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Seven days before the deluge, God told Noah to enter the ark with his household and the animals.

In order to protect Noah and his family, God placed lions and other ferocious animals to guard them from the wicked who tried to stop them from entering the ark.

According to one Midrash, it was God, or the angels, who gathered the animals to the ark, together with their food.

(The word for the ark of the covenant Noah is warned of the coming flood and told to construct the ark.

God spells out to Noah the dimensions of the vessel: 300 cubits in length, 50 cubits in width and 30 cubits in height (450 × 75 × 45 ft or 137 × 22.9 × 13.7 m).

‎; Biblical Hebrew: Tevat Noaḥ) is the vessel in the Genesis flood narrative (Genesis chapters 6–9) by which God spares Noah, his family, and a remnant of all the world's animals from a world-engulfing flood.

According to Genesis, God gave Noah instructions for building the ark.

In the Atrahasis version of the Babylonian flood story, the flood was sent by the gods to reduce human over-population, and after the flood, other measures were introduced to prevent the problem recurring.

Talmudic tractates Sanhedrin, Avodah Zarah and Zevahim relate that, while Noah was building the ark, he attempted to warn his neighbors of the coming deluge, but was ignored or mocked.

This remains the basic plot for several subsequent flood-stories and heroes, including Noah. In Babylonian versions his name is Atrahasis, but the meaning is the same.

In the Atrahasis version, the flood is a river flood (lines 6–9 Atrahasis III,iv) Probably the most famous version is contained in a longer work called the Epic of Gilgamesh, now known only from a 1st millennium Assyrian copy in which the flood hero is named Utnapishtim, "He-found-life".

There are nine known versions of the Mesopotamian flood story, each more or less adapted from an earlier version.

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