Inannas Descent Picture

Inanna's descent to the underworld
Most curious is perhaps the story of Inanna's descent to the underworld. In Sumer the Underworld was a dreary, dark place; a home to deceased heroes and ordinary people alike. Based on their behavior they could be afforded better treatment or positions in the underworld.

Inanna's reason for visiting the underworld is unclear. The reason she gives to the gatekeeper of the underworld is that she wants to attend her brother-in-law Gud-gal-ana's funeral rites. However, this may be a ruse; Inanna may have been intending to conquer the underworld. Ereshkigal [12], queen of the underworld and Inanna's sister, may have suspected this, which could explain her treatment of Inanna.

Before she left, Inanna instructed her minister Ninshubur plead with the gods Enlil, Nanna, and Enki to save her if anything went wrong.

Inanna dresses elaborately for the visit, with a turban, a wig, a lapis lazuli necklace, beads upon her breast, the '
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