Special Exhibition Image Gallery: The Royal Tombs of Ur

01
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Reconstruction of the Burial Scene of a King

© University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology; Used with permission.
A Special Exhibition Image Gallery by Stan Parchin Reconstruction of the Burial Scene of a King (?) Just Before the Death of the Royal Retainers, Illustrated London News, June 23, 1928, pp. 1172-74. University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology

Stan Parchin, Senior Correspondent for Museums and Special Exhibitions, has assembled an image gallery of art and artifacts from the Royal Tombs of Ur: Ancient Treasures from Modern Iraq exhibition for our viewing pleasure. Here he walks us through them and offers descriptions of each.

"Royal Tombs of Ur: Ancient Treasures from Modern Iraq" is on view from February 22 through August 13, 2006 at the Houston Museum of Natural Science, One Hermann Circle Drive, Houston, TX 77030 (Telephone: 713-639-4629; Website: www.hmns.org). The exhibition is open Monday and Wednesday to Sunday from 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM and Tuesday from 9:00 AM to 9:00 PM. Admission is $9.00 for adults and $8.00 for senior citizens (62 years of age and over), college students with valid identification cards and children ages 3 to 11.

Click here for a review of the special exhibition.

Special thanks to Erin Blatzer of the Houston Museum of Natural Science for the additional images from the exhibition.

This graphic reconstruction illustrates a scene from the royal burial labeled PG 789, possibly that of a king whose name is lost to us.

Depicted are members of his court, including military personnel, servants and women. According to several interpretations of the actual burial's arrangement, artworks and artifacts, the elaborately dressed royal retinue, replete with musical instruments, drank poison and accompanied the deceased king with slaughtered oxen in the burial pit.

Since its temporary residency at The St. Louis Art Museum, Missouri, Treasures from the Royal Tombs of Ur opened on February 22, 2006 at the Houston Museum of Natural Science, where it will remain on view until August 13. Thereafter, the show will travel to the Middlebury College Museum of Art in Vermont from September 14 to December 11. The University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology's traveling exhibition has been on the road since October 3, 1998. The exhibition shows no sign of loosing steam in terms of its enduring popularity. Called Royal Tombs of Ur: Ancient Treasures from Modern Iraq while in Texas, the display features more than 200 exquisite Mesopotamian works of art and artifacts, including: the Great Lyre; the Ram Caught in a Thicket (actually a rearing goat); the Headdress of the Lady Puabi and her exquisite jewelry; a gold ostrich egg; superb examples of weaponry; and other precious masterpieces from Sumer's Early Dynastic IIIA period (ca. 2600-2500 B.C.). Sometime after 2006, the collection will be reinstalled in the University of Pennsylvania Museum's renovated Ancient Near Eastern Art galleries.

Click here for the full review of the special exhibition.

Special thanks to Erin Blatzer of the Houston Museum of Natural Science for the additional images.

"Royal Tombs of Ur: Ancient Treasures from Modern Iraq" is on view from February 22 through August 13, 2006 at the Houston Museum of Natural Science, One Hermann Circle Drive, Houston, TX 77030 (Telephone: 713-639-4629; Website). The exhibition is open Monday and Wednesday to Sunday from 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM and Tuesday from 9:00 AM to 9:00 PM. Admission is $9.00 for adults and $8.00 for senior citizens (62 years of age and over), college students with valid ID cards and children ages 3 to 11.

**************************

From your Guide: Stan Parchin, Senior Correspondent for Museums and Special Exhibitions, is a specialist in ancient, late-medieval and Renaissance art and history, and a regular contributor to About Art History. You may read all of his Special Exhibition and Catalogue Reviews here

02
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Ram in the Thicket (or Ram Caught in a Thicket)

Image © University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology; Used with permission.
A Special Exhibition Image Gallery by Stan Parchin Ram in the Thicket (or Ram Caught in a Thicket) (Mesopotamian, ca. 2650-2550 B.C.). Found in the "Great Death Pit" at Ur. Gold, silver, lapis lazuli, copper, shell, red limestone and bitumen. H. 42.5 cm. © University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology

This profile view of one of a pair of statues made of composite materials was discovered by Sir Leonard Woolley. The British archaeologist's name for it, now clearly a misnomer, is a Biblical reference to the animal found in the Old Testament story of Abraham.

