Ancient Uruk Limestone Hemispheroid Stamp Seal with Ram


A finely incised Ancient Uruk hemispheroid stamp seal, made from drill-cut limestone in the Jemdet Nasr period (3300-2900 B.C.). The Jemdet Nars period developed during the later part of the Uruk period, based slightly above Uruk geographically. The flat side is engraved with a stylised ram produced from a combination of lines and dots. A geometric motif, possibly a figure, features above the animal. The seal is pierced longitudinally for suspension and comes with a professionally baked, modern impression.

Date: 3300 - 2900 BC
Provenance: From Ex. Cotswold collection 1980. A large part of the collection was sold by a Cirencester Auction in November 2018.
Condition: Good condition. One minor chip to the stamps surface.

In stock

SKU: AG-48 Category: Tags: , ,

The Jemdet Nasr Period took place in southern Mesopotamia with a great number of administrative cuneiform tablets and seals coming from this area. A seal comprises of a design carved onto a hard material: although most often made of stone, there are also examples rendered in bone, ivory, faience, glass, metal, wood, and even sun-dried or baked clay. Both the material and the scene carved on the seal might have been ascribed with protective qualities. In the ancient world, seals guaranteed the authenticity of marked ownership – as such, they were instrumental in legal transactions, and in the protection of goods against theft. Mesopotamia has been regarded as the cradle of ancient glyphic arts, with the earliest cylinder seals proven to have been firstly executed during the Bronze Age, circa 4th Millennium BC. Each following period in ancient Mesopotamian history contributed in developing styles and techniques of glyphic arts, making seals important in determining chronological phases by providing a visual chronicle of style and iconography.

For more about stamp seals, see our relevant blog post: Making their Mark: A Concise Guide to Western Asiatic Stamp Seals

Weight 24.8 g
Dimensions L 3.1 x H 2.1 cm



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