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Reading source texts


Admission requirements


Reading Akkadian source texts from the third (OAkk), second (O/MB, O/Mass) or first millennium (N/LB, Nass).

The student reads selected texts in cuneiform, transliterates them in class, gives a translation and grammatical analysis of the transliteration and studies the background of the texts.
The instructor offers further information about the linguistic aspects and cultural and historical context of the texts.
The student reads selected secundary literature about the historical context of the texts and summarizes them in a short weekly paper. The content of the literature is discussed in class.

Course objectives

  • The ability to decipher, transliterate and translate cuneiform texts from the selected period.

  • Knowledge of the historical development, function and cultural context of the selected texts.


Please consult the timetable on the Classics and Ancient Civilizations website.

Mode of instruction

  • Workgroup

Course Load

  • Class: 28 hours

  • Translating independently: ca. 42 hours

  • Reading literature: ca. 40 hours

  • Writing weekly papers: ca. 56 hours

  • Writing the final essay: ca. 114 hours

  • Total study load: 280 hours

Assessment method

  • Weekly papers of 800-1000 words: ##%

  • Final essay of ca. 5000 words: ##%



Reading list

  • To be announced


Students are requested to register through uSis, the registration system of Leiden University for this course. General information about uSis is available in English and Dutch.

Registration Contractonderwijs


Contact information

Mw. J.H.E. Krul