Since its temporary residency at The St. Louis Art Museum, Missouri, Treasures from the Royal Tombs of Ur opened on February 22, 2006 at the Houston Museum of Natural Science, where it will remain on view until August 13. Thereafter, the show will travel to the Middlebury College Museum of Art in Vermont from September 14 to December 11. The University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology's traveling exhibition has been on the road since October 3, 1998. The exhibition shows no sign of loosing steam in terms of its enduring popularity. Called Royal Tombs of Ur: Ancient Treasures from Modern Iraq while in Texas, the display features more than 200 exquisite Mesopotamian works of art and artifacts, including: the Great Lyre; the Ram Caught in a Thicket (actually a rearing goat); the Headdress of the Lady Puabi and her exquisite jewelry; a gold ostrich egg; superb examples of weaponry; and other precious masterpieces from Sumer's Early Dynastic IIIA period (ca. 2600-2500 B.C.). Sometime after 2006, the collection will be reinstalled in the University of Pennsylvania Museum's renovated Ancient Near Eastern Art galleries.

Click here for the full review of the special exhibition.

Special thanks to Erin Blatzer of the Houston Museum of Natural Science for the additional images from the exhibition.

"Royal Tombs of Ur: Ancient Treasures from Modern Iraq" is on view from February 22 through August 13, 2006 at the Houston Museum of Natural Science, One Hermann Circle Drive, Houston, TX 77030 (Telephone: 713-639-4629; Website). The exhibition is open Monday and Wednesday to Sunday from 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM and Tuesday from 9:00 AM to 9:00 PM. Admission is $9.00 for adults and $8.00 for senior citizens (62 years of age and over), college students with valid identification cards and children ages 3 to 11.

**************************

From your Guide: Stan Parchin, Senior Correspondent for Museums and Special Exhibitions, is a specialist in ancient, late-medieval and Renaissance art and history, and a regular contributor to About Art History. You may read all of his Special Exhibition and Catalogue Reviews here.

03
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Wreath (Mesopotamian, ca. 2650-2550 B.C.)

Image © University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology; Used with permission.
A Special Exhibition Image Gallery by Stan Parchin Wreath (Mesopotamian, ca. 2650-2550 B.C.). Found in the "Great Death Pit" at Ur. Gold, lapis lazuli and carnelian. L. 42.7 cm. © University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology

This delicate wreath consists of a double string of lapis lazuli beads separated by carnelian rings. The gold sheet leaves probably represent ones from poplar trees, common to the riverbanks of the Tigris and Euphrates Rivers.

Since its temporary residency at The St. Louis Art Museum, Missouri, Treasures from the Royal Tombs of Ur opened on February 22, 2006 at the Houston Museum of Natural Science, where it will remain on view until August 13. Thereafter, the show will travel to the Middlebury College Museum of Art in Vermont from September 14 to December 11. The University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology's traveling exhibition has been on the road since October 3, 1998. The exhibition shows no sign of loosing steam in terms of its enduring popularity. Called Royal Tombs of Ur: Ancient Treasures from Modern Iraq while in Texas, the display features more than 200 exquisite Mesopotamian works of art and artifacts, including: the Great Lyre; the Ram Caught in a Thicket (actually a rearing goat); the Headdress of the Lady Puabi and her exquisite jewelry; a gold ostrich egg; superb examples of weaponry; and other precious masterpieces from Sumer's Early Dynastic IIIA period (ca. 2600-2500 B.C.). Sometime after 2006, the collection will be reinstalled in the University of Pennsylvania Museum's renovated Ancient Near Eastern Art galleries.

Click here for the full review of the special exhibition.

Special thanks to Erin Blatzer of the Houston Museum of Natural Science for the additional images from the exhibition.

