the Burney Relief, this sculpture from Mesopotamia, which has
been dated to around 2,000 BC, depicts a woman with many of
the features displayed in the statue of Ninkharsag overleaf.
Our interpretation is that when the old gods were denigrated,
in order to replace them with new gods, such a disturbing characterisation
was seen to be necessary, in order to downgrade her memory.
The measuring rod and ring, symbols of rule and law, are needlessly
repeated in each hand and bent. The horned turban is exaggerated.
The drooping wings, naked body, crows feet, sheep/goat bell
necklace, and accompanying owls, complete the re-branding of
this Shining One, Kharsag biologist, farmer and wife of Enlil,
as the Hag of the Night.
Telegraph, Tuesday March 9, 2004