Doleritski kip Gudea, vladar Lagaša

Doleritski kip Gudea, vladar Lagaša


Neo-sumerski. Kip Gudee. Girsu, Irak. 2120. pne. Klinast natpis. Louvre.

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Sadržaj

Natpisi spominju hramove koje je Gudea sagradila u Uru, Nippuru, Adabu, Uruku i Bad-Tibiri [ potreban citat ]. To ukazuje na sve veći utjecaj Gudee u Sumeru. Njegov prethodnik, Urbaba, već je svoju kćerku Enanepadu učinio visokom svećenicom Nanne u Uru, što ukazuje i na veliku političku moć. Dvadeset godina njegove vladavine poznato je po imenu, čini se da se glavni vojni podvig dogodio u njegovoj šestoj godini, zvanoj "godina kada je Anshan pogođen oružjem". [3]

Gudea je odabrala naslov énsi (gradski kralj ili namjesnik), ne uzvišeniji lugal (Akadski šarrum), iako je sebe stilizirao kao "boga Lagaša". [ potreban citat ] Gudea je tvrdio da je osvojio Elam i Anshan, ali njegovi natpisi naglašavaju izgradnju kanala za navodnjavanje i hramova te stvaranje dragocjenih darova bogovima. [5] Materijali za njegove zgrade i statue dopremljeni su iz svih dijelova zapadne Azije: kedrovina s planina Amanus, vađeno kamenje iz Libana, bakar iz sjeverne Arabije, zlato i drago kamenje iz pustinje između Kanaana i Egipta, diorit iz Magana (Oman) i drvo iz Dilmuna (Bahrein). [6] [7] [8]

Kako je moć Akadskog carstva slabila, Lagaš je ponovo proglasio neovisnost, ovaj put pod Puzer-Mamom, koji se proglasio lugal Lagaša. [ potreban citat ] Nakon toga, ovaj naslov se neće povezivati ​​s Lagašem, barem do kraja gudeanskog razdoblja. Lagašite vladari, uključujući Ur-Ningirsu i Ur-Bau, čija su vladavina pre Gudee, sebe su nazivali énsi, ili guverner Lagaša i zadržao termin lugal samo za njihove bogove ili kao pitanje ranga u vezi, ali nikada kao političko sredstvo. Kontinuirana upotreba lugal u odnosu na božanstva izgleda da ukazuje na svjestan pokušaj vladara da zauzmu poziciju poniznosti u odnosu na svijet - nije li to iskrena poniznost ili politička smicalica. [ potreban citat ]

Dosad je pronađeno 26 kipova Gudee tokom iskopavanja Telloha (drevnog Girsua), a većina ostalih potiče iz trgovine umjetninama. [ potreban citat ] Rani kipovi su napravljeni od vapnenca, steatita i alabastera kasnije, kada su uspostavljene široke trgovačke veze [ potreban citat ], korišten je skuplji egzotični diorit. Diorit su već koristili stari sumerski vladari (kip Entemena). Ovi kipovi uključuju natpise koji opisuju trgovinu, vladavinu i religiju. [ potreban citat ] To su bile jedna od mnogih vrsta neo-sumerskih umjetničkih formi.

Prva poznata referenca Goe u Indiji vjerovatno se pojavljuje kao Gubi u zapisima Gudee. [9] U to vrijeme Sumeri su uspostavili trgovačke kontakte s Indijom. [9]

Molbe bogova pod Gudeom i njegovim nasljednicima djeluju kreativnije i poštenije: dok su akadski kraljevi slijedili skriveni obrazac proklinjanja potomstva i rušenja temelja onih koji vandalizuju stelu, kraljevi Lagašite šalju različite poruke. [ potreban citat ] Vremena su bila nasilna nakon što je Akadsko carstvo izgubilo vlast nad južnom Mezopotamijom, a bog koji je Gudei privukao najveću pažnju bio je Ningirsu - bog bitke. Iako se Gudea spominje samo jedan borbeni uspjeh, mnoge ratničke zamke koje gradi za Ningirsu ukazuju na nasilno doba. [ potreban citat ] Južni mezopotamski gradovi definirali su se svojim obožavanjem, a odluka Gudee da Lagaš napravi regalije rata za svoje bogove pokazatelj je temperamenta vremena. [ potreban citat ]

Iako očito temelj i prokletstvo potomaka nije bilo jedino vjersko pozivanje političkih sila tokom Akadskog carstva, ono pokazuje izvjesnu standardizaciju, a s njom i stagnaciju položaja bogova koji vjerovatno nisu pristajali ljudima Lagaš. Ur-Ningirsu I, s kojim počinje Gudeanska dinastija Lagaš, ostavlja malo natpisa na putu, iako se čini da neki spomeni različitih bogova ukazuju na središnju ulogu, tek će Gudea moći biti uporedna -strano poređenje sa starim prokletstvom Sargona iz Akada. Natpis na kipu Gudee kao arhitekte Kuće Ningirsu [10] upozorava čitatelja na propast ako se riječi promijene, ali postoji zapanjujuća razlika između upozorenja Sargona ili njegove linije i upozorenja Gudee. Jedan je dužine Gudeino prokletstvo traje skoro četvrtinu znatne dužine natpisa [11], a drugo je kreativnost. Bogovi neće samo smanjiti zločinčevo potomstvo u pepeo i uništiti mu temelje, ne, oni će "pustiti ga da sjedne u prašinu umjesto na sjedalo koje su mu postavili". Bit će "zaklan kao bik ... uhvaćen kao želudac za njegov žestoki rog". [12]

