University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology
Object Number: B14543
Current Location: Collections storage
Provenience: Iraq
Period: Persian
Date Made: -522
Early Date: -522
Late Date: -522
Section:Near Eastern
Materials:Jade
Iconography:Inscription
Figures
Credit Line:Bequest of Maxwell Sommerville, 1904
Other NumberPBS XIV: 1096 - Other Number

Description

flat, irregular lozenge, relief and inscription. two kneeling figures. possible royal memorial of Darius I
CBS Register: Flat irregular lozenge with relief and inscription. Green jade; Persian. Two kneeling figures
PBS XIV: Jade stone relief with seven lines of cuneiform inscription. The scene is Persian inspiration is perhaps a memorial of Darius after the overthrow of the pseudo Smerdis, September 29, 522 BC. The stone of almond shape measuring 49 ½ x 40 mm and 6 mm thick, has tapering edges as if to e set in a metal mounting.
The king and his minister are squatting or kneeling on a platform on either side of a square stone. The king wears a crown and raises a finger as if addressing his minister. Both have Aryan features, high brows, straight noses and pointed beards. They wear necklaces, bracelets and long ceremonial robes.
The inscription records probably the words of the king. The language used must be the Babylonian. Several sings or ideograms not found in the Elamite columns of the Behistun inscription are purely Babylonian. But the engraving is unsteady. The text betrays an Elamite inspiration. The god Margarza or Marshaza seems akin with Marqazana the patron god of the Elamite month of October. In this very month we know that Darius restored the royalty and built anew the destroyed temples.
There are three lines above the hands of the king, two on the stone, and two on the platform. The following is a tentative translation:
“Margarza//has made known//in Elam (?)//Stone of the//Persians (?) [Smerdis(?)]//in the middle of the platform built in Persia.”
MS Coll.


Bibliography:

[Book] Legrain, Leon. 1925. The Culture of the Babylonians. Volume XIV. : Page/Fig./Plate: 367; fig: 1906View Objects cited in this Publication

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