Witchcraft Literature In Mesopotamia

Authored by: Tzvi Abusch

The Babylonian World

Print publication date:  August  2007
Online publication date:  June  2009

Print ISBN: 9780415353465
eBook ISBN: 9780203946237
Adobe ISBN: 9781134261284

10.4324/9780203946237.ch26

 Download Chapter

 

Abstract

Let us begin with simple definitions of magic and witchcraft in Mesopotamia. We classify as magical those rites that address the needs, crises, and desires of the individual. In contrast to some later western societies, magic in Mesopotamia was regarded as legitimate and as part of the established religion. Therefore, in a Meso-potamian context, witchcraft refers not to magical behavior as such, but to inimical behavior, that is, to the practice of magic for anti-social and destructive purposes (though, as we shall note later, not all behavior so labeled was, in fact, motivated by evil intentions).

 Cite
Search for more...
Back to top

Use of cookies on this website

We are using cookies to provide statistics that help us give you the best experience of our site. You can find out more in our Privacy Policy. By continuing to use the site you are agreeing to our use of cookies.