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Abstract

This dissertation reconstructs the activities of an administrative agency in the Middle Assyrian government that was tasked with producing a daily offering in Assyrian capital. The introduction reviews the approaches used in previous literature on Middle Assyrian administration and offers a theoretical framework for studying administration in a Middle Assyrian context. The first body section of the work shows that the Agency’s offering was supplied by imposing fixed gināu assessments on the governors of the kingdom’s major provinces, and it then works out the exact amounts imposed on each province. This discussion includes a significantly improved reconstruction of where these provinces were and the larger administrative groups into which they were combined. It also looks at how the Agency used the existing Middle Assyrian transportation network to transport those supplies. The second section examines how the Agency processed the supplies into finished offering goods. It also reconstructs the size of a complete daily offering and locates several monthly and yearly festivals on the Assyrian cultic calendar. The third section reconstructs the details of several large administrative crises which afflicted the Agency and looks at how the Agency handled the risk inherent in its operations. Each of the three main sections also includes a chapter discussing how the Agency documented the activities described. Finally, the work closes with a discussion of how the archive formed. In addition to the main text, there are also two supplementary files containing provisional full editions of every tablet in the archive currently available to scholarship. These are not formally part of the dissertation, but have been included for the convenience of the reader.

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