There are two versions of the death of Inanna.


Apparently she was whisked away to meet Ereshkigal, probably Lilith in their underground world. The story is straight out of "Sleeping Beauty" with the evil Queen putting her into a pseudo-death sleep and her brother Enlil or Bhima rescuing her.


The stories do give us more insight into the Underworld and its people where the Queen of Darkness live,

"To the Land of no Return, the realm of Ereshkigal, Ishtar, the daughter of Sin, set her mind. Yea, the daughter of Sin set her mind to the dark house, the abode of Irkalla, to the house which none leave who have entered it, to the road from which there is no way back, to the house wherein the entrants are bereft of light, where dust is their fore and clay their food, where they see no light, residing in darkness, where they ore clothed like birds, with wings for garments. Always the familiar examples of their appearances."

Here, Ishtar is Inanna whom they say goes there willingly.


The bird-like garments reminiscent of the Japanese figurines of helmets with bird-like bills; the wings, life-support systems. Again we see they eat clay which is excellent for ridding the system of radiation.


They soon stripped Inanna of her life-support suit, (which may have been as the ones believed to be in the pictures -plates no. 7 and 8) and at the gate a keeper first takes her 'crown' off:

"Why, O gatekeeper, didst thou take the great crown on my head?"


"Enter, my lady, thus are the rules of the Mistress of the Nether World." When the second gate he had mode her enter, He stripped and look away the pendants on her ears."

He then commenced to take the "chains round her neck,"

"ornaments on her breast," "girdle of birthstones on her hips," "clasps round her hands and feet," and breechcloth round her body," which all sounds like some manner of support-system.

When Ereshkigal saw her she "burst out at her presence," and Inanna "Unreflecting, flew at her."


Ereshkigal said to her guard,

"Go, Nomtar, lock her up in my palace! Release against her, against Ishtar, the sixty miseries," which were ailments of the eyes, sides, heart, feet and head, "against every part of her, against her whole body!"

News was then sent to Sin, or Rama, possibly Enlil, and it seems she was being held as ransom for the "life water bag" was what was wanted which seemed to be some sort of pure water, perhaps to remove radiation as we know only spring or distilled water can do best. He sent an envoy there to remind her that Inanna did not have it, but he did.


Inanna was then rescued and brought back to life with the "water of life."

In another Sumerian tale of Inanna's descent into the Underworld it is because she has the "seven me," the divine tablets, which seems to be a blending of another tale of Ereshkigal and the death of Inanna:

I am descending to the km; lo the Underworld. If I do not return,
Set up a lament for me by the ruins.
Beat the drum for me in the assembly places.
Circle the houses of the gods.
Tear at your eyes, at you mouth, at your thighs.
Dress yourself in o single garment like a beggar.
Go to Nippur, to the temple of Enlil.
When you enter his holy shrine, cry out:
'O Father Enlil, do not let your daughter
Be put to death in the underworld.
Do not let your bright silver
Be covered with the dust of the Underworld.
Do not let your precious lapis
Be broken into stone for the stoneworker.
Do not let your fragrant boxwood
Be cut into wood for the woodworker.
Do not let the holy priestess of heaven
Be put to death in the underworld.

Here, it is "Father Enki," the "God of Wisdom," who,

"knows the food of life, He knows the water of life; He knows the secrets. Surely he will not let me die."

No doubt this was meant to be Rama or Enlil.


Linen is mentioned which would be used if she did die, or was merely put to sleep, to preserve the body. The same story line is used of the different ornaments she wears but she also carries "the lapis measuring rod and line."


Her eyes have kohl or shadow on them but they state it is a salacious ploy but make-up had degraded to this when the Sumerians wrote, not realizing its benefits. All the decoration was removed as in the other story.


Her death is given though in more detail,

"Ereshkigal rose from her throne. Inanna started toward the throne. The Anunnaki, the judges of the underworld, surrounded her. They passed judgment against her. Then Ereshkigal fastened on Inanna the eye of death. She spoke against her the word of wrath. She uttered against her the cry of guilt. She struck her. Inanna was turned into a corpse, a piece of rotting meat, and was hung from a hook on the wall."

She did not return to life after three days, mark this in your mind for as we will see in the chapter on death this has significance, and a "lament" was begun for her and a handmaiden that was with her told "Father Enlil" of the sad news.


In this version he is upset with Inanna that she went there but this seems highly unlikely. "She who goes to the Dark City stays there," so he says here. Accordingly she is finally rescued by being sprinkled with the "food of life" and the "water of life" and she rose again.


Whatever did happen to Draupadi, peace was no longer contemplated.




I. SUMERIAN & BABYLONIAN PSALMS - Stephen Langdon - 1909.


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