Volume V                Issue 26
Tishrin 4, 6749                                                                       October 4, 1999

T H I S  W E E K I N  Z E N D A

The Lighthouse Portraits of Christian Asia Minor
Good Morning Bet-Nahrain Albright Statement on Free Iraqi Leaders
News Digest Chaldean Group Receives Health Improvement Grant
Syria to Reclaim Artifacts from Canadian Art Dealer
Surfs Up "Somebody is not being truthful"
Surfers Corner A Glance at the Summit of the Assyrian Political Parties
The Eponyms of the Assyrian Empire (910-612 B.C.)
Assyrian Surfing Posts Re-Elect Ben Elias:  An Assyrian Concilmember
Protest U.S. State Dept's Decision
Coakley's The Church of the East and the Church of England
Pump up the Volume Bubbles and Soap
Back to the Future The Aramaic Language & the Babylonian Vowels
Literatus Not of Nineveh
This Week in History Rev. Polous Enwiya
Bravo New at Harvard University Library
Calendar of Events Halloween Party in Chicago

All blue links throughout this issue are hyperlinks to other sections on this page or featured websites.



Further to previous reports I am pleased to confirm that the Centre for Comparative Genocide Studies held its inaugural biennial conference, "Portraits of Christian Asia Minor", at Macquarie University, in Sydney-Australia, on Saturday 18 and Sunday 19 September 1999.

Papers were presented on various aspects of the indigenous Christian civilisations of Asia Minor namely Hellenic, Armenian and Assyrian, focussing on the early decades of the twentieth century.

There were many speakers representing the said three nations. There were also representatives from the Turkish Government including the Turkish consul and Professor Salahi Ramsdam Sonyel.  Prof. Sonyel holds a Ph.D. in Political (Diplomatic) History from the University of London (1971). Prof. Sonyel was invited from London by the Turkish government  to attend the conference and to deny all  accusations against the Turkish involvement in any genocide.

Prof. Sonyel Spoke about the " Christian Minorities & The Destruction Of The Ottoman Empire, With Reference To The Twentieth Century".  An abstract of his presentation is set out hereunder :- “ After the Failure of the Ottoman Turks, in 1683, for the second time to capture  Vienna, the dismemberment of the Ottoman Empire, began. In the words of William Miller, ‘ European statesmen anticipated the dismemberment of the Sultan's European possessions, and formed schemes for the partition of the spoils.‘ Thus the process of getting rid of the Turk’ in eastern Europe, including the Balkans, and later in Anatolia (Asia Minor) had began.

The process was of one Anatolia, both Muslim and non-Muslim, especially during the First World War, which finally led to the destruction of the Ottoman Empire. Yet, the Ottoman Turks were often welcomed by Christian and other non-Muslim populations of the territories they occupied, as confirmed by numerous western scholars.

Since the foundation of the Ottoman state, particularly during its ascendance, the ethnic and religious minorities living within its boundaries, irrespective of their origin, culture, and beliefs, benefited enormously from Ottoman Enounce (istimalet and tolerance, and from all the other benefits provided by a strong and benevolent Muslim state). They enjoyed, inter alia, relative security of corporate life, social, educational and linguistic autonomy and economic prosperity, and preserved their religion and ethnic identity in peace and order, within the Ottoman communal (millet system, based on Islamic principles). This is also confirmed by numerous British consular reports quoted in this paper. “

Dr. Racho Donef was the first speaker on the Assyrian issues. Dr. Donef has obtained a Ph.D. in relation to the subject of ethnic minorities of the Republic of Turkey from Macquarie University. He has delivered public lectures on the official policies of the Republic of Turkey towards its Christian populations in the 20th Century. His paper presented to the conference was titled "ASSYRIANS AND ASSYRIAN IDENTITY IN THE OTTOMAN EMPIRE" An abstract from his presentation is set out hereunder :- “ Many terms have been employed to define the population group nowadays referred to as Assyrian: Syrians, Jacobites, Nestorians and Chaldeans are the most common. The varied usage reflects the extent of linguistic, cultural, religious and ethnic diversity among the Assyrians. Although, today, the Assyrian identity covers all the above-mentioned groups, this was not always the case.

Today, substantial populations from all the above Christian populations identify themselves as descendants of the imperial Assyrians. They celebrate the Assyrian New Years, use Assyrian names such as Assurbanipal and Hammurabi, and employ such imperial symbols as winged bulls and replicas of the Ishtar gate. However, there was no clear Assyrian identity in the Ottoman Empire, except during the dying stages of the Empire, in early twentieth century.

