Full Name: Sheikh Hamoudi Ibn Ibrahim      
Involvement with Ur: Foreman     
Season Number: 02: 1923-1924      
Season Number: 03: 1924-1925      
Season Number: 04: 1925-1926      
Season Number: 05: 1926-1927      
Season Number: 06: 1927-1928      
Season Number: 07: 1928-1929      
Season Number: 08: 1929-1930      
Season Number: 09: 1930-1931      
Season Number: 10: 1931-1932      
Season Number: 11: 1932-1933      
Season Number: 12: 1933-1934      
Time of Involvement with Ur: 1922-1934     
Biography: Little is known about Hamoudi’s origins. Even his dates of birth and death are unknown. He is first known from the Carchemish excavations before the First World War, where he was in charge of organising and controlling the expedition workforce. Hamoudi also made himself indispensable in other ways, including administering medicine, and is credited with saving Lawrence’s life when he contracted typhoid fever. In June 1913, Lawrence and Woolley took Hamoudi to England, and they visited Oxford. The visit left a deep impression on Hamoudi. In 1914, Woolley and Lawrence shut down the site at Carchemish and both men were soon involved in military concerns. Woolley returned to Carchemish in 1919–20, but was unable to resume excavation because of the political situation. When Woolley was appointed Director of the joint British Museum/University of Pennsylvania Museum expedition to Ur in 1922, Hamoudi was appointed foreman. Described then as an elderly man, he brought with him two sons who worked under their father in organising the workforce. There are several photographs of Hamoudi at Ur, including some which show him in the same line as the Woolleys and the rest of the team. He was clearly a much-valued member of that team. At the start of every season, he would meet Woolley in Baghdad to discuss the ordering of stores of food and excavation essentials, then arrange for their transport to Ur. He also took instructions about work to be carried out to the expedition house before Woolley and his wife arrived. Mallowan frequently mentioned Hamoudi in a diary kept during 1925 and 1926. In October 1926 he reports buying presents (“sundry decorative articles”) in Paris on his way to Ur for Hamoudi and his (by then) three sons working at Ur: Yahia, Ibrahim and Isa. Undergoing an emotional crisis after the death of one of his closest friends, Mallowan “went to talk things over with Hamoudi, that tower of philosophy”. Hamoudi went on to be part of Mallowan’s digs in northern Syria at Chagar Bazar and Tell Brak. Agatha (Christie) related how he and two of his sons reported for duty at 5 a.m. while the Mallowans were still fast asleep in their hotel room. In 1949, when Mallowan was about to begin excavating at Nimrud, he found that Hamoudi had been awarded the King’s Medal for Service in the Cause of Freedom (KMS) for his services to British interests during the War. How long after this Hamoudi died is not recorded. Katharine Woolley made a bronze head of Hamoudi, which was once in the collection of the Horniman Museum, but the Museum does not have it now, and have no recollection of what happened to it. It was much admired at the time and considered to have been a good likeness.      

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Media Media Title Title Label Author Omeka Label
Season 1 Field Report Season 1 Field Report (none) Woolley, Leonard (none)
Season 10 Field Report Season 10 Field Report (none) Woolley, Leonard (none)
Season 11 Field Report Season 11 Field Report (none) Woolley, Leonard (none)
Season 12 Summary Report Season 12 Summary Report (none) Woolley, Leonard (none)
Season 2 Field Report Season 2 Field Report (none) Woolley, Leonard (none)
Season 3 Field Report Season 3 Field Report (none) Woolley, Leonard (none)
Season 4 Field Report Season 4 Field Report (none) Woolley, Leonard (none)
Season 5 Field Report Season 5 Field Report (none) Woolley, Leonard (none)
Season 6 Field Report Season 6 Field Report (none) Woolley, Leonard (none)
Season 7 Field Report Season 7 Field Report (none) Woolley, Leonard (none)
Season 8 Field Report Season 8 Field Report (none) Woolley, Leonard (none)
Season 9 Field Report Season 9 Field Report (none) Woolley, Leonard (none)
UPM Field Photo numbers UPM Field Photo numbers (none) (none) (none)
  • 13 Media


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