“On the Wings of the Winds: Towards an Understanding of Winged Mischwesen in the Ancient Near East,” KASKAL 14 (2017), pp. 15-54.

In this study, I argue that the literary depictions and iconographic images of wings on various hybrid creatures are a means of depicting that creature’s association with wind and the cardinal directions, and that recognizing this correlation offers

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    UNIVERSITÀ CA ’ FOSCARI VENEZIA   KASKAL Rivista di storia, ambienti e culture del Vicino Oriente Antico  Volume 14 2017 LoGisma editore Firenze 2017    UNIVERSITÀ CA ’ FOSCARI VENEZIA   KASKAL Rivista di storia, ambienti e culture del Vicino Oriente Antico  Volume 14 _ 2017 Direzione _ Editorial Board  Stefano de Martino, Frederick Mario Fales, Giovanni Battista Lanfranchi, Lucio Milano, Simonetta Ponchia Consiglio scientifico _ Scientific Board   Yoram Cohen, Stefano de Martino, Frederick Mario Fales, Francis Joannès, Michael Jursa, Giovanni Battista Lanfranchi, Cécile Michel, Lucio Milano, Simonetta Ponchia, Michael Roaf,  Jack M. Sasson Segreteria Scientifica _ Scientific Secretary Paola Corò Progetto grafico _ Graphic project  Daniele Levi Composizione _ Typesetting Stefania Ermidoro Editore _ Publisher LoGisma editore – Via Zufolana, 4 – I-50039 Vicchio (Firenze) www.logisma.it Stampa _ Print Press Service Srl – Via Curzio Malaparte, 23 – I-50145 Firenze Distribuzione _ Distribution Orders can be either addressed to the publisher, or to: Casalini Libri s.p.a. _ Via B. da Maiano 3 _ I-50014 Fiesole (Firenze) http://www.casalini.it  All articles published in this journal were submitted to peer reviewed evaluation. ISBN 978-88-94926-03-3 ISSN 1971-8608 Stampato in marzo 2018  KASKAL Rivista di storia, ambienti e culture del Vicino Oriente Antico   Volume 14 (2017)   ON THE WINGS OF THE WINDS:  TOWARDS AN UNDERSTANDING OF WINGED  MISCHWESEN IN THE ANCIENT NEAR EAST Scott B. Noegel In this study, I argue that the literary depictions and iconographic images of wings on various hybrid creatures are a means of depicting that creature’s association with wind and the cardinal directions, 1  and that recognizing this correlation offers greater insight into the function and meaning of these creatures in the written and iconographic records generally. 2  As such, I add to our increasing awareness of the close relationship between textual and iconographic motifs in the ancient Near East.  3  Furthermore, I contend that attention to the number of wings a creature possesses informs our understanding of the entity’s perceived cosmological abilities. I divide my analysis into five parts. In the first, I examine a variety of ways in which 1.    Thus, I intend to nuance the observation of Keel – Uehlinger 1998, 251, who argue that the wings on  various Egyptian-inspired hybrid creatures found on iconographic remains in Phoenicia and Israel in the 9 th -8 th  centuries BCE, “stress the celestial aspect... as well as the idea of protection. In combination with the sun god, they convey the idea of a mysterious connection between unapproachable distance and effective protection”. Wood 2008, 88-89, rejects the view of others that the biblical cherubim personify the wind. I posit that it is merely the wings of the creature, and others like it, that signify the wind. 2.   Since wind is invisible, one can depict it only by rendering its effect. It is noteworthy that the Sumerian sign im, “wind” srcinally portrayed a sail, as does the hieroglyphic Egyptian logogram and determinative for wind, ¶ . On the Sumerian sign, see Deimel 1928-1933, §399. On the etymology of the Egyptian determinative as meaning “airflow, breeze”, see Bojowald 2011, 51-55. 3.   