Corruption and Violence in Early Dynastic Mari (As Seen from Ebla): A New Attempt at ARET 13, 15
The tablet ARET 13, 15 was published in 2003 by Pelio Fronzaroli among other Eblaite “testi di cancelleria,” providing a basis for studying the document. This edition was the first step toward understanding the text, establishing that it describes several episodes pertaining to Ebla’s relations with Mari, its principal rival in eastern Syria, at the time of Yibbi-zikir, the last vizier of Early Dynastic Ebla. However, a number of difficulties remained unresolved. In a new edition, Walther Sallaberger (2008) made significant progress in the interpretation of the structure, genre, and historical setting of the text, as well as of several problematic passages. In particular, he showed that the document describes offenses suffered by Eblaites visiting the Mari kingdom, related to a war between Ebla and Mari. We believe, however, that there is still room for a better understanding of the text. Here we suggest several new interpretations for a number of passages, revealing previously unnoticed lexemes and historical facts. We also provide the first English translation of the document.