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Home > Research > Publications > Annual Reports > 1996-97 Annual Report

The Chicago Assyrian Dictionary


Martha T. Roth

The Chicago Assyrian Dictionary is proud to announce that we have been awarded a three-year grant (1997-2000) from the National Endowment for the Humanities. This grant will allow us to see through to publication the volumes in advanced stages of preparation, P, R, and T, and to begin work on the remaining volumes, Tet and U/W.

Page proof from R volume typeset by Eisenbrauns

This year, the R volume, which is being printed by Eisenbrauns, occupied most of the attention of the editorial staff, headed by Linda McLarnan. By the end of June 1997, we had returned all of the first galleys, received all of the second galleys, returned second galleys 1-103, and received the first batch of pages (see illustration). The first galleys are reviewed by the members of the editorial board (Robert Biggs, John A. Brinkman, Miguel Civil, Walter Farber, Erica Reiner, and Matthew Stolper), and by outside consultants Simo Parpola and Klaas Veenhof. Final responsibility for the galleys rests with Martha Roth, the Editor-in-Charge. About half of the T volume, which is being printed by J. J. Augustin, is now in second galleys, and those second galleys have been returned to the printer to be set as pages.

Martha Roth finished editing the last of the draft articles for the P volume at the end of June. The edited articles were reviewed and prepared for final checking by our manuscript editor, Linda McLarnan. The edited articles are sent to Wilfred G. Lambert (University of Birmingham) for his review, and meanwhile here in Chicago the arduous and painstaking process of "checking" began. Checking is the crucial stage in Dictionary preparation in which every reference, page or plate number, line number, cuneiform sign, transcription, context, and translation is checked by Assyriologists against the original cuneiform tablet, copy, photograph, and/or scholarly edition. This substantive citation checking process occupied almost all of the energies of our Research Associates in 1996/97: Gertrud Farber, who is responsible for the lexical and bilingual citations; Karel van Lerberghe of the University of Leuven, who joined our team from July through December 1996; Raija Mattila of the University of Helsinki, who was with us from January through December 1996; and Barbara Böck of the University of Berlin, here from January through May 1997. Although not formally on our staff, Gabriella Voet and Ignacio Márquez Rowe, who accompanied their spouses to enjoy the delights of Chicago, also generously contributed their expertise to our project.

Timothy Collins, a doctoral candidate in Assyriology in the Department of Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations, worked as a research assistant for the Dictionary from January to September 1996. When he became the first recipient of the Elizabeth and A. Leo Oppenheim Scholarship, Tim decided to devote the 1996/97 year to completing his dissertation on medical incantations. He was ably succeeded by Michael Kozuh, a student of Achaemenid Studies in the Department of Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations. These two pre-doctoral students worked verifying references for the P and R volumes, proofread and prepared for checking the articles for the P volume, and assisted in all manner of Assyriological and editorial tasks.

We continue to enjoy the good cheer and able assistance of undergraduate students participating in the College Research Opportunities Program, who perform various lexicographic and clerical tasks for the Dictionary. In June, we said good-bye to Allison Carmody, a Linguistics major who worked with us for two years and who leaves to attend Harvard Law School. Jason Kemper and Jordan Finkin, both Jewish Studies majors in the College, continue to work on the computer catalog of the Oppenheim offprint collection. Adrienne Hosek began her initiation into the project just before the summer break. All four undergraduates joined us at a party in May to thank all of our friends and colleagues for their participation in the project, at which Barbara Böck offered a toast with the following speech:

...I wish to thank you all and in Particular Martha and Linda for the Painstaking and Perfect PreParation of the Party. I am Pleased as Punch. But let me Proceed and reach PromPtly the Punch line of the sPeech. During our Pente-monthly stoP in this city, which was first PoPulated by Potawatomi Indians, I was occuPied with the Prudent and Precise Perusal as well as the hairsPlitting Proofreading of words beginning with the letter P. I don't want to bore you with the Picture of my Profession, neither with the Practice I gained nor how much I Profited. Rather we, Ignacio and I, would like to exPress our thanks to all of you who made our stay here so Pleasant.

We hope that our new research associate for 1997/98, University of Chicago Ph.D. David Testen, will find his Participation equally Pleasant and Productive, and will Provide the final Push to send the P volume off to Press.

Revised: February 7, 2007

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