HOME

TheInfoList




Adab or Udab (
Sumerian
Sumerian
: ''Adab''ki, spelled UD.NUNKI) was an ancient
Sumer Sumer ()The name is from Akkadian language, Akkadian '; Sumerian language, Sumerian ''kig̃ir'', written and ,approximately "land of the civilized kings" or "native land". means "native, local", iĝir NATIVE (7x: Old Babylonian)from ''The ...

Sumer
ian city between Telloh and
Nippur Nippur (Sumerian: ''Nibru'', often logographically recorded as , EN.LÍLKI, "Enlil City;"The Cambridge Ancient History: Prolegomena & Prehistory': Vol. 1, Part 1. Accessed 15 Dec 2010. AkkadianAkkadian or Accadian may refer to: * The Akkadian l ...
. It was located at the site of modern Bismaya or Bismya in the Wasit Province of
Iraq Iraq ( ar, الْعِرَاق, translit=al-ʿIrāq; ku, عێراق, translit=Êraq), officially the Republic of Iraq ( ar, جُمْهُورِيَّة ٱلْعِرَاق '; ku, کۆماری عێراق, translit=Komarî Êraq), is a country i ...

Iraq
.


History of archaeological research

Initial examinations of the site of Bismaya were by
William Hayes Ward
William Hayes Ward
of the Wolfe Expedition in 1885 and by
John Punnett Peters John Punnett Peters (December 16, 1852 – November 10, 1921) was an United States, American Episcopal Church (United States), Episcopal clergyman and Orientalist. Biography John Punnett Peters was born in New York City on December 16, 1852. He ...

John Punnett Peters
of the
University of Pennsylvania The University of Pennsylvania (Penn or UPenn) is a in , Pennsylvania. The university, established as the College of Philadelphia in 1740, is one of the nine chartered prior to the . , Penn's founder and first president, advocated an edu ...

University of Pennsylvania
in 1890, each spending a day there and finding one cuneiform table and a few fragments.
Walter Andrae Walter Andrae (February 18, 1875 – July 28, 1956) was a German archaeologist and architect born near Leipzig. He was part of the mission that stole the Ishtar Gate out of Iraq in the 1910s. Career Archaeologist He initially studied architecture ...
visited Bismaya in 1902, found a table fragment and produced a sketch map of the site. Excavations were conducted there for a total of six months, between Christmas of 1903 and June 1905, for the
University of Chicago The University of Chicago (UChicago) is a private Private or privates may refer to: Music * "In Private "In Private" was the third single in a row to be a charting success for United Kingdom, British singer Dusty Springfield, after an abse ...
, primarily by Dr.
Edgar James Banks Edgar James Banks (May 23, 1866 – May 5, 1945), was an American diplomat, antiquarian and novelist. Biography Banks was an antiquities enthusiast and entrepreneurial roving archaeologist in the closing days of the Ottoman Empire, who has been he ...

Edgar James Banks
, with the final part of the dig being under engineer Victor S. Persons. It proved that these mounds covered the site of the ancient city of Adab (Ud-Nun), hitherto known only from the ''
Sumerian King List#Redirect Sumerian King List {{Redirect category shell, 1= {{Redirect from other capitalisation {{Redirect from move ...
'' and a brief mention of its name in the introduction to the Hammurabi Code. The city was divided into two parts by a
canal Canals are waterways channels Channel, channels, channeling, etc., may refer to: Geography * Channel (geography), in physical geography, a landform consisting of the outline (banks) of the path of a narrow body of water. Australia * ...

canal
, on an island in which stood the
temple A temple (from the Latin ) is a building reserved for spiritual rituals and activities such as prayer and sacrifice. Religions which erect temples include Christianity (whose temples are typically called church (building), churches), Hinduism (w ...
, E-mach, with a
ziggurat A ziggurat (; AkkadianAkkadian or Accadian may refer to: * The Akkadian language Akkadian ( ''akkadû'', ''ak-ka-du-u2''; logogram: ''URIKI'')John Huehnergard & Christopher Woods, "Akkadian and Eblaite", ''The Cambridge Encyclopedia of the ...