"Royal Tombs of Ur: Ancient Treasures from Modern Iraq" is on view from February 22 through August 13, 2006 at the Houston Museum of Natural Science, One Hermann Circle Drive, Houston, TX 77030 (Telephone: 713-639-4629; Website). The exhibition is open Monday and Wednesday to Sunday from 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM and Tuesday from 9:00 AM to 9:00 PM. Admission is $9.00 for adults and $8.00 for senior citizens (62 years of age and over), college students with valid identification cards and children ages 3 to 11.

**************************

From your Guide: Stan Parchin, Senior Correspondent for Museums and Special Exhibitions, is a specialist in ancient, late-medieval and Renaissance art and history, and a regular contributor to About Art History. You may read all of his Special Exhibition and Catalogue Reviews here.

04
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Wreath (2) (Mesopotamian, ca. 2650-2550 B.C.)

Image © University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology; Used with permission.
A Special Exhibition Image Gallery by Stan Parchin Wreath (Mesopotamian, ca. 2650-2550 B.C.). Found in the "Great Death Pit" at Ur. Gold, lapis lazuli and carnelian. L. 33.1 cm. © University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology

Like the personal adornment previously displayed, this wreath's pendant gold sheet leaves perhaps imitate those from poplar trees. The lightweight leaves are engraved with veining to give them a more realistic look.

Since its temporary residency at The St. Louis Art Museum, Missouri, Treasures from the Royal Tombs of Ur opened on February 22, 2006 at the Houston Museum of Natural Science, where it will remain on view until August 13. Thereafter, the show will travel to the Middlebury College Museum of Art in Vermont from September 14 to December 11. The University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology's traveling exhibition has been on the road since October 3, 1998. The exhibition shows no sign of loosing steam in terms of its enduring popularity. Called Royal Tombs of Ur: Ancient Treasures from Modern Iraq while in Texas, the display features more than 200 exquisite Mesopotamian works of art and artifacts, including: the Great Lyre; the Ram Caught in a Thicket (actually a rearing goat); the Headdress of the Lady Puabi and her exquisite jewelry; a gold ostrich egg; superb examples of weaponry; and other precious masterpieces from Sumer's Early Dynastic IIIA period (ca. 2600-2500 B.C.). Sometime after 2006, the collection will be reinstalled in the University of Pennsylvania Museum's renovated Ancient Near Eastern Art galleries.

Click here for the full review of the special exhibition.

Special thanks to Erin Blatzer of the Houston Museum of Natural Science for the additional images from the exhibition.

"Royal Tombs of Ur: Ancient Treasures from Modern Iraq" is on view from February 22 through August 13, 2006 at the Houston Museum of Natural Science, One Hermann Circle Drive, Houston, TX 77030 (Telephone: 713-639-4629; Website). The exhibition is open Monday and Wednesday to Sunday from 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM and Tuesday from 9:00 AM to 9:00 PM. Admission is $9.00 for adults and $8.00 for senior citizens (62 years of age and over), college students with valid identification cards and children ages 3 to 11.

**************************

From your Guide: Stan Parchin, Senior Correspondent for Museums and Special Exhibitions, is a specialist in ancient, late-medieval and Renaissance art and history, and a regular contributor to About Art History. You may read all of his Special Exhibition and Catalogue Reviews here.

05
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Wreath (3) (Mesopotamian, ca. 2650-2550 B.C.)

Image © University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology; Used with permission.
A Special Exhibition Image Gallery by Stan Parchin Wreath (Mesopotamian, ca. 2650-2550 B.C.). Found in Puabi's death pit at Ur. Gold, lapis lazuli and carnelian. L. 40 cm. © University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology

This wreath of gemstones includes gold leaves that most likely represent those that come from poplar trees. The ornament was found with the body of one of Lady Puabi's female attendants.

Since its temporary residency at The St. Louis Art Museum, Missouri, Treasures from the Royal Tombs of Ur opened on February 22, 2006 at the Houston Museum of Natural Science, where it will remain on view until August 13. Thereafter, the show will travel to the Middlebury College Museum of Art in Vermont from September 14 to December 11. The University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology's traveling exhibition has been on the road since October 3, 1998. The exhibition shows no sign of loosing steam in terms of its enduring popularity. Called Royal Tombs of Ur: Ancient Treasures from Modern Iraq while in Texas, the display features more than 200 exquisite Mesopotamian works of art and artifacts, including: the Great Lyre; the Ram Caught in a Thicket (actually a rearing goat); the Headdress of the Lady Puabi and her exquisite jewelry; a gold ostrich egg; superb examples of weaponry; and other precious masterpieces from Sumer's Early Dynastic IIIA period (ca. 2600-2500 B.C.). Sometime after 2006, the collection will be reinstalled in the University of Pennsylvania Museum's renovated Ancient Near Eastern Art galleries.

