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Akītu-Temple of Ištar

a Pleiades place resource

Creators: Jamie Novotny Copyright © The Contributors. Sharing and remixing permitted under terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License (cc-by).
Last modified Feb 06, 2018 06:02 AM History
The New Year’s House (or Akītu Temple) of Nineveh's tutelary deity Ištar appears to date back at least to the Middle Assyrian period (reign of Tukultī-Ninurta I). Its Sumerian ceremonial name is not preserved in extant cuneiform sources. This temple's exact location remains unknown and it is certain whether Ištar's Akītu Temple was located in the citadel or in the lower town.

36.359605, 43.152528975

unlocated, temple


Based on an Akkadian inscription of the Neo-Assyrian king Ashurbanipal recording the rebuilding of this temple, it has sometimes been suggested that this akītu-house at Nineveh was located in the lower town because that text states that the temple was ina qereb Ninūa (“inside Nineveh”), rather than ina qabāl āli (“in the citadel”). However, this is not sufficient proof as Ashurbanipal’s palace, which is certainly in the citadel, is also stated as being ina qereb Ninūa. Therefore, this akītu-house may have been located near the Ištar temple (Emašmaš,) inside the citadel, as one annalistic text of Ashurbanipal seems to suggest. Thus, the debate about this temple’s location remains open.

Around 690 B.C., the Neo-Assyrian king Sennacherib started construction on an entirely new akītu-house at Nineveh, which he called Ešahulezenzagmukam. However, he abandoned work on it ca. 688 B.C., when he decided to rebuild the god Aššur’s akītu-house at Ashur instead. 

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Jamie Novotny, 'Akītu-Temple of Ištar: a Pleiades place resource', Pleiades: A Gazetteer of Past Places, 2018 <> [accessed: 28 September 2023]

            {{cite web |url= |title=Places: 310869662 (Akītu-Temple of Ištar) |author=Novotny, J. |accessdate=September 28, 2023 2:44 pm |publisher=Pleiades}}