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Assyria: Khorsabad (Room 10c)
710 – 705 BC
The city and palace at Khorsabad (in modern northern Iraq), was built for the Assyrian King Sargon II (721-705 BC). The palace entrances were originally dominated by pairs of colossal human-headed winged bulls, which were intended as guardians, accompanied by protective spirits with magical powers.
Two of these impressive statues now stand in Room 10c, along with carvings depicting the king and crown prince, royal courtiers and hunting scenes. Inscriptions on display in the gallery come from a similar winged bull from the palace of Sennacherib (704-681 BC) at nearby Nineveh and were badly burnt when the city was destroyed in 612 BC.