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To celebrate Vikings Live, we have replaced our Roman alphabet with the runic alphabet used by the Vikings, the Scandinavian ‘Younger Futhark’. The ‘Younger Futhark’ has only 16 letters, so we have used some of the runic letters more than once or combined two runes for one Roman letter.

For an excellent introduction to runes, we recommend Martin Findell’s book published by British Museum Press.

More information about how we have ‘runified’ this site


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cylinder seal

  • Object type

  • Museum number


  • Description

    Lapis lazuli cylinder seal; presentation scene; suppliant goddess stands behind a bald, clean-shaven worshipper (possibly the owner of the seal?) who faces a seated, deified king in a round hat before whom is a small nude dancer or "bow-legged" dwarf who stands on dais beneath a sun-disc or star-disc and a crescent moon. There is a base line under the scene and three-line inscription; edges slightly chipped.


  • Authority

  • Culture/period

  • Date

    • 1850BC
  • Production place

  • Materials

  • Dimensions

    • Height: 2.48 centimetres
    • Diameter: 1.45 centimetres
  • Inscriptions

      • Inscription Type

      • Inscription Transliteration

        suen-ish-me-a-ni, dumu suen-i-din-nam, ir su-ma-ia-mu-ut-ba-la.
      • Inscription Translation

        Sin-Ishmeanni, son of Sin-iddinam, servant of Sumu-Yamutbala.
      • Inscription Comment

        The first sign of the last line extends beyond the frame.
  • Bibliography

    • Collon 1986a 56 bibliographic details
    • Collon 1986a pl.VIII bibliographic details
    • Frayne, RIME 4 RIM.E. bibliographic details
  • Condition

    Fair; edges slightly chipped.

  • Subjects

  • Associated names

  • Acquisition name

  • Acquisition date


  • Acquisition notes

    Acquisition among other items purchased from the estate of the late Captain E.G. Spencer-Churchill noted in the 'British Museum Quarterly' 32 (1967/68), p.57.

  • Department

    Middle East

  • BM/Big number


  • Registration number



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Object reference number: WCO24191

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