Monday, July 20, 2009

Readaloud: The Golden Bull

As we have been studying the Sumerians and the Assyrians, I found this book to read about two children who leave their drought-stricken farm and their parents to go to Ur to find work. Historical fiction for this time period is a bit, er, sparse!

The brother, Jomar, goes to Ur to apprentice with a goldsmith, and he brings his sister along with him in hopes that she too will find something to do in the city. It's not a finely crafted story, and it's a bit spare in the details but it does give the flavor of ancient life in a walled city. Religious life in particular is very hazy. Ur was the birthplace of Abraham and it would have caused some interesting discussions to see in greater detail what the setting was when Abraham, and thereafter ethical monotheism, came on the scene. I think it's hard to grasp how very radical this idea was. We have enjoyed the story well enough, and have only about five or six short chapters to go.

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