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HOME : Near Eastern Art : Cuneiform Tablets : Sumerian Cuneiform Bulla
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Sumerian Cuneiform Bulla - LSO.32
Origin: Israel
Circa: 2038 BC

Collection: Ancient Writings
Medium: Clay

Location: Great Britain
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Clay bulla, 64 x 57 x 53 x 58mm This is three sided and hollow. Originally it covered knots in rope or cord, which secured sacks or packages. The sides are covered with impressions of the scribe’s cylinder seal and writing, which gives his name and the date. Month: Shunigal, year: the high priestess of Nanna of Karzida was installed. This is the 9th year of Amar-Sin, third king of the Third Dynasty of Ur, c. 2038 BC. The seal shows a seated deity on the right, and facing him two standing figures: first an introducing Lamma goddess, then a human worshipper, who is being led by the wrist. The seal owner would see himself as this human. There is a lunar crescent in the sky, the symbol of the moon-god Nanna. A three-line inscription may read: Ibanis (?) Scribe Son of… The impressions of the text are faint and difficult to read, and while the name is repeated on the bulla by the scribe, it is covered with hard incrustation. This is an unusually large bulla, and rare for being almost perfectly preserved. Normally, such bullae were broken when the package was opened. - (LSO.32)


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