An Annotated & Illustrated Collection of Worldwide Links to Mythologies,
Fairy Tales & Folklore, Sacred Arts & Sacred Traditions
by Kathleen Jenks, Ph.D.
Pacifica Graduate Institute


[The music is a transcription of an ancient Hurrian Hymn --
see Richard Dumbrill's site below the image of a harpist]


Map of the Near East from Chicago's Oriental Institute
[see below]
[For more maps of the Near East, see this page of links from]
.General Links
Relevant to the Entire Near Eastern Region

[Note:  a menu of Myth*ingLinks pages on specific regions
will be found at the bottom of this page]

[Added 1 March 2000]:  This is Archäologie im Internet, a German site with a well chosen selection of links to many Near Eastern archaeological sites; many of these are in English but other languages are represented as well. (Note: this site is also listed elsewhere in my Near East pages.)
Chicago's Oriental Institute has a superb collection of Near Eastern artifacts.  This page looks at some of them, grouped both by region and theme:
The Oriental Institute Museum is a showcase of the history, art and archaeology of the ancient Near East. An integral part of the University of Chicago's Oriental Institute, which has supported research and archaeological excavation in the Near East since 1919, the Museum exhibits major collections of antiquities from Egypt, Mesopotamia, Iran, Syria, Palestine, and Anatolia.
Author's Note:
I remember being at the Oriental Institute in the 1980's.  I had read about the Institute for many years while I was researching an historical novel on Moses (The River and the Stone -- now out of print).  I felt a sense of awe at actually being there at last.  I remember looking at small Egyptian artifacts in a glass display case and wondering why the shelves were shaking.  I assumed it was a passing subway (I had lived many years in NYC so it was a logical assumption, even though I was living in southern California by then).  I later learned that the shaking was caused by an unexpected earthquake centered far south of Chicago in St. Louis.  I wondered why it had struck exactly at that moment when my time-gyres were intersecting those of ancient Egypt's.

What struck me was how fragile those Egyptian artifacts were, those tiny vases and figurines, standing on delicately trembling glass shelves in a world that didn't even exist when they were first crafted millennia ago.  How strange, I thought, if they were to be destroyed a world and eons away from that ancient Near East.  But they survived, as do we all, refugees from that lost world, our bones still quaking from the buried memories of hidden numinosities.

Ever since, I've felt a special kinship with the University of Chicago's Oriental Institute.
Again from the Oriental Institute in Chicago is this fine page on "Women in the Ancient Near East: A Select Bibliography of Recent Sources in The Oriental Institute Research Archives"; it is compiled by Terry G. Wilfong.
From Columbia University comes this page of resources in Middle Eastern Studies -- the page of links is well chosen and brief enough not to be overwhelming to newcomers to this field.
From Chicago's Oriental Institute comes this highly specialized but engrossing page with a huge number of links to Mesopotamian data from worldwide archaeological work (some links are broken and will just give you 404's, but don't be discouraged -- there's great material here).
Still highly specialized, this is a meta-guide to more Near Eastern resources on the internet from the Oriental Institute.
Chicago's Oriental Institute also offers ABZU discussion lists.  What, you may ask (as I did), does ABZU mean?  I clicked on two ABZU hypertext links and came to a little page that gives this wonderful explanation:
1. the abzu as Enki's shrine / temple in Eridu 2. the abzu in locations other than Eridu 3. the abzu as a (partly?) subterranean structure 4. the abzu as a mythical place where the life influencing powers reside and where their results, as well as the means to influence their effects, originate 5. the abzu described as incomprehensible, unfathomable, secret 6. the abzu as a place producing raw materials 7. abzu in DN 8. abzu in TN 9. abzu in PN; Archaic, Presarg., Gudea, Ur III, OB, Post-OB
What a great word!  It should be better known, especially among those who love mythic and depth psychological contexts!

Meanwhile, the reason I'm giving you the above link is because, if you have the time to get involved in often very active discussion lists, you'll find the best ones listed here:

This is an index of mailing lists (majordomo, listserv, listproc, etc.) and discussion groups focusing on, or with substantive content on topics and research in ancient Near Eastern studies.

Old Babylonian Period, ca. 2000-1600 B.C.E.
[From Chicago's Oriental Institute]
If you're interested in ancient Near Eastern music, don't miss this superb site by Richard Dumbrill: "The Musicology and Organology of the Ancient Near East 3500 - 500 BC."  His 700 page book is available in 3 formats: as a book, a CD-ROM, or it can also be downloaded directly from this site.  It looks rich and very impressive.  (The page includes Dumbrill's transcription of a Hurrian Hymn, which is the music on my page.  For data on the Hurrians, check this link:
Sometimes my webbing work is made easier by the careful guides at -- this page offers a number of examples, all from N. S. Gill, the guide to Ancient/Classical History.  This page of hers looks at a handful of briefly annotated links to Near Eastern alphabets, languages, and their origins.
These are Gills' links to introductory information on the various geographical regions in the Near east.
These are Gill's especially fascinting links to Near Eastern Science, Math, and Technology.   There are many surprises here.
These are Gill's links to lovely, illustrated sites on Near Eastern art, archaeology and Architecture.
Finally, these are Gill's links to the much misunderstood role of sacred prostitution in the Near Eastern world.
This is the Encyclopaedia of the Orient.  It's trapped in frames but offers useful introductory information on a vast number of alphabetized entries as well as news updates on contemporary Near Eastern (and North African) issues.
Menu of Mything Links'
Near Eastern pages:
The Tigris-EuphratesRiver Valley
(also known as Mesopotamia, Sumer, Babylonia, Assyria)

Contemporary Iraq

(which once covered much of modern Syria, Jordan, Lebanon,
Palestine and Israel)

Anatolia & Central Asia
(which once covered much of modern Turkey & the steppes beyond)

The Three Monotheisms:

Mythinglinks' Home Page
Note:  my complete site map and e-mail address are on my home page.

This page created with Netscape Gold 3.01
Technical assistance: William Weeks
Text and Design:
Copyright 1998-2001 by Kathleen Jenks, Ph.D.
All rights reserved.

This ancient Hurrian Hymn (i.e., from roughly what we'd call Turkey)
comes from Richard Dumbrill  [see above]:

<BGSOUND SRC="RichardDumbrillHurrianHymn~arrangement.mid" LOOP=infinite>

Note:  Bar-separators are a detail cropped from the famous Standard of Ur  (c.2600-2400 BCE), found in Time/Life's series, MYTH AND MANKIND: Epics of Early Civilization: Middle Eastern Myth, 1998:54.

Updates: 10-12 February 2000; 20 February 2000;
1 March 2000;
1-2 December 2001 (redesigned + Islam link);
29 July 2002: added new Iraq link.