This volume is a collection of selected essays on specific themes in Ugaritic literature. Included are eight unique contributions to understanding the religious life and thought of Ugarit, including detailed studies and essays covering broader issues for grasping the worldview of ancient Syria.
6 x 9
This flagship volume of the Gorgias Ugaritic Series is a book of selected essays dating from 1992 to the present, devoted to themes in Ugaritic literature. Providing a glimpse into the worldview of ancient Syria, Word of Tree and Whisper of Stone includes the following chapters: A New Look at the Term šdmt; The Titles of the Ugaritic Storm-God; The Pruning of the Vine in KTU 1.23; Understanding Polytheism: Structure and Dynamic in a West Semitic Pantheon; Religion at Ugarit: an overview; Epic in Ugaritic Literature; "May Horon Smash Your Head!": a Curse Formula from Ugarit; and Word of Tree and Whisper of Stone, from which the volume takes its title.
The shorter chapters, 1 and 3, deal with details in textual analysis, the intermediate ones, 5 and 6, with matters of religion and genre. The longer ones, 2, 4, 7 and 8, cover broader issues, respectively the surprisingly large range of Baal's epithets; the theology of the so-called "pantheon lists" from Ugarit, and the tension they invite between pluralistic and unitary conceptions of deity; and the question of prophecy in Ugarit. Prophetic figures have now been widely attested in the ancient Near East, from the time of Zimri-Lim of Mari down into the Iron Age. It was only a matter of time till the phenomenon was observed in Ugarit. This final chapter explores the language of divine communication in the light of some archaic features in Israelite oracular procedure.
Nicolas Wyatt received his education at the universities of Hull, Montpellier, King’s College London and the School of Oriental and African Studies in London. He taught for eighteen years at Glasgow University, and seventeen years at Edinburgh University. He has contributed several general studies and important reference works to the field of Ugaritic studies.