Ali ove razlike, iako demonstriraju Lagašite poštovanje prema vjerskim ličnostima jednostavno u količini vremena i energije koja im je potrebna, nisu toliko govorljive koliko jezik koji Gudea koristi da opravda svaku kaznu. Dok Sargon ili Naram-Sin jednostavno zahtijevaju kaznu za svakoga tko promijeni njihove riječi, na temelju njihove moći, Gudea brani svoje riječi kroz tradiciju, „od najranijih dana, otkad je sjeme izniklo, nitko (nije) trebao promijeniti izjava vladara Lagaša koji je, nakon što je izgradio Eninnu za mog gospodara Ningirsu, učinio da stvari funkcioniraju kako treba ”. [13] Promjena riječi Naram-Sina, živog boga, izdaja je, jer je on kralj. Ali mijenjati riječi Gudee, jednostavnog guvernera Lagaša, nepravedno je jer je učinio da stvari rade kako treba. [ potreban citat ]

Društvene reforme započete za vrijeme Gudeine vladavine, koje su uključivale otkazivanje dugova i omogućavanje ženama da posjeduju porodično zemljište, možda su bile poštene reforme ili povratak na stari običaj Lagašite. [ potreban citat ]

Njegovo doba bilo je posebno doba umjetničkog razvoja. No, Ningirsu je privukao većinu Gudeine pažnje. Ningirsu, bog rata, za kojeg je Gudea izgradio buzdovane, koplja i sjekire, a sve je na odgovarajući način nazvano po razornoj moći Ningirsua - ogromno i pozlaćeno. Međutim, odanost Ningirsu bila je posebno inspirirana činjenicom da je to bio Gudein lični bog i da je Ningirsu od davnina bio glavni bog regije Lagashite (zajedno sa svojim supružnikom Ba'u ili Babom). [ potreban citat ]

Što se tiče trgovine, Lagash pod Gudeom imao je opsežnu komercijalnu komunikaciju s udaljenim područjima. Prema vlastitim zapisima, Gudea je donio kedre iz planina Amanus i Libanon u Siriji, diorit iz istočne Arabije, bakar i zlato iz centralne i južne Arabije i sa Sinaja, dok su njegove vojske bile angažirane u bitkama u Elamu na istoku. [14]

Cilindri Gudea, napisani nakon života Gudee, slikaju atraktivnu sliku južne Mezopotamije za vrijeme vladavine Lagaša. U njemu „Elamiti su mu došli iz Elama ... natovareni drvom na ramenima ... kako bi sagradili Ningirsuovu kuću“ (str. 78), opšti ton je jedan od bratske ljubavi na području koje poznaje samo regionalne sukobe.

Gudea je izgradio više od Kuće Ningirsu, vratio je tradiciju Lagašu. Njegova upotreba naslova ensi, kada je očito imao dovoljno političkog utjecaja, kako u Lagašu tako i u regiji, da to opravda lugal, pokazuje isti politički takt kao i njegovo isticanje moći božanskog. [ potreban citat ]

Ur-Ningirsu II, sljedeći vladar Lagaša, uzeo je za svoju titulu "Ur-Ningirsu, vladar Lagaša, sin Gudee, vladar Lagaša, koji je sagradio Ningirsuovu kuću" (str. 183).

U jednom natpisu Gudea se poziva na Meluhhane koji su došli u Sumer prodavati zlatnu prašinu, karneol itd. [14] U drugom natpisu spominje svoju pobjedu nad teritorijima Magan, Meluhha, Elam i Amurru. [14]

U cilindrima Gudea Gudea spominje da će "širiti svijetom poštovanje prema svom Hramu, pod mojim imenom cijeli će se svemir okupiti u njemu, a Magan i Meluhha će sići sa svojih planina da prisustvuju" (cilindar A, IX) . [15] U cilindru B, XIV, spominje svoju nabavku "blokova lapis lazulija i jarkog karneolina iz Meluhhe." [16]

Gudein izgled danas je prepoznatljiv jer je imao brojne statue ili idole koji ga prikazuju s neviđenim, realističnim realizmom, postavljenim u hramovima širom Sumera. Gudea je iskoristio umjetnički razvoj jer je očito želio da potomci znaju kako izgleda. I u tome je uspio - podvig koji mu je bio na raspolaganju kao kraljevska porodica, ali ne i običnim ljudima koji si nisu mogli priuštiti da sami sebi urežu statue. [ potreban citat ]

Gudea je, nakon Sargona, bio jedan od prvih vladara koji je za sebe tvrdio da je božanstven, ili je to tvrdio za njega nakon njegove smrti. Neki od njegovih podviga kasnije su dodani Epu o Gilgamešu (N. K. Sandars, 1972, Ep o Gilgamešu).

Nakon Gudee, utjecaj Lagaša je opadao, sve dok nije pretrpio vojni poraz od Ur-Nammua, čija je Treća dinastija Ur tada postala vladajuća sila u južnoj Mezopotamiji. [ potreban citat ]

"Libacijska vaza Gudea" sa zmajem Mušḫuššuom, posvećena Ningishzidi (kratka hronologija 21. vijeka prije nove ere). Kaducej (desno) tumači se kao prikaz boga Ningishzide. Natpis "" Bogu Ningiszidi, njegovom bogu Gudei, Ensi (namjesnik) Lagaša, za produženje života, posvetio je ovo "

Glava Gudee u poliranom dioritu, vladavina Gudee (Bostonski muzej likovnih umjetnosti).