ziggurat
, or stepped tower. It was evidently once a city of considerable importance, but deserted at a very early period, since the ruins found close to the surface of the mounds belong to
Shulgi Shulgi ( Dingir, dŠulgi, formerly read as Dungi) of Ur was the second king of the Third Dynasty of Ur. He reigned for 48 years, from c. 2094 – c. 2046 BC (Middle Chronology) or possibly c. 2030 – 1982 BC (Short Chronology). His accompli ...
and
Ur-Nammu Ur-Nammu (or Ur-Namma, Ur-Engur, Ur-Gur, Sumerian: , ruled c. 2112 BC – 2094 BC middle chronology The chronology of the ancient Near East is a chronology, framework of dates for various events, rulers and dynasties. Historical inscriptions a ...
, kings of the
Third Dynasty of Ur The Third Dynasty of Ur, also called the Neo-Sumerian Empire, refers to a 22nd to 21st century BC ( middle chronology) Sumerian ruling dynasty based in the city of Ur and a short-lived territorial-political state which some historians consider to h ...
in the latter part of the third millennium BC, based on inscribed bricks excavated at Bismaya. Immediately below these, as at
Nippur Nippur (Sumerian: ''Nibru'', often logographically recorded as , EN.LÍLKI, "Enlil City;"The Cambridge Ancient History: Prolegomena & Prehistory': Vol. 1, Part 1. Accessed 15 Dec 2010. AkkadianAkkadian or Accadian may refer to: * The Akkadian l ...
, were found artifacts dating to the reign of Naram-Suen and
Sargon of Akkad Sargon of Akkad (; akk, 𒊬𒊒𒄀 ''Šar-ru-gi''), also known as Sargon the Great, was the first ruler of the Akkadian Empire The Akkadian Empire () was the first ancient empire of Mesopotamia after the long-lived civilization of Sumer ...

Sargon of Akkad
, c. 2300 BC. Below these there were still of stratified remains, constituting seven-eighths of the total depth of the ruins. Besides the remains of buildings, walls and graves, Dr. Banks discovered a large number of inscribed clay tablets of a very early period, bronze and stone tablets, bronze implements and the like. Of the tablets, 543 went to the
Oriental InstituteOriental Institute may refer to a number of university faculties, departments, and institutes of Oriental studies: ;United States * Oriental Institute (Chicago), part of the University of Chicago ;United Kingdom * Faculty of Oriental Studies, Oxfor ...
and roughly 1100, mostly purchased from the locals rather than excavated, went to the Istanbul Museum. The latter are still apparently unpublished. But the two most notable discoveries were a complete statue in white marble, apparently the earliest yet found in
Mesopotamia Mesopotamia ( grc, Μεσοποταμία ''Mesopotamíā''; ar, بِلَاد ٱلرَّافِدَيْن ; syc, ܐܪܡ ܢܗܪ̈ܝܢ, or , ) is a historical region of Western Asia situated within the Tigris–Euphrates river system, in th ...

Mesopotamia
, now in the
Istanbul Archaeology Museums The Istanbul Archaeology Museums ( tr, ) are a group of three archaeological museums located in the Eminönü quarter of Istanbul ) , postal_code_type = Postal code , postal_code = 34000 to 34990 , area_ ...

Istanbul Archaeology Museums
, bearing the inscription, translated by Banks as "E-mach, King Da-udu, King of, Ud-Nun", now known as the statue of Lugal-dalu; and a temple refuse heap, consisting of great quantities of fragments of vases in marble,
alabaster Alabaster is a mineral In geology and mineralogy, a mineral or mineral species is, broadly speaking, a solid chemical compound with a fairly well-defined chemical composition and a specific crystal structure that occurs naturally in pure fo ...

alabaster
,
onyx Onyx primarily refers to the parallel banded variety of the silicate mineral Silicate minerals are rock-forming mineral In geology Geology (from the Ancient Greek γῆ, ''gē'' ("earth") and -λoγία, ''-logia'', ("study of", "dis ...

onyx
, porphyry and
granite Granite () is a coarse-grained (phanerite, phaneritic) intrusive rock, intrusive igneous rock composed mostly of quartz, alkali feldspar, and plagioclase. It forms from magma with a high content of silica and alkali metal oxides that slowly cool ...

granite
, some of which were inscribed, and others engraved and inlaid with
ivory Ivory is a hard, white material from the tusk Tusks are elongated, continuously growing front teeth A tooth (plural teeth) is a hard, calcification, calcified structure found in the jaws (or mouths) of many vertebrates and used to Mastica ...
and precious stones. Of the Adab tablets that ended up at the University of Chicago, sponsor of the excavations, all have been published and also made available in digital form online. Of the purchased tablets sold piecemeal to various owners, a few have also made their way into publication. Though the Banks expedition to Bismaya was well documented by the standards of the time and many objects photographed, no final report was ever produced due to personal disputes. Recently, the Oriental Institute has re-examined the records and objects returned to the institute by Banks and produced a report. In response to widespread looting, the Iraq State Board of Antiquities and Heritage conducted an excavation at Adab in 2001. There is a comic tale of the ''Three Ox-drivers from Adab''.


