Peter Knight's Ancient Mesopotamia: New Perspectives PDF

By Peter Knight

ISBN-10: 1576078124

ISBN-13: 9781576078129

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Until Sargon’s move to Dur Sharrukin. Like Botta, Layard experienced hostility from some local officials and problems owing to the fragility and vastness of the remains, but in addition he was severely handicapped by lack of funds. In 1846 the trustees of the British Museum were induced to offer official sponsorship, but their £2,000 was a pittance compared with the generous French excavation funding. As a Historical and Chronological Setting 27 result, the inevitable destruction wrought by excavators, who were pioneers in a discipline where there was no accumulated knowledge and experience to draw upon, was compounded in Layard’s case by the need to acquire the maximum yield of exhibitive objects using minimal resources.

The honored dead were laid to rest in large pits with their magnificent objects, such as harps and gaming boards ornamented with gold, silver, mother-of-pearl, and lapis lazuli and accompanied by guards, grooms, female attendants, and musicians—as many as seventy-four in the “Great Death Pit”—devoted servants who had, it seems, willingly accompanied their masters and mistresses into the other world. 38 ANCIENT MESOPOTAMIA Leonard Woolley brushing earth away from 4000-year-old records in the temple of the Moon God Nanna in Ur.

At the beginning of the century, Ernst Herzfeld had uncovered a cemetery at Samarra on the middle Tigris whose graves contained a fine style of painted pottery. When Mallowan excavated a settlement at Chagar Bazar in Syria he discovered that this Samarra ware belonged to the period before Halaf. Finally in 1943, Seton Lloyd and Fuad Safar from the Iraqi Antiquities Department found the final piece of the chronological jigsaw when they dug at Hassuna southwest of Nineveh. In the upper deposits of the settlement, locally made Hassuna ware was used alongside imported Samarra ware; below this were the houses of people who used only Hassuna pottery.

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Ancient Mesopotamia: New Perspectives by Peter Knight

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