Title: Ur Excavations IX; The Neo-Babylonian and Persian Periods     
Date: 1962     
Author: Woolley, L. and Mallowan, Max     
Publisher: Oxford University Press     
Publication place: Oxford     


Objects: Ur Excavations IX; The Neo-Babylonian and Persian Periods | Ur Excavations IX; The Neo-Babylonian an Export: JSON - XML - CSV

Object U Number Museum Number (UPM Date Reg Number) Museum Number (BM Registration Number) Museum Number (UPM B-number) Description (Catalog Card)
(none) (none) (none) (none) unknown
(none) (none) 1923,1110.199 (none) (none)
(none) (none) (none) (none) unknown
(none) 31-43-541 (none) (none) (none)
1002A (none) (none) (none) [A-C] Fragments of clay bowls. With rounded panels stamped with palm decorations. Greenish-drab clay, wheelmade.
1006 (none) (none) (none) Clay Pot. Drab clay, wheelmade. A wheel-tuned line 15mm, below the rim and two more at the shoulder. Type LXX =P.137
10750 (none) (none) (none) Bull-footed column Terracotta Miniature One bull's foot alone remains the other 3 missing. Column square in section: at each angle a circular half column and between each angle an undecorated panel. Upper portion missing [Type] IX [drawing] c. 1:2 [next card drawing] 1:1
109 (none) (none) B15286 Bronze object. Resembling double axe: very thin metal. [drawing 1:1] [Annotated] Phil
110 (none) (none) (none) Bronze spatula. Blade flattened: haft square in section. [drawing 1:1]
1124 (none) (none) (none) Bronze arrowhead. [drawing 1:1]
1126 (none) (none) (none) Bottle. Glazed. Persian. Drab clay: white glaze, slightly ribbed above belly. Type XCII =P.180
113 (none) (none) (none) Bronze bowl. Godrooned: exact type of Deir Huzah bowls. [Annotated] Photo?
1130 (none) (none) (none) Jar. Drab clay. Type XXXVII (but without lines on shoulder)
11599A (none) 1929,1017.724 (none) Tomb Group. Consisting of: [A-C] (1) 3 Glazed Pots (one broken), with two small handles rising from rim.; [D] (2) A copper finger ring with flat bezel. [E] (3) Beads, mostly glazed and shaped beads, & two or three stone beads. [drawing]
11599D (none) (none) (none) Tomb Group. Consisting of: [A-C] (1) 3 Glazed Pots (one broken), with two small handles rising from rim.; [D] (2) A copper finger ring with flat bezel. [E] (3) Beads, mostly glazed and shaped beads, & two or three stone beads. [drawing]
11599E.2 30-12-538 (none) (none) Tomb Group. Consisting of: [A-C] (1) 3 Glazed Pots (one broken), with two small handles rising from rim.; [D] (2) A copper finger ring with flat bezel. [E] (3) Beads, mostly glazed and shaped beads, & two or three stone beads. [drawing]
12061 (none) (none) (none) Terracotta Amulet. In shape of a human leg & foot. Perforated at top for suspension. [Annotated} Cf. U.16114. [drawing]
123 (none) (none) B15280 Bronze bowl. Upper part on one side broken, but virtually all frs. there and fitting together. Metal in good condition. Near the rim on the outside is a sun and moon pattern. [drawing]
12336 (none) (none) (none) [A-B] 2 Copper rings.
12337 (none) (none) (none) Copper Bowl. Plain circular type with low side. [Type] III. =RC.4.
124A (none) (none) (none) [A-B] 2 Bronze bowls. One inside the other, corroded together. [drawing] (A) In good condition. (B) Inside it one apparently thus: but base all gone.
124B (none) (none) (none) [A-B] 2 Bronze bowls. One inside the other, corroded together. [drawing] (A) In good condition. (B) Inside it one apparently thus: but base all gone.
