According to the cuneiform texts, the Sumerian gods liked eating, drinking, music and dancing. Food would be put on tables, then the god left alone to enjoy it. After a time the priests would come in and eat what was left. The gods also needed beds to sleep in and for enjoying sex with other gods. They had to be washed for this and dressed and anointed with perfumes.
As with the grave goods in Egypt, the aim of these practices was to try to tempt gods to inhabit the material plane, but reminding them of the sensual pleasures denied them in the spirit worlds.
Contemporary with the rise of Egyptian civilization in about 3250 BC Sumerian civilization arose in the land between the Tigris and the Euphrates. [...]
As these cities grew, so too did the god houses, until they became ziggurats[...]
As the generations passed from ancient Mesopotamian and Egyptian times, the ideal of dynastic kingship spread through the Mediterranean lands into the Balkans, the Black Sea regions and Europe. But, in the course of this, dynasties emerged that were not of the original kingly race. Instead, many were unrelated warrior chiefs who gained their thrones by might of the sword.