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Good Advice from Dad, Circa 2200 BC

My aunt sent me this link, which translates an Akkadian father's advice to his son long ago. Most of it is common sense, extolling generosity, politeness, honesty, and restraint. Some of it is amusing, especially the bit about refusing to be drawn into the disputes of others, for fear of lawsuits and denunciations, which sounds entirely too modern.

But some of it is, er, a little more strange, as Strong Bad might say. In fact, the references to Shamash, slave girls, and the desirability of Ishtar-women in the household are not all that relevant to us today. The Akkadian father's mention of them makes it clear to me that things do, in fact, change, and there is something new under the sun.

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