Myth of Etana Cylinder Seal


Osama Shukir Muhammed Amin
published on 20 February 2018
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This calcite cylinder seal depicts the myth of Etana, the shepherd and the legendary king of Uruk, who was carried up to heaven by an eagle to obtain an heir. Etana's ascent is watched by the shepherd and his dog, with two markhor-type goats, a sheep, and a sheep pen. The six discs above them may represent cheese. Above, a crouching bearded man is working a churn. The right hand of the shepherd carries a whip and there is a staff on his shoulder. He wears a long robe and has a long beard. Akkadian Period, circa 2250 BCE. Precise provenance of excavation is unknown. (The British Museum, London).

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About the Author

Osama Shukir Muhammed Amin
Associate Professor of Neurology and lover of the Cradle of Civilization, Mesopotamia. I'm very interested in Mesopotamian history and always try to take photos of archaeological sites and artifacts in museums, both in Iraq and around the world.

Cite This Work

APA Style

Amin, O. S. M. (2018, February 20). Myth of Etana Cylinder Seal. Ancient History Encyclopedia. Retrieved from

Chicago Style

Amin, Osama S. M. "Myth of Etana Cylinder Seal." Ancient History Encyclopedia. Last modified February 20, 2018.

MLA Style

Amin, Osama S. M. "Myth of Etana Cylinder Seal." Ancient History Encyclopedia. Ancient History Encyclopedia, 20 Feb 2018. Web. 25 Sep 2020.

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