Ancient Mesopotamia Speaks: Highlights of the Yale Babylonian Collection

Cover of the book titled "Ancient Mesopotamia Speaks."

Agnete W. Lassen, associate curator of the Yale Babylonian Collection, Eckart Frahm, professor of Assyriology, and Klaus Wagensonner, postdoctoral researcher

(Yale University Press)

The Yale Babylonian Collection houses virtually every genre, type, and period of ancient Mesopotamian writing, ranging from about 3,000 B.C.E. to the early Christian Era. Among its treasures are tablets of the Epic of Gilgamesh and other narratives, the world’s oldest recipes, a large corpus of magic spells and mathematical texts,  miniature art carved on seals, and poetry by the first named author in world history, the princess Enheduanna.

This volume, the companion book to an exhibition at Yale’s Peabody Museum of Natural History, celebrates the Yale Babylonian Collection and its formal affiliation with the museum. Included are essays by renowned experts on the exhibition themes, photographs and illustrations, and a catalog of artifacts in the collection that present the ancient Near East in the light of present-day discussion of lived experiences, focusing on family life and love, education and scholarship, identity, crime and transgression, demons, and sickness.

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