Good News (šimûtu)!

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Aaron Michael Butts
Enrique Jiménez



In this note, we discuss the Akkadian word šimûtu, which is not recorded in either of the standard Akkadian dictionaries but is attested in two Neo-Babylonian documents, one Neo-Babylonian inscription, and one commentarial explanation from the Seleucid period. The commentarial explanation confirms the word’s meaning as “(good) news,” previously suggested by some scholars. We propose that the Akkadian word was replicated on the model of Aramaic *šamūʿat “report, news,” which led to the creation of the Akkadian word as well as to an increase in its frequency.

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