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Nabu — Mesopotamian god

Mesopotamian god
Nabu is the ancient Mesopotamian patron god of
literacy, the rational arts, scribes and wisdom, patron
deity of Borsippa.
— 3rd son to Marduk & goddess Erua (Sarpanit)
— younger brother to twins Ashur / Osiris, & Satu / Seth
— he was the only surviving uncle to Horus
He was the husband of Akkadian goddess Tashmet
who was also considered a deity of wisdom.
Due to his role as an oracle, Nabu was associated
with the Mesopotamian moon god Sin.
Limestone statue of Nabu. Circa 810-800 BCE. The British Museum, London.
Nabu is the patron deity of Borsippa as well as the minister and
scribe of Marduk. Nabu's most important scribal duty was
effected annually on the 11th day of Nisannu (the first month
of the year).
Probably as a consequence of his scribal role, Nabu soon
became god of writing, progressively taking over from the
goddess Nidaba in that function. As god of writing, Nabu was
also the patron of scribes. From god of writing Nabu became
lord of wisdom.
Copper alloy votive plaque with inscription.
The British Museum, London.
The Concept Of Fate In The
Ancient World
Nabu was said to be the
keeper of the tablet of fate
regarding the ancient
Babylonians and Assyrians.
Gigantic limestone statue of Nabu
National Museum of Iraq, Baghdad
The main symbol of Nabu is a single wedge, vertical or
horizontal, sometimes resting on a clay tablet. This
wedge represents the writing stylus. Nabu is typically
depicted wearing a long fringed robe under a slit skirt.
Limestone statue of Nabu
The British Museum, London.
Cult places
Nabu's main cult centre was the Ezida temple in Borsippa.
His cult was also strongly linked to Babylon since his cult
statue was paraded between Borsippa and Babylon
during the akītu festival.
In the Neo-Assyrian period, temples of Nabu are attested
at Assur, Nineveh, Kalhu, Dur-Šarrukin, Kurba'il and
Guzana. Outside Mesopotamia, eastwards, a temple was
built for Nabu at Dur-Untash in Elam.
Nabu resided in his temple Ezida in the vicinity of Borsippa
(Babylon's lesser sister-city), considered by modern
scholars as a religious edifice in honor of this god. Each
New Year, his statue was moved to Babylon so Nabu
could pay his deep respect to his father.
Plan of Ezida, Nabu's temple at Kalhu
Nabu’s Worship
Nabu was continuously venerated until the 2nd
century, within the boundaries of Mesopotamia and
his cult even spread to ancient Egypt, where the
Egyptians linked Nabu with Thoth.
In the period of time between the death of
Alexander the Great in 323 BCE and the emergence
of the Roman Empire, Nabu was often compared to
the Greek god Apollo.