Throughout Mesopotamian mythology there persists a legend of the tables of destiny, tupsimati, on which the universal laws were inscribed. Zu, the lion-headed Sumerian storm bird, took these tablets from Enlil and threatened the very existence of the gods, for whoever wore them on the breast was supreme ruler of the world. Abashed and frightened, the assembly of the gods could not find a champion, until the son of Enlil, Ninurta, god of war and the chase, found the nest of Zu on the fabulous mountain of Sabu and rescued the tablets.
The tupsimati originally belonged to the Babylonian she-dragon Tiamat, who existed prior to the creation of the earth. They were her wedding gift to her second husband Kingu, whom Marduk slew in order to make man from Kingu's blood.