According to legend and ancient historical accounts Oannes was a figure who introduced the civilized arts to modern man.
These accounts credit Oannes with introducing following arts and sciences:
|"At first they led a somewhat wretched existence and lived without rule after the manner of beasts. But, in the first year appeared an animal endowed with human reason, named Oannes, who rose from out of the Erythian Sea, at the point where it borders Babylonia. He had the whole body of a fish, but above his fish's head he had another head which was that of a man, and human feet emerged from beneath his fish's tail. He had a human voice, and an image of him is preserved unto this day. He passed the day in the midst of men without taking food; he taught them the use of letters, sciences and arts of all kinds. He taught them to construct cities, to found temples, to compile laws, and explained to them the principles of geometrical knowledge. He made them distinguish the seeds of the earth, and showed them how to collect the fruits; in short he instructed them in everything which could tend to soften human manners and humanize their laws. From that time nothing material has been added by way of improvement to his instructions. And when the sun set, this being Oannes, retired again into the sea, for he was amphibious. After this there appeared other animals like Oannes."|
Adapa, the first of theantediluvian sevensages, was a Mesopotamianmythical figure who unknowingly refused the gift ofimmortality. The story is first attested in the Kassite period (14th century BCE), in fragmentary tablets from Tell el-Amarna, and from Assur, of the late second millennium BCE. Mesoptamian myth tells of seven antediluvian sages, who were sent by Ea, the wise god of Eridu, to bring the arts of civilisation to humankind. The first of these, Adapa, also known as Uan, the name given as Oannes byBerossus, introduced the practice of the correct rites of religious observance as priest of the E'Apsu temple, at Eridu. The sages are described inMesoptamian literature as 'pureparādu-fish, probably carp, whose bones are found associated with the earliest shrine, and still kept as a holy duty in the precincts of Near Eastern mosques and monastries. Adapa as a fisherman was iconographically portrayed as a fish-man composite. The word Abgallu,sage, (Ab = water, Gal = Great, Lu = Man, Sumerian) survived into Nabatean times, around the time of Christ, as apkallum, used to describe the profession of a certain kind ofpriest
Berosos (pron.: /bəˈrɒsəs/) or Berossus (name possibly derived frompron.: /bəˈroʊsəs/; Akkadian: Bēl-rē'ušunu, "Bel is their shepherd"; Greek:Βήρωσσος) was a Hellenistic-era Babylonian writer, a priest of BelMarduk and astronomer who wrote in the Koine Greek language, and who was active at the beginning of the 3rd century BC. Versions of two excerpts of his writings survive, at several removes from the original.