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Oriental Institute Publications (OIP)

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OIP 137.

Tell Hamoukar, Volume 1. Urbanism and Cultural Landscapes in Northeastern Syria:

The Tell Hamoukar Survey, 1999-2001.

Jason A. Ur

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Tell Hamoukar is one of the largest Bronze Age sites in northern Mesopotamia. The present volume presents the results of three seasons of field survey and remote-sensing analysis at the site and its region. These studies were undertaken to address questions of urban origins, land use, and demographic trends through time. Site descriptions and settlement histories are presented for Hamoukar and fifty-nine other sites in its immediate hinterland over the last 8,000 years. The project paid close attention to the "off-site" landscape between sites and considered aspects of agricultural practices, land tenure, and patterns of movement. For each phase of occupation, the patterns of settlement and land use are contextualized within larger patterns of Mesopotamian history, with particular attention to the proto-urban fifth millennium B.C., the Uruk Expansion of the fourth millennium BC, the height of urbanism in the late third millennium, the impact of the Assyrian empire in the early first millennium BC, and the Abbasid landscape of the late first millennium AD.

The volume also includes a description of the unparalleled landscape of tracks in the Upper Khabur basin of Hassake province, northeastern Syria. Through analysis of CORONA satellite photographs, over 6,000 kilometers of premodern trackways were identified and mapped, mostly dating to the late third millennium and early Islamic periods. This area of northern Mesopotamia is thus one of the best-preserved ancient landscapes of movement in the world.

The volume's appendices describe the sixty sites, their surface assemblages, and the survey's ceramic typology.

  • Oriental Institute Publications 137
  • Chicago: The Oriental Institute of the University of Chicago, 2010
  • ISBN 978-1-885923-73-8
  • Pp. lxi + 384, includes Preface by McGuire Gibson and Arabic summary; 210 figures, 3 pocket maps, 74 tables.
  • $75.00

Revised: October 8, 2013

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