III



CALENDAR OF RITES AND FEASTS
Individual Months

Nisannu Ajaru Simanu Du'uzu
Abu Ululu Tashritu Arahshamna
Kissilimu Tebetu Šabatu Adarru


Common Festival Terms:



a-ki-ti/Akitu - possibly "(the House where the God) temporarily dwells (on) Earth;" CC p.405, or zag-mu "edge of the year;" A once or twice yearly festival at the beginning of either or both the entire year or the equinoctial years, in which the chief God or Goddess of a specific city is taken to the akitu-House outside the city for a set number of days (usually 7), then brought back in and reestablished as the Ruler.

kinunum - "Brazier;" a Festival which marked the onset of the cold season with the lighting of Braziers and attendant celebration.

nabrum - "Seek Oracle; Divine;" an annual (usually in Arahsamna or Kissilimu, the onset of winter) or more frequent festival, the climax of which is an Oracular decision on the upcoming year or season.

humtum - "To Heat" (Ahw hamatu); a festival of Samas usually in the XIIth month, perhaps to ensure Samas would provide good conditions for farming (CC 397).

elunum - meaning unknown, possibly related to the month elulu or ullulum, "to purify;" festival always related to a Goddess (such as Inanna or Aya) or Goddesses (such as the pair Belat-suhner and Belat-terraban).



General rules for the months from a 10th century b.c.e. tablet (VAT 9663; listed in Bm pp. 49 -50)



"A Palace may be founded in Ajaru, Simanu, Abu, Elulu, Tebitu, Sabatu, and Addaru.
One may move out of a house in Simanu, Abu, Arahsamna, Tebitu, Sabatu, and Addaru.
One may return to a house in Nisannu, Ajaru, Simanu, Tesritu, Arahsamna, Sabatu, and Addaru.
A King may build a temple or repair a Holy Place only in Sabatu and Addaru.
A King may clean his garments in Nisannu, Ajaru, Simanu, Abu, Tesritu, Arahsamna, Sabatu, and Addaru.
A King may recite a penitential psalm in Nisannu, Simanu, Abu, Tesritu, Arahsamna, Sabatu, and Addaru.
Favorable months for bringing a bride into the house are Nisannu, Ajaru, Simanu, Elulu, Tesritu, Arahsamna, Sabatu and Addaru, (all ?) except for days 1 and 3. The conjunction of the Sun and Moon is favorable, as is the morning watch. Evening and middle watches unfavorable.

There are 7 x 60 (242) lucky days in the year. "Half lucky" days are Abu 6, Tesritu 8, 13; Tebitu 11, 17, 24, 27; Sabatu 10, 29 (or 30); Nisannu 4, 6.
"Half lucky" means that morning and evening watches are unlucky, while the middle of the day is lucky.
Days 26 and 27 of each month are days of penance in preparation for the disappearance of the Moon on the 28th. It is especially unlucky to go out of the gate (leave town) on the 29th (Bm p. 84).