of personal god: ishdda teevatai

ma-ra-da-ra-ta- e-a . Ta. maanRa idam rata eea

ra-ta: Ta.  comes radiating?  Note Telugu: ra: to come Su. ra-ra: to move about ; Malay: lalu: to move about . Ta. alai-alai: to roam around.

Note  Ta. ratam, iratam : chariot, that which moves?

ra-ta> ta-ra (metathesis ) Ta. teer: chariot. Thus Sk terms such as "rata-kaar-ra" turns out to be Tamil in its origins. kaar < Su. gar-u: to set up,  to do etc.

34.  ki-sikil ( The maiden)  sag-ga-e (  who pre-eminent)   ki-kinda (her brow)  mu-ag  (bore)

ki-sikil : Malay: kechil: the small. Probably the kumari, the Vaalaip peN,  a girl before reaching puberty

ki-sikil= kin-sikil Ta. kanni sukkila: the pure undefiled maiden.( > Sk. sukla: pure , white )

Note : Do we have here the mention of a practice that is still available in Kathmandu, Nepal  where a pre-adolescent young girl is chosen as the living deity, the Kumari?

35. gi-dub-ba-ku-be ( who a bright stilus)  su-ne-du-a (held)

gi-dub-ba ku-be Ta. kiir  tubba koovee

su-ne-du-a . Ta. suur-ne iduva

36. dub (and the tablet )   mul-an-dug-ga ne-gal-la-a   ( showed the favour of the stars)

mul-an-dug-ga Ta. muulan tungka : great or auspicios stars

ne-gal-la-a Ta. nayan kaalla-a  > nayam kaalvatu Ta. nayam ; good, fair etc


Note: Here we definitely have the practice of astrology as an  important component of Temple building. The stars are said to be auspicious which shows that the star clusters were studied  and some noted as inauspicious and some others however auspicious ( tunga).  This practice is continued to this day. This also shows  Cootidam, pure astrology was also studied, a science also developed later during the Babylonian times after Hammurabi took political control of Sumer and installed Akkadian as the official language.

37 a.   ad-im-da-gi-a  (and she studied it)   SAL+KU-mu (my sister)

38 (a) nisaba ( Nisaba)  ga-nam-me-am (she surely was)

ad-im-da-gi-a Ta. atu iyamidu   taminya , atu iyamidu  taniya: she  studied it  on her own (?). Ta. iyambu: to recite, to tell etc

Nisaba , elsewhere  Saraswathi, the Goddess of Learning.  Ta. kalaivaaNi. Note Ta. nicitam ; sharness, keenness; Also Ta. naidatam, naishatam:  a kind of poetry: that which instructs?

38b.  e-a (for the temple )  du-ba  ( for the building thereof)

Note:  perhaps  there is a distinction being made here between  e ( il) and "du-ba"  as  a noun . Perhaps here is a clear reference to the Sk. stuuba, stuubi and Ta. tuupam: a tall structure perhaps in those days the "koopuram"  the frontal tower or the tower over the main shrine.

As a verb it is  Ta. eduppa: for the purpose of building the temple.

39. mul-ku-ba ( the propiticious  star )  gu-ma-ra-a-de  ( she declared to thee)

 mul-ku-ba : Ta.  miin kooba:  the divine stars ;  here very clearly the practice of astrology and which habit persists to this day.

gu Ta. kuu, kuuvu: to call , declare etc. gu-ma-ra-a-de :  kuuv- maanRa- aa- ide . Here -aa- : he or she  , -idu. Ta. idu: to do, aux, verb. The main verb: kuuvidu

40. min-kam-ma ( The second)   ur-sag-am (who was a warrior)    a-mu-gur  (with strength endured)

ur-sag -am, Ta. caanRoon aam etc

mu-gur =mu-un-gur > mun kor>  munkol >  Ta. munkoL:  received.  aa munkoL : contained with strength

41. li-um-za-gin ( who with a tablet of lapis -lazuli)   su-ne-du-a ( held)  (d) nin-dub (was Nin-dub)

