Ubaid Female Ophidian Figurines, 5th Millennium BC
The action I’m currently writing into my latest novel is now taking place among the Ubaid people in Southern Mesopotamia, so I need a refresher on the city of Eridu that the Sumerian King’s List declares: “After the kingship descended from heaven, the kingship was in Eridug.”
There is great mystery surrounding the religion of the Ubaid, which is not hard to understand since their material culture spanned 2700 years, from 6500 to 3800 BC. This period is comparable to the Egyptian from predynastic (around 3000 BC) to its collapse to foreign conquerors. Although we know quite a bit about Egyptian Religion because literacy allowed history to be recorded from the First Dynasty, worldwide literacy emerged in Mesopotamia long (about 800 years) after the end of the Ubaid material culture.
All we have on Ubaid religion is what we can surmise from excavated artifacts. But we can know a couple of things about the Ubaid which give us clues. First, with a nod to the late Marija Gimbutas (you did finish our recent video of Marija holding forth on the primordial goddess religion of Europe and Western Asia, with a host of artifacts, right? If that 1:42 video put you to sleep, read this), I’m presuming the Ubaid originally worshipped an Abzu goddess before developing the Sumerian pantheon.
Given the dating of the Ophidian figurines and Elongated Skulls found among Ubaid artifacts, I estimate these date to the worship of the Abzu goddess, with a snake serving as forerunner and father of her ophidian progeny, prefiguring her future consort Enki . These strange material artifacts turn out not to be unique to the Ubaid or to this period, but evidence elsewhere dates the other incidences later or contemporaneous with the Ubaid, as demonstrated in the following fine video published (Dec 19, 2017) by Vlad (Vlad9VT on YouTube). Before you start the following video, I urge you to watch the entire 35 minutes and see how the Ubaid figurines resemble contemporary and later figurines excavated elsewhere in the world. Similarly, artificially elongated skulls show up throughout the world.
The facts in this post are germane to the events I’m writing into my latest novel.
Thanks for visiting,
R. E. J. Burke