Neo-sumersko razdoblje ili Treća dinastija UR-a

Oko 21-20 stoljeća prije nove ere Ur je obnovljen kao sumerska prijestolnica, a III dinastija Ura započela je pod vlašću kralja Ur-Nammua. Međutim, akadski utjecaj bio je jasno uočljiv u umjetnosti ovog razdoblja: iako su se sila i moć vratile na čelo umjetničkog stvaralaštva, ublažavanje krutosti predaka u sumerskoj umjetnosti odražavalo je utjecaj koji je ostavila akadska dominacija.

Kralj Ur-Nammu morao je vladati 18 godina, a naslijedio ga je njegov sin Dungi koji je vladao skoro pola stoljeća. Nebrojeni spomenici čije su cigle bile zapečaćene imenima ova dva suverena pokazale su građevinsku moć oba kralja. Prva briga Ur-Nammu bila je da utvrdi glavni grad kako bi izdržao svaki napad. Zidovi Ura izgrađeni u to vrijeme bili su skoro 25 mt. široka u bazi. Ali ovo strašno djelo nikako nije najvažnija građevina Neo-Sumera. Ruševine hrama Sina, boga mjeseca, bile su: a zigurat ili stepenastu kulu izgrađenu tako da se božanstvo može spustiti s neba na zemlju. Većina sumerskih gradova imala je slične konstrukcije. Ovi spomenici imali su tri do sedam nivoa, svaki sa manjom bazom od prethodnog, i odgovarali su tipu građevine opisane u Bibliji kao Babilonska kula ”.

Rekonstrukcija zigurata Ur-Nammu u Uru (oko 2100 pne).

The zigurat od Ura, koju je započeo Ur-Nammu, bila je trokatna kula. Prvi nivo bio je potpuno čvrst i iznosio je 65 mt. duga 43 mt. širok sa visinom od 22 mt. Zidovi su mu bili blago nagnuti. Na platformu prvog kata moglo se doći s tri monumentalne stepenice: dvije bočne uz lijevu i desnu stranu prednje fasade i treću okrenutu prema naprijed i okomito na druga dva. Ove tri stepenice imale su 100 stepenica. Iznad ovog divovskog postolja stajale su dvije preklapajuće platforme na čijem se vrhu nalazio božji hram. Još jedan hram u podnožju uslovljen kao dom božanstva pretvorio je ovu zgradu u monumentalne stepenice za uspinjanje ili spuštanje s neba. Prorok Jakov, nakon što je posjetio zemlju odakle je njegov otac, morao se sjetiti vjerskih obreda i procesija koji su se izvodili na ovim divovskim stepenicama Ur ’ zigurat. I danas je nevjerojatno pomisliti da su ove gigantske arhitekture napravljene od opeke od kojih niti jedna ne doseže 40 cm. Takve konstrukcije trebale bi milijune ovih ručno izrađenih komada i prevladale ogromne poteškoće za podizanje cijele zgrade.

Kip Gudee, Patesi od Lagaša, u bogoslužju (Louvre), ca. XXII vek pne.

Neo-sumersku skulpturu poznajemo po nalazima u Lagashu, gradu čiji vladari nikada nisu imali titulu kralja, ali su bili poznati kao patesi ili guvernere. Prema drevnim popisima, najvažniji je bio sedmi po imenu Gudea. Ovo patesi, koji je vladao Lagašom nešto više od 15 godina, gradio hramove i palače i ostavio nam ogromnu seriju svojih portreta koji su možda najupečatljivija skupina skulptura napravljenih voljom jednog pojedinca. Danas znamo više od 30 ovih kipova isklesanih u tvrdim i sjajnim vulkanskim stijenama: plavi diorit i crni dolerit. U svima njima patesi Gudea se pojavljuje odjeven kao monah u ogrtaču koji ostavlja gole desno rame i ruku i uvijek sklopljenih ruku u molitvi. Finoća detalja poput prstiju, usana i obrva, te neki suptilno naglašeni mišići na površini tijela u suprotnosti su s teškom jednostavnošću haljine. Sve statue iz serije ne samo da stvaraju dojam spokojnog veličanstva, već i snažnog vjerskog zanosa.

Patesi Gudea (Louvre), sumerski vladar Lagaša, ca. 2200 pne. Na glavi nosi geometrijsku traku koja se koristi za određene vjerske obrede, a na njegovoj suknji je tekst s molitvama.

Kroz tisućljeća do nas je došao jedan od najsvetijih predmeta blaga Gudee: čaša uzvišenja koju je koristio u vjerskim obredima. To je kameni pehar čiji reljefi nam govore da, unatoč humanizaciji bogova uvedenoj za vrijeme akadske dominacije, stara božanska čudovišta nisu potpuno nestala. Gudea#8217s čaša za libaciju ima dva stojeća zmaja koji drže koplje prednjim nogama. To su zastrašujuća čudovišta sa zmijskom glavom, mačjim tijelom, orlovskim krilima i kandžama i repom škorpiona. Oba čudovišta čuvaju štap na kojem se uvijaju dvije zmije i čije se glave uzdižu do ruba šalice kao da žele piti iz ritualne tekućine. Ovaj sveti simbol već je vrlo sličan Štap grčkog Asklepija koju su koristili stari liječnici, a koja je i dalje ostala s nekim izmjenama kao amblem farmacije i medicine.

Libations cup Gudea (Louvre). Napravljen je od kamena sapuna i datira iz XXII vijeka prije nove ere.

