“Dead or Alive”: Towards a Formula in Legal Texts from Emar

Alexandrov Boris E.

The article deals with the expression “dead or alive”, which is used in the Emar legal texts to characterize slaves who lost their freedom through a sale by their relatives or voluntarily bondage in order to repay their debts. The author examines the historical context and content of the relevant sources. Special attention is paid to the orthography of the formula “dead or alive” and to the interpretations advanced in earlier scholarship. The final part of the study provides a Russian translation of all texts containing this formula.

Keywords: ancient Emar, Ancient Near Eastern law, legal formulae, slavery

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