Title: Ur Excavations VI; The Ur III Period     
Date: 1974     
Author: Woolley, Leonard     
Publisher: Oxford University Press     
Publication place: Oxford     


Objects: Ur Excavations VI; The Ur III Period | Ur Excavations VI; The Ur III Period 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)
1000 (none) (none) (none) Bronze figure. Zembilje type, ending in nail-like point rather unusually long, not inscribed. Period UR-ENGUR. Sent to Baghdad.
1001 (none) (none) (none) Steatite plaque. One side flat, one convex. Rectangular. Uninscribed. Sent to Baghdad. Found with U.1000
108 (none) (none) (none) Fr. of alabaster vase. =RC..91a. [drawing]
1165 (none) (none) B15885 Black stone gate socket, with long but incomplete inscr. running round the side. Beginning and end lost, partly by the breaking off of one side of the stone, partly by flaking away the surface. 42 ll remain, recording the building of an archive-house (dub-la-mah), annexed to the court of justice, by Bur-Sin I, king of Ur. The text ends with blessings and curses upon those who should respect or destroy the king's monument. Photo 147 RI.71
1167 (none) 1924,0920.397 (none) Fragment from near the rim of an alabaster vase.
118 (none) (none) (none) Tablet found with hoard in 2, TTB probably astronomical
119 (none) (none) (none) Tablet, probably a contract, from somewhere in TTB
1190 (none) (none) (none) Portion of a large black diorite duck-weight, originally of 30 minas. Much broken, both on the head and across the middle. On one side of the neck, a crescent moon in low relief, on other side, part of an inscription dedicating the object for the life of a king of the 3rd Dynasty of Ur: the name is now missing. R.1. No. 84.
1211 (none) (none) B15695 Terra cotta face or mask, broken away from rest of object. Resembles Greek comic mask, but may be face of Pazuzu. [drawing] P Photo 174
1327 (none) (none) (none) Fragment from head of a large black diorite statue of a king of the 3rd Dyn (?) of Ur. Remains of an inscriptoin appear above the hair over the left forehead.
1351 (none) 1924,0920.393 (none) Fragment from base of large inscribed clay cone. Beginning of inscription of Warad-Sin king of Larsa: duplicate of U.19, U.700, etc.
1353 (none) (none) (none) Leg and hoof (of bull?). Thin gold leaf. [drawing 1:1]
1359 (none) (none) (none) Shell amulet. In form of a left hand; pierced at wrist for suspension. [drawing 1:1]
1361 (none) 1924,0920.233 (none) Bronze implemenet. Like a nail with 2 barbs or flanges. [drawing 1:1]
1362 (none) (none) B15756 Bronze implement. (Drill?): square in section. [drawing 1:1]
137 (none) (none) B14966 Torso of statue. White limestone. Eyes originally inlaid. Surface a great deal worn and the soft parts of the stone decayed, destroying much of the original character. [drawing]
139 (none) (none) (none) Lapis lazuli. Fr of inlay. Apparently hair. [drawing 1:1]
1392 (none) (none) B15643 Drab clay relief. Moulded. 2 figures standing, wearing flounced skirts, one with horned headdress. Crescent of moon and stars above. P.
14129 (none) (none) (none) Seal impressions. Not clear.
1455 (none) 1924,0920.395 (none) Fragment from the rim of a mottled black and white stone vase, with the remains of an inscription of Ennapadda, priest of Nnar, and son of Ur-Nammu, King of Ur. Cf. U.18224. Cf. Ur Texts No. 25
152 (none) (none) (none) String of beads. Red transluscent pebble, small barrels. 25 in all: found scattered and strung together.
1524 (none) (none) B15702 Bedstead (or chair) Drab clay. 2 legs and back missing. Decorated with 6(?) panels in relief, like the quarterings of a shield. P.
153 (none) (none) (none) Beads. Minute, of rock crystal and white semi-hemispherical pebble, 15 in all [crossed out] of transparent white glass [crossed out] crystal and opaque glass paste, white. 7 beads go to 1cm.
