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H 276 x W 203 mm

246 pages

114 figures, 6 tables (colour throughout)

Published Mar 2024

Archaeopress Archaeology


Paperback: 9781803276694

Digital: 9781803276700

DOI 10.32028/9781803276694

Recommend to a librarian

Early Mesopotamia; Urban plan; Domestic Architecture; Agriculture; Industry; City-state Politics; Cuneiform Library

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City of Culture 2600 BC: Early Mesopotamian History and Archaeology at Abu Salabikh

By John Nicholas Postgate

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This book presents the city beneath the surface of Abu Salabikh, southern Iraq. The archaeology and the textual data combine to reveal its architecture, agricultural and industrial enterprises, and social structure. Integrated with our wider knowledge of south Mesopotamia at this time it creates a vivid image of city life in 2600 BC.





Chapter 1. The site and the environment

Chapter 2. The mounds and the city layout

Chapter 3. Buildings and builders

Chapter 4. Burials and memorials

Chapter 5. The temple and the tablets

Chapter 6. The temple estates

Chapter 7. Textiles, clay and stone

Chapter 8. Ornamental stones and metals

Chapter 9. The ensi and his city

Chapter 10. Kingships and patron deities

Chapter 11. Cities and states: recognition and rivalry

Chapter 12. Abu Salabikh in context


Appendix 1. Ereš and Nisaba

Appendix 2 ki.en-gi

Appendix 3. Records of land allocations

Appendix 4. The profession PA.USAN

Bibliographical matters


About the Author

Nicholas Postgate taught Akkadian at SOAS in London from 1967-71 and then moved to the British School of Archaeology in Baghdad until 1980 when he returned to teach Mesopotamian history and archaeology at Cambridge, and later Sumerian and Akkadian language and literature, retiring in 2013. His main archaeological project in Iraq was Abu Salabikh, though he also worked at Tell Madhhur and under Diana Kirkbride at Umm Dabaghiyah. After Iraq became out of bounds in 1990 he directed the Bronze and Iron Age excavation at Kilise Tepe in Rough Cilicia from 1994 to 1998 and again in 2007-2012. Alongside his books, Early Mesopotamia: society and economy at the dawn of history (1992) and Bronze Age bureaucracy: writing and the practice of government in Assyria (2013), he has edited Middle and Neo-Assyrian archives, co-edited the Concise Dictionary of Akkadian, and written articles on various historical topics, and recently on Sumerian grammar.