The Jemdet Nasr Period took place in southern Mesopotamia, known as Iraq today, with a great number of administrative cuneiform tablets and seals coming from there. The stamp seal was a carved object, usually made of stone, which first appeared in the fourth millennium BC and was used to impress pictures or descriptions into soft, prepared clay. These seals guaranteed the authenticity of marked ownership: as such, they were instrumental in legal transactions, and in the protection of goods against theft. Seal amulets with stylised animals have been found throughout Mesopotamia in contexts dating to the late fourth millennium BC, although stamp seals and cylinder seals were the predominant types in the ancient Near East.
Prehistoric Stone Stamp Seal
An elliptical stamp seal from southern Mesopotamia. It is made of mottled cream stone; cut with an indeterminate animal design; and has been pierced horizontally for suspension.
Condition: Fine condition, both eye plaques absent.