12796 (none) (none) (none) Flat seal. Carnelian. Crescent moon and great bead (?). Persian period. [drawing 1:1]
12797 (none) (none) (none) Bes amulet. Glazed frit.
12798 (none) (none) (none) Beads. Glazed frit. 3 balls. 1 fluted double conoid with rings ends; 1 ball with ringed ends thus [reference to drawing]; 1 flat seal - oval shaped with markings.
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Locations: Ur Excavations IX; The Neo-Babylonian and Persian Periods | Ur Excavations IX; The Neo-Babylonian an Export: JSON - XML - CSV

Location Context Title Context Description Description (Modern)
Nin-Giz-Zida Temple | Nin-Ezen Temple | NT The excavation area abbreviation NT refers to a successive series of small temples built very near the city wall in the southwestern portion of Ur. The temple nearest the surface was that built in the Neo-Babylonian period and attributable to the reign of Nebuchadnezzar. The excavation area abbreviation NT actually stands for Nebuchadnezzar's temple. No Persian period temple was found here but Persian burials infringed on the building (see area NTB). Beneath the Neo-Babylonian temple Woolley discovered another, similar temple of the Kassite period. This one seemed to have two phases of construction, one phase attributable to the reign of Kurigalzu. Beneath this sat another temple of the Isin-Larsa/Old Babylonian period, also with two phases. One of these dated to the reign of Rim Sin and the other to that of Sin-Iddinam. Yet another temple sat beneath, but this one was very fragmentary and difficult to map. It likely belonged to the Ur III period but little could be discerned. Inscribed clay cones found in the Larsa levels give the name of the building as E-ni-gi-na and state that Rim-Sin restored this temple dedicated to Nin-gish-zida. Inscriptions in other levels show that this deity was honored here throughout the time periods but that Nin-Ezen (Ningizzida's consort) was also honored here in a kind of double shrine. Woolley suggested that another temple to Nin-Ezen appeared in the temenos area (see area SM) and that Ningizzida was the primary deity for this smaller temple in the southern city. (none)
Dublalmah | LL First investigated by Taylor in 1853, the dublalmah was originally a gateway onto the eastern corner of the ziggurat terrace. It expanded into a larger building in the Isin-Larsa/Old Babylonian period. It had multiple functions, religious and administrative, through the centuries. An inscribed door socket of Amar-Sin found here refers to the building as the great storehouse of tablets and the place of judgment. It was thus essentially a law court, possibly with tablets recording judgments stored within. In Mesopotamia, an eastern gateway--in sight of the rising sun--was typically seen as a place of justice, and gateways were often places where witnesses or judges might hear claims. After the Ur III period the door onto the ziggurat terrace was sealed up and the dublalmah appears to have become a shrine, but it retained its name and probably its law court function. Kurigalzu made significant restorations to the building in the Kassite period and Woolley marveled at the well-constructed fully preserved arched doorway of this Late Bronze Age time. By the Neo-Babylonian period, the structure had essentially merged with the functions of the neighboring giparu. (none)
ES The abbreviation ES almost certainly stands for Enunmah South, though it may also have to do with the building called Emuriana, referenced in a disturbed Kassite door socket found in the area. Legrain lists ES as the Egigpar of Nabonidus, SW end, and ES, or at least ESB did extend into the later remains of the Dublalmah, which at that time was part of the NeoBabylonian Giparu. The abbreviation ES first appeared in season one as a supplement to Trial Trench B (TTB.ES) when the trench was expanded to reveal the extents of the building found to be called E-nun-mah. In season 3, the abbreviation shortened simply to ES, used for the majority of the enunmah building. The Enunmah changed in layout and likely in usage through the many centuries of its existence. Initially a storage building called the ga-nun-mah, it seems to have been used as a temple, the e-nun-mah, in the Neo-Babylonian period. Some lists of excavation abbreviations equate ES with the Dublalmah site. This is because the southern Enunmah is just east of the Dublalmah. Area ESB is still more closely associated with the eastern edge of the dublalmah and likely into it. (none)
