This paper explores the similarities and differences in the creation myths of the Sumerian, Babylonian and Egyptian cultures.
The creation story of En ma Elish–named for the first words of the story, When above or When on high– predates the Genesis version of creation by an estimated 500 years, having been dated at 1950 BC. The earliest written Semitic sources, which survive as fragments of various Old Testament books, have been dated at the fourteenth century BC (Babylonia). According to Senior (RG2-3), Genesis was composed around 1000 BC and gives an account of events and personalities flourishing from a period roughly equivalent to the time of the Enma Elish, 1850 to 1250 BC, the estimated period of the narrative events. However, the written Hebrew record corresponds to a strong and highly consistent oral tradition among the Hebrew generations (Senior RG6).