Preface

Most of the volumes of this series have had considerable lead time. That is, the preliminary transliterations, along with indices and concordances, have been in the hands of the editors several years in advance of the publication deadline. By contrast, when the decision was made last year to exclude the grants and schedules from Part II of the administrative texts (SAA 11) and to move the publication date of this volume forward to coincide with the publication of SAA 11, editors for the volume had not yet been assigned. Editorship of the volume was, for obvious reasons, offered to Postgate, but he was unable to take on any additional editorial responsibilities at the time. He did, however, agree to collate the texts in the British Museum, make any necessary copies, and consult with the editors based on his lengthy experience with these texts.

In order to complete the volume in the time allotted, it was obvious that it would have to be prepared in Helsinki. Accordingly, Kataja began preparing translations of the texts based on the uncollated transliterations then in the Project's database. Kataja prepared preliminary translations of the following texts: 1-5, 10-12, 24, 43-44, 46-48, 68-84, 86-87, 91, 97-98. Nos. 16-17 and 27: 1-35 were translated by Parpola and nos. 6-9, 13-15, 18-23, 25-26, 27:36-r.22, 28-42, 45, 49-67, 85, 88-90, 92-96 were translated by Whiting. Parpola revised the translations of nos. 1, 5, 10, 43-44, 69-72, 74-79, 82-84, 97, and Whiting revised nos. 4-5, 24, 48, 68-69, 75-77, 80-81, 84, 86-87, 91 and 98. In the critical apparatus, the following comments were provided by Kataja: 71:8 and 11; 76:22, 33; 77 i 6; 83:7. The remainder of the critical apparatus was prepared by Whiting unless attributed to another contributor. The contributors' signatures in the critical apparatus are: (HF) Helmut Freydank; (ILF) Irving L. Finkel; (SP) Simo Parpola; (JNP) Nicholas Postgate. The transliterations and reconstructions of the text are the responsibility of Parpola and Whiting, with the advice of the collators.

The Introduction was written by Whiting although parts of the discussion on the distinction between grants and administrative texts are based on notes provided by Simo Parpola. The Introduction and the critical apparatus are, of necessity, more brief and less comprehensive than these texts warrant. The purpose of the SAA volumes is not to provide all-encompassing studies of the text genres presented, but to make available material for further studies in the form of accurate and well-indexed transliterations and translations. Despite the number of times these texts have been edited, there remain many important points of cultural, economic, and philological significance that have not been fully explored, but that have had to be touched only lightly or passed over in silence.

At this point, the editors normally express their gratitude to the Project staff for their assistance, but since almost the entire staff was directly involved in preparing the volume, this does not seem appropriate. However, the editors would like to express their sincere thanks to Raija Mattila, who, despite an exceptionally heavy workload, was able to proofread the manuscript and make the final selections for the illustrations as we! I as undertaking the onerous job of pasting up the collations, a task that normally falls to the editors.

The completion of this manuscript from a standing start in about a year owes much to the whole-hearted cooperation of those already mentioned, and of course, Julian Reade who provided the illustrations. Since neither of the editors have ever seen any of the original tablets in this edition, we are particularly grateful to our principal collators, Nicholas Postgate and Helmut Freydank, who have gone back to the tablets again and again to answer what must have seemed the most trivial of questions. Our thanks also go to Jeremy Black for his prompt and positive response when asked for a copy of CTN 4 256 (our no. 84) prior to its publication.

June 1995

Laura Kataja

Robert Whiting

Laura Kataja & Robert Whiting

Laura Kataja & Robert Whiting, 'Preface', Grants, Decres and Gifts of the Neo-Assyrian Period, SAA 12. Original publication: Helsinki, Helsinki University Press, 1995; online contents: SAAo/SAA12 Project, a sub-project of MOCCI, 2020 [http://oracc.org/saa12preface/]

 
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