Enki and Inanna—how the arts and crafts of civilisation
(the ‘me’ pronounced ‘may’) were taken to Uruk


The clues to this story in Room 56 at the British Museum include images of Enki, the god of fresh water and wisdom, and Inanna, the goddess of fertility and war. A map shows the location on the River Euphrates of Enki’s city, Eridu, and Inanna’s city, Uruk. In Mesopotamian mythology, the city of Eridu is in the abzu, the place whence flow the waters of the earth and the wisdoms of the world. The Uruk trough shows sheep and lambs emerging from Inanna’s reed hut. It is decorated with Inanna’s symbols. These are her rosettes and “high volutes” like poles with ribbons at their top. Other clues to be found on the heritage trail for this story are a bronze drinking cup, a statue of a lion’s head, a model boat and a flowery crown.

The story tells how Inanna put on her crown and left her city of Uruk to visit Enki in Eridu. He invited her to sit with him beneath the lion’s head drinking beer. As they drank beer together Enki offered Inanna the “me” written on clay tablets. She took away the “me” in her boat of heaven. When Enki awoke from a drunken slumber and saw what had happened he sent various sets of monsters to catch the boat of heaven and bring back the “me”. Each set of monsters was repulsed by Inanna and her helper, Ninshuba. Enki gave up the chase and the “me” were unloaded in Uruk with much celebration.

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Participants register

Looking for story clues

June Peters tells the story

"Once upon a time..."

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Participants tell the story to each other in groups

Solo storytelling