Giparu | KP The excavation area given the abbreviation KP was eventually found to be the site of the ancient building known as the giparu (alternatively e-gig-par or gig-par-ku). Mostly dedicated to the goddess Nin-gal, Nanna's consort, it was also in various periods the residence of the entu priestess. The abbreviation KP, however, stands for King's Palace because Woolley initially thought this might be the site of Shulgi's palace, the ehursag. The giparu was a very long-lived building, though it underwent many changes over many centuries. Most striking were the changes in the Neo-Babylonian period when Woolley shows it combining with the dublalmah to the east. He believed that by this point the building was not sufficient to house the Ningal temple and the entu priestess together, and thus the so-called Palace of Belshaltinannar was constructed outside the temenos specifically to house the priestess herself. At times Woolley refers to the giparu as the Great Ningal Temple, which can be confusing as the Kassite and Neo-Bablyonian Ningal temples had moved onto the ziggurat terrace to the north of the giparu (Area HD). Furthermore, parts of the giparu were excavated under area abbreviations other than KP in season 3 when the full extents of the building were only just coming to light. The northern portion originally carried the abbreviation HDB and the southeastern portion, SF. (none)
Harbor Temple The Harbor Temple had no field abbreviation, probably because HT was already in use and because very few artifacts were found within. Despite being largely empty, this building was described by Woolley as one of the best preserved temples of the Neo-Babylonian period in Mesopotamia. The temple covered 33x27 meters and some of the bricks in its walls bore the inscription of Nebuchadnezzar. Nonetheless, Woolley suggested Nabonidus as the more likely founder. The walls were of mud brick with baked brick facing up to a meter thick and they stood to a height of 6.5 meters. The entire building was filled with clean sand and Woolley proposed that it was, in fact, not the actual temple but a complete replica beneath the surface never intended for human use. The actual temple would have stood above and it had completely eroded away. Evidence for the upper temple was found in a few paving bricks of Nabonidus at a level equivalent to the floor of the nearby 'Palace of Belshaltinannar'. In fact, Woolley suggested that the Harbor Temple may have been a chapel specifically associated with this building. Creating such a substructure has apparent (much earlier) textual but not archaeological precedent. Woolley believed that after the sub-temple was complete, it was consecrated to the gods and then filled with sand, then an entire temple built again above it for human use. No indication of the deity to whom the temple was dedicated was found. The temple was first uncovered at the end of season 8 and a temporary wooden roof was erected to keep it from filling in during summer sandstorms. So roofed, it appeared remarkably complete and Woolley suggested it be preserved this way for tourists to experience. (none)
Neo-Babylonian Housing | NH The excavation area abbreviation NH refers to the better-preserved Neo-Babyloninan Housing immediately southwest of area AH (though at one point Legrain mistakenly listed it as North Harbour). Woolley excavated in area NH for a short time in season 9 and again for an even shorter time ("a few days at the end of the season" according to field reports) in season 12. He did not dig below the level of Neo-Babylonian housing as his goal was to expose the layout of a portion of the Neo-Babylonian town. Across much of the site, the Neo-Babylonian domestic remains were badly preserved and even here there were only the stubs of walls and some evidence of later, Persian, occupation. The houses used no baked brick and they were close to the surface, thus they had often disappeared almost completely. Nonetheless, Woolley recovered outlines of two streets and seven houses along with a number of late artifacts, including two pots filled with tablets dating from the reign of Nabopolassar up to that of Alexander the Great. Neo-Babylonian houses were much more spacious in ground plan than Old Babylonian and were typically built with a saw-toothed outer plan that Woolley had difficulty explaining. The streets were much more linear than earlier layouts and this implies developments in centralized town planning. Woolley attributed this entire domestic quarter, which he believed had been built on ground cleared of all other remains, to the time of Nebuchadnezzar. Despite the fact that there were many artifacts recovered here and there were many graves excavated, there are only four field notecards extant and only cursory publication. When reporting graves, Woolley listed only house number, not room. Even the house numbers were assigned late, as evidenced by publication in UE9, which discusses House A and B while its map numbers 1-7. Houses 6 and 7 were certainly dug in 1931 when Woolley intended to extend area AH, but he changed his mind and only later went back to uncover the outlines of a few more houses south of these in the final season, including House 1, dug in 1934. (none)
