Ancient Near East / Legend of Keret

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Date: 1500 B.C.E.

The Legend of Keret, also known as the Epic of Kirta, is an ancient Ugaritic epic poem, dated to Late Bronze Age, circa 1500 – 1200 BCE. It recounts the myth of King Kirta of Hubur. The epic story of Keret is contained in three rectangular clay tablets, excavated by a team of French archaeologists in Ras Shamra in the First Syrian Republic in 1930–31. King Kirta of Hubur, despite being reputed to be a son of the great god El (deity) himself, was struck with many misfortunes. Kirta prayed and lamented his plight. In his sleep, the god El appeared to Kirta, who begged him for an heir. El told Kirta that he should make war against the kingdom of Udum.