Iskopavanja drevnog Lagaša dala su nekoliko statua koje ne predstavljaju portrete kraljeva već mladića s potpuno obrijanim licem i glavom, kao i različite prikaze žena. Najvažniji od svih ovih ženskih predstava je lik sa rukama spojenim u istom položaju kao i one iz Gudee, odjeven u tuniku i plašt ukrašen vezenim vrpcama, a čija je kovrčava kosa prekrivena platnenim pokrivalom za glavu pričvršćenim vrpcom. Veličanstveni zrak ove slike i mistični osjećaj koji iz nje izvire naglašen molitvenim položajem njenih ruku naveli su mnoge arheologe da je identificiraju kao vlastitu ženu Gudee#8217.

Žena sa pokrivalom za glavu (Louvre), iz Lagaša. U ovoj zelenoj bisti od sapunice, arheolozi su vjerovali da vide portret žene Gudee#8217.

Novosumerski kipovi pokazuju nam potpuno originalnu estetsku interpretaciju ljudskog lica. U tom smislu impresivno je glava princeze koja je pronađena u Uru 1927. godine. Nosi glatku kružnu traku za glavu, poput zlatnog prstena, za držanje kose i, uprkos nedostatku dna lica, oči, umetnute u lapis lazuli , pogledajte nas sa milenijumskim izrazom čuđenja.

Ženska glava alabastera (Muzej Univerziteta u Pennsylvaniji, Philadelphia), iz Ura, datirana oko 2100. godine p.n.e. Identificirano je s neo-sumerskom princezom, a također i s božicom Ningal.

Asklepijev štap: Poznat i kao Asklepijev štap (ponekad se naziva i Asklepije ili Eskulap) i kao asklepijski. U grčkoj mitologiji se odnosi na zmiju isprepletenu šipku kojom upravlja grčki bog Asklepije, božanstvo povezano s iscjeljivanjem i medicinom. Simbol se nastavio koristiti u moderno doba, gdje se povezuje s medicinom i zdravstvenom njegom, ali se često miješa s osobljem boga Hermesa, caduceus, koja za razliku od toga ima dvije zmije isprepletene oko štapa i nadvijene krilima.


Kipovi Gudee

Do sada je dvadeset sedam kipova Gudee, vladara (ensi) države Lagash u južnoj Mezopotamiji koji je vladao ca. 2144 - 2124 pne, pronađeni su i označeni brojevima A -AA. A-K su pronađeni tokom iskopavanja Ernesta de Sarzeca u dvoru palače Adad-nadin-ahhe u Tellohu (drevni Girsu). Kipovi M-Q potječu iz tajnih iskopavanja u Tellohu 1924. Ostatak dolazi iz trgovine umjetninama, s nepoznatim porijeklom i ponekad sumnjive autentičnosti. Slike L i R ne predstavljaju Gudeu s razumnom sigurnošću. Kipovi su trebali predstavljati vladara u hramovima, nuditi stalnu molitvu umjesto njega. Većina kipova nosi ispisanu posvetu koja objašnjava kojem je bogu posvećena. Gudea sjedi ili stoji u jednom sanduku (N), drži vrč za vodu au vase jaillissant. Obično nosi usku odjeću kaunakes, možda napravljeno od ovčje kože i dugačke haljine s kitom. Samo u jednom primjeru (M, statua sokleta) nosi drugu haljinu, koja podsjeća na akadski kraljevski kostim (torzo Manishtushu). U krilu jedne od njih (statua B) nalazi se plan njegove palače, s mjernom skalom u prilogu. Kip F je sličan kipu B, obojici nedostaju glave, a na krilu im je daska s mjernom skalom i olovkom, samo kip F nema tlocrt.

Čini se da su rani kipovi mali i izrađeni od više lokalnog kamenja (vapnenac, steatit i alabaster) kasnije, kada su uspostavljene široke trgovačke veze, korišten je skuplji egzotični diorit. Diorit su već koristili stari sumerski vladari (kip Entemena). Prema natpisima, diorit (ili gabro, na4 esi) došao iz Magana.

Posvećivanje dioritskih statua obično govori kako ensi Gudea je iz planina Magan donio diorit, oblikovao ga kao svoju statuu, nazvanu imenom u čast boga/boginje (x) i dao kip unijeti u hram (y). Većina velikih (gotovo životnih veličina, D je čak i veća od života) kipova posvećena je vrhunskim bogovima Lagaša: Ningirsu, njegovoj supruzi Ba'u, boginjama Gatumdu i Inanni i Ninhursangi kao "Majci bogova". Q je posvećen Ningiszidi, Gudeinom ličnom zaštitničkom božanstvu koje je pravilnije povezano s Farom i Abu Salabikhom, manji M, N i O sa njegovom "suprugom" Gestinannom. Vezu između Ningiszide i Gestinanne vjerojatno je izmislio Gudea kako bi ostvario bližu vezu s Lagashom.


Kip kralja Gudee (oko 2140.- 2124. p. N. E.) Vladara Lagaša, poznatog kao Mala Gudea, iz Telloha, diorit

Vaš račun za jednostavan pristup (EZA) omogućava onima u vašoj organizaciji da preuzimaju sadržaj za sljedeće namjene:

  • Testovi
  • Uzorci
  • Composites
  • Layouts
  • Grubi rezovi
  • Prethodne izmjene

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Drevni Irak: nova otkrića

Slaveći bogato kulturno naslijeđe Iraka, ova gostujuća izložba Britanskog muzeja prvi je put da će nova terenska istraživanja Iraka krenuti u obilazak s ključnim predmetima iz muzejske zbirke.

