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Lord Aberdeen's Black Stone


Artifact: Stone
Provenience: Nineveh
Period: Neo-Assyrian (ca. 911-612 BC)
Current location:
Text genre, language: ; Akkadian
CDLI page

Description: The most prominent feature of this stone are not the four sides inscribed with an annalistic text by the Neo-Assyrian king Esarhaddon, but the "front" which contains a glyphic inscription of the king's name and titulature. In his annals the king is indeed referring to this invented script: "Constellations, the equivalent of the writing of my name I carved on them (i.e., foundation deposits)." The script itself uses metaphorical and symbolic features to refer to the cuneiform signs that make up the king's name. So, e.g., both the bull and the date palm are used to refer to the notion "king". The outer shape of the plough, on the other hand, serves to represent the shape of the two cuneiform signs ash-shur. (Klaus Wagensonner, University of Oxford)

Editions: Finkel, I. and J.E. Reade. 1996. "Assyrian Hieroglyphs," ZA 86, 244 - 268; Scurlock, J. 1997. "Assyrian Hieroglyphs Enhanced," N.A.B.U. 1997/92; Roaf, M. and A. Zgoll. 2001. "Assyrian Astroglyphs: Lord Aberdeen's Black Stone and the Prisms of Esarhaddon," ZA 91, 264 - 295; Morenz, L.D. 2003. "Neuassyrische visuell-poetische Bilder-Schrift und ihr Vor-Bild," in: L.D. Morenz and E. Bosshard-Nepustil (eds) Herrscherpräsentation und Kulturkontake. Ägypten - Levante - Mesopotamien (Alter Orient und Altes Testament 304, Münster), 197 - 229.

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abderdeen_black_stone.txt · Last modified: 2013/04/03 15:04 (external edit)
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