Text Of A Treaty


This tablet is inscribed with a contract between the ruler of Ebla and a prince, who unfortunately is not mentioned by name, from the city of Abarsal, a site not yet located. The text is not altogether understood, and we can therefore only present a partial translation.

After a census of the twenty surrounding towns under the jurisdiction of Ebla a treaty follows: Abarsal is obligated to take care of provisions for messengers from Ebla. In the case of theft of sheep from the Ebla region, the neighbors are threatened with annihilation. In case of revolt in Abarsal, Ebla reserves the right to intervene. In case of negligence regarding deliveries of seed as well as the provision for messengers, the prince of Abarsal is threatened with deposition. Abarsal must also guarantee Ebla’s unlimited use of their waterways. The ruler of Ebla seems to have less direct power over individual citizens and property at Abarsal: in case of breach of contract the people of Abarsal are threatened by severe punishment inflicted on them by the sun god, the weather god, and a third unspecified god. A curse formula closes the document: All of those who…) assemble for evil (purposes) Shamash (and) Adad shall cause its (that assembly’s) words to perish in (its) bile. To (its) couriers who go in (their) travels no one shall bring drinking water hor (give) shelter. And you (Abarsal) (if) you go on an evil expedition you shall be cast out.

  • Site: Ebla (Tell Mardikh), Royal Palace G

  • Date: Late Early Dynastic to early Akkadian period,

  • Material: Backed clay

  • Item Dimensions: Height: 22.1 cm; width: 23.9 cm; depth: 6 cm

  • Archaeological Mission:

  • National Museum Of Aleppo (2011) – Museum Number: Aleppo TM. 75. G. 2420

  • Index Code: Alp 0186

Excavation Site Location

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  • E. Sollberger SEU III (1980) 129–155

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