Cuneiform Tablet

SKU LSO.28
Circa

2026 BC

Dimensions

3.58″ (9.1cm) high x 2.28″ (5.8cm) wide

Medium

Clay

Origin

Israel

Gallery Location

UK


 

Clay Tablet, with 9 lines of Sumerian Cuneiform writing on the Reverse The obverse of this tablet is covered with salt incrustation from the Mesopotamian soil. The reverse is clean and legible. The tablet is a record of a court case, dated to the third year of Ibbi- Sin, last king of the Third Dynasty of Ur, c. 2026 BC. The reverse does not allow a full understanding of the case, but some sense can be obtained. Text translation: …] shepherds and herders. The foreman Lugal-itida declared that so long as the barley…………Lugal iti-da swore by the king that his barley ration existed. Cylinder seal inscription: Ibbi-Sin Lugal-iti-da Mighty king scribe, King of Ur Son of Ur- Dumuzida King of the four world regions your servant Date: Year: Ibbi-Sin, king of Ur, destroyed Simurum, *** The whole of the surface of the tablet was rolled with the scribe’s cylinder seal so as to show the inscription, and in addition it was rolled on a blank part of the surface just before the date at the end of the tablet. The purpose was to ensure that the document as written was authentic. Only the holder of the seal could copy or alter the text. The case was apparently about someone’s barley ration: a kind of wage paid to serfs. The salt incrustation could be removed with expert treatment, and then no doubt the case would be fully clear.

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