Kroz 80 izuzetnih objekata, izložba nastoji istaknuti izazove zaštite raznolike iračke kulturne baštine nakon decenija sukoba. Također će predstaviti trenutni rad Iračke sheme Britanskog muzeja na zaštiti ovog naslijeđa za buduće generacije.

Zvjezdani objekti će istaknuti dva projekta rada na terenu u drevnim iračkim gradovima Girsu i Qalatga Darband i arheološka istraživanja ovih gradova, koja datiraju prije otprilike 4.000 godina. Jedan projekt šeme u južnom Iraku fokusira se na otkrivanje velikog hramskog kompleksa. Prvi put izvan Londona na izložbi će biti izložena statua Gudee, vladara drevne države Lagash, koja je prvobitno podignuta u sklopu ovog hramskog kompleksa.

Drugi projekt sheme, na sjeveru modernog Iraka, otkriva iskopavanja na ranije neistraženom lokalitetu na samom rubu Rimskog carstva, što su pozicija osporili zastrašujući Parti, koji su prihvatili grčke kulturne tradicije koje je prenio Aleksandar Veliki. Takođe će biti izložene kipiće inspirisane Grčkom, lični ukrasi pod uticajem grčke mitologije, kao i statua heroja Herakla.

Posljednji dio izložbe bavit će se nedavnim uništavanjem iračke kulturne baštine od strane DAEŠ-a (tzv. Islamske države) i radom sheme kao odgovor na nju. Razvijena 2014. godine na vrhuncu ove devastacije, shema pruža praktičnu obuku na mjestima iskopavanja iračkim arheolozima, pomažući im u procjeni, dokumentiranju i stabilizaciji lokaliteta kulturne baštine koje je Daesh oštetio ili uništio. Mnoga nova otkrića napravljena na obje lokacije u shemi pokazuju koliko još ima za naučiti o jedinstvenoj iračkoj kulturnoj baštini.

Uz podršku Fondacije Dorset, u znak sjećanja na Harryja M Weinrebea, gostujuća izložba Britanskog muzeja Drevni Irak: nova otkrića će putovati u Newcastle i Nottingham.


ISTORIJA LJETA I AKKADA

VIDJELI SMO da dinastija Akad označava vrhunac koji su postigle rase Sumera i Akada u ranijim periodima njihove istorije. Istina je da su kraljevi ovog razdoblja mnogo dugovali svojim neposrednim prethodnicima, ali su dodali i poboljšali svoje nasljedstvo. Kroz duge vjekove sporog razvoja, seoska zajednica se postepeno transformisala u grad-državu, a ova institucija je procvjetala i zauzvrat propala prije centralizirajućeg utjecaja kraljevstava Sumera i Kisa. Upravo je na ruševinama potonje monarhije Shar-Gani-sharri osnovao svoje carstvo, koje se od Kiša razlikovalo po svom opsegu, a ne po načelima svog formiranja. Slično bliska veza može se pratiti između kulturnih ostataka uzastopnih razdoblja s kojima smo do sada imali posla. Nepristojni, iako snažni, umjetnički napori ranijih Sumeraca opremili su modele po kojima su imigrantski Semiti iz sjeverne Babilonije napredovali. U Kiševoj skulpturi i na cilindarskim pečatima tog razdoblja vidimo prijelaz između dva stila, kada je cilj naturalističkog tretmana ponekad davao neugodne i groteskne rezultate. Potpuno postizanje ovog cilja pod patronatom akadskih kraljeva daje njihovoj epohi interes i važnost u kojoj, samo iz njihovog carstva, možda ne bi uživali.

Kasnokadski zaptivač cilindra od crvenog jaspisa

Dok ranija doba babilonske povijesti daju upečatljivu sliku postepenog rasta i razvoja, razdoblja koja su naslijedila dinastiju Akad obilježena su određenim retrogradnim pokretom ili povratkom na ranije ideale. Podražaj, koji je proizveo carstvo i umjetnost Akada, može se pratiti dotokom svježih rasnih elemenata u sjevernu Babiloniju i njihovom fuzijom sa starijim i visoko kultiviranim elementima na jugu. Kad je impuls iscrpljen i dinastije do kojih je došlo su krenule svojim tokom, došlo je do malo daljeg razvoja u tom pravcu. I u umjetnosti i u politici sumerska reakcija uslijedila je nakon perioda semitske moći, a uspostavljanje dinastije Ur bilo je značajno više od pomaka političkog utjecaja prema jugu. Čini se da je napravljen sistematski pokušaj vraćanja na ranije standarde. Ali utjecaj Akada i njenih monarha, iako namjerno zanemaren i s njim se borio, bio je daleko od nedjelotvornog. Kako skulpture Gudee uvelike duguju razdoblju Naram-Sina, tako je i carstvo Dungija bilo neizbježno pod utjecajem osvajanja Shar-Gani-sharrija. Nije došlo do iznenadnog hapšenja ni političkog ni kulturnog razvoja zemlje. Povratak moći Sumera samo je promijenio smjer u kojem se trebao odvijati daljnji razvoj. Iako, gledano s općeg stajališta, nema prekida kontinuiteta između epohe Akada i Ura, postoji izvjestan nedostatak informacija u vezi s događajima u međuvremenu. Postoje svi pokazatelji da između vladavine Naram-Sina i Ur-Engura, osnivača dinastije Ur, moramo računati u generacije, a ne u stoljeća, ali ukupna dužina razdoblja još uvijek je nepoznata. Završetak Akadske dinastije, kao što smo već vidjeli, obavijen je misterijom, ali jaz u našem znanju može se na sreću u određenoj mjeri premostiti. U ovom trenutku grad Lagash nam još jednom priskoči u pomoć i, dostavljajući imena brojnih njenih pateza, omogućava nam da uredimo niz vladara, a time i da formiramo neku procjenu dužine tog perioda.

