One in a specialised collection of cuneiform texts, examined by Professor Wilfrid George Lambert FBA (1926-2011), a specialist in Assyriology and Near Eastern archaeology, in the late 1980s and early 1990s. The collection is exceptional for its variety, and the very rare and well-preserved examples. Cuneiform writing was one of the earliest forms of writing, developed in the ancient lands of Mesopotamia. Babylonian society was complex and had a need, as we do today, to record such things as temple acquisitions, land transactions, financial loans, as well as their epic stories and personal letters. They would write these documents and letters on a wet clay tablet, which was then dried, retaining the inscriptions. Cuneiform is instantly recognisable by the wedge-shaped marks, usually pressed into clay tablets. Indeed, the name ‘cuneiform’ literally means “wedge-shaped”. The text would have been written using a blunt reed.
Large Old Babylonian Cuneiform Clay Tablet Fragment
A fragment of Western Asiatic, Old Babylonian clay tablet. It is inscribed with cuneiform text to both sides in horizontal registers. This is a fragment of a whole tablet.
Provenance: The property of a London gentleman and housed in London before 1992. Thence by descent to family members.
Condition: Fine condition, signs of cracks and chips remain visible to the surfaces. A surface section is missing from the bottom left corner of the front, and along the top of the obverse. There is also some minor staining to the surface.