The nineteenth century was the era in which a national consciousness developed amongst the millets of the Ottoman Empire. Nationalism among the Muslim millets developed later than among the Christian millets, the Turks being the last to be affected. The Nestorians were the last Christian millet in develop nationalist consciousness, but now, calling themselves Assyrians, they gradually developed a strong feeling of national fellowship.

When the First World War broke out in 1914, the Assyrians saw an opportunity for independence. They were encouraged by the Allies with promises of assistance that never materialised. After long deliberations, the Assyrians declared war on Turkey on 10 May 1915. In the Ottoman Empire, they had a reputation of being fierce fighters but were no match for the better organised and equipped Turkish forces supported by Kurdish tribes, Despite their efforts, the Treaty of Sevres (1920) - which provided for an independent Kurdistan and Armenia- did not cater for the Assyrians. The Lausanne conference was just as disappointing for them as it did not recognise them as a minority.”

The second speaker on the Assyrian issues was an Assyrian academic, Dr. Abdul-Massih Saadi.  Dr. Saadi’s was a teacher of Syriac language and literature in Lebanon and Syria (1977-1990). He served as Principle and Instructor at the St. Ephrem Theological Seminary in Damascus Syria (1984-1990). Since 1993 he has been with the Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago.  In the past two years Dr. Massih Saadi has been an instructor with the Centre of Middle Eastern Studies at North Park University.

He is a prolific writer and has published extensively on the history of Christianity in the Middle East (of the Syriac Church in particular) and has presented at a number of academic conferences around the world including "History of Syriac Churches, Encounters With Muslims: What Have We Learned?" (North Park University & Assyrian Academic Society Conference, Chicago June 1997) and "The Originality of Syriac Sources: A Study in Syriac Historiography"  (Melammu-The Intellectual Heritage of Assyria and Babylon in East and West, Tvarminne Finland October 1998). This was his first visit to Australia.

Dr Saadi’s paper was titled "THE OTTOMAN SCYTHE AND THE DECIMATION OF THE ASSYRIAN NATION". An abstract from his presentation is set out hereunder:  “ It was the Scythe of the Ottomans that cut off the continuity of the Assyrian nation that was rooted with the dawn of human civilization. Its ruthless blade cut them off from their ancestral lands and reduced them to desperation and annihilation. Although their property, homes, families and communities were unjustly broken and scattered to the wind, their spirit and will to live were not. Ultimately, their steadfast belief in a merciful God brought them alive through their hellish ordeal and renewed their belief in themselves and in the power of love to overcome all obstacles, even their unmerciful enemies.

I will briefly relate the horrible fate of the Assyrians during. World War I. Then I will demonstrate that it was a peculiar mind-set that built up and gained momentum among the regular and irregular Ottomans against their Christian subjects, which drove them to the most ungodly acts of cruelty and oppression against their neighbours and fellow men. Even the most powerless Christians who had no political aspirations whatsoever were not exempt from denigrating and low atrocities……"  Dr. Saadi's speech lasted one hour and was followed by questions and denials from the Turkish side.

The Turkish side blamed the Allies and particularly the British and their unfulfilled promises for what had  happened  to the Assyrians. They also blamed the Assyrians for siding with the Russians against the Turks, which was alleged to be the reason for the tragic turn of events.  The Turks also alleged that they  experienced the same fate of death and destruction.

In this part of the conference we received a very supportive stand from a Jewish Professor and his wife who replied to the Turkish side urging them to admit to the holocaust against the Assyrians in the same way that the Germans had done to the Jews.

The Turkish Consul later requested to meet with Senator John Nimrod, Secretary General of the Assyrian Universal Alliance, who was present at the conference. The Consul expressed his regret for what had happened in the past, explaining that the Turks are trying to turn a new page with the Assyrians. He advised that he personally is working to establish contact and good relations with the Assyrians. However he was surprised that there were Assyrians attending the genocide conference. The Consul denied that the Turks have ever been guilty of any genocidal acts upon the Christian Assyrians.

Last but not the least, credit must be given to the The Assyrian Australian Academic Society (TAAAS)  whose members worked tirelessly in making this conference an absolute success. Members of the TAAAS standing committee on research also presented an unforgettable example of their hard work in the form of  a documentary film on the Assyrian Genocide in WW1. In this film were also included interviews from Assyrian survivors from the genocide who are now living outside the Asia Minor region.