15651 (none) (none) (none) Clay cone. Fragment - Warad-Sin ded. - of Edilmunna RIU.127
1584A (none) (none) B15754 [A and B] Bronze models (?) In shape of canoes. 2 adhering, one inside the other, and fragment of others. [drawing 1:1]
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Locations: Ur Excavations VI; The Ur III Period | Ur Excavations VI; The Ur III Period Export: JSON - XML - CSV

Location Context Title Context Description Description (Modern)
No. 1 Boundary Street This was a large and important house at the corner of Boundary Street and Niche Lane,opening on the former. The outer walls had from fourteen to twenty courses of burnt brick showing above pavement level, the inner and back walls had only a damp-course of from two to five courses; the building was well preserved except on the NE where it had suffered denudation by being on the line of a wadi cut by the water from the higher ground to the SW. There were two doors opening on the street very close to one another; the second (No. 3) was probably a shop attached to the dwelling-house. (none)
City Wall | CLW The meaning of the excavation area abbreviation CLW is not precisely clear. Some references to it state that it is the central portion of the northeastern city wall, thus it might mean Central Long Wall. Field notes with the abbreviation, however, refer to excavation squares along the entirety of the edge of the mound where the outer city wall once stood and thus it more likely to refer to the City Long Wall as a whole. H.R. Hall dug a 12 meter trench across the city wall in 1919, but Woolley began his investigations of it in February of 1929. In a period of a few days he exposed 100 meters of the length of the wall behind his dig house. In the next season he set his workers to tracing the entirety of the wall, which ran approximately 2.5 miles around the city. To uncover it they simply followed the outer line of the wall to no great depth and made cross cut trenches to assess the width of the wall at intervals. Despite the great extent, the tracing of the wall took only one month. In a report sent from the field in February of 1930, Woolley said, "...the wall is a complete ruin; not a vestige of the burnt-brick wall proper has been discovered and in few places does more survive than the weathered stump of the huge mud-brick rampart along which the wall originally ran." The investigations showed the original wall to be between 25 and 34 meters wide and Woolley estimated that it once stood to a height of 8 meters. On the central portion of the east side, he found and excavated partial houses. Woolley believed that for portions of Ur's history, the backs of these houses formed the defensive wall itself. Many of the objects marked as CLW come from this specific area of houses along the wall, and this is likely the reason that CLW in abbreviation lists is said to be the central portion of the northeast city wall. The sloping revetment that was often found in CLW squares was evidence of the bank of a canal running along the east side of the city. Some of the CLW squares also contained other excavation areas, such as the North and West harbors, the so-called Kassite Fort, the Rim Sin temple (RS), and the Nin-Ezen Temple (NT). (none)
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)
Rim Sin Temple | RS Along the city wall (CLW) in the southeast Woolley came across a relatively large building and spent some time investigating it. Here he found clay cones of Rim-Sin and a foundation deposit mentioning that this king had dedicated the building to the god Enki. Thus Woolley referred to the building as the Enki Temple of Rim-Sin or simply the Rim-Sin Temple. Legrain lists the abbreviation RS but the code does not appear on any field catalogue cards. Rim-Sin's ninth year is known as 'the year in which he built the temple of En-ki at Ur.' He probably made major restorations rather than founding the building, however, as there is an earlier, Amar-Sin, temple beneath. There are many inscribed bricks of this earlier king, but the early ground plan was mostly destroyed. (none)
EH Site | EH Area EH is located within the Neo-Babylonian temenos wall south of the giparu. There are many other area designations given to parts of this space (such as DP and LR), but EH overall refers to the interior extent of the SW temenos wall from the south corner almost to the Nebuchadnezzar gate and extending east to the line of Pit F. Walls in the area were scattered and difficult to follow, so Woolley established a grid covering at least 55x100 meters in 5x5 squares. The grid is not well documented but publication shows that Woolley began numbers to the east, increasing to the west, and letters to the south, increasing to the north; square 1,A therefore sits in the SE corner -- 11,T in the NW. The abbreviation EH stands for E-Hur-sag but the building of that name does not lie within this excavation zone. Woolley did not believe that the building to the east of this area (partially dug by H.R. Hall in 1919) was the e-hur-sag, the palace of Shulgi, despite bricks with the inscription of the building being found there. Instead he called that building Hall's Temple (HT) and sought the palace in many other places inside the temenos. He eventually conceded that HT was indeed the e-hur-sag and published EH without reference to the abbreviation's original meaning. The area Woolley called EH was the area Hall called the 'tomb mound' because it was relatively high ground in which he found a number of graves. Woolley showed that these were the remains of graves beneath the floors of houses dating from the Isin-Larsa to Kassite periods. EH in this time was likely an extension of the domestic area EM. In the Ur III period there appear to have been larger public buildings here, but their remains were spotty at best. Tablets from this area and area EM show that the residents of the domestic quarter in the Isin-Larsa/Old Babylonian period were likely temple workers. (none)
