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Free PDF download from the Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Stamp and cylinder seals are a crucial source for the art, history, and religion of the ancient Near East. The rulers, gods, demons, and monsters that move in stately and seemingly dumb procession around the seals give us important insights into the real and magical worlds of the ancients. Cylinder and stamp seals were among the first objects to enter the Museum's collection from the Near East." Met website.
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Call Number: Colby Miller New Books CD5344 .C59 1990
Publication Date: 1990-12-04
A rich source of pictorial information about the Ancient Near East comes to us in the form of miniature reliefs, created from the impressions made in clay by tiny engraved stone seals. Originally used for sealing goods and writing tablets, these seals now provide important evidence for administrative practices, technical development, and long-distance trade. The designs themselves record religious beliefs, mythical characters, architectural styles, musical instruments, festivals, sport, warfare, transportation, and fashions in dress. In this first comprehensive introduction to pre-Islamic Near Eastern seals, Dominique Collon discusses cylinder sealsa form unique to the Ancient Near Eastas well as stamp seals, the earliest dating from the fifth millennium B.C. As a reflection of how their owners saw the world around them, Near Eastern seals are an essential tool for archaeologists in interpreting the past.