Click here for the full review of the special exhibition.

Special thanks to Erin Blatzer of the Houston Museum of Natural Science for the additional images from the exhibition.

"Royal Tombs of Ur: Ancient Treasures from Modern Iraq" is on view from February 22 through August 13, 2006 at the Houston Museum of Natural Science, One Hermann Circle Drive, Houston, TX 77030 (Telephone: 713-639-4629; Website). The exhibition is open Monday and Wednesday to Sunday from 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM and Tuesday from 9:00 AM to 9:00 PM. Admission is $9.00 for adults and $8.00 for senior citizens (62 years of age and over), college students with valid identification cards and children ages 3 to 11.

**************************

From your Guide: Stan Parchin, Senior Correspondent for Museums and Special Exhibitions, is a specialist in ancient, late-medieval and Renaissance art and history, and a regular contributor to About Art History. You may read all of his Special Exhibition and Catalogue Reviews here.

06
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Great Lyre from the "King's Grave" (front panel)

Image © University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology; Used with permission.
A Special Exhibition Image Gallery by Stan Parchin Great Lyre from the "King's Grave" (front panel) (Mesopotamian, ca. 2650-2550 B.C.). Shell and bitumen. H. 33 cm. © University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology

The trapezoidal front panel of this musical string instrument displays four scenes divided into separate registers. The top scene features a bearded male figure (probably semidivine) flanked heraldically by two mythological beings. The three remaining regions depict a funerary banquet attended by lively animals performing human tasks.

Since its temporary residency at The St. Louis Art Museum, Missouri, Treasures from the Royal Tombs of Ur opened on February 22, 2006 at the Houston Museum of Natural Science, where it will remain on view until August 13. Thereafter, the show will travel to the Middlebury College Museum of Art in Vermont from September 14 to December 11. The University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology's traveling exhibition has been on the road since October 3, 1998. The exhibition shows no sign of loosing steam in terms of its enduring popularity. Called Royal Tombs of Ur: Ancient Treasures from Modern Iraq while in Texas, the display features more than 200 exquisite Mesopotamian works of art and artifacts, including: the Great Lyre; the Ram Caught in a Thicket (actually a rearing goat); the Headdress of the Lady Puabi and her exquisite jewelry; a gold ostrich egg; superb examples of weaponry; and other precious masterpieces from Sumer's Early Dynastic IIIA period (ca. 2600-2500 B.C.). Sometime after 2006, the collection will be reinstalled in the University of Pennsylvania Museum's renovated Ancient Near Eastern Art galleries.

Click here for the full review of the special exhibition.

Special thanks to Erin Blatzer of the Houston Museum of Natural Science for the additional images.

"Royal Tombs of Ur: Ancient Treasures from Modern Iraq" is on view from February 22 through August 13, 2006 at the Houston Museum of Natural Science, One Hermann Circle Drive, Houston, TX 77030 (Telephone: 713-639-4629; Website). The exhibition is open Monday and Wednesday to Sunday from 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM and Tuesday from 9:00 AM to 9:00 PM. Admission is $9.00 for adults and $8.00 for senior citizens (62 years of age and over), college students with valid ID cards and children ages 3 to 11.

**********************

From your Guide: Stan Parchin, Senior Correspondent for Museums and Special Exhibitions, is a specialist in ancient, late-medieval and Renaissance art and history, and a regular contributor to About Art History. You may read all of his Special Exhibition and Catalogue Reviews here.

07
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Great Lyre from the "King's Grave" (detail: front panel)

Image © University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology; Used with permission.
A Special Exhibition Image Gallery by Stan Parchin Great Lyre from the "King's Grave" (detail: front panel) (Mesopotamian, ca. 2650-2550 B.C.). Shell and bitumen. © University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology

All three figures in this composition possess wide-eyed facial expressions. Two human-headed bulls, a recurring motif in Sumerian art, are held by a heroic male figure located between them.

