Tommaso Scarpelli, M.A., is a doctoral student at the Institute of Ancient Near Eastern Studies.

Persönliche Daten

Geboren am 3. September 1993 in Bagno a Ripoli (Florenz), Italien

Wissenschaftlicher Werdegang

  • Seit Oktober 2018: Arbeit am Promotionsprojekt Das Wetter in der Mesopotamischen Kulturgeschichte des II. und I. Jahrtausends v. Chr.
  • Seit September 2017: Studentische und wissenschaftliche Hilfskraft am Altorientalischen Institut der Universität Leipzig.
  • April 2016 -September 2018: Master of Arts Altorientalistik an der Universität Leipzig. Thema der Abschlussarbeit: Das Wetter in den altbabylonischen Alltagstexten.
  • September 2014 - Juli 2015: Erasmussemester an der Ruprecht-Karls-Universität Heidelberg.
  • September 2012 - Januar 2016: Bachelorstudium Archäologiewissenschaft an der Universität "La Sapienza", Rom. Titel der Abschlussarbeit: La Città -Stato di Ur nel periodo Protodinastico.


Das Wetter in der mesopotamischen Kulturgeschichte des 2. und 1. Jahrtausends vor Christus

The aim of the project is to provide an overview of the human perception of meteorological phenomena. Many different texts describe the consequences of natural events on everyday life and how weather phenomena were considered with regard to the supernatural. This work treats the dependent relationship of the Mesopotamians with weather and climate during the 2nd and 1st Millennium B.C. only by means of philological methodology. It is possible to summarize the main sources for this research as follows: everyday texts, letters and administrative texts, omens, documents from the Mesopotamian divinatory tradition, meteorological recordings from the 1st Millennium B.C., literary compositions. The first task of the work consists in collecting both detailed and brief attestations dealing with atmospheric events, that are contained in cuneiform letter corpora from two Millennia, and to present them in chronological order. The texts should be analyzed in each geo-climatic context, in order to provide a better understanding of the use of natural resources in Mesopotamian cultural history. The weather appears in omen compendia as part of the protasis, or as part of the apodose. After collecting all meteorological omens and integrating them to the Enuma Anu Enlil Tablets 42-49 (previously edited by E. Gehlken), they will be examined and compared to each other as well as to omens drawn from other phenomena with which weather is combined, such as astral events. A first edition of unpublished omen tablets in the British Museum is also planned with a view to investigate a continuous development of weather divination throughout two Millennia. In conclusion, a study on weather terminology will be provided together with idiomatic and regional expressions: figures of speech are often based on meteorological elements, so they offer another key to unlock Mesopotamian perceptions of weather.