Nimintabba Temple | DT The abbreviation DT stands for Dungi's Temple or Dimtabba Temple and this abbreviation is found within the larger EH excavation area; Woolley discovered cylinders inscribed with the name of Shulgi beneath a partly ruined floor in area EH and assigned the building it was associated with an excavation abbreviation of its own. The building's walls were almost completely destroyed, however, and thus were difficult to follow. They lay in the northwestern portion of area EH and originally defined a temple dedicated to the god Nimintabba (Woolley initially read the name as Dim-Tab-Ba). The ephemeral remains of the temple stretched underneath and beyond the Neo-Babylonian temenos wall and Woolley expanded excavation in search of the rest, but little more of the temple was found. The westward expansion of the excavation beyond the temenos wall became excavation area abbreviation DP. (none)
Ehursag | HT The excavation area abbreviation HT stands for Hall's Temple because H.R. Hall had excavated parts of it in 1919. Hall called it Area (or Building) B and he found inscribed bricks in the paved floors of the building which indicated it was the ehursag, the house of the mountain, which was purported to be Shulgi's palace. Woolley, in his first season, found inscribed bricks in the walls that mentioned Ur-Namma's temple of the moon god, and he concluded the building was actually a temple, dubbing the excavation area HT. He believed the actual ehursag palace to be located somewhere else within the temenos. Many of his subsequent excavation abbreviations attest to his search for the building, but he eventually agreed that HT was the ehursag itself. In his fourth season, Woolley cleared the remaining extents of the building. He had already explored parts of the terrace wall on which it stood and came to find that this was part of the Ur III temenos wall. Along this wall near the ehursag Woolley found a deep well, at the bottom of which (13 meters down) were many inscribed clay cones. (none)
Enunmah | TTB | ES That its foundation goes back behind the Third Dynasty of Ur is certain, for fragments of walls and pavements in pIano-convex brick (PI. 30a) prove the fact, but of the character of that original structure nothing can be said. Ur-Nammu was responsible for the temple in its existing form; he built it in mud brick, or at any rate made much use of that material, and his work was added to and probably completed by his son Dungi. Bur-Sin replaced with burnt brick the mud-brick walls of his grandfather and Gimil-Sin added further details. The temple was completely overthrown by the Elamites on the occasion of the downfall of Ibi-Sin and under the Isin Dynasty was rebuilt by Gimil-ilishu, who faithfully followed the lines of the Third Dynasty ground-plan. Ishme-Dagan, Nur-Adad, and Sin-idinnam all in turn undertook repairs of its structure and Kudur-Mabug seems to have done some more radical restoration, but his building was destroyed by the Babylonians in the time of Samsu-iluna. It was probably restored after a fashion not much later, but the first actual record of its re-establishment is that of Kuri-Galzu; the Kassite ruler still kept to the original plan, but added a few new features. His building was repaired, without any noticeable alterations, by Marduk-nadin-ahhe in the 11th century B.C. Nebuchadnezzar was the first to tamper seriously with the ancient ground-plan; his reconstruction involved a complete change of character corresponding to a change of ritual in the temple services, and in the temple as he left it the old E-nun-mah is barely recognisable. Nabonidus repaired but does not seem to have modified his predecessor's work. Finally we find, above the Nabonidus level, remains of a further reconstruction which we can attribute only to Cyrus of Persia., The building was an almost exact square measuring some 57.00 m. in either direction; its angles were, as usual, orientated to the cardinal points of the compass. It was surrounded by a wall 2.70 m. thick strengthened by double buttresses, of which there were five on each side, and the area thus enclosed was raised to form a platform about 2.00 m. above the level of the ground outside; this wall is fairly well preserved on the NE (v. Pis. 28b., 29b), has suffered a good deal, and is partly masked by subsequent additions in the SE (PI. 29a), could be traced only by its foundations on the SW, where the building has been remodelled, and on the NW it has been completely eradicated by a drain of Nebuchadnezzar. There is a doorway in the SE wall which, however, would seem to have led only into two small chambers having no communication with the rest of the building. In view of the denudation of the walls, which here do not rise above floor level, it is not possible to assert definitely that such communication never existed, but the facts that the wall between rooms 17 and 18 is whereas in almost every other case the doorways can be distinguished even at this level (rooms 8, 9, and 10 are the sole exceptions), and that no hinge-box or doorsocket stone was found here, make the theory of a door hazardous. Probably the real entrance to the building was in the NW front. (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)