Adab and its environment

A group of tells or settlement mounds are what remains of the ancient city. The mounds are about long and wide, consisting of a number of low ridges, nowhere exceeding in height, lying somewhat nearer to the
Tigris The Tigris () is the easternmost of the two great rivers that define Mesopotamia, the other being the Euphrates. The river flows south from the mountains of the Armenian Highlands through the Syrian Desert, Syrian and Arabian Deserts, and empti ...

Tigris
than the
Euphrates The Euphrates () is the longest and one of the most historically important rivers of Western Asia. Tigris–Euphrates river system, Together with the Tigris, it is one of the two defining rivers of Mesopotamia (the "Land Between the Rivers"). O ...
, about a day's journey to the south-east of Nippur.


Occupation history

Adab was occupied from at least the Early Dynastic Period. According to text ''Inanna's descent to the netherworld'', there was a temple of
Inanna Inanna is an ancient Mesopotamian goddess associated with love, beauty, sex, war, justice and political power. She was originally worshiped in Sumer Sumer ()The name is from '; ''kig̃ir'', written and ,approximately "land of the ...
named ''E-shar'' at Adab during the reign of
Dumuzid Dumuzid ( sux, 𒌉𒍣𒉺𒇻, ''Dumuzid sipad'') or Dumuzi, later known by the alternative form Tammuz,; he, תַּמּוּז, Transliterated Transliteration is a type of conversion of a text from one script Script may refer to: ...
of
Uruk Uruk, also known as Warka, was an ancient city of (and later of ) situated east of the present bed of the River on the dried-up ancient channel of the Euphrates east of modern , , .Harmansah, 2007 Uruk is the for the . Uruk played a leading ...
. In another text in the same series, ''Dumuzid's dream'', Dumuzid of Uruk is toppled from his opulence by a hungry mob composed of men from the major cities of Sumer, including Adab. A king of Kish,
Mesilim Mesilim ( sux, ), also spelled Mesalim (c. 2600 BC), was ''LUGAL, lugal'' (king) of the Sumerian city-state of Kish (Sumer), Kish. Though his name is missing from the ''Sumerian king list'', Mesilim is among the earliest historical figures recorde ...
, appears to have ruled at Adab, based on inscriptions found at Bismaya. One king of Adab,
Lugal-Anne-Mundu #REDIRECT Lugal-Anne-Mundu Lugal-Anne-Mundu ( sux, , , ca. 24th century BC) was the most important king of the city-state of Adab in Sumer Sumer ()The name is from Akkadian '; Sumerian ''kig̃ir'', written and ,approximately "land of ...
, appearing in the ''
Sumerian King List#Redirect Sumerian King List {{Redirect category shell, 1= {{Redirect from other capitalisation {{Redirect from move ...
'', is mentioned in few contemporary inscriptions; some that are much later copies claim that he established a vast, but brief empire stretching from
Elam Elam (; Linear Elamite Linear Elamite is a Bronze Age The Bronze Age is a prehistoric Periodization, period that was characterized by the use of bronze, in some areas proto-writing, and other early features of urban civilization. The Br ...

Elam
all the way to
Lebanon Lebanon ( , ar, لُبْنَان, translit=lubnān, ), officially the Republic of Lebanon or the Lebanese Republic, is a country in Western Asia Western Asia, West Asia, or Southwest Asia, is the westernmost subregion A subregion is a part ...

Lebanon
and the
Amorite The Amorites (; Sumerian language, Sumerian 𒈥𒌅 ''MAR.TU''; Akkadian language, Akkadian ''Amurrūm'' or ''Tidnum''; Egyptian language, Egyptian ''Amar''; he, אמורי ''ʼĔmōrī''; grc, Ἀμορραῖοι) were an ancient Semitic lan ...
territories along the Jordan. Adab is also mentioned in some of the
Ebla tablets The Ebla tablets are a collection of as many as 1,800 complete clay tablets, 4,700 fragments, and many thousands of minor chips found in the palace archives of the ancient city of Ebla, Syria. The tablets were discovered by Italian archaeologist ...
from roughly the same era as a trading partner of
Ebla Ebla (Sumer Sumer ()The name is from '; ''kig̃ir'', written and ,approximately "land of the civilized kings" or "native land". means "native, local", ifrom ''The Pennsylvania Sumerian Dictionary''). Literally, "land of the native ...

