This small terracotta toy in the shape of a wagon was a votive donation to the goddess Ishtar. The Archaic buildings of the Ishtar temple were in use from 2500-2000 BCE. From the Archaic temples (or buildings) of Ishtar at the city of Ashur, northern Mesopotamia, Iraq. (The Pergamon Museum, Berlin).
The cuneiform inscriptions on the back of this small diorite statue (height 18 cm) read, "Dedicated to the god Ningizzida, his god, by Ur-ningirsu, priest-prince of Lagash, son of Gudea, priest-prince of Lagash." This bearded man is Ur-ningirsu. The mouth and the nose appear to be damaged on purpose. Probably, Ur-ningirsu dedicated this statuette of himself... [continue reading]
This alabaster bas relief depicts marching shield bearers accompanied by a group of musicians who carry different musical instruments. The male musicians are carrying rectangular drums with a string; this instrument can still be found in modern Iraq and northern Africa and is seen here for the very first time! The same applies to the cymbals, which are made... [continue reading]
A close-up view of some glazed-bricks of the side walls of the processional street at Babylon. The street and its Ishtar Gate were built by King Nebuchadnezzar II. From Babylon, Mesopotamia, Iraq. Neo-Babylonian period, 575 BCE. (The Pergamon Museum, Berlin).
This statue was unearthed during the German excavations at the city of Ashur in 1905 CE. The statue depicts a man in a long gown, which is girded at the waist with a belt. The details of the body, especially at the shoulders and upper arms are marvelous. In the year 1983 CE, Iraqi archaeologists discovered the head of this statue at the same place. Altogether... [continue reading]
This was part of a wall relief and was found inside a well within the courtyard of the temple of Ashur at the city of Ashur, the capital city of the Assyrians. The central part of the relief depicts a male deity. Two smaller water deities stand on either side of him. He holds two long branches, and two goats (standing on their hind legs) appear to eat from... [continue reading]
This small alabaster wall relief was part of a larger relief that represents the military campaign of the Assyrian king Ashurbanibal against the Elamite city of Hamanu. There is an Assyrian chariot with charioteer and archer, protected from enemy attacks by shield bearers. Neo-Assyrian period, 650 BCE. From Nineveh (modern Mosul, Ninawa Governorate), northern Mesopotamia... [continue reading]
This small alabaster bas relief was part of a larger relief that documented the military campaign of the Assyrian king Ashurbanipal against the Elamite city of Hamanu. The Assyrian camp was built before Hamanu's city walls. There are two tents and various domestic animals that accompany the baggage train. In addition, an officer (returning home?) receives... [continue reading]
This was part of a larger wall relief which depicts a siege scene. The Assyrian king Tiglath-pileser III is armed with a bow. Next to him, an Assyrian warrior wears a classical pointed Assyrian helmet and holds a dagger. Alabaster, from Nimrud (ancient Kalhu; Biblical Calah), northern Mesopotamia, Iraq. 745-727 BCE. The Pergamon Museum, Berlin).
These fragments were part of a stela which was found at the Row of Stelae in the city of Ashur. It depicts a woman who wears a crown in the shape of a crenelated city wall. This is queen Ashur-Sharrat, wife of Ashurbanipal. It is rare to see an Assyrian queen without her husband. The queen raises her hand in salutation. Limestone, from Ashur, northern Mesopotamia... [continue reading]