Stamp Seal


Location: On Display in the Middle East Galleries

From: Iraq | Tepe Gawra

Curatorial Section: Near Eastern

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Object Number 35-10-15
Current Location Middle East Galleries - On Display
Provenience Iraq | Tepe Gawra
Archaeology Area Level X
Locus Level X | Tepe Gawra, 4 '0' [9 P]
Date Made ca. 4000 BCE
Section Near Eastern
Materials Serpentine
Technique Carved
Iconography Dog | Saluki

Serpentine stamp seal. Rectangular; damaged. Two animals facing left, one superimposed. Carved with the design of two Salukis, dogs used for hunting from early times in the Near East.

This stamp seal, found in level 10 at Tepe Gawra in what is now northern Iraq, depicts two animals that are likely saluki dogs. The agile breed was domesticated in the ancient Near East and played an important role in hunting and herding. Stamp seals themselves were used to place an identifiable mark on clay and played a large role in early administration and the rise of complexity in record keeping.

Man and Animals: "ca. 3200 BC. H. 0.85 cm W. 1.6cm Th. 0.9cm. This stamp seal from Tepe Gawra in northern Mesopotamia is carved with the design of two salukis, dogs used for hunting from early times in the Near East. Seals such as this one, as well as cylinder seals, were used to secure jars and other objects whose contents were not to be disturbed. They were pressed into the wet clay that coverd the opening of a container."

Height 0.85 cm
Width 1.6 cm
Thickness 0.9 cm
Credit Line American School Oriental Research / University Museum Expedition to Tepe Gawra, Iraq; E. A. Speiser, 1935
Other Number G4-609 - Field No SF | Rothman: 2012 - Other Number

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