Queen Puabi’s Headdress [Object of the Day #70]

September 25, 2012

Queen Puabi's Headdress
Queen Puabi’s Headdress

This ornate headdress and pair of earrings were found with the body of Queen Puabi in the Royal Cemetery at Ur. The headdress is made up of 20 gold leaves, two strings of lapis and carnelian, and a large gold comb. When Queen Puabi was found, there were several distinct aspects of her burial. On one of the three cylinder seals she was buried with, there are two cuneiform signs that are believed to read “Puabi” (originally thought to have read “Shubad”). During Queen Puabi’s era, most women’s cylinder seals read “wife of ___”. The fact that there was no mention of Queen Puabi’s husband tells us that she may have been a Queen in her own right.

To learn more about Queen Puabi check out the Penn Museum’s site: Iraq’s Ancient Past

Penn Museum Object #s B17710, B17712B, B17712A, B16693, B17709, and B17711A

See this and other objects like it on Penn Museum’s Online Collection Database