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Home > Research > Publications > Annual Reports > 1999-2000 Annual Report

The Chicago Assyrian Dictionary


Martha T. Roth

We are pleased to report that during 1999/2000 we sent the P volume of the Chicago Assyrian Dictionary (CAD) to press, printed the R volume, and received funding from the National Endowment for the Humanities for an additional three years. The funding will allow us to complete the writing and editing of the last two volumes of the dictionary, Ø and U/W.

The 3,735-page printed manuscript for the P volume along with the single zip disk containing the entire manuscript was ready to be sent to press before the new year. Eisenbrauns began setting the manuscript from the disk, using the paper copy to verify the fonts and type sizes. By June they had sent us the first two hundred galleys corresponding to manuscript pages 1-589. These pages have been distributed here in Chicago to the members of the CAD Editorial Board (Robert D. Biggs, John A. Brinkman, Miguel Civil, Walter Farber, Erica Reiner, Martha T. Roth, and Matthew W. Stolper) and mailed to our consultants (Simo Parpola of the University of Helsinki and Klaas R. Veenhof of the University of Leiden) for their final comments and corrections. The members of the Editorial Board and the consultants return the pages to editor-in-charge Martha T. Roth, who, with research associate Tim Collins, incorporates their suggestions into a corrected copy which is then returned to Eisenbrauns.

In April 2000 the R volume appeared, the first volume to be set and printed by Eisenbrauns and the first to appear since 1994. A preview copy of the R volume was displayed at the American Oriental Society Meetings in Portland, Oregon, and enthusiastically consulted by all. Now that a smooth system is in place with Eisenbrauns, we expect that the next volumes, P and T, will follow within a few short years.

We are extremely gratified by the confidence expressed by the National Endowment for the Humanities, and by the granting agency's reviewers, in awarding the CAD a three-year grant to complete the Dictionary. Our goal is to have the final volumes ready for press by 2003.

During the year, work on several volumes continued. Although the major push for the first half of the year was to get P ready to leave the house, Roth worked on editing the volume of words beginning with the emphatic dental occlusive represented as T with a dot underneath (pronounced "tet"). In this task, she is ably assisted by David Testen, who referred to their hours hunched over difficult words as tête-à-tête sessions; in order to finish the gargantuan word tuppu "tablet," they launched a "Tet offensive."

After a word is edited by the Assyriologists, it goes to Linda McLarnan for manuscript editing and then to Edythe Seltzer for inputting. The edited words are also sent to W. G. Lambert of Birmingham, England, for his comments and additions. The next stage, final reference checking, begins only when all the lemmata for the volume have been similarly treated.

In February 2000 we sent the T volume to Eisenbrauns. This volume had been in press with our former printer since 1991 but had not progressed beyond first and second galleys. Fortunately, the entire set of galleys had been read and commented on by the members of the Editorial Board and by our outside consultants. In order to speed the publication of the volume and to avoid diverting our time and attention away from the remaining volumes, we decided to "close" the T volume, that is, not to add new texts published after the volume originally went to press and to resist the temptation to rewrite or re-edit portions of the volume in light of later scholarship. In consultation with Eisenbrauns, we have decided to give priority to publishing the P volume; thus Eisenbrauns will begin typesetting the T volume only after they have finished the first galleys for P. We anticipate going directly from first galleys to page proofs and hope to see the T volume published in 2002.

During this year we have been assisted (twice) by visiting scholar Joan Westenholz, and by research associates Tim Collins, Gertrud Farber, and David Testen. Westenholz, on leave from her job as chief curator at the Bible Lands Museum Jerusalem, assisted us for eleven months during 1998/99 and returned for the summer of 2000. Collins switched from part time to full time in spring 2000, eager to spend more time writing the U/W volume. Farber spent much of her time checking the lexical sections of the P volume and verifying that changes were entered correctly before the volume was sent to press. Testen recently switched from full time to half time in order to prepare for his move to Israel, where he has accepted an appointment in Semitic Linguistics at Tel Aviv University. Graduate student Michael Kozuh was our part-time research assistant. Edward Schoolman, an undergraduate who works for the Dictionary project through the College Research Opportunities Program, devoted his time to entering the Sachs offprint collection into a bibliographic database. He is spending his summer in and around the Mediterranean and will return to Chicago and to the Dictionary in the fall.

Revised: July 30, 2007

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