Administrative practices in the Old Babylonian letters from Šaduppûm

Anita Fattori – University of Sao Paulo

Tutub-māgir, Nana-mansumand Imgur-Sînare namesfrequently read in a group of fifty Old Babylonian administrative letters excavated at the archaeological site of Tell Harmal(ancient Šaduppûm),published by A. Gotze in 1958. Through these letterswe know that the mentioned individualswere part of the administrative bureaucracy of Šaduppûm. Thisdocumentation gives us details about some aspects of the rolesthey playedonthe management of agricultural lands. Theoccurrenceofspecificwordsand expressions(as biltum, šibšum, nēbeḫumand isiktum) allowsus toperceive some of the operational aspects andadministrative practices concerning the flowof people, information andgoods in this local administrativecentre, specifically when Šaduppûmwas under the control of Ibal-piel IIking of Ešnunna. In this paper,Iwill present and discuss this documentationin order tobring to light an important aspectof thelocal administrationofŠaduppûmas linked to the central administration of thekingdom ofEšnunna.Although Ešnunnahadsome authority to demand administrative control, it also reliedon the efficiency of practices performed by administrators in Šaduppûm,thus constitutingatwo-way relationship. Key words: Old Babylonian Letters; Administrative Practices;EšnunnaKingdom; Šaduppûm.