By Isaac Mendelsohn
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Additional info for Slavery in the Ancient Near East
5. One male slave Lu-Sin by name, his price four [ ? ] shekels of silver [X] 1. has paid. 2. . 3. By the king he has sworn Beginning with the Sargonid period, slave-sale documents often contain the bukannu (Sumerian: gis-gan-na) clause. The exact meaning of this term is as yet not clear. It was undoubtedly a symbolical act consisting of the seller's handing over some kind of object to the buyer and thus legalizing the act of transfer of the sold commodity. Following are a few examples of slave-sale documents containing the bukannu clause from the Sargonid period, from the Third Dynasty of Ur, and from Larsa: ITT 11040 1.
127 It was at these arbitrary and unlimited powers of the creditor, which tended to reduce large numbers of freeborn Babylonians to slavery, that the laws of paragraphs 117-19 of the Hammurabi Code were aimed. The law decrees that, in case the hostage was a slave, the creditor could dispose of him in whatever manner he pleased, the debtor having no right to interfere. If the pledge was the debtor's slave-concubine who had borne him children, the Code tried to exercise a moral pressure on both creditor and debtor: upon the former not to dispose of her as he would legally be justified to do if she were a mere slave, and upon the latter to redeem his concubine when possible.
Nig-sam-ma-ni 5. ) gin kù-babbar Break. Rev. 1. i-[si]-la 2. d en . . ma ( ? ) -ka-sè 10 3. mu lugal in-pà10 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. One male slave Lu-Sin by name, his price four [ ? ] shekels of silver [X] 1. has paid. 2. . 3. By the king he has sworn Beginning with the Sargonid period, slave-sale documents often contain the bukannu (Sumerian: gis-gan-na) clause. The exact meaning of this term is as yet not clear. It was undoubtedly a symbolical act consisting of the seller's handing over some kind of object to the buyer and thus legalizing the act of transfer of the sold commodity.
Slavery in the Ancient Near East by Isaac Mendelsohn