Collection online


  • Object type

  • Museum number


  • Description

    Limestone lion's head; carved; the recessed eye-sockets, wrinkled nose and whiskers were originally inlaid but no trace of these survive; incised with a cuneiform inscription.

  • Culture/period

  • Date

    • 882BC (circa)
  • Findspot

  • Materials

  • Technique

  • Dimensions

    • Length: 10.6 centimetres
    • Height: 9.4 centimetres
  • Inscriptions

      • Inscription Type

      • Inscription Script

      • Inscription Language

      • Inscription Comment

        States that it was presented by Sennacherib to his son Esarhaddon.
  • Curator's comments

    Attached to 1882,0918.14356.

    Originally part of the decoration of the temple of Shamash (known as the Ebabbar or 'Shining Temple') at Sippar in southern Iraq. This was one of the most important traditional and prestigious religious centres in Mesopotamia. Rulers sent offerings to Shamash and there are records of numerous kings restoring and rebuilding the temple. This head, which was originally inlaid, bears a worn inscription naming the Assyrian king Esarhaddon (680-669 BC) and his father Sennacherib. It is not clear whether this is a Babylonian or an Assyrian piece. Esarhaddon was responsible for restoring the capital city of Babylon following its destruction by Sennacherib in 689 BC.


  • Bibliography

    • Searight, Reade & Finkel 2008a 650, p.104 bibliographic details
    • Guide 1922 p.188 bibliographic details
    • Leichty E 1986a p.299 bibliographic details
    • Hall H R 1928a pl. lix bibliographic details
    • Barnett & Wiseman 1960a pp.56-57, no. 26 bibliographic details
  • Location

    On display: G55/dc13

  • Condition

    nose damaged

  • Subjects

  • Associated names

  • Acquisition name

  • Acquisition date


  • Department

    Middle East

  • BM/Big number


  • Registration number


COMPASS Image Caption: Stone lion's head


COMPASS Image Caption: Stone lion's head

Image description



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Object reference number: WCO23787

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