Zapamtit će se da je pod Shar-Gani-sharrijem i Naram-Sinom neki Lugal-ushumgal (oko 2230-2200 pr. Kr.) Bio Patesi Lagaša, te da su pronađeni utisci njegovih pečata koje je koristio za vrijeme vladavine ova dva monarha. Poznata su imena tri druge pateze Lagaša, koje se također moraju pripisati razdoblju dinastije Akad, jer se spominju na pločama tog datuma. To su Ur-Babbar, Ur-E i Lugal-bur, čini se da je prvi od njih bio savremenik Naram-Sina, pa je u tom slučaju morao slijediti Lugal-ushumgal. Što se tiče Ur-E i Lugal-bura, nemamo drugih podataka osim činjenice da su živjeli u doba kraljeva Akada. Daljnja grupa ploča pronađenih u Tellu, različite po tipu od onih iz dinastije Akad, s jedne strane, a s druge od ploča iz dinastije Ur, daje nam nazive drugih pateza koje ćemo postaviti u razdoblju prije uspona Ur-Engura. Tri od njih, Baša-mama, Ur-mama i Ug-me, vjerojatno su bile ispred Ur-Baua, koji nam je ostavio dovoljno dokaza o svojim građevinskim aktivnostima u Lagashu. Posjedujemo ploču iz godine pristupanja Urme, a drugu datiranu za vrijeme patezijata Ug-me, godine postavljanja velikog svećenika u Nini. Pronađen je i pečat posljednje vladavine patesija, koji podržava pripisivanje ove grupe ploča razdoblju između sargonske ere i doba Ura. Predmet graviranja na pečatu je obožavanje božanstva, prizor koji se vrlo često pojavljivao u kasnijem periodu, ali svojim stilom i tretmanom djelo živo podsjeća na epohu Shar-Gani-sharri i Naram-Sin. Na osnovu ovih dokaza, tvrdilo se da Ug-meovo razdoblje nije bilo daleko od perioda Lugal-ushumgal, Ur-E i Lugal-bur.

Jedan od dokumenata ovog razdoblja datiran je u vrijeme patezijata samog Ur-Baua, u godinu u kojoj je poduzeo određene opsežne radove na navodnjavanju, dok su drugi datirani u godinu pristupanja Ur-gar-a, a u ono što je uslijedilo nakon pristupanje Nammakhnija. Iz drugih dokaza znamo da je Nammakhni bio Ur-Bauov zet, budući da se zaručio s Ningandu, Ur-Bauovom kćerkom, i preko nje osigurao svoju titulu na prijestolju. Ur-gar, također, mora pripadati generaciji koja slijedi Ur-Baua, budući da je u Tellu pronađena ženska statua, koju je kćerka Ur-Baua posvetila nekom božanstvu u ime svog života i života Ur- gar, patesi. Tablice su također datirane u pristupne godine Ka-azaga, Galu-Baua i Galu-Gule, a njihov sadržaj daje naznake da potječu otprilike iz istog doba. Ur-Ninsun, čije ime i naslov se nalaze na fragmentu zdjele vrlo sličnom onoj koju je koristila Nammakhnijeva žena, ne spominje se na pločama, ali nekoliko je datirano u vrijeme vladavine Gudee i njegovog sina Ur-Ningirsua. Sada, u vrijeme vladavine Dungija, sina Ur-Engura, živio je veliki svećenik božice Nine po imenu Ur-Ningirsu i, ako možemo poistovjetiti ovog svećeničkog službenika s patesom tog imena, što je vrlo vjerojatno, mi steći određenu dodirnu tačku između kasnije istorije Lagaša i istorije Ura. No, čak i ako se sinkronizam između Ur-Ningirsua i Dungija smatra nedokazanim, nema sumnje da nijedan dugi interval nije odvojio Gudeinu vladavinu od dinastije Ur. Karakter umjetnosti i stil pisanja koje nalazimo u Lagašu u ovo doba toliko su slični onima u Uru, da je jedno razdoblje moralo slijediti drugo bez prekida. Upečatljiv primjer sličnosti koja je u to vrijeme postojala u umjetničkoj produkciji dva grada pružaju zavjetni bakreni čunjevi ili ekseri Gudee i Dungija nadviseni likovima bika couchant. Pogled će pokazati male promjene u obliku i tretmanu teme koje su uveli metalski radnici u vrijeme Dungijeve vladavine.