Since its temporary residency at The St. Louis Art Museum, Missouri, Treasures from the Royal Tombs of Ur opened on February 22, 2006 at the Houston Museum of Natural Science, where it will remain on view until August 13. Thereafter, the show will travel to the Middlebury College Museum of Art in Vermont from September 14 to December 11. The University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology's traveling exhibition has been on the road since October 3, 1998. The exhibition shows no sign of loosing steam in terms of its enduring popularity. Called Royal Tombs of Ur: Ancient Treasures from Modern Iraq while in Texas, the display features more than 200 exquisite Mesopotamian works of art and artifacts, including: the Great Lyre; the Ram Caught in a Thicket (actually a rearing goat); the Headdress of the Lady Puabi and her exquisite jewelry; a gold ostrich egg; superb examples of weaponry; and other precious masterpieces from Sumer's Early Dynastic IIIA period (ca. 2600-2500 B.C.). Sometime after 2006, the collection will be reinstalled in the University of Pennsylvania Museum's renovated Ancient Near Eastern Art galleries.

Click here for the full review of the special exhibition.

Special thanks to Erin Blatzer of the Houston Museum of Natural Science for the additional images from the exhibition.

"Royal Tombs of Ur: Ancient Treasures from Modern Iraq" is on view from February 22 through August 13, 2006 at the Houston Museum of Natural Science, One Hermann Circle Drive, Houston, TX 77030 (Telephone: 713-639-4629; Website). The exhibition is open Monday and Wednesday to Sunday from 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM and Tuesday from 9:00 AM to 9:00 PM. Admission is $9.00 for adults and $8.00 for senior citizens (62 years of age and over), college students with valid identification cards and children ages 3 to 11.

**************************

From your Guide: Stan Parchin, Senior Correspondent for Museums and Special Exhibitions, is a specialist in ancient, late-medieval and Renaissance art and history, and a regular contributor to About Art History. You may read all of his Special Exhibition and Catalogue Reviews here.

08
of 11
Gold Vessel in the Form of an Ostrich Egg

Image © University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology; Used with permission.
A Special Exhibition Image Gallery by Stan Parchin Gold Vessel in the Form of an Ostrich Egg (Mesopotamian, ca. 2550-2400 B.C.). Gold, lapis lazuli, red limestone, shell and bitumen. H. 14.6 cm, Diam. 13 cm. © University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology

This container was made from a single sheet of hammered gold. Its rim is inlaid in a mosaic pattern of lapis lazuli, red limestone and shell.

Sumerian graves were frequently supplied with ostrich eggs, a bird common to the region. This decorated reproduction, identical in size to a real one, could have been used in a funerary ritual. Ostriches were hunted by royalty in antiquity. Initially the birds were identified with underworld creatures, but later came to represent the idea of regeneration.

Since its temporary residency at The St. Louis Art Museum, Missouri, Treasures from the Royal Tombs of Ur opened on February 22, 2006 at the Houston Museum of Natural Science, where it will remain on view until August 13. Thereafter, the show will travel to the Middlebury College Museum of Art in Vermont from September 14 to December 11. The University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology's traveling exhibition has been on the road since October 3, 1998. The exhibition shows no sign of loosing steam in terms of its enduring popularity. Called Royal Tombs of Ur: Ancient Treasures from Modern Iraq while in Texas, the display features more than 200 exquisite Mesopotamian works of art and artifacts, including: the Great Lyre; the Ram Caught in a Thicket (actually a rearing goat); the Headdress of the Lady Puabi and her exquisite jewelry; a gold ostrich egg; superb examples of weaponry; and other precious masterpieces from Sumer's Early Dynastic IIIA period (ca. 2600-2500 B.C.). Sometime after 2006, the collection will be reinstalled in the University of Pennsylvania Museum's renovated Ancient Near Eastern Art galleries.

Click here for the full review of the special exhibition.

