Kullab = Kolob?


    Kullab was the name of one of the districts in the ancient Mesopotamian city of Uruk. Originally, it had been a city on its own, dating back to the period known as the Ubaid 1 or the Eridu period, roughly 5400-4700 BC. Eventually, Kullab merged with a neighboring city to form the larger city later known as Uruk. The two original cities became the districts of Eanna and Anu, known as such because they were built around temples dedicated to Inanna 1 and Anu 2 (or AN) respectively. The latter district was the one which had originally been Kullab, and its devotion to Anu is significant, because Anu (the Akkadian name) or AN (the original Sumerian name) was the chief god of heaven. Thus we see there was a tradition of the chief deity of heaven being connected to a place named Kullab, which sounds suspiciously like the name Kolob, which, according to the Abraham 3:2-18, is the place where God (Elohim) resides. To be more precise, Kolob is said to be nearest to God, and that information is also intriguing, because a word for near in Hebrew is qarob, and since there is an interchange between the consonants “l” and “r” in Semitic languages, kolob could easily have been a word with the original meaning of near.
    In terms of the possible significance of Uruk for Jeremiah (if that is indeed the name which appears in Jeremiah 15:15), it is possible that some light can be shed on that question by mentioning Nabonidus, 3 the last king of Babylon, who ruled during the middle of the 6th century BC, just after the time of Jeremiah. According to Ball (2001:89), transferred the name of Uruk to Edessa (in northern Mesopotamia), thus founding a new Uruk, because the old one (in southern Mesopotamia) had been lost to the Persians. This indicates that the name of Uruk still carried some special significance (probably because of its ancient cultic connections) during the 6th century BC, and that may have been a cultural phenomenon among the Babylonians even during Jeremiah's time. Therefore, it is conceivable that some of the Babylonians used the name Uruk to wistfully refer to their own country in a way that called its rich cultic history to mind, and that Jeremiah borrowed that term – perhaps even sarcastically – to beg the Lord not to send him there.


1. Inanna was a great Sumerian goddess, and perhaps even the “Queen of Heaven” who was later worshiped by apostate Israelites in come cases. The E-anna, her temple, means literally “house of heaven.”
2. AN (Anu in Akkadian) was the Sumerian name for the great, primeval father-god.
3. His son, Belshazzar, is mentioned in the book of Daniel.