Code Three: Wind Into Clay

Arthur Joseph, copyright 1996

Keywords: Short Historical Fiction, Law Codes, Mesopotamia, Education of Rulers, Mystery Initiation, Hammurabi, Terach, Ziggurats, Coneiform Writing, Hammurabi Style


The seven foot tall black stone post, called the Hammurabi Style, is inscribed with our most extensive surviving text of Akkadian laws, the famous Hammurabi Code (Avalon Project, Yale).

At the top of this post or style is a pictorial engraving of King Hammurabi, sitting at the feet of his teacher, the judge of heaven. Beneath that is a poetic caption stating the king's ideals of social justice; beneath that the law code.

Code Three: Wind Into Clay, which I composed in 1996, unfolds this heading into an imaginative yet historically congruent extrapolation of the modes of education and initiation among mesopotamian urban elite at that historical moment, when increasing social complexity called for translation of leadership initiative into commitment to a written social contract.

Here is a compassionate re-animation of some of the first of us to dare commit their confrontation with the great winds into whispers scribed into clay.

Arthur Joseph

Begin Wind Into Clay