|Author||David B. Weisberg|
David Weisberg became fascinated by Assyriology as an undergraduate at Columbia University. Already endowed with a strong background in Hebraica, he soon came to know that he needed the deeper immersion of a graduate program, and he enrolled at Yale to pursue it. David’s interests soon focused on the Chaldean Dynasty of Nebuchadnezzar and the Achaemenid Dynasty of Cyrus the Great. Weisberg’s thesis succeeded in illuminating the wider significance of some previously unpublished cuneiform texts from this period?as well as earning him the doctorate. The thesis appeared in the recently established Yale Near Eastern Researches (1967) under the somewhat daunting title Guild Structure and Political Allegiance in Early Achaemenid Mesopotamia, and David’s career was launched.
Weisberg’s oeuvre, as exemplified by the nearly three dozen essays conveniently assembled in this volume, attest both to his prodigious industriousness and to the loss that the field of Assyriology has suffered in his untimely demise. As is clear from the Table of Contents, he continued to make major contributions to the study of the Neo-Babylonian period (especially regarding political and military history and the doings of ancient royals) but he also offered seminal insights in other areas, including Masoretic studies, rabbinics, social and economic life of the ancient Near East, as well as the interface between modern culture and study of the ancient world.