This film was produced by the famous Assyrian film producer Mr. John Homeh. The Chairperson of the Genocide Centre congratulated the Assyrians for screening the documentary and requested a copy for the Centre. It is anticipated that the film will be shown again at the University. TAAAS is hopeful that the film can be screened to the Assyrian communities in Australia and overseas. The film will also be shown at all Assyrian schools, so that our youths learn more about our history and the betrayal of our nation.

We would like to thank our Assyrian brothers of Renyo Hiro Bahro Production and the Patriotic Revolutionaries of Bet-Nahrin (PROB), for their indirect participation and the materials forwarded about  the Assyrian genocide.  I would also like to extend our thanks to our brothers Andreas Schmidt (Germany),  Matay Arsan (Holland) and Carlo Ganjeh (U.S.) on this link for their support.

Attending the conference were many Assyrian members of the various organisations, the media and a large number of Assyrian youths, who showed an overwhelming interest in their history.

The outcome of this conference and the Assyrian participation has been such that the University has now accepted an earlier request, to launch the first ever exclusive international university conference on the subject of Assyrian genocide. The date is tentatively and significantly set for 7th August 2000. We will keep you and the Assyrian organisations and Federations fully informed about the progress of the intended conference. Of course the Assyrian feedback and support will be essential.

At present we are pleased to have progressed to the level of being acknowledged as a nation who has suffered under the Ottoman rule and whose historical contribution is a must in any such conference. This conference has proven very successful and is indeed a step forward towards a better understanding of our history and our demographic scatter as a nation.

In the near future we hope to distribute a more complete report about the conference including the conference papers.

God Bless Our Assyrian Nation

Hermiz Shahen
Secretary of AUA - Australia
P.O. BOX  34
Fairfield, NSW 1860



(ZNDA:  Washington)  As released by the Office of the Spokesman, U.S. Department of State

September 20, 1999
Secretary of State Madeleine K. Albright
New York, New York

I was very pleased to have another conversation with this delegation of prominent, free Iraqis.

The most important thing for any captive people is to have a voice. The Baghdad regime has tried hard to silence the Iraqi people, and to hide the evidence of its crimes against them. This courageous group, visiting New York for the opening of the General Assembly, has shown that Saddam Hussein has failed.

These free Iraqi leaders told me of the regime's continuing daily oppression against all those Iraqis still subject to Baghdad's control. They emphasized their concern to relieve the suffering of the Iraqi people, while preventing any of their country's wealth from going back to Saddam Hussein for palaces and poison gas.

We particularly agreed on the need for Saddam Hussein to comply fully with UNSCR 688, among the other obligations imposed by the world community for the protection of the Iraqi people and their neighbors.

I was glad to hear that other governments will join us in listening to these brave, free voices of Iraq, as the UNGA considers how to support the Iraqi people against the depredations of their own government.

I hope other free countries will join in supporting the Iraqi people in recovering the country and setting it back in its rightful place among civilized nations.

Iraqi People's Delegation on September 20 included Mr. Albert Yelda as an independent Assyrian, from London, United Kingdom and a member of INC.  The Iraq National Congress (INC) will hold its National Assembly Meeting in New York on 20 October, 1999.



(ZNDA:  Detroit) The Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan Foundation board of directors has announced that seven groups, including the Arab-American and Chaldean Council of Lathrup Village, from across the state will share in a $500,000 "Seek-Find-Enroll 2000" grant. The grant offers support to Michigan nonprofit community organizations to develop innovative methods to find and enroll uninsured children eligible for MIChild and Medicaid health coverage.

MIChild was developed last year by the Michigan Department of Community Health for uninsured children of Michigan's working families. The program offers broad health coverage that includes regular checkups, immunizations, emergency care, dental care, pharmacy, hospital care, vision and hearing. Mental health and substance abuse services are also available. Eligible families pay a monthly premium of $5 regardless of the number of children they have who qualify for this insurance coverage.

Courtesy of  Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan (C) 1999


(ZNRU:  Montreal)  Ancient mosaics that once covered the floors and walls of Syrian churches but which ended up in a gloomy Montreal warehouse are likely to be returned to Syria, Canadian customs officials said Friday. The 39 terra cotta mosaics believed to date from the fourth or fifth century will be retained as evidence after they were seized on Thursday from a local antiquities importer. But they will probably be shipped back to Syria only after the conclusion of legal proceedings against the accused importer, customs investigator Richard Boucher told Reuters.

