Kisiga visit and photos - Page 3

Tell Lahm (Kisiga)
Visited 08.30-10.00, 7 June, 2008
Located about 38 km to the south-east of Ur, Kisiga is about twice the size of Eridu.

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Tell Lahm (Kisiga)
Visited 08.30-10.00, 7 June, 2008
Located about 38 km to the south-east of Ur, Kisiga is about twice the size of Eridu.

Brief excavations were carried out by J. E. Taylor in 1855 and by R. Campbell Thompson in 1918. The most recent work at the site was undertaken by Fuad Safar in 1949 after local people informed him that Bedouin tribes had dug defensive pits and trenches on the mound.

J. E. Taylor, “Notes on Abu Shahrein and Tel el Lahm”, Journal of the Royal Asiatic Society 15 (1855), pp. 404-15; F. Safar, “Soundings at Tell Al-Laham”, Sumer 5 (1949), pp. 154-64.

The settlement dates from the Early Dynastic to the end of the Kassite period. The main mound was used as a cemetery throughout much of the first millennium BC.

The helicopter landed on the north-eastern side of the mound. The inspection team moved west across the mound to a large gully (oriented east-west). The south-western side and summit of the mound are covered by looter holes – pithos and bath-tub burials were the main attraction for the looters. Silt filled many of the holes. Sherds of Middle Babylonian, Neo-Babylonian and Achaemenid date are visible on the surface of the mound. The site has been badly damaged by military activity and the remains of tank emplacements (17 x 3.4 m) and other military installations such as a circular cutting (some 9 m in diameter) and a rectangular feature (14 x 11 m) scar the large gully. These military features (at least some of which were visible in photographs of the site dating to 1992) are filled with silt. The appearance of the puddled mud in the bottom of the looters’ holes was similar to that in the bottom of the military installations, suggesting that the looters’ holes were not recent and probably dated from 2003. The presence of US forces at Tell Lahm is demonstrated by numerous military food packages scattered on the surface. The site is unfenced. A large number of SPF personnel arrived in three vehicles after the team had been at the site for an hour.

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