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Akkadian language

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Ancient Mesopotamia
EuphratesTigris
Assyriology
Cities / empires
Sumer: UrukUrEridu
KishLagashNippur
Akkadian Empire: Agade
BabylonIsinSusa
Assyria: AssurNineveh
NuziNimrud
BabyloniaChaldea
ElamAmorites
HurriansMitanniKassites
Chronology
Kings of Sumer
Kings of Assyria
Kings of Babylon
Language
Cuneiform script
SumerianAkkadian
ElamiteHurrian
Mythology
En?lish
GilgameshMarduk
Nibiru
 
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Akkadian was a language of the Semitic family spoken in ancient Mesopotamia, particularly by the Assyrians and Babylonians. It used the cuneiform writing system.

Contents

Dialects

Akkadian (lišānum akkadītum) is divided into dialects based on geography and time.

  • 2500 – 1950 Old Akkadian
  • 1950 – 1530 Old Babylonian/Old Assyrian
  • 1530 – 1000 Middle Babylonian/Middle Assyrian
  • 1000 – 600 Neo-Babylonian/Neo-Assyrian
  • 600 B.C. – A.D. 100 Late Babylonian

Cuneiform

Akkadian scribes wrote cuneiform using signs that represented Sumerian logograms, Sumerian syllables, Akkadian syllables, and phonetic complements. Cuneiform was in many ways unsuited to Akkadian: among its flaws were its inability to represent glottal stops, pharyngeal stops, and emphatic consonants, as well as a syllabic construction completely inappropriate for languages demonstrating the triconsonantal root. Sumerian cuneiform also distinguished between i and e; this distinction, however, though not originally present in Akkadian, was adopted rapidly as compensation for the disappearance of the original pharyngeals.

Grammar

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Akkadian was an inflected language, possessing two genders (masculine and feminine), three cases (nominative, accusative, and genitive), three numbers (singular, dual, and plural), and verb conjugations for first, second, and third persons.

Akkadian, unlike Arabic, has no broken plurals, although some masculine words take feminine plurals. In that, it is similar to Hebrew.

Syntax

Akkadian sentence order was subject, object, verb, which sets it apart from most other Semitic languages, apart from those of Ethiopia. It has been hypothesized that this word order was a result of influence from the Sumerian language, which was also SOV. There is evidence that native speakers of both languages formed the same society for at least 500 years, so it is entirely likely that a sprachbund could have formed. Further evidence of an original VSO or SVO ordering can be found in the fact that direct and indirect object pronouns are suffixed to the verb. Word order seems to have shifted to SVO/VSO late in the 1st millennium, possibly under the influence of Aramaic.

External links

da:Akkadisk de:Akkadische Sprache eo:Akada lingvo fr:Akkadien nl:Akkadisch no:Akkadisk sprk pl:Język akadyjski sk:Akkadčina sv:Akkadiska

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