Sami Iskandar, a Montreal lawyer representing the Syrian government, filed a request in Quebec court seeking the return of the artifacts to Syria. "I filed a motion claiming the lift of the seizures to the benefit of the Syrian government,'' Iskandar said, adding that he plans to file next week a similar request under a Canadian law that prohibits the illegal trade of national cultural properties.

The Canadian law comes under the auspices of a UNESCO treaty of which Canada and Syria are members.

Experts from Montreal's McGill University and elsewhere have determined that the baked earth mosaics, some of which contain Greek lettering and intricate designs, originally came from the city of Alep, in northern Syria. "According to the experts, some of the mosaics were removed from the floors or walls of churches and other buildings in the same region, northern Syria,'' said Boucher.

Iskandar said the rare artifacts are of significant value. "They were made in the fourth or fifth century during the Byzantine era. They are very, very beautiful and have a great historical value,'' he said.

Authorities seized the mosaics from a Montreal warehouse and private residence in July. The importer had brought them to Montreal in 1990, claiming in official customs documents that they were from Lebanon and valued at only C$200,000, officials said. Canadian customs officials did not challenge that claim until 1996, when U.S. customs seized five similar mosaics in Champlain, N.Y., just across the border from Quebec, after a Montreal importer tried to export them to the United States. The importer in that case had indicated that the artifacts were in fact from Syria.

The Montreal seizure is not the first involving mosaics believed to have been shipped from Syria through the murky world of international antiquities trade into Canada and on to wealthy buyers in the United States. Another 32 mosaics seized in Montreal in 1996 were subsequently returned to Syria. Boucher said customs officers are still searching for 17 other Syrian mosaics that were part of a shipment of 54 brought into Canada in 1990.

Courtesy of Robert Melnbardis for Reuters Montreal (bureau 514-985-2434)
See also:  Archaeological Diggings, Vol. 6. No. 5, October/November 1999


"Shlama qablon:  True that a wonderful chapter, Zenda, in the Assyrian media is being closed, but I am sure that your new challenge, Zinda, is going to be of a greater success.  God bless you!"

Fred Aprim

"In the May 10th, 1999 issue of Zenda, you published a letter titled "AANF OFFICIAL POSITION ON ASSYRIAN CENSUS CLASSIFICATION" signed by AANF president Mr. Sargon Lewie. In that letter, he wrote "...AANF will maintain it's 1990 Census position on how the ethnic Assyrian Americans should be classified and incorporated in the year 2000 Federal Census tracking program....AANF maintains its position that all members Assyrian Americans should request to be classified as "Assyrians" only."  In the following issue (May 17, 1999), you also published a letter by Mr. Carlo Ganjeh (Assyrian American National Federation Census 2000 Committee Chairperson) in which he mentioned an emergency meeting to take place at the State Convention in Modesto ( May 29 & 30, 1999 ) discussing the Census 2000 issue.  To the best of my knowledge, no statement was released by any of the AANF officials about the outcome of this meeting since the Sate Convention.  Last weekend, while I was attending a political rally at the National Convention, I questioned Mr. Sargon Lewie about his letter and if any decisions were made during the Census 2000 meeting at the Sate Convention.  To my total astonishment, he denied writing the letter and ignored my question about the meeting.  Mr. Carlo Ganjeh was also present at the rally, but did not make any comments.  Can you shed some light on this matter?  Somebody is not being truthful."

Rita Pirayo

"The month of August is very dear to us and it was designated as the month to remember our people who died for no reason other than being Assyrian. We sincerely and proudly salute all and thank them for rekindling in our veins the spirit of Assyrian nationalism. We promise we will always remember them. In 1921 a foreign administration installed a Bedouin muslim from Hijaz as king over Assyrian land.

In August 1933, about 3,000 of our people were massacred. Women, children and infirms among them under the same rulership and with the same foreign administration its back to the wall (approval). In present day, it is equivalent of massacring 22,000 people if proportional representation is considered. It is a genocide.

We must learn from our history and act accordingly otherwise we will not have a cause to carry on with.

I have some personal points regarding the present status of our nation:

1. The minimum objective we demand is a self rule in a loose federal form. Any individual or organisation or grouping without such objective should not get support from our people because is a betrayal for our cause and a de facto submission to our oppressors, the Arabs, Kurds and Turks. Remember Singapore and Andora are states.