NNCF This area lies beyond (north/northwest of) Nebuchadnezzar's corner fort (NCF) at the west corner of the temenos wall. In seasons 10 and 11 the area was somewhat systematically excavated, initially creating a shallow trench from the northwest terrace and temenos wall almost to the city wall some 100 meters away. According to the 1932 reports, it was "enlarged into a regular excavation covering the area of a number of houses," and this expansion was continued in season 11. Excavations were taken through Persian (mostly surface) level down only a small depth to relatively well preserved house remains of the late Kassite and Neo-Babylonian periods. Many of the houses had graves under their floors. Woolley did not map or record the houses or graves, saying in his Antiquaries Journal report for 1932 (p.390): "They produced no objects of importance, but the graves did yield a certain number of glazed vases, beads and seals." Publication does not do justice to the extent of this excavation area. Only XNCF, a smaller excavation of domestic space along the NW temenos is published in UE8 and that in only a few paragraphs. (none)
NTB The excavation area abbreviation NTB refers to that space beyond (northeast of, toward the central portion of the mound of Ur) the Ningizzida temple on the southwest city wall. Woolley often used the suffix letter B to indicate an extension of an excavation area, particularly one that went beyond the confines of a visible building he was excavating. He rarely explains, however, just how far away from the building the extended excavation was carried out. In this case, Woolley explored late remains that surrounded the Ningizzida temple, noting that there were Neo-Babylonian and Persian house remains and burials nearby. Most of these are likely from area NTB, though Woolley only preceded the grave number with NT and some late graves did infringe upon the temple building itself. There are very few artifacts that actually display the NTB designation and these are all from season 8. The excavation area outside the temple space may not have been large, though it is impossible to tell on current evidence. (none)
Palace of Bel-Shalti-Nannar | AD The excavation area abbreviation AD was apparently duplicated by accident and thus refers to two different areas of the site. At the excavation, the designation was used to refer to a large Neo-Babylonian structure in the northern portion of the site that was eventually dubbed the 'Palace of Bel-Shalti-Nannar.' The horizontal extent of this building is one of the largest at Ur and the layout resembles that of the 'Great House' in Merkes at Babylon. The building's foundations were preserved to a great depth (over 3 meters) and paved floors sat at the top of the intentional fill of these foundations. Walls did not extend much above this level and excavation consisted mostly of following the outlines in order to determine the ground plan. A few artifacts were recovered, primarily from intrusive graves and from foundation deposits. Inscribed bricks in the preserved floor led Woolley to identify the building with the residence of the entu priestess in the Neo-Babylonian period. It was built for the daughter of Nabonidus, whose name we now read as Ennigaldi-Nanna but which in Woolley's day was read Bel-Shalti-Nannar. It may have had some administrative functions but it mainly appears to have been a large-scale residence. Legrain, in his museum work on inscribed materials, used the excavation area abbreviation AD to refer to a subsection of area BC (the mausoleum of the Ur III kings). Artifacts from the two separate AD contexts have been divided in the digital data wherever possible. (none)
