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Boundary stone (kudurru)

 

Height: 61.000 cm

Gift of Sir Arnold Kemball

ME 90841

Room 55: Mesopotamia

    Boundary stone (kudurru)

    2nd Dynasty of Isin, about 1099-1082 BC
    From Babylon, southern Iraq

    'The Establisher of the Boundary forever'

    This kudurru records the purchase of a piece of land by Marduk-nasir, an officer of King Marduk-nadin-ahhe (about 1099-1082 BC) from a certain Amel-Enlil. Marduk-nadin-ahhe was a king of the Second Dynasty of Isin.

    The cuneiform text details the purchase price of the land as: a chariot, saddles, two donkeys, an ox, grain, oil and some garments. Each is separately valued; the total coming to 1700 shekels of silver. The man carrying a bow and arrow is the king. He wears a garment that remained the Babylonian royal dress for centuries. The cuneiform caption beside him names the kudurru as 'The Establisher of the Boundary forever'. The text calls on twelve gods to protect the document, and, in addition to the king, nineteen symbols of deities provide further decoration and protection. The symbols are framed by an undulating snake, which occurs frequently on boundary stones.

    L.W. King, Babylonian boundary stones and (London, Trustees of the British Museum, 1912)

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    On display: Room 55: Mesopotamia