2. We never attach to any remnant of that Hijazi Bedouin family. Its hand is still stained with the Assyrian holy blood.

3. We never attach to any militant Islamist, because more of our people will be slaughtered and more of our holy places desecrated or demolished.

4. We never attach to any non-Assyrian grouping unless we are acknowledged in its manifesto that we are geographically and ethnically distinct.

5. We welcome the Pope's visit to Ur. The Pope is a priest and it is his duty to visit his parishes. He is visiting our land anyway. The Pope toured the world and he met Arafat the former holder of Kalashnikov, Saudi crown price whose rule forbids Christian worship, and the ruler of Sudan whose hand is stained with the blood of more than one million christian martyrs.

6. The west is tactical and not our friend but we have to use our skills and be strategists. They may harass us. They may use us as pawns or hostages but we have to be brave and soon we will be free and deal with them as a nation.

I have been living in this country for more than 21 years and I have learnt lots more and one day I will reveal it to you my people. It is a promise.

7. The classification of Assyrian/Chaldean/Syriac for the USA Census 2000 should be acceptable. It is a unifying process for our people in a foreign land. It is purpose is only for census and for our people in the USA. One can not force the others to accept a single definition, although logic is presented, and more discussions are futile.

8. The idea of changing the Assyrian organisation names from Assyrian to Assyrian/Chaldean/Syriac is not correct. It serves our enemies at home. Assyrian nationalism must mean and cover the historical Assyrian land to the Mediterranean sea. All its people are one people who belong to one nation.

9. Assyrian groups should air their differences openly by talking to each other. It is a weakness and divisive that we use the Arabic or Kurdish or Islamic media to air our Assyrian or Christian differences. 10. The Assyrian forum is futile without a code of conduct. One presents a thesis, and those who wish can reply to that thesis with objective presentation. Otherwise it should be removed.

Long live the Assyrian Nation.
Yours in Christ and Assyrian Nationalism"

Dr. George Habash
United Kingdom



The summit (September 3-5,1999 London, United Kingdom) was attended by delegates of six Assyrian political groups: Bet-Nahrain Democratic Party, the Assyrian Patriotic Parry, the Assyrian Democratic Party, Ashur Liberation Party, the Assyrian Democratic Union and the Assyrian National Congress (Observer). two other parties, the Assyrian National Patriotic Party and the Bet-Nahrain Patriotic Union, had input in the deliberations of the summit The groups resolved to form a strong Assyrian front next Spring.

The summit resolved to submit the name of Mr. Albert Yelda as the Assyrian representative in the Executive Council of the Iraqi National Congress and endorsed the idea of forming an independent committee in London to support Mr. Yelda in his duties. Each party designated one of its member to Serve in the committee and endorsed the membership of three other independent individuals in the 'Assyrian Reconciliation Committee." The Assyrian political panics attending the summit succeeded in their mission when Mr. Yelda was invited officially '('join the Iraqi opposition delegation who met with the U.S. Secretary of State in New York on September 20th.

Delegates of the summit held important meetings with officials of several Iraqi opposition groups who visited the site of the summit to meet with the Assyrian delegates. The visiting officials included those from the Free Iraq Council, Mr. Saad S. Jabr led the delegation, the Iraqi Communist Party, the Iraqi National Accord, the Movement for Constitutional Monarchy, and several Kurdish groups. In addition, the President of 'he Assyrian National Congress and a delegation from Bet-Nahrain democratic Party met at INC headquarters in London with Dr. Ahmad Chalabi and other officials of the Iraqi National Congress. The President of the ANC and the BNDP delegation attended a special meeting of the Centrist Democratic Movement and met with high officials of the British and Commonwealth Office and the First Secretary of the political section of the American Embassy in London. BNDP delegation was led by Mr. Pnuel Hormiz the vice-president of the BNDP Council and consisted of three other members, Mr. Albert Ohm and You sip Shakhali from Chicago and Rabi Sorro Sorro from Australia.