Temenos Wall | TW The excavation area abbreviation TW stands for Temenos Wall, a wall that surrounded the ziggurat terrace and its extended sacred space in the northern central portion of the city of Ur through much of its history. The wall may have begun in the Early Dynastic period, as Woolley found some indication of what he believed to be its earliest foundation. There was clearly an Ur III period version that ran south of the giparu and then further southeast to encompass the ehursag. This was the general line of the wall through the Isin-Larsa/Old Babylonian and into the Kassite period, though the Kassites made some changes in the northern portion. Finally, the Neo-Babylonians changed the wall greatly, expanding the area encompassed to the north and south and adding several gateways. The foundations of this later, quite massive, wall often destroyed earlier remains. Woolley explored parts of the temenos wall in many seasons and frequently used the TW abbreviation for the wall in any of its building periods. Other excavation area abbreviations include parts of the temenos, particularly NCF, PDW and BC. The temenos wall built by Urnamma was 6 meters thick and built of mud brick with a baked brick facing. Most of the baked brick had been removed, probably for later building. The Nebuchadnezzar and Nabonidus temenos wall had chambers within it and sported six gates into the temenos area. This area was known as e-gish-nu-gal (Woolley read this e-gish-shir-gal). At least one later interpretation conflates TW with the phrase Town Wall, but the wall surrounding Ur was always referred to as the city wall, (CLW). (none)
Nebuchadnezzar Corner Fort | NCF The excavation area abbreviation NCF refers to the Nebuchadnezzar Corner Fort excavated in seasons 10 and 11. This building was located at the west corner of the temenos where it meets the ziggurat terrace and turns to the south. Publication UE9 refers to this specific structure as the West Corner Fort, built by Nebuchadnezzar at the corner of his temenos wall. An earlier fortification had been uncovered in season 3, which Woolley called the Bastion of Warad Sin. This structure sits at the north corner of the ziggurat terrace, approximately mid-way along the northwest temenos wall and may have functioned as a kind of sally port gate. It was sometimes called the north corner fort in early seasons but artifacts were not catalogued with this abbreviation in those seasons. Any artifacts from the Warad Sin building were likely catalogued instead with the abbreviation PDW. Nebuchadnezzar's Corner Fort may also have been defensive, but it contained in its later phase a large mixing basin filled with bitumen. In the time of Nabonidus it may well have been in use in repairing the ziggurat. Woolley dug beneath the Nebuchadnezzar Corner Fort, still using the abbreviation NCF, and uncovered what he believed was a temple or shrine. (none)
XNCF This area lies along the edge of northwest temenos wall east of the Nebuchadnezzar Corner Fort (NCF). It was partly explored in season 1 when late graves were found in what at that time were called Cemeteries X, Y, and Z. In seasons 10 and 11 the larger area of late domestic space, or mostly that to the northwest, was more systematically excavated as area NNCF and the 'cemeteries' were found to be graves beneath heavily deteriorated late houses. Publication of area XNCF in UE8 discusses the remains of domestic buildings found east of NCF and Warad Sin's Bastion along the temenos wall and the northern extent of the Nanna Courtyard (PD). XNCF as a whole, however, appears to have included the long range of Kassite magazines extending under and somewhat beyond the Neo-Babylonian temenos wall. These were broken into rows A, B, and C, and field catalogue cards referring to XNCF often record one of these letters and a room number in the contextual notes. Thus XNCF contained public buildings between the ziggurat terrace and the temenos wall (including a clear reference to the Kuriglazu addition to the Warad Sin Bastion), and domestic buildings and burials somewhat beyond (north of) the northwest temenos wall. (none)
Cemetery X Season 1 catalog cards contain the context location Cemetery X referring to late period (Persian and Neo-Babylonian) graves discovered along (or just northwest of) the northwest temenos wall. Originally believed to be a late period cemetery (along with cemeteries Y and Z nearby), it was eventually found that the graves lying near the surface here were originally located beneath the floors of domestic space that had almost completely denuded. Contextual information from later seasons indicate this area of houses and graves with the abbreviation XNCF, meaning northeast of the Nebuchadnezzar Corner Fort. Some of the material in this later explored area is as early as the Kassite period. (none)
  • 13 Locations