Special thanks to Erin Blatzer of the Houston Museum of Natural Science for the additional images from the exhibition.

"Royal Tombs of Ur: Ancient Treasures from Modern Iraq" is on view from February 22 through August 13, 2006 at the Houston Museum of Natural Science, One Hermann Circle Drive, Houston, TX 77030 (Telephone: 713-639-4629; Website). The exhibition is open Monday and Wednesday to Sunday from 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM and Tuesday from 9:00 AM to 9:00 PM. Admission is $9.00 for adults and $8.00 for senior citizens (62 years of age and over), college students with valid identification cards and children ages 3 to 11.

**************************

From your Guide: Stan Parchin, Senior Correspondent for Museums and Special Exhibitions, is a regular contributor to About Art History. Read all of his Special Exhibition and Catalogue Reviews here.

09
of 11
Dagger (Mesopotamian, ca. 2550-2400 B.C.)

Image © University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology; Used with permission.
A Special Exhibition Image Gallery by Stan Parchin Dagger (Mesopotamian, ca. 2550-2400 B.C.). Gold with wood restoration. L. (restored) 33 cm. © University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology

This gold weapon was discovered in a royal grave at Ur. The dagger's hilt guard and restored wooden pommel or handle are decorated with miniature gold nails. Their rounded heads in two decorative designs simulate fine intricate granulation.

Since its temporary residency at The St. Louis Art Museum, Missouri, Treasures from the Royal Tombs of Ur opened on February 22, 2006 at the Houston Museum of Natural Science, where it will remain on view until August 13. Thereafter, the show will travel to the Middlebury College Museum of Art in Vermont from September 14 to December 11. The University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology's traveling exhibition has been on the road since October 3, 1998. The exhibition shows no sign of loosing steam in terms of its enduring popularity. Called Royal Tombs of Ur: Ancient Treasures from Modern Iraq while in Texas, the display features more than 200 exquisite Mesopotamian works of art and artifacts, including: the Great Lyre; the Ram Caught in a Thicket (actually a rearing goat); the Headdress of the Lady Puabi and her exquisite jewelry; a gold ostrich egg; superb examples of weaponry; and other precious masterpieces from Sumer's Early Dynastic IIIA period (ca. 2600-2500 B.C.). Sometime after 2006, the collection will be reinstalled in the University of Pennsylvania Museum's renovated Ancient Near Eastern Art galleries.

Click here for the full review of the special exhibition.

Special thanks to Erin Blatzer of the Houston Museum of Natural Science for the additional images from the exhibition.

"Royal Tombs of Ur: Ancient Treasures from Modern Iraq" is on view from February 22 through August 13, 2006 at the Houston Museum of Natural Science, One Hermann Circle Drive, Houston, TX 77030 (Telephone: 713-639-4629; Website). The exhibition is open Monday and Wednesday to Sunday from 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM and Tuesday from 9:00 AM to 9:00 PM. Admission is $9.00 for adults and $8.00 for senior citizens (62 years of age and over), college students with valid identification cards and children ages 3 to 11.

**************************

From your Guide: Stan Parchin, Senior Correspondent for Museums and Special Exhibitions, is a specialist in ancient, late-medieval and Renaissance art and history, and a regular contributor to About Art History. You may read all of his Special Exhibition and Catalogue Reviews here.

10
of 11
Tumbler (Mesopotamian, ca. 2650-2550 B.C.)

Image © University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology; Used with permission.
A Special Exhibition Image Gallery by Stan Parchin Tumbler (Mesopotamian, ca. 2650-2550 B.C.). Found in Puabi's death pit at Ur. Electrum. H. 15.2 cm. © University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology

The rim and base of this fluted tumbler with 28 ridges exhibit herringbone and zigzig patterns. The last register from the Great Lyre's front panel contains depictions of similar vessels. This one is made of electrum (an alloy of gold and silver).

