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assigned to them.

assigned to them. Sumerian Parallels The parliamentary form and the need to govern justly find interesting records among the Sumerians: 1. Regarding parliamentary structures, it seems that around 3000 BCE it appeared in the city of Uruk (the biblical Ur or Erek?) a first form of structure appeared consisting of two “rooms” that were convened to discuss whether or not to go to war. 2. With reference to the need to lead a “good government” this Psalm mentions the extraordinary behavior of the Sumerian king named URUKAGINA (2600 - or 2300? - BCE). Urukagina, was not willing to tolerate any more abuses of that period's mighty, reformed the legal system which claimed to have been commissioned directly by “God” NINGIRSU. Urukagina was king/governor of the city of Lagash, in Mesopotamia, and became famous for his reforms against corruption and the measures taken in favor of the lower classes. He exempted widows and orphans from taxation; charged the city with the duty to pay funeral expenses; forced rich people to use silver in purchasing with the poor; and also decided that people could not be forced to sell their property against their will. His code is also known for the attention given to the situation of women who drew substantial benefits in terms of civil and social recognition. In the early verses of Psalm 82 (83), it is said that Elohìm sits in the assembly of El (the singular form is here used to designate the supreme “God”) and is pronouncing his sentence in the presence of other Elohìms, his colleagues are clearly of a lower rank. So we have some “Gods” partaking in an assembly convened by El, the supreme Lord. The Elohìm who chairs the meeting calls his “colleagues” to have respect for 158

justice, and rebukes them because they pronounce unjust judgments and are on the side of the wicked. He reminds them of the duty to defend the weak, the poor and the orphaned, to take care of the destitute, and in short, to fulfill the precepts the ANUNNAKI had dictated to the power managers they had appointed. After these calls, the editor introduces a personal account, underlying that these Elohìms “do not understand, can not understand” and then the chairman takes the floor to say, in a peremptory and menacing tone (verses 6-7): I have said that you Elohìm and the sons of the highest Lord (the one who is very high) you too will certainly die like an Adàm and like one of the heads you will fall 159

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