RLBcB023 Ancient Near Eastern Religions

Faculty of Arts
Spring 2021
Extent and Intensity
1/1/0. 4 credit(s). Type of Completion: k (colloquium).
PhDr. Dalibor Papoušek, Ph.D. (lecturer)
Guaranteed by
PhDr. Dalibor Papoušek, Ph.D.
Department for the Study of Religions - Faculty of Arts
Contact Person: Mgr. Šárka Londa Vondráčková
Supplier department: Department for the Study of Religions - Faculty of Arts
Prerequisites (in Czech)
! RLB23 Ancient Near Eastern Religions
Course Enrolment Limitations
The course is only offered to the students of the study fields the course is directly associated with.

The capacity limit for the course is 50 student(s).
Current registration and enrolment status: enrolled: 0/50, only registered: 0/50
fields of study / plans the course is directly associated with
Course objectives
The course outlines main religious systems of the ancient Near East - religions of ancient Egypt, Mesopotamia, Syria-Palestine, and Anatolia. Starting with their general characteristics, it provides a survey of their mythological background, structure of the pantheons and the most important ritual practices icluding the priesthood and calendar.
Learning outcomes
After completing the course, students will be able to:
  • demonstrate the basic factual knowledge of the religions of ancient Egypt, Mesopotamia, Syria-Palestine, and Anatolia;
  • apply the basic terminology used in the study of the ancient Near Eastern religions;
  • interpret key literary and archaeological sources connected with the topic;
  • compare main mythological circles of the ancient Near East;
  • characterize the typological category of ancient religions, including their specific features in the Near East.
  • Syllabus
    • Introduction to the course. General characteristics of ancient Near Eastern religions
    • Egypt I: Cosmogonic myths and their social impact
    • Egypt II: Osiris' cycle and the conception of death
    • Class discussion I: Akhenaten's Hymn to Aten and Psalm 104
    • Mesopotamia I: Survey of Mesopotamian pantheons
    • Mesopotamia II: Ritual life
    • Class discussion II: Gilgamesh Epic
    • Syria-Palestine I: Survey of Canaanite pantheons
    • Syria-Palestine II: Ritual life
    • Class discussion III: Baal's cycle
    • Anatolia I: Survey of Anatolian pantheons
    • Final test
      required literature
    • HELLER, Jan. Starověká náboženství : náboženské systémy starého Egypta, Mezopotámie a Kenaanu. 3. vyd. Neratovice: Verbum, 2010. 413 s. ISBN 9788090392021. info
      recommended literature
    • HRŮŠA, Ivan. Bohové, chrámy, obřady a lidé : náboženství staré Mezopotámie. Vydání první. Praha: Vyšehrad, 2015. 286 stran. ISBN 9788074295386. info
    • Religions of the ancient world : a guide. Edited by Sarah Iles Johnston. Cambridge, Mass.: Belknap Press of Harvard University Press, 2004. xvii, 697. ISBN 0674015177. info
      not specified
    • BAINES, John, Leonard H. LESKO and David P. SILVERMAN. Náboženství ve starověkém Egyptě : bohové, mýty a náboženská praxe. Edited by Byron E. Shafer. 1. vyd. Neratovice: Verbum, 2009. 237 s. ISBN 9788090392014. info
    • STEHLÍK, Ondřej. Ugaritské náboženské texty : kanaanské mýty, legendy, žalmy, liturgie, věštby a zaříkávání pozdní doby bronzové. Vyd. 1. Praha: Vyšehrad, 2003. 389 s. ISBN 8070215879. info
    Teaching methods
    Lectures; home readings examined electronically in three semestral minitests; panel discussions based on home readings; final written test; colloquial written commentary on a chosen textual source.
    Assessment methods
    Requirements for the colloquium:
  • final written test in the basic knowledge of the ancient Near Eastern religions;
  • colloquial written commentary on a chosen textual source, including its defense.

    The final assessment includes: final test (100 points = 50%, limit 60 points); colloquial commentary (100 points = 50%, limit 60 points); participation in the classes, participation in class discussions, three semestral minitests in home readings (extra points added to the final test).
  • Language of instruction
    Follow-Up Courses
    Further comments (probably available only in Czech)
    The course is taught once in two years.
    The course is taught: every week.
    Information on course enrolment limitations: Zápis mimo religionistiku je podmíněn souhlasem vyučujícího.
    Listed among pre-requisites of other courses

    • Permalink: https://is.muni.cz/course/phil/spring2021/RLBcB023