Since its temporary residency at The St. Louis Art Museum, Missouri, Treasures from the Royal Tombs of Ur opened on February 22, 2006 at the Houston Museum of Natural Science, where it will remain on view until August 13. Thereafter, the show will travel to the Middlebury College Museum of Art in Vermont from September 14 to December 11. The University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology's traveling exhibition has been on the road since October 3, 1998. The exhibition shows no sign of loosing steam in terms of its enduring popularity. Called Royal Tombs of Ur: Ancient Treasures from Modern Iraq while in Texas, the display features more than 200 exquisite Mesopotamian works of art and artifacts, including: the Great Lyre; the Ram Caught in a Thicket (actually a rearing goat); the Headdress of the Lady Puabi and her exquisite jewelry; a gold ostrich egg; superb examples of weaponry; and other precious masterpieces from Sumer's Early Dynastic IIIA period (ca. 2600-2500 B.C.). Sometime after 2006, the collection will be reinstalled in the University of Pennsylvania Museum's renovated Ancient Near Eastern Art galleries.

Click here for the full review of the special exhibition.

Special thanks to Erin Blatzer of the Houston Museum of Natural Science for the additional images from the exhibition.

"Royal Tombs of Ur: Ancient Treasures from Modern Iraq" is on view from February 22 through August 13, 2006 at the Houston Museum of Natural Science, One Hermann Circle Drive, Houston, TX 77030 (Telephone: 713-639-4629; Website). The exhibition is open Monday and Wednesday to Sunday from 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM and Tuesday from 9:00 AM to 9:00 PM. Admission is $9.00 for adults and $8.00 for senior citizens (62 years of age and over), college students with valid identification cards and children ages 3 to 11.

**************************

From your Guide: Stan Parchin, Senior Correspondent for Museums and Special Exhibitions, is a specialist in ancient, late-medieval and Renaissance art and history, and a regular contributor to About Art History. You may read all of his Special Exhibition and Catalogue Reviews here.

11
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Tumbler (detail: bottom) (Mesopotamian, ca. 2650-2550 B.C.)

Image © University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology; Used with permission.
A Special Exhibition Image Gallery by Stan Parchin Tumbler (detail: bottom) (Mesopotamian, ca. 2650-2550 B.C.). Found in Puabi's death pit at Ur. Electrum. H. 15.2 cm. © University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology

The base of the hammered electrum tumbler from Puabi's death pit features a decorative eight-petal rosette surrounded by a series of arcs or concentric circles.

Since its temporary residency at The St. Louis Art Museum, Missouri, Treasures from the Royal Tombs of Ur opened on February 22, 2006 at the Houston Museum of Natural Science, where it will remain on view until August 13. Thereafter, the show will travel to the Middlebury College Museum of Art in Vermont from September 14 to December 11. The University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology's traveling exhibition has been on the road since October 3, 1998. The exhibition shows no sign of loosing steam in terms of its enduring popularity. Called Royal Tombs of Ur: Ancient Treasures from Modern Iraq while in Texas, the display features more than 200 exquisite Mesopotamian works of art and artifacts, including: the Great Lyre; the Ram Caught in a Thicket (actually a rearing goat); the Headdress of the Lady Puabi and her exquisite jewelry; a gold ostrich egg; superb examples of weaponry; and other precious masterpieces from Sumer's Early Dynastic IIIA period (ca. 2600-2500 B.C.). Sometime after 2006, the collection will be reinstalled in the University of Pennsylvania Museum's renovated Ancient Near Eastern Art galleries.

Click here for the full review of the special exhibition.

Special thanks to Erin Blatzer of the Houston Museum of Natural Science for the additional images from the exhibition.

"Royal Tombs of Ur: Ancient Treasures from Modern Iraq" is on view from February 22 through August 13, 2006 at the Houston Museum of Natural Science, One Hermann Circle Drive, Houston, TX 77030 (Telephone: 713-639-4629; Website). The exhibition is open Monday and Wednesday to Sunday from 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM and Tuesday from 9:00 AM to 9:00 PM. Admission is $9.00 for adults and $8.00 for senior citizens (62 years of age and over), college students with valid identification cards and children ages 3 to 11.

**************************

From your Guide: Stan Parchin, Senior Correspondent for Museums and Special Exhibitions, is a specialist in ancient, late-medieval and Renaissance art and history, and a regular contributor to About Art History. You may read all of his Special Exhibition and Catalogue Reviews here.