November 22, 2016

The Stela and the State: Monuments and Politics in Ancient Mesopotamia

Dr. Irene Winter
Harvard University

Wednesday, November 30, 2016
7:00 PM
Breasted Hall of the Oriental Institute

Public Monuments constituted one of the major contributions of ancient Mesopotamia to world history. From the third millennium BCE to the first, rulers dedicated freestanding stone stelae to their piety to the gods and their exploits in battle. Although we are far from having a complete record of all such monuments, enough works have been recovered in the archaeological record to be able to see both similarity and difference, and to have a sense of the specific meaning of individual works at important historical junctures. The lecture provides a summary of known monuments, in order to stress the power such works were believed to have had and the role they played in propagating royal ideology.