Iz kratkog sažetka danog u prethodnim odlomcima primijetit će se da smo povratili imena dvanaest pašteta Lagasha, koji se mogu pripisati razdoblju između dinastija Akad i Ur. Od ovih dvanaest imena, najmanje jedanaest se pojavljuje na grupi ploča, koje su pronađene zajedno u Tellu, a koje su svojim oblikom i sadržajem označene kao da pripadaju jednom razdoblju. Same ploče su od nepečene gline i tvore prijelaz između vrsta Akad i Ur. U posljednjoj spomenutoj vladavini vjerovatno je da možemo pratiti sinhronizam s dinastijom Ur, i iako se još ne može uspostaviti stvarna dodirna tačka s dinastijom Akad, dokaz poput onog koji je dao Ug-meovo pečaćenje sugerira da se nije mogao dogoditi znatniji odmak od vremena. Nevjerojatno je da je ovih dvanaest pateza vladalo u Lagasu u ovom intervalu, a imena drugih vladara se u svakom trenutku mogu povratiti. No, sigurno je da su vladavine mnogih ovih pateza bile izuzetno kratke i da nemamo veze s jednom dinastijom, čvrsto uspostavljenom tijekom cijelog razdoblja, čiji su zasebni članovi, nakon njihovog pristupanja, svaki držali prijestolje za vrijeme njegov prirodni život. Imamo definitivan dokaz da je nekoliko pateta, poput Ka-azaga, Galu-Baua i Galu-Gule, vladalo samo nekoliko godina, a čini se da je u određenim trenucima u tom razdoblju došlo do promjene vladara Lagash sa značajnom frekvencijom.

NINGIRSUU, MOĆNOM RATNIKU ENLILA, GUDEA VLADAR LAGASHA UČINIO JE NJIHOVIM SPOSOBNIM I IZGRADIO NJEMU HRAM SJAJNE IMDUGUD PTICE I OBNOVIO GA

Upotreba titule patesi, i potpuno odsustvo titule "kralja" u ovom trenutku, sugerira da Lagash nije uspio uspostaviti svoju neovisnost, te da i dalje duguje vjernost nekoj vanzemaljskoj dinastiji. U skladu je s tim stavom da se datumi upisani na komercijalnim pločama ne odnose na događaje vojnog karaktera. Možemo zaključiti da, u svakom slučaju, sve do vladavine Gudee, Lagash i njeni vladari nisu bili zabrinuti da nametnu svoju vlast nad drugim gradovima, niti da brane svoju granicu od napada. Postojanje moćnijeg grada, koji tvrdi da ima hegemoniju u Babiloniji, objasnilo bi odsustvo vojnog poduhvata koji se odražava u formulama datuma i zapisima o temeljima tog vremena. For such a city, while guaranteeing the integrity of each of her tributary states, would have resented the inauguration of an ambitious policy by any one of them. On the other hand, the purely local character of the events commemorated in the date-formulas is no less significant. These are without exception drawn from the local history of Lagash, and betray no evidence of the authority exercised by a foreign suzerain. It is therefore probable that during the greater part of this period Lagash enjoyed a considerable measure of autonomy, and that such bonds as may have united her to any central administration were far less tightly drawn than at the time of Shar-Gani-sharri and Naram-Sin. Like Lagash, her old rival Umma seems to have survived as a patesiate under the later Semitic rulers in the north, and it is probably to this time that we may assign Galu-Babbar, the patesi of that city, three of whose votive cones are preserved in the British Museum. During the earlier part of this period Lagash presents the picture of a compact and peaceful state, content to develop her own resources. A considerable increase of power is noticeable in the reign of Gudea, the most famous ruler of the period, who, though still retaining the title of patesi, must be regarded as practically an independent sovereign, since he was strong enough to undertake a successful campaign in Elam, and imported his building materials from Arabia and the Syrian coast.

With the exception of Gudea, the only ruler of this period who has left us any considerable records or remains is Ur-Bau (c. 2164-2144 BC), the predecessor of Nammakhni and Ur-gar upon the throne of Lagash. We possess a small diorite statue of this ruler, which, like most of those found at Tello, is without its head. It is a standing figure, and its squat and conventional proportions suffice to show that it must date from a rather earlier period than the larger and finer statues of Gudea, which are fashioned from the same hard material. Gudea definitely states that he fetched the diorite for his series of large statues from Magan, but Ur-Bau makes no such boast and, although it is clear that his stone must have come from the same quarries, we may probably conclude that the small block he employed for his figure had not been procured as the result of a special expedition. In fact, such records as he has left us portray him as devoting all his energies to the building of temples within the different quarters of his city.

His chief care appears to have been the rebuilding, upon a new and enlarged site, of E-ninnu, the great temple of Ningirsu at Lagash, in which he placed the statue of himself that has been recovered. Little of this temple now remains in the mounds of Tello, beyond a wall the lower part of which was found still standing under the south-east corner of the later palace erected in the second century BC. In addition to the rebuilding of the temple of the city-god, Ur-Bau records that he erected three temples in Girsu in honour of the godĀ­desses Ninkharsag and Geshtin-anna, and of Enki, "the king of Eridu". In Uru-azagga he built a temple for the goddess Bau, and in Uru, another quarter of the city, he constructed a shrine in honour of Ninni, or Nin-azag-nun, the goddess Ishtar. Other deities honoured in a similar way by Ur-Bau were Nindar, Ninmar, and Ninagal, the last of whom stood in the mystical relation of mother to the patesi. Attached to E-ninnu he also built a "House of the Asses" in honour of Esignun, the deity whose duty it was to tend the sacred asses of Ningirsu.

