Iraq

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Object Lesson: Ram in the Thicket

What is it? This ancient Mesopotamian sculpture known as the ‘ram in the thicket’ is actually a ‘goat in a tree’. The goat is rendered in impressive detail, as it reaches up to eat leaves on high branches – a common sight along the banks of the Tigris and Euphrates rivers. The sculpture was made […]

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Preview: Rethinking the Islamic world

A fresh approach to a celebrated collection On 18 October 2018, the new Albukhary Foundation Gallery of the Islamic World will open its doors to visitors at the British Museum. CWA was invited to take a look behind the scenes as installation of the objects was under way. How do you tackle a subject as […]

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According to Ancient Egyptian mythology, the world was created at Heliopolis. This significance was reflected in a temple complex that boasted the largest enclosure known in Egypt. Today, acts of creation at the site mostly concern new buildings springing up in the Cairo suburbs, while rescue excavations tease out traces of the temple before they […]

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Hope through heritage

Before September, the people in this picture had never picked up a chisel. Now, only a few months into World Monument Fund’s conservation stonemasonry training programme, they can carve arabesques for zakhrafa jambs, prepare rectangular billet mouldings, or work an ovolo return. Not yet perfect maybe, but still astonishing progress, made more remarkable still given […]

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Object lesson: Agatha Christie’s ivory from Iraq

What is it? This exquisitely carved ivory plaque from the ancient Assyrian site of Nimrud, near Mosul in Iraq, is one of several inlays that once adorned the back of a wooden chair or couch. Measuring 26cm × 12cm, the plaque features a woman in a long, Syrian-style dress with loose, beaded sleeves and a […]

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Giza is one of the most celebrated archaeological sites in the world. Although it is revered for its spectacular pyramids, research over the last few decades has shed light on a living community that grew up to service the dead. In our cover feature we examine their role in dispatching the deceased on a voyage […]

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In France, archaeologists have uncovered a huge Iron Age chariot burial that is puzzling archaeologists. It is the largest yet found, and belongs to a Celtic aristocrat who enjoyed high social standing in life. But is this chief a man or a woman? The funerary complex is unusual, too: no settlement has been found close enough to be associated […]

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