Many conceptual overlaps exist between ancient Near Eastern texts and the visual arts (including architecture and textile production) in terms of patterning. One can find narrative programs, repetition and variation, symmetry, gendered parallelism, visual puns, as well as ring structures in ancient Near Eastern texts and the visual arts. See, e.g., Douglas 1999; Albenda 1992, 297-309; Watson 1980, 338, fn. 85; Roaf – Zgoll 2001; Kilmer 2006; David 2014. If the hypothesis of Ataç 2010 is correct that the scribal-sacerdotal elite had a supervisory hand in the design and production of the Assyrian reliefs, then one would expect an overlap between the literary and visual arts.  Scott B. Noegel 16 Mesopotamian, Egyptian, and biblical texts identify winds with wings and the cardinal directions. 4  In the second, I study a number of literary and artistic depictions of two- and four-winged  Mischwesen for their connections to the winds and cardinal directions. 5  In Section 3, I offer a separate survey of winged entities that possess six wings. In the fourth section, I investigate the patterns that emerge when classifying hybrids according to the number of their wings. In the fifth and final segment, I offer some concluding thoughts on the cosmological import of winged hybrid creatures, the spaces they inhabit, and a few other associations that emerge when examining the data from this typological perspective. 1. Wings, wind, and the cardinal directions 1.1.  Mesopotamian texts Numerous cuneiform texts evince a conceptual link between wings, wind, and the cardinal directions. 6  For example, Gudea refers to the Northwind as a man with “enormous wings” (á.dirig)”. 7  In Akkadian, the word ^  ā  ru means both “wind” and a “cardinal direction”. 8  Thus,  Adapa threatens the Southwind by saying: kappaki l  ū  ^ebir  , “I will break your wing” (EA 356, 5). In the Old Babylonian myth of the winged Anzû, Belet-Ili tells her son Ningirsu to defeat him in a way that identifies him with the wind: ^  ā  r  ū   kapp ī   ana puzur  ā  tim liblunim  , “may the winds carry (his) wings away to distant places” (III, 70). 9  Ironically, it is a storm wind that brings him down: ina mit~ur me~îm abaršu imqut  , “at the onrush of the South-storm, his wing fell” (III, 76). The four winds also appear in a fragmentary portion of the story in the Standard Babylonian version as weapons of protection and fear (III, 6-7). In this version, the defeat of Anzû results in establishing the hero’s holy daises in the kibr  ā  t erbetti  , “four (world) regions” (II, 143). Observe also Erra’s words to Marduk: ^a ^  ā  ri (   TU 15  ) lemni k ī  ma i##  ū  ri (  MUŠEN  ) akassâ id  ā  ^u  , “I shall bind the wings of the evil wind as one does to a bird” (  Poem of Erra I 187). 10  In an oracle to Esarhaddon, Ištar rhetorically asks the 4.   I treat Ugaritic texts only parenthetically, because the Ugaritic cognate knp , “wing” does not bear this meaning. DULAT   450, s.v  . knp , “wing”. The related term mknpt means “span” (used of a battlement in CAT   1.16 i 9; DULAT   543, s.v  . mknpt   ). 5.   On this point, I am indebted to the masterful study by Keel 1977, though my arguments expand upon and nuance his. 6.   On the connection between some winged creatures and the wind in Mesopotamia, see Wiggermann 1980/1983; 2007. 7.   Gudea, Cyl. A XI 22. 8.   See CAD   Š/2 133, s.v  . š  ā  ru  . As discussed by Neumann 1977, the Mesopotamian cardinal points do not represent true North, South, East, and West, but correspond to winds from the Northwest, Southeast, Northeast, and Southwest, respectively. Two of the names of the winds reflect these geographic realities: im KUR  . RA   šadû  , “Eastwind” (= lit. “mountains”) and im MAR  . DÚ   amurru  , “Westwind” (= lit. “Amorites”).  The other two are im SI . SÁ   ilt  ā  nu  / išt  ā  nu, “Northwind” (= “appropriate, straight”, i.e. , “common”) and im ÙLU   š  ū  tu  , “Southwind” (= “flying”). See Horowitz 1998, 196-198. 9.   Cf. the fragmentary Hittite text found in CHD   231, s.v  .  pata  -: [  I   ]  NA GÌR.MEŠ=ŠU= ma=za KUŠ E.SIR.