Esarhaddon’s Succession Treaty as the Source for the Canon Formula in Deuteronomy 13:1

Journal of the American Oriental Society, Vol. 130, No. 3, pp. 337-347, 2010

12 Pages Posted: 28 Jul 2011

Date Written: 2010

Abstract

The purpose of this study is to propose a Neo-Assyrian origin for the so-called “canon formula” found in Deut. 13:1 (LXX 12:32). Sections of Esarhaddon’s Succession Treaty, also known as the Vassal Treaties of Esarhaddon (VTE), have previously been recognized as a literary model for both the curses of Deut. 28 and the Deuteronomic series of three laws governing apostasy from a prophet or oneiromancer, a family member, or an entire city (Deut. 13:2–12). Here Levinson proposes a similar origin for the canon formula of Deut. 13:1, as part of Deuteronomy’s larger project of creative literary reworking. Levinson suggests that the adjuration to loyalty of the adê provided a literary model for the authors of Deut. 13. Those authors transformed the Neo-Assyrian formula requiring exclusive loyalty to the “word of Esarhaddon” (abutu ša Aššur-aḫu-iddina) into one that demanded fidelity to “the word” of Israel’s divine overlord, Yahweh, as proclaimed by Moses.

Keywords: Esarhaddon’s Succession Treaty, Adê, apostasy series, canon formula, Neo-Assyrian literature, form - criticism, loyalty oath, Deuteronomy, literary history, reworking. Kanonformel, neuassyrische, Assurbanipal, Ashurbanipal, Die Assyrer in Palästina, Deut 13, Dtn 13, VTE, Deut 28, Dtn 28

Suggested Citation

Levinson, Bernard M., Esarhaddon’s Succession Treaty as the Source for the Canon Formula in Deuteronomy 13:1 (2010). Journal of the American Oriental Society, Vol. 130, No. 3, pp. 337-347, 2010. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1898231

Bernard M. Levinson (Contact Author)

University of Minnesota ( email )

245 Nicholson Hall
216 Pillsbury Dr., SE
Minneapolis, MN 55455-0229
United States
612-625-4323 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://levinson.umn.edu/

Register to save articles to
your library

Register

Paper statistics

Downloads
224
Abstract Views
1,699
rank
135,643
PlumX Metrics