The Assyrian delegates were informed by reliable sources in the [NC that during the month of August another Assyrian delegation, representing three groups (ADM, AUA and ADO) met in London with the INC officials and submitted the name of Mr. Unadam Karma "as the only Assyrian representative in all organs of the INC and other Iraqi opposition groups." This demand was rejected immediately in the presence of the said delegation When Mr. Albert Yelda was officially invited, as the only Assyrian representative. to take part in the Iraqi delegation who visited with the U.S. Secretary of State in New York, John Nimrod of AUA and Ninos Baito of ADM tried in vain to stop his representation. Intimidating calls were made and letters were sent to the officials of INC, U.S. State Department and other Iraqi groups stating that Mr. Albert Yelda is not recognized by the three groups. Ninos and John telephoned Mr. Yelda demanding that he writes a letter stating that he ONLY represents the three groups! Mr. Yelda did not acquiesce to such insults. He refused to write such a letter. Instead he wrote a later, dated September 21st, to all groups, including those who took part in the summit, stating: "I am at the service of the Assyrian cause. I do not want to play politics I want to further our cause and insist on our rights in international and opposition circles. My only hope is that I can rise to the expectations of our people and yourselves." Not satisfied with Mr. Yelda's letter, John Nimrod Ninos Baito flew to New York on September 23rd to further their sinister plan.

Information Bureau
Assyrian National Congress
P.O. Box 3539
Modesto, California 95352
(209) 538-2795


The Eponyms of the Assyrian Empire 910-612 B.C., by Alan Millard
State Archives of Assyria Studies 11
Helsinki: Neo-Assyrian Text Corpus Project
1994. xvi + 153 pp., 20 plates.

One of the valuable sources for reconstructing the chronology of the ancient Near East is the information found in Assyrian texts concerning the officials who year by year held the office of Limmu, "eponym," and by whose names years were designated. The limmus included the king at the beginning of his reign, certain high state officials, governors of provinces, and others, in sequence. Tablets containing lists of these limmus were already noticed in the Kuyunjik collection at the British Museum by Henry Creswick Rawlinson in the middle of the last century, and some of the main texts were published in lithographed plates in 1866 in volume 2 of Cuneiform Inscriptions of Western Asia prepared by him and Edwin Norris. In 1870, volume 3, prepared in conjunction with George Smith of the staff of the British Museum, included a more complete copy of one of the main tablets, incorporating fragments published separately in volume 2 with others subsequently identified.

Transliterations and translations of these tablets were included by Eberhard Schrader in 1872 in his well-known volume Die Keilinschriften und das Alte Testament, and English translations were made available in 1875 by Smith in his volume, The Assyrian Eponym Canon with discussion of their bearing on Hebrew chronology; the full subtitle of the volume was, "containing translations of the documents, an account of the evidence, on the comparative chronology of the Assyrian and Jewish kingdoms, from the death of Solomon to Nebuchadnezzar." This was a handy reference book for students of that time, though it consisted only of translations; but the data were again offered with transliterations and translations in the second edition of Schrader's Keilinschriften und das Alte Testament in 1883, which appeared in an English translation (by O. C. Whitehouse) in 1885 (the third edition, 1903, was completely recast and no longer included this material; in p. 2 n. 8 of the present volume the reference should therefore be to "2nd ed." not "3rd ed."), and also in 1889 in volume I of Schrader's Keilinschriftliche Bibliothek, in 1912 in R. W. Rogers's Cuneiform Parallels to the Old Testament, and in 1927 in volume 11 of D. D. Luckenbill's Ancient Records of Assyria and Babylonia. Luckenbill was able to include the evidence of some additional tablets found during   the German excavations at Assur and published by Otto Schroeder in 1920 in Keilschrifttexte aus Assur verschiedenen Inhalts. These and other handy sources were replaced in 1938 by the definitive article "Eponymen" by Arthur Ungnad in the Reallexikon der Assyriologie, 2, pp. 412-57, which has been the authoritative reference for the last half century. It has however been inconvenient in being merely an article in a multivolume encyclopedia, and with the passing years the user has had the uneasy feeling that more recent discoveries may have put some details out of date.

The appearance of the present volume is therefore welcome on the ground of convenience, but more particularly because it takes account of the most recent evidence available.

The texts fall into three main categories: simple lists of the names of the eponyms--"Eponym Lists"--which cover the years 910 to 649 B.C.; lists with "historical notices" (Smith), "Beischriften" (Schrader), "Notes" (Rogers), "Erganzungen" (Ungnad), designated "Eponym Chronicles" by Millard, a term already used for instance by Hugo Winckler in his Keilinschriftliches Textbuch, which cover the years 858 to 699 B.C. with gaps; and individual letters, administrative documents, etc., dated by the names of eponyms.

