Genesis 1-2 Parallels #3: Ninti, “Lady of the Rib”



Because Adam is lonely and lacks a helper as his partner, Yahweh puts him to sleep and makes a woman out of his rib (Gen. 2:21-23).  Again we return to a story of the deities Enki and Ninsikila/Ninhursaga, starting with Enki’s attempt to win the love of his great granddaughter, Uttu; he does so by finding a gardener to help him grow all kinds of fruits and vegetables. Upon accepting Enki’s gift, Enki takes her by force until Ninhursaga arrives – removing Enki’s semen from Uttu’s body and planting it in the ground where eight plants then grow. Later, Enki comes across the plants and asks his page Isimu if he should eat them to “find out their nature.”[1]  Isimu says he will name each one and give it to Enki to eat. Doing so he becomes pregnant, but suffers great for being unable to give birth as a male. Ninhursaga decides to help by placing him in her vulva and gives birth to eight deities, each of which is created from a different part of Enki’s body. As you may have already guessed, one is from his rib:

“My brother,
what part of you hurts you!”
“My ribs hurt me!”
She gave birth to Ninti out of it. [2]

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