42. e-a ( of the temple)   gis-har-ba (its plan )   im-mi-si-si-gi (he gave (thee)

The Paarpaan

"Nin dub" here appears to e  the God Brahma, the Ayan,  the Veetan, the Lord of Scriptures, whose consort is (d)  Nisaba , Saraswathi  in later mythology. Perhaps also the 'asim-bab-bar" of Enhudu Anna in her Siirbiyam

84. as-im--babbar na-an-kus-u-de   ( I cannot appease Ashimbabbar)

Ta. aatim paarppaar naa aan kuucittee

It is mainly Brahma, the Veetan who is known as Paarppan. It is also a name for Civa. It appears the "aati paarppaan" here is the primordial paarppaan, the primoridal veetan, the God Brahma as one of the Trinities. It may be possible that there  was the use of the term ' paarppan" in terms of those who read ( and write) tablets viz. scholars , people who are favoured by The Paarppaan, Brahmah.  Thus it appears that even in Sumerian times there were paarppaans ( Sk. brahmanah) who were skillful in writing and reading ( the tablets ) i.e scholarly.

si-si Ta. ciircey : to improve upon

im-mi-si-si- gi . Ta. ciircey- imme-  mii : to improve   further

43. igi-zu-su  dusu-ku  gub-ba ( The clean carrying-pad that stood before thee)  u-sub-ku si-sa-a ( the clean mould that was prepeared.

( For discussions , see lines 17 & 18)

si-sa-a Ta. ciircaala: excellent, faultless , without blemishes etc

44. sig-nam-tar-ra (the brick of destiny)  u-sub-ba  gal-la  (that was in the mould)

45. sig-zi-e-ninnu (the sacred brick of E-ninnu)  ga-nam-me-am ( that surely was)

46. a-am igi (...)  (before thee)  gub-ba ( standing)

47. TI.BU.HU lu  a u(d) mi ni-ib-zal-a-su

48.  e-du-de ( (it signifies that ) while building the temple)  igi-zu ( before thee)  u-dug-ga (sweet sleep) nu-si-tu-tu ( shall not come in)

u-dug-ga Ta.  tuungkal : to sleep . The "u' may mean 'someone' or 'anyone"

tu-tu Ta. titi: to be continuosly,  to persist   (Note  Sk stiti < si-tu-tu?)

49. ansu-sul-a-zi-da-lugal-zag-ge  (As to the strong ass which the right hand of the king)

50. ki-ma-ra-har-har-a-su (was drawing for thee upon the grounds)

51.a. ze me ( thou  art (he) )

ansu-sul Ta. asuvam cuul: the brave horse , or the brilliant  horse ; a-zi-da Ta. aal catta: of true strength

zag-ge Ta. caakai: branch, side?  Also Ta. caki: companion

The Chariot.

51.b. e-ninnu-a nig-lal-a-gigir-gim (For E-Ninnu as that which is yoked to a waggon )   ki-im-si-har-e (was he desiging thee)

gigir Ta. kiRukiRu: going round and round: thus a round -wheeled cart, chariot?

lal-a Malay: lalu : to move around Ta. alai: to wave , to roam about

nig-lal-a Ta. mika-alaiba: that which moves very fast.; thus perhaps a horse drawn  chariot.

Thus it appears that among the Sumerians there was already the use of fast -moving and hence probaly horse drawn chariots in use perhaps by kings.

(the Text is concluded, some analysis would follow)

An Analysis of the Text

1. The Signifance of "ma-mu"

It appears that in Sumerian times the temple building unlike that of the secular structures like e-gal , the Palace ( lit. large house : il-kaL)  is a DIVINELY inspired activity where the actual design is disclosed  in essence by the divine powers through what they called "ma-mu" and normally understood as dreams . However in the context of this yext it appears to something like LUCID dreams or the Yogak kaadci or Vinjnjaanak kaadci of Saiva Siddhanta and Agama  texts and many other texts in Yoga, a species of transductive perceptions.  The dreamer exclaims that he is NOT sure whether the deity is real or not real ( 9. me-a-nu me-a-ni). Perhaps here we have the beginnings of the analysis of "avattai" -- states of Being into caakkiram., coppnam, cuuzutti, turiam and turiaatiitam such as those we  find  in Tirumantiram of Tirumular and a host of other texts in India.