Ungnad had listed twenty manuscripts of the first two types of list. Two of these, his Ce from Assur and Cf from Bogazkoi, relate to the second millenniUM B.C.., and are therefore excluded from the present volume; and one, his Cbg, is too illegible to include. Millard's volume includes all of the remaining 17, 4 of them not available in published copies in Ungnad's time (copies of two published by J. A. Brinkman in 1989), but included here in new copies, and two from Sultantepe in southem Turkey, published in 1953 by O. R. Gumey, making a total of 19. These consist of nine main cuneiform manuscript sources for the "Lists" and ten for the "Chronicles," most made up of fragments or being themselves merely fragments, six and nine respectively from Nineveh, two "Lists" from Assur, and a useful additional tablet of each type from the excavations at Sultantepe. Millard supplies copies of all 19 texts, those from Assur reproduced (with adjustments) from Schroeder's copies, those from Sultantepe from Gumey's copies, and those from Kuyunjik, many of which have previously been available only in 19th century lithographed form, recopied by him from the originals in the British Museum.

Previous publications have presented the material either in the form of eclectic texts without specific indication of which parts come from which manuscripts, or in some cases transliterations of individual fragments. The present monograph presents the material in combined form year by year in terms of the Julian calendar (to which the sequence is pegged by the mention of the solar eclipse of 763 B.C. in the eponym of Bur-Saggile (pp. 41, 58); each manuscript has text appropriate to an individual year transliterated under it. For instance under the year 740 B.C., the name of the limmu Nabu-etiranni is given, followed by transliterations of the appropriate lines from four "Lists" (three from Kuyunjik and one from Assur), giving simply his name, and one "Chronicle" (from Kuyunjik) which gives the additional information that he held the office of rab shaqê and that there was a campaign to Arpad in that year. It is convenient having all the available evidence separately indicated and gathered together in this way; but it is a pity that, thanks presumably to the desire of the publishers to save space, the extracts are compressed into two columns, making it less easy to compare the details. This section, headed "Text Score," is followed by an English translation combining all the data from the Lists and Chronicles, together with information from other sources. George Smith (1875) had included some data of the third type from dated texts arranged chronologically, and Ungnad (1938) had included an alphabetical list of eponyms with their dates and a summary of what was known about them, thereby providing an index to the lists. Millard gives a "Catalogue of Eponym-Dated Texts" (pp. 79-125), making up a substantial part of the monograph, which likewise lists all the limmus in alphabetical order, with their dates and references to and transliterations of the significant parts of all the dated texts he has been able to identify each. This is a valuable part of the monograph, and it includes the names of the (postcanonical) limmus who held office after 649 B.C.., the last year in the lists. References to many texts dated to these officials had been collected in 1956 by Maria Falkner, and on their basis she had worked out a sequence and individual dates for them. This was a very creditable effort, but in the present monograph, Robert Whiting has contributed a chapter on the postcanonical and extracanonical (post-612) eponyms, showing, on the basis of additional information not available to Falkner, that there are considerably more names than years and that it is not really possible to assign dates to most o them, though in some instances the sequence of a few can be worked out.

The volume concludes with indices of Divine, Personal and Geographical Names; Titles of Eponyms and Other Akkadian Words; and Excavation, Museum and Publication Numbers (not including the Eponym Lists). Those familiar with the usual sequence of British Museum numbers-K(uyunjik), Sm(ith), D(aily)T(elegraph), R(assa)m, BM/Serial (whole) numbers, Collection (date) numbers- will be temporarily confused by what is perhaps the influence of the word processor, in the rearrangement of these in alphabetical order. This review has aimed to survey the content and presentation of the monograph; no attempt has been made to check details, something that will no doubt be undertaken in other reviews.

T. C. Mitchell
British Museum

Links to Other Assyrian Websites

Re-Elect Ben Elias:  An Assyrian Concilmember of Union City, California
Protest U.S. State Dept's Decision
Coakley's The Church of the East and the Church of England



BC (8th Century B.C.)

Around this time, the Aramaic language and script became the principal commercial and diplomatic means of communication in the Middle East.  After the fall of the Persian Empire, Greek slowly replaced Aramaic.  Until the second century B.C. Aramaic reigned supreme.

The Development of the Aramaic Script, Naveh

AD (1845)

The Swedish Isidor Lowenstern was the first to advocate the view that the Babylonian script was a Semitic language.  He claimed that the phonetic symbols of the Babylonian cuneiform writing were simple consonant signs, and like the later Semitic alphabetic writings (Syriac, Hebrew, Arabic) the vowels were unrecorded.  Five years later, Edward Hincks, discovered that these signs did not represent consonants, but syllables.  He wrote: "not one single sign standing for a simple consonant, but signs representing a consonant preceded or followed by a vowel."

