Babylonian era problems. (photo via tbc34)
old school hate mail
Imagine how pissed you have to be to engrave a rock
Ok but there was this guy called Ea-nasir who was a total crook and would actually cheat people ought of good copper and sell them shit instead.
The amount of correspondences complaining to and about this guy are HILARIOUS.
Are you telling me we know about a specific guy who lived 5000 years ago, by name, because he was a huge asshole
More like 4000 years ago but yes. Ea-nasir and his dodgy business deals.
And we haven’t even touched on the true hilarity of the situation yet. Consider two additional facts:
- He wasn’t just into copper trading. There are letters complaining about Ea-nasir’s business practices with respect to everything from kitchenwares to real estate speculation to second-hand clothing. The guy was everywhere.
- The majority of the surviving correspondences regarding Ea-nasir were recovered from one particular room in a building that is believed to have been Ea-nasir’s own house.
Like, these are clay tablets. They’re bulky, fragile, and difficult to store. They typically weren’t kept long-term unless they contained financial records or other vital information (which is why we have huge reams of financial data about ancient Babylon in spite of how little we know about the actual culture: most of the surviving tablets are commercial inventories, bills of sale, etc.).
But this guy, this Ea-nasir, he kept all of his angry letters – hundreds of them – and meticulously filed and preserved them in a dedicated room in his house. What kind of guy does that?
[ source ]
Okay, but imagine from the other guy’s point of view. You send angry letters about how Ea-nasir shipped you half a ton of subpar copper, and then 3800 years later—
History: you are without a doubt the worst business man ive ever heard of
You know that concept, “a man’s not dead while his name’s still spoken”?
Ea-nasir still walks the earth, gleefully inconveniencing people in various guises.
(…would make a fantastic story.)