The study of numerous Agamas and Tantras may shed more light on this development of Indian Civilization and culture.

The dream experience remains to this day central in the building of temples

2. Ningir-su as Vishnu

That Ningirsu is actually a primitive form of Vishnu seems to be clear from the descriptions  given of Ningirsu , the large footed. Elsewhere the deity is also called En-lil , Se-ir maal,  Mu-ul-lel etc . He is said to cover both the heavens and the eRTH , a theme that gets mentioned as the "muuvadiyaal ulakaLanta perumaaL"  He who measured the world with three strides , a theme that is also alluded  to in the Sumerian texts and also in Cangam classics.

The divine "storm"  bird ( (d) im-dugug (musen) dam)  may actually be Garuda, the bird that is always associated with Vishnu and which symbolically may mean, among other things, He seeing everything that transpires in the phenomenal world.

The description of the presence of "tempest " at his feet (5. sig-ba-ni-asu a-ma-ru-kam) is very significant in connection with this identification for it may be what later was called the paaRkadal and Vishnu also become NraayaNan, He who arises from  the waters. This also implies that He is the Purusha of Purusha Suktam of later times. See. Purusha Suktam 2. utaamrtatvasyesaanah : uta amrtatvasye eesaanah : he who arises above the waters?

 Nin-a and Beginnings odf Saktaism

"Nin-a" means really "the Great One" but that she is the mother of Nigirsu means that she is the Great Mother, the Primordial Womb of all things, the creatrix of all. Thus we have here a clear reference to the Saktaism, where the same is said and to this day : the Ambal is the creatrix of all.  Here there is also mentioning  that SHE is the interpreter of the dreams and hence Gestin Anna and which may have  given birth to the tradition of Agastya initially a feminine institution but later masculinised. This phenomenon may be linked  to the practice of dreaming  and dream interpretaions to solve personal  problems that exists to this day in the rural areas of Tamil Nadu where interestingly enough, the help of Old women in the village are sought after for this way of solving problems.

This Nin-a appears  to have been Brahmanised during the Upanisadic and later periods . See: Brahma Sutras (1:1) (Brahman is that ) from which the origin, &c (i.e the origin, subsistence, and dissolution) of this (world proceed) (Trans: George Thibaut)

Gudea and Kuddan

As a matter for further research I am proposing this here. The name Gudea the  honourable Pati (Su. pate-si) of Lagash might have given rise  to  the Cera  Dynasty of KeraLa whose names also has this kuddan or Kudduvan,e.g. Ceeran Ceng -kudduvan . The name Kuddi for males is also availble in KeraLa to this day ( as I understand).  Kuddan really means he who knocks down  (Ta. kuddu, koddu)and hence someone victorious, similar to gub-ta in Sumerian. In a parallel  manner we have also  king Lugal Banda who may be  related to the Pandiyas of Madurai and Sulgi ( sulgi> suli> suuzi) related to Cholas of Tanjore.

Added to the identification  of Gudea with Kuddaan is the fact that the presiding Deity of Cera Nadu remains Vishnu and to this day. And the society has been till recent times matriarchal perhaps indicating the dominance of the rule of Nin-a, the Great Mother.

Anse and Asmedha Yakam

As a matter for further studies I wish to mention that in Sumerian times itself there were waggons ( gigir) and fast moving chariots  (nig-lal-a-gigir ; mika alai kiRukiRu) and hence the "anse"  mentioned may be  horse (Ta. asuvam) rather than ass. However the fact that  in the dream Gudya  appearing as the horse that draws the plan of the temple and moves the waggon  might have given rise to the  ritual practice of asvamedha , a ritual practiced by the kings as a way becoming this dream horse. The eating of the flesh of the sacrificed Horse , it might have been believed, would provide them the Kingship that they sought after. It should  be noted here that many Pandia Kings of Cangam times have conducted such rituals.