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Writing, Law, and Kingship in Old Babylonian Mesopotamia$
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Dominique Charpin

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780226101583

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: March 2013

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226101590.001.0001

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Conclusion: A Civilization with Two Faces

Conclusion: A Civilization with Two Faces

(p.127) Conclusion: A Civilization with Two Faces
Writing, Law, and Kingship in Old Babylonian Mesopotamia
University of Chicago Press

This chapter sums up the key findings of this study on writing and literacy in Mesopotamia during the second millennium bce. The Old Babylonian period is no doubt the era of Mesopotamian history when writing covered the broadest range of reality compared to the third millennium bce. There was considerable diversity in the types of contracts used and more abundant letters with more varied and vivid contents. Despite the widespread writing and use of written text, the transmission of knowledge remained largely within the sphere of the oral and writing for the most part only preserved information whose interest was limited in duration.

Keywords:   writing, literacy, Mesopotamia, contracts, letters, written text, knowledge transmission

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