A Dictionary of the Ugaritic Language in the Alphabetic Tradition.

Author:Huehnergard, John
Position:Book review

A Dictionary of the Ugaritic Language in the Alphabetic Tradition. By GREGORIO DEL OLMO LETE and JOAQUIN SANMARTI'N, translated and edited by WILFRED G. E. WATSON. Third revised edition. 2 vols. Handbuch der Orientalistik, vol. 112. Leiden: BRILL, 2015. Pp. xlii + 470, 471-989. $210

Gregorio del Olmo Lete and Joaquin Sanmartin's Dictionary (DUL) has become the standard lexicon of Ugaritic. The first edition was in Spanish, Diccionario de la lengua ugaritica (Sabadell-Barcelona: AUSA); in quarto format, its two paperbound volumes, the first published in 1996 and the second in 2000, comprised xxvii + 560 pages, and it was, if memory serves, relatively inexpensive. The second edition, a revision translated into English by Wilfred G. E. Watson, was published in 2004 by Brill; also in two volumes, but now hardback and octavo, it comprised xliv + 1006 pages, and was much more costly. The new, third edition keeps the format of the second, though it is somewhat shorter at xlii + 989 pages, and. unfortunately, still too expensive for most students to purchase. In the second and third editions, the phrase in the Alphabetic Tradition was added to the title, to indicate that the dictionary does not include the few Ugaritic words that are attested only in syllabic (Akkadian) cuneiform texts, but not in alphabetic texts, such as /riglu/ 'foot'. As in the earlier editions, proper nouns (personal, divine, geographic, and month names) are also included.

For the third edition, the editors cite no fewer than ten types of changes, ranging from the correction of typos, the harmonization of text translations, and the addition of new cognates, to more substantive changes of content, especially the addition of new words and new references from texts published since the appearance of the second edition (in particular, those of the "Maison d'Ourtenou" published by P. Bordreuil, D. Pardee, and R. Hawley in Ras-Shamra-Ougarit vol. 18, 2012), but also changes made in accordance with suggestions offered in some of the lengthy reviews of the second edition, and the addition of new bibliography (and the exclusion of all but a few studies published before 1970). The editors also acknowledge once again that Dr. Watson has contributed much to the work in addition to his felicitous translation. Although it has the same format as the second edition, the layout of the new edition strikes me as clearer and easier to read than its predecessor.

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