qīptum Loans According to a Legal Document from Old Babylonian period BE 6/1 103

Abstract

The Old Babylonian period (2006-1595 B.C.) witnessed a remarkable an economic activity that led to the discovery of thousands of cuneiform inscriptions concerning economy. It also led the Babylonians to deal with a number of loans from which was the qīptum one that was of a commercial nature. It is to be noted that the contracts of such loans were so concise that do not give much information. The inscriptions showed also that the dealing with this type of loans was exclusive to the first Babylonian dynasty. The qīptum loan was used in the selling and purchasing transactions, trading travels and trading association business. It was expected that there had been an interest levied on such loans, while the inscriptions did not prove any of that. Nevertheless, when the Babylonian king Ammiṣaduqa issued the mīšarum, the government called off the prior dealings with the qīptum, whereas the references state that it was not included in the mīšarum provisions. However, the present research tries to tackle this point through a legal document which was the only one that shows a dispute happened over a quantity of cereals which was a qīptum loan.

Keywords

Cereals, harvest, loans