Extinct Languages, Friedrich


October 8, 1885:   dies, Rev. Polous Enwiya, Assyrian activist and humanitarian.  Rev. Enwiya immigrated to the United States during his youth and assisted many early Assyrian immigrants to America.



Upon seeing the Nimrud Lamasu (Assyrian winged-bull), being dragged up the steps into the British Museum in 1850, D. G. Rossetti speculated that this might not be its last stop:

For as that Bull-god once did stand
And watched the burial-clouds of sand,
Till these at last without a hand
Rose o’er his eyes, another land,
And blinded him with destiny :---
So may he stand again; till now,
In ships of unknown sail and prow,
Some tribe of the Australian plough
Bear him afar,--- a relic now
Of London, not of Nineveh !



A rare Assyrian newspaper rendered in its French newspaper as Lichono Doumto (National Language) has made its way into the Harvard collection in what would seem to be a full set. This newspaper, printed in Beirut under the editorship of Ibrahim Hackverdi, appeared twice monthly from 1927-1931. Aside from a beautiful typeface in the western Syriac style, the newspaper carries its date in 'abjad' (do I need to explain what that is?) and does not stint on pictures, some familiar (of Naoum Faik often) and others more rare of schools and students.

The collection was rescued from a flooding basement by Mr. and Mrs. George Donabed from the home of George Donabed's aunt in Watertown, Ma. Accompanying the collection are some wonderful photographs of a "Sons of Assyria" Fourth of July parade in Worcester, Ma from 1922, and rare calendars as well as more familiar periodicals. All Assyrians should be grateful to the Donabeds for their diligence, especially since this is not the first time they have collected and preserved Assyrian materials. Because there were several almost complete sets of Lichono Doumto, the Donabeds will donate one set to the Ashurbanipal Library of Chicago, and another similar set to UC Berkeley where the Assyrian Foundation of American Book Fund helps that institution to collect and preserve our heritage in print.

The Donabed example of tapping into collections from basements and attics, when followed by others will allow us to expand our collections.

Dr. Eden Naby
Near Eastern Studies Dept
Harvard University

Oct 23

Bet-Eil Assyrian Church presents One day Seminar with Nate Mirza
10:00 AM - 4:00 PM

Lunch will be served at 12:30 PM
Donation:  Adults:  $15:00   Children: $5:00
Location: Bethel Church, 1201 South Winchester Blvd.  San Jose, California
For more information please contact:

        Tel: (408) 264-7058
        Fax: (408) 264-7087
        E-mail: beteilchurch@jps.net

Oct 30

Hosted by the Assyrian Athletic Club & Assyrian Media Communication

7:15 PM
White Eagle Banquet 
6839 North Milwaukee Avenue

Entertainers:  Walter Aziz, Amanouel Bet-Younan, & Fatin Shabo
Donation:  $ 15.00

Hanny Baba             (773) 465-9308
Ninif Michael           (847) 486-1845
Samir Younan          (773) 973-0977
Assyrian Social Club (773) 478-8808

Bring Your Customs for Prizes & Fun!

Please come & support our youth programs
Dec 31

The Assyrian American Association of San Jose proudly presents
"Year 2000 Dinner Dance" with Ogin & Martik
Westin Hotel, Santa Clara

Package includes complete dinner with appetizer and dessert, two complimentary Wine/Beer drinks or four soft drinks, Champagne toast , after mid-night coffee/tea service and the best Assyrian and international dance music
Ticket Information:
   Saturdays from   10:00 AM to   2:00 PM
   Wednesdays from 8:00 PM to 10:00 PM

Tickets will only be sold at the Assyrian American Association of San Jose

20000 Almaden Road, San Jose 
408-927-8100  or  408-927-9100

October 2nd to October 21           member $120   non-member $130
October 23rd to November 21      member $130    non-member $140 
November 24th to December 30   member $140    non-member $150 
          *********** Absolutely no refunds or exchanges***************

Jan 28,

Divine Liturgy in the Eastern Assyrian Rite (Chaldean and Malabarese)
Basilica of St Cecilia in Trastevere

This Week's Contributors:
in alphabetical order
 Fred Aprim
Ninous Bebla
Surfers Corner


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