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  • Writer's pictureVazgen Barsegian

Worlds oldest discovered hymn and the Armenian connection.

It was a hot summer day and the year is 14th century BC. A Hurrian priest is expressing his fervor and love for the goddess Nikkal in song form, as he’s etching the cuneiform notes into a clay tablet. The priest has his 9-stringed Sammûm (harp) with him and is singing and playing this hymn he has written for his beloved goddess Nikkal, who is the Hurrian goddess of forests and orchards. The priest then hears his fellowmen running for their lives and yelling “run ! run! the Assyrians are attacking!!!” the priest in a hurry to escape, abandons his belongings, thus leaving his beloved cuneiform tablet hymn to be lost under the ruins of his local temple. The hymn is then discovered in the 1950’s during an excavation in the ancient city of Ugarit (modern day northern Syria). The clay tablet in it’s contents, contains; the musical notes, instructions, specifications of the Hurrian harp, and the lyrics of the hymn, thus leading to historians and archeologists labeling the discovered hymn as the “Hurrian Hymn” and “the worlds oldest discovered hymn/song”, due to it being the oldest musical notation/hymn to ever be discovered by archeologists. The Armenians are the direct descendants of the Hurrians, via the ancient Urartians, whose language belonged to the Hurro-Urartian language family. The Urartians, which the Armenians directly descended from, share the same ancestry as the Hurrians. I, dear reader, have reconstructed this ancient Hurrian/Urartian harp and have adorned it with ancient Urartian depictions/motifs:

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