@I.A= uš liliwanduš IM.MEŠ= uš šarkuit  , “(Tašmitu) put on his feet [the winds] as winged shoes”.  Winged deities are rare in the Hittite world. See, e.g., CHD   P 80 s.v  .  paltana-  : “(the bisexual deity) Šaušga-to-be-Invoked: a golden statue (represented as) a man standing, wings coming from (his) shoulders”. 10.   Cagni 1969, 78.  On the Wings of the Winds: Towards an Understanding of Winged  Mischwesen    17 king: ^  ā  ru ^a ī  dibakkani aqapu^u l  ā   aksup ū  ni  , “Have I not trimmed the wings of the wind that blew against you”? 11  After surviving the flood, Utnapishtim recalls: u^  ē  #  ī  ma ana erbetti ^  ā  r  ā  ni (  IM . MEŠ  ) attaqi niqâ  , “I sent forth (everything) to the four winds, I made an offering” (Gilg  . XI, 155). A protasis from an Old Babylonian omen employs the same language: ^  ā  r erbetti^u mit~  ā  ri^ ill  [  ak  ], “If the (smoke) goes in all four directions to the same degree...”. 12  The demon Pazuzu also declares: I am Pazuzu, the son of Hanbu, King of the evil Lilû  -Wind Demons, I ascended to the mighty mountains that quake. The winds, in whose midst I proceeded, were directed towards the West, I alone have broken their wings (Heeßel 2002, 59, ll. 102-109; Wiggermann 2007). Moreover, as F. Wiggermann has shown, Pazuzu has his srcins in the four cardinal winds (Wiggermann 2007). As I shall explain more fully below, this explains why Pazuzu figurines consistently possess four wings (Fig. 1). Indeed, on a Neo-Babylonian cylinder seal, one also finds the four winds each with four wings (Fig. 2). 13   The Mesopotamian connection between wings, winds, and the four cardinal directions obtains also in references to the kippatu  , a term that means “circle, loop, circumference, and totality”. 14   When used of the earth or the winds it represents all directions, i.e  ., everywhere the wind blows.  Thus, we hear about the king: ana kippat erbette \  ā  bti t  ē  tepu^  , “you (the king) have shown kindness to all the circle of the four (quarters)”. In the Poem of Erra  , Anu ordains the winds by commanding them: k ī  ma ^  ā  ri z  ī  [  q   ] ma kippata ~  ī  \a  , “blow like the wind, survey the circle” (I, 36). The stormgod  Adad also possesses the kippat ^  ā  r erbetti  , “circle of the four winds”, and thus, he #  ā  bit kippat ^  ā  r  ē    (  IM . MEŠ  ), “controls all the winds”. 15  1.2.  Egyptian texts   In ancient Egypt too, one finds the four winds personified as winged beings, even as early as the Pyramid Texts  , where they personify the four cardinal directions. 16  Hence the following incantation,  which one must recite four times: n 4 Ω   pw kh  Χ w Χ w=k m  ΧΧ w m   r.wy mdw m wtwt mr  , “to the four, these strong-winds which are about you, which see with two faces, who contend with fierce roaring (?)” (Spell 311). 17  Spell 340 also states:   d= ΩΩ  =n= Ω   ~r=k nw   m=k n= Ω   m  Ω      m ΩΧ btj m ~t Ω  mntj Ω  wt=k m ~t= Ω   m  Ω    Ω  wt m m     jt m ~t rsw   d w  Χ  , “Recitation: ‘I have come to you, you Ancient One. May you turn back to me as Eastwind is turned back by Westwind; may you come down to me as Northwind 11.   Parpola 1997, 4. 12.   Both texts cited in CAD   Š/2 133, s.v  . ^  ā  ru  . 13.   Observed by Wiggermann 2007, 130, 156. Image from (156). Three seals from the Old Babylonian Period show each of the winds with two wings (152-153). 14.   CAD   K 397, s.v.   kippatu  . 15.   See Wilson 1962, 90-115 (93:4). 16.   On the Egyptian four winds, see de Wit 1957, 25-39; Kurth 1986, cols. 1266-1272; Kákosky 1997, 219-229. 17.   Sethe 1908-1910, Spell 311, §497b-c-498a. Translation adopted, with slight modification from Faulkner 1998, 97. Allen 2005, 59, renders this difficult spell (= 216 on Unis’ Anti-chamber): “to those four of yours who go down behind you, who see with two faces and argue painfully about the firstborn...”.
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