TTB TTB is shorthand for Trial Trench B, one of two trenches excavated in Woolley's first season at Ur in 1922. This one was about 4 meters wide by about 60 meters long and ended up almost entirely within the e-nun-mah, a building that went through many forms over the centuries. The trench was expanded to reveal the building and extra abbreviations were added to it to indicate portions, roughly in directional notation from the main trench. The trench cut the building close to the west corner and TTB.W became the abbreviation for this area beyond the trench itself. TTB.SS and TTB.ES covered the larger area to the south and east. The abbreviation ES was then used in later seasons to refer to the majority of the building and a small portion of the area to the south of it. The enunmah itself was a complicated structure that seems to have changed function from storeroom (originally called the ganunmah) to temple through its long history. Woolley began assigning room numbers within the abbreviation TTB, but these excavation room numbers do not correlate precisely with the published room numbers. (none)
FH The excavation area abbreviation FH stands for 'Front of Hall'. By this, Woolley meant the area in front of (north of) Hall's excavation area B, the building found to be the ehursag. Woolley dug Trial Trench C (TTC) in the southern extent of this denuded area in season 4 and expanded investigations in seasons 9 and 10 in order to complete his understanding of the constructions inside the temenos and especially to find more evidence of the earlier temenos wall. In a season 9 report early in 1931, Woolley had this to say about what he found in area FH: "considerable Larsa wall, some Kassite house remains of no particular importance, and a remarkable cistern of burnt bricks and bitumen." In season 10, he said: "Having proved that nothing could be recovered in this area to complete the ground-plan of the Temenos I stopped the work." (none)
LH Area abbreviation LH refers to the excavation of an ancient (Larsa period?) pit mostly filled with broken pottery that sat in front of the eastern portion of the Third Dynasty temenos wall. The pit is inside area FH but appears to have been given its own abbreviation. Legrain lists the context as, "Pit in front of third dynasty wall" and one of the field catalog cards says similarly, "mixed rubbish in the pit in front of the IIIrd Dynasty wall." UE 6 discusses this rubbish pit briefly in connection with the Ur III temenos stating that the pit was located in site grid square Y 37. (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)
Mausoleum Site | BC Woolley called the east corner of the Neo-Babylonian temenos the Bur-Sin Corner (area BC) because he found bricks of Bur-Sin (now read Amar-Sin or Amar-Suen) there in early season explorations. Area BC is particularly complex because it consists of substantial building in many periods. The largest building was of the Ur III period, and it is this building to which the abbreviation BC typically refers in field notes. It sits at the northeastern edge of the Royal Cemetery. The main Ur III building was 35 x 27m and its southwest wall was preserved two meters in height, while its northeast wall was largely destroyed. Its walls were built with inscribed bricks of Shulgi. The overall layout of the building is much like a courtyard house but on a large scale and with more ritual furnishings. Attached to this building were two annexes, one northwest and the other southeast, built with bricks of Shulgi's son, Amar-Sin (see context AD). Beneath the entire building were three very large vaults. All of them had been plundered in antiquity and only scattered fragments of artifacts and bones were discovered inside. Nonetheless, Woolley believed that these vaults originally held the remains of the Ur III kings. For this reason, area BC is sometimes referred to as the Mausoleum Site. The building was destroyed by Elamites, according to Woolley, and sometime thereafter houses of the Isin-Larsa/Old Babylonian period were constructed in the area (see House 30). Finally, the Neo-Babylonian Temenos wall was constructed over and through parts of the remains. (none)
Mausolea of Amar-Sin | AD Amar-Sin annex to Shugli Mausoleum, The excavation area abbreviation AD was apparently duplicated by accident and thus refers to two different areas of the site. Legrain reported the abbreviation as "Annex of Dungi's Tomb," but he was not on site the year that the context was excavated. He placed the abbreviation with this meaning on cards he created for inscribed material that came to him in the museum. Some tablets and cylinder seals were found in the filling of the tomb annex and some even have a note that they are from Seal Impression Strata against the tomb or its foundational fill. These artifacts are clearly from the BC area, that of the Mausoleum of the Ur III kings built by Shulgi and his son Amar-Sin (Amar-Suen). Amar-Sin built two annexes onto the Shulgi building (See area BC), one to the northwest and the other to the southeast. It is not clear which of the two annexes Legrain was referring to with the abbreviation AD, probably either or both. Essentially artifacts from this use of AD can only be located generally to the overall BC area at the eastern edge of the Royal Cemetery (PG). On the excavation site the abbreviation AD was being used for the so-called Palace of Bel-Shalti-Nannar. Artifacts from the two separate AD contexts have been divided in the digital data wherever possible. (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)
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