The Amarna Letters; Ashur-uballit, King of Ashur (Assyria)

EA15; From Ashur-uballit , King of Ashur to an unnamed Egyptian Pharaoh

To the king of the land of Egypt – speak!

So (says) Ashuruballit , the king of the land of Ashur. To your house, to your country, to your war chariots and to your army well-being!

I have sent my envoy to visit you and to see your country. That my forefathers until now have not sent, I have sent you today; one fine chariot, two horses, (and) a jewel from precious stone, a date shaped bead from genuine lapis lazuli as a good-wish present, (I) have directed unto you. My envoy, whom I have sent you (only) to visit (you), do not hold him back! May he visit and leave! Your opinion and the situation of your country may he observe, then may he leave!

EA16; From Ashur-uballit, King of Ashur (Assyria) to Napkhororia (Akhenaten)

To Napkhororia, Great King, king of Egypt, my brother, thus speaks Ashuruballit, king of Assyria, Great King, your brother: may well-being reign over you, your house and your land!

I feel very pleased after having seen your envoy. This is felt, in truth… before me. I have sent you a beautiful royal chariot, two white horses, an unfurnished chariot and a beautiful stone seal as gifts. Of the Great King… it is said: The gold is in your land like the dust; Why is there …. in your eyes? I have begun a new palace, and I want to have it ready soon. Send me as much gold as is required for its decoration and for what is needed.

When my father, Ashurnadinahe, ordered his messengers to go to Egypt, they sent him twenty gold talents. And when the king of Khanigalbat sent his messengers to your father (Amenhotep III) in Egypt, they sent twenty gold talents to him. See, to the king of Khanigalbat (Mittani) I am …, but to me you have sent only a little gold, which is not sufficient, in spite of the goings and comings of my messenger. If it is your intention that a sincere friendship exist, send much gold! And you may send people on your part, and you will receive whatever you need!

Our lands are far apart, which is why our envoys must travel wisely. Those who detained your envoy were the Sutu (nomadic semites who pledged allegiance to Egypt), his attackers. Dead will I be until I have sent people to take the Sutu attackers… They will not detain my envoy. Why do they have to remain in foreign lands, and die in foreign lands, the messengers? If they have passed in a foreign country a part of their time, and the king has taken advantage of it, they may then remain there and die; the king has, certainly, had a gain. But if he has not had any, why do the messengers we send have to die in a foreign country? The envoys are being attacked and die in a foreign land.

Amarna Letters

Copyright J Hill 2010