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The Oldest Love Poem

Old Babylonian Period, 18th century BC

This inscription, dated to the 18th century BC and belonging to the Old Babylonian Period, is described as the oldest known love poem in the world. According to Sumerian belief, it was a sacred duty for the king to marry a priestess once a year instead of INANNA, the goddess of fertility and love, in order to ensure the fertility of the soil and the fertility of the womb. This poem was probably written by a bride chosen for king SHUSIN, to be sung at the New Year’s Eve celebration, and was sung at banquets and feasts, accompanied by music, song, and dance.

Groom, lover of my heart
Your beauty is great, sweet as honey
Lion, the precious of my heart
Your beauty is great, sweet as honey
Groom, let me caress
My precious caresses are sweeter than honey.
The bedroom is full of honey
Let’s delight in your beauty,
Let me caress you lion
My precious caresses are sweeter than honey.
Groom, you enjoyed me,
Tell my mom she will give you nice things.
Dad will give you gifts.
Because you love me
Please give me your caresses,
My lord my god, my lord my protector,
I am SHUSIN who pleases the heart of God ENLIL
Please give me your caresses,

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