My sources, well, those would include people like Shlomo Ezre'el, Samuel Noah Kramer, Arno Poebel, Leonard Wooley, and other Sumerologists who excavated, translated, and collected the cuneiform tablets found throughout Mesopotamia during the end of the 1800s and the first half of the 1900s.
For general history, archaeology, mythology, and culture I use books like
"The Sumerians: their History, Culture, and Character" by Samuel Noah Kramer, which, as the title suggests, covers everything from food they ate, to what was taught in their schools, to how their writing evolved, and what happened to their ethnic peoples.
"History Begins at Sumer: Thirty-Nine Firsts in Man's Recorded History" by Samuel Noah Kramer, which covers all of the cultural, linguistic, war and peace, and other related elements of society where Sumerians recorded the first account.
"The Sumerians" by Leonard Wooley, similar to the first one, in that it covers the history of the ethnic people, and a little bit about who they were as individuals, and their impact on later cultures.
"Myths from Mesopotamia" from the Oxford World's Classic library, which is simply a volume of nothing but the Babylonian myths laid out for the reader to interpret. No extra addendums, or scholarly interpretations. Just you and the myths.
For more in-depth studies of specific myths I use books like:
"Myths of Enki, the Crafty God" by Samuel Noah Kramer and John Maier; a compendium of all of the known tablets containing the god Enki (many which still remain unpublished elsewhere), and cultural and literary analysis of said myths.
"Adapa and the South Wind: Language has the Power of Life and Death" by Shlomo Izre'el; which views the Adapa/Oannes myth in a mystical light, interpreting word choice, organization, and the overall significance of the myth.
"Inanna, Queen of Heaven and Earth: Her Stories and Hymns from Sumer" by Samuel Noah Kramer and Diane Wolkstein; where-in the entire Inanna cycle is laid out in new translations, including her birth, her acquiring of the Me, her marriage with Dumuzi, her descent, Dumuzi's death, and even a handful of hymns and prayers which were recorded down for her (seven, if I recall correctly).
If that's still not enough for you, I also use, from time to time:
"Jealous Gods, Chosen People: the Mythology of the Middle East" by professor David Leeming, which covers Egyptian, Mesopotamian, Anatolian, Jewish, Christian, and Islamic mythology side-by-side for comparative purposes.
"The Ancient Near East: an Anthology of Texts and Pictures" edited by James Pritchard, which brings together translations of nearly 100 myths, letters, elegies, legal documents, poems, hymns, and rituals from Egypt, Mesopotamia, Ugaritic, Anatolian, and Hebrew mythology.
The word the Sumerians used to dictate a god, or a deity, was dingir, a compound word. It combined di and gar, which meant, together, "one who delivers a decision." You can find this information, and much, much more, in John A. Halloran's "Sumerian Lexicon," which is available online as a free PDF file. The lexicon covers nearly 4,000 Sumerian terms, took fourteen years to compile, and draws it's information from more than 30 cross-referenced sources.
The translation of Anunnaki comes from a variety of Near Eastern dictionaries, but, looking on Wikipedia, it does list them as sources, and it does give the same definition. You do not need to use Wikipedia to learn this though. Reading the myths is enough.
An and Nammu give birth to Enlil, Nudimmud (later, Enki), and Ninmah (later, Ninhursag). Nudimmud and Ninmah give birth to Ninshar, Ninkurra, Ningikugal, Ninimma, and Uttu. All of the preceding deities are born in Dilmun (paradise) and their offices are over plants, pastures, marshes, wetlands, and reeds (respectively). None of them come from the sky, or have aerial functionality. Several more generations come about: Nanshe (office: the ocean), Ninsun (office: cow herds), Sud (later Ninlil, office: southern wind) and then Enlil begins creating deities.
You would think the Lord of the Air (Enlil), and the Queen of the Air (Sud) would create aerial deities... nope. Nanna is born in the underworld, and represents time, and wealth; only in Babylon does he become the moon. Ereshkigal is the personification of the Underworld. Inanna is a grain goddess before becoming Queen of Heaven. Namtar, Neti, Ninazu, Ningiszhida, et al, all deal with Underworld functions, or earthy offices.
The Anunnaki were never "they who from the sky came to earth" as those hacks Sitchin, Icke, and "Ancient Aliens" suggest.
Enough evidence for you?
~ Wandering Scribe
edit on 22/2/13 by Wandering Scribe because: correcting some code