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Kramer, Samuel Noah (28 September 1897–26 November 1990), Sumerologist and historian, was born in Zashkov (Ukraine), a Jewish ghetto near Kiev in tsarist Russia, the son of Benjamin Kramer, a teacher of the Talmud, and Yetta (maiden name unknown). He grew up in a family that was immersed in the study of the Hebrew Bible. Benjamin Kramer decided to emigrate to the United States out of fear of anti-Semitic pogroms, and in 1905 the family settled in Philadelphia, where the young Kramer’s name, originally Simcha Noach, was anglicized to Samuel Nathan. Only as an adult did Kramer resume using his original middle name in the slightly altered version, Noah....