Inanna and Erishkigal

Sophie Juneau

Edmund Dulac 1915

This is my take on the story of Inanna, the Sumerian goddess who descended into the Underworld to meet her sister Erishkigal. It’s an outline of a longer piece I’m writing. Apologies to lovers of ancient literature for taking liberties with the original myth.

Inanna and Erishkigal

Thousands of years ago the Sumerian Queen–Goddess Inanna sat on her throne with her demure servant Ninshubur by her side.

Everyone loved Inanna. Her skin was luminous, like honey. Clear-eyed and calm, she was the goddess of love and war, a wise ruler of many cities: independent, beholden to no-one, a Queen in her own right. Her chosen consort was a young musician.

Now Inanna had an older sister, Erishkigal, who ruled over the Underworld. Erishkigal had never lived up to her promise. She had been an adventurous child, dark haired, clever and inventive, but she had watched her baby sister soak up…

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