Developments at Kirkuk

Originally Published in 1931

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THE most interesting inscription yet found at Kirkuk has recently been reported by Mr. R. F. S. Starr, the expedition’s director. It came from the area which is being dug straight down for the purpose of obtaining a cross-section of all periods in the mound’s history. This ‘deep room’ is now down to the eleventh level and virgin soil may be expected very soon. From one of the lower levels came a tablet on which is inscribed a map showing two mountain ranges between which flow two rivers, the larger of which has three mouths flowing into the sea or some other large body of water. The directions, north, south, and so forth, are marked on the edges of the tablet, and many place names, most of them unfamiliar, are given. One of these names is lbla; this may be the same place as an ancient city in Syria known as the Fortress of lbla, but this is by no means sure.

In the temple area, the fourth stratum, mentioned last month, continues to be most interesting in plan. The cella, or principal room, has now been cleared completely; it is in remarkable condition and is most impressive. At the end of the room is a raised pilaster in front of which is a raised platform flanked by two others. In the center of the room is a large mud-brick hearth about three feet square; here was found a large jar bearing incised and raised figures of animals. On the lower step of the altar were found the fragments of a pottery model of a house, intended either as a votive or a censer, while another broken house model was found nearby.

This is the last report on Kirkuk that will appear in the Bulletin, unless some unusual discovery warrants mention next November. It has been decided that, during the four years that have been spent in excavating, sufficient information and material objects have been obtained to afford a fairly complete knowledge of the cultures of different periods that are represented at this site. The work, therefore, will not be continued next year. The results of these excavations conducted by the Museum jointly with Harvard University and the American School of Oriental Research, Bagdad, may be considered as an important contribution to our knowledge of the ancient world. Particularly complete and illuminating is that phase dealing with the Hurrian city of Nuzi which has afforded so much insight into the life and culture of the people who lived there thirty-five hundred years ago.

Cite This Article

"Developments at Kirkuk." Museum Bulletin II, no. 6 (April, 1931): 187-190. Accessed July 25, 2024.

This digitized article is presented here as a historical reference and may not reflect the current views of the Penn Museum.

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