Sumerian literature by period and region

This chart lists the number of compositions currently entered in the catalogue organised by period and region. As the catalogue is a work in progress the numbers do not accurately reflect the extent of Sumerian literature at any moment in time.

The allocation of sources to periods is provisional in some cases. Currently liturgies and incantations are excluded throughout. For the first millennium, only compositions and individual proverbs also attested earlier are listed, as well as related catalogues. For the Old Babylonian period no regional distribution is given and only compositions also attested in other periods are listed. For further Old Babylonian compositions see edition2/etcslbycat.php and

Click on a number to see the compositions attested in that period and region, grouped according to modern text categories.


Urk3: Uruk III (c. 3200-3000 BC)
PSrg: Pre-Sargonic (c. 2800-2350 BC)
Srg: Sargonic (c. 2350-2200 BC)
Ur3: Ur III (c. 2200-2000 BC)
OB: Old Babylonian (c. 2000-1600 BC)
MB: Middle Babylonian (c. 1500-1000 BC)
NA: Neo-Assyrian (c. 900-612 BC)
NB: Neo-Babylonian (c. 1000-539 BC)
LB: Late Babylonian (c. 539-85 BC)
UND: Undetermined

1 This figure includes nearly 200 untitled and often fragmentary compositions, many of which are written using UD.GAL.NUN conventions. Sources marked L (lexical or literary) in Krebernik's catalogue (Krebernik 1998) have not been included.
2 This figure includes approximately 30 exercise tablets inscribed with extracts from unidentified compositions.