Ebla
in northern Syria, shortly before Ebla was destroyed by unknown forces. A marble statue was found at Bismaya inscribed with the name of another king of Adab, variously translated as Lugal-daudu, Da-udu, Lugaldalu, and Esar.G.A. Barton, "The Names of Two Kings of Adab", ''
Journal of the American Oriental Society The ''Journal of the American Oriental Society'' is a quarterly academic journal published by the American Oriental Society since 1843.Naram-Suen built a temple to Inanna at Adab, but the temple was not found during the dig, and is not known for certain to be ''E-shar''. Several governors of the city under
Ur III The Third Dynasty of Ur, also called the Neo-Sumerian Empire, refers to a 22nd to 21st century BC (middle chronology The middle chronology is one chronology of the Near Eastern Bronze and Early Iron Age, which fixes the reign of Hammurabi to 179 ...

Ur III
are also known. While no later archaeological evidence was found at Bismaya, the excavations there were brief, and there were later epigraphic references to Adab, such as in the
Code of Hammurabi The Code of Hammurabi is a Babylonian legal text composed 1755–1750 BC. It is the longest, best-organised, and best-preserved legal text from the ancient Near East. It is written in the Old Babylonian dialect of Akkadian, purportedly by Ham ...

Code of Hammurabi
.


Rulers of Adab


Gallery

File:Urdumu, Ensi of Udnunki.jpg, Seal of "Urdumu, Ensi of Udnunki" ("Urdumu, Governor of Adab") File:UD-NUN-KI City of Adab.jpg, UD-NUN-KI, "City of Adab" on the statue of Lugal-dalu, with rendering in early Sumero-Akkadian
cuneiform Cuneiform is a Logogram, logo-Syllabary, syllabic writing system, script that was used to write several languages of the Ancient Near East. The script was in active use from the early Bronze Age until the beginning of the Common Era. It is nam ...

cuneiform
. File:Headless votive statue, from Adab, Iraq, early dynastic period. Ancient Orient Museum, Turkey.jpg, Headless votive statue, from Adab, Iraq, early dynastic period. Museum of the Ancient Orient, Turkey File:Headless votive statue, from Adab, Iraq, early dynastic period. Ancient Orient Museum, Istanbul.jpg, Headless votive statue, from Adab, Iraq, early dynastic period. Museum of the Ancient Orient, Istanbul File:Head of a votive statue, from Adab, Iraq, early dynastic period. Ancient Orient Museum, Turkey.jpg, Head of a votive statue, from Adab, Iraq, early dynastic period. Museum of the Ancient Orient, Turkey File:Relief of a naked priest, from Adab, Iraq, early dynastic period. Ancient Orient Museum, Turkey.jpg, Relief of a naked priest, from Adab, Iraq, early dynastic period. Museum of the Ancient Orient, Turkey File:Cuneiform inscription on a statue from Adab, mentioning the name of Lugal-dalu and god ESAR of Adab.jpg, Cuneiform inscription on a statue from Adab, mentioning the name of Lugal-dalu and god ESAR of Adab


See also

*
Cities of the Ancient Near East The earliest cities in history were in the ancient Near East, an area covering roughly that of the modern Middle East: its history began in the 4th millennium BC and ended, depending on the interpretation of the term, either with the conquest by ...


References


Further reading

*Edgar James Banks, The Bismya Temple, The American Journal of Semitic Languages and Literatures, Vol. 22, No. 1, pp. 29–34, Oct. 1905 *D. D. Luckenbill, Two Inscriptions of Mesilim, King of Kish, The American Journal of Semitic Languages and Literatures, Vol. 30, No. 3, pp. 219–223, Apr. 1914 *Edgar James Banks, The Oldest Statue in the World, The American Journal of Semitic Languages and Literatures, Vol. 21, No. 1, pp. 57–59, Oct. 1904 *Yang Zhi, The Excavation of Adab,
Journal of Ancient CivilizationsThe Institute for the History of Ancient Civilizations (IHAC) is a graduate research institute on ancient history, ancient languages, and archaeology at the Northeast Normal University in Changchun, China (Jilin Province). The IHAC was the first Chin ...
, Vol. 3, pp. 16–19, 1988 *D. D. Luckenbill, Old Babylonian Letters from Bismya, The American Journal of Semitic Languages and Literatures, vol. 32, no. 4, pp. 270–292, 1916


External links


Oriental Institute page for Bismaya: Recovering the Lost City of AdabBismaya "re-excavation" project being funded by Shelby White - Leon Levy Program
{{Authority control Populated places disestablished in the 3rd millennium BC 1885 archaeological discoveries Sumerian cities Archaeological sites in Iraq Former populated places in Iraq Wasit Governorate Tells (archaeology) 3rd-millennium BC disestablishments in Sumer Early Dynastic Period (Mesopotamia)