Ur-Bau may probably be regarded as representative of the earlier patesis of this epoch, who, while acting with freedom and independence within the limits of their own state, refrained from embarking on any policy of conquest or expansion. With the accession of Gudea a distinct change is noticeable in the circumstances of Lagash. Like his predecessors, he devoted himself to the building of temples, but his work was undertaken on a wider and more sumptuous scale. Of all the kings and patesis of Lagash, he is the one under whom the city appears to have attained its greatest material prosperity, which found its expression in a lavish architectural display. Although not much of his great temple of E-ninnu still survives at Tello, his monuments are more numerous than all the others that have been recovered on that site. Moreover, the texts engraved upon his statues, and inscribed upon the great clay cylinders which he buried as foundation-records in the structure of E-ninnu, are composed in a florid style and form a striking contrast to the dry votive formulae employed by the majority of his predecessors. The cylinder-inscriptions especially are cast in the form of a picturesque narrative, adorned with striking similes and a wealth of detailed description such as are not found in the texts of any other period. In fact, Gudea's records appear to have been inspired by the novelty and magnitude of his architectural constructions and the variety of sacred ornament with which they were enriched.

We have no information as to the events which led to his accession, beyond the negative evidence afforded by the complete absence of any genealogy from his inscriptions. Like Ur-Bau, Gudea does not name his father, and it is possible that he was a man of obscure or doubtful birth. The energy which he displayed as patesi is sufficient to account for his rise to power, and the success which attended his period of rule may be held to have amply justified a break in the succession. Another problem suggested by a study of his texts concerns the source of the wealth which enabled him to undertake the rebuilding and refurnishing of the temples of Lagash upon so elaborate a scale. The cause of such activity we should naturally seek in the booty obtained during a number of successful campaigns, but throughout the whole of his inscriptions we have only a single reference to an act of war. On the statue of himself in the character of an architect, holding the plan of E-ninnu upon his knees, he gives in some detail an account of the distant regions whence he obtained the materials for the construction of Ningirsu's temple. At the close of this list of places and their products, as though it formed a continuation of his narrative, he adds the record that he smote with his weapons the town of Anshan in Elam and offered its booty to Ningirsu. This is the only mention of a victory that occurs in Gudea's inscriptions, and, although in itself it proves that he was sufficiently independent to carry on a war in Elam on his own account, it does not throw light upon the other causes of his success.

The absence of military records from Gudea's texts is rendered the more striking, when we read the names of the countries he laid under contribution for the materials employed in the building of E-ninnu. The fullest geographical list is that given on the statue of the architect with the plan, and, although unfortunately some of the places mentioned have still to be identified, the text itself furnishes sufficient information to demonstrate the wide area of his operations. Gudea here tells us that from Mount Amanus, the mountain of cedars, he fetched beams of cedar-wood measuring fifty and even sixty cubits in length, and he also brought down from the mountain logs of urkarinnu-wood five-and-twenty cubits long. From the town of Ursu in the mountain of Ibla he brought zabalu-wood, great beams of ashukhu-wood and plane-trees. From Umanu, a mountain of Menua, and from Basalla, a mountain of Amurru, he obtained great blocks of stone and made stelae from them, which he set up in the court of E-ninnu. From Tidanu, another mountain of Amurru, he brought pieces of marble, and from Kagalad, a mountain of Kimash, he extracted copper, which he tells us he used in making a great mace-head. From the mountains of Melukhkha he brought ushu-wood, which he employed in the construction of the temple, and he fetched gold-dust from the mountain of Khakhu and with it he gilded a mace-head carved with the heads of three lions. In Gubin, the mountain of khuluppu-wood, he felled khuluppu-trees from Madga he obtained asphalt, which he used in making the platĀ­form of E-ninnu and from the mountain of Barshib he brought down blocks of nalua-stone, which he loaded into great boats and so carried them to Lagash in order to strengthen the base of the temple.

The above list of places makes it clear that Gudea obtained his wood and stone from mountains on the coast of Syria and in Arabia, and his copper from mines in Elam. On the first of his cylinders he also states that the Elamite came from Elam and the man of Susa from Susa, presumably to take part as skilled craftsmen in the construction of the temple. In this account he does not mention the names of so many places as in the statue-inscription, but he adds some picturesque details with regard to the difficulties of transport he encountered. Thus he records that into the mountain of cedars, where no man before had penetrated, he cut a road for bringing down the cedars and beams of other precious woods. He also made roads into the mountains where he quarried stone, and, in addition to gold and copper, he states that he obtained silver also in the mountains. The stone he transported by water, and he adds that the ships bringing bitumen and plaster from Madga were loaded as though they were barges carrying grain.

A third passage in Gudea's texts, referring to the transport of materials from a distance, occurs upon the colossal statue of himself which he erected in E-ninnu. Here he states that Magan, Melukhkha, Gubi, and Dilmun collected wood, and that ships loaded with wood of all kinds came to the port of Lagash. Moreover, on eight out of his eleven statues he records that the diorite, from which he fashioned them, was brought from Magan. In his search for building materials, he asserts that he journeyed from the lower country to the upper country and, when summarizing the area over which he and his agents ranged, he adopts an ancient formula, and states that Ningirsu, his beloved king, opened the ways for him from the Upper to the Lower Sea, that is to say, from the Mediterranean to the Persian Gulf.

The enumeration of these distant countries, and Gudea's boastful reference to the Upper and the Lower Sea, might, perhaps, at first sight be regarded as constituting a claim to an empire as extensive as that of Shar-Gani-sharri and Naram-Sin. But it is a remarkable fact that, with the exception of Lagash and her constituent townships, Gudea's texts make no allusion to cities or districts situated within the limits of Sumer and Akkad. Even the names of neighbouring great towns, such as Ur, Erech, and Larsa, are not once cited, and it can only be inferred that they enjoyed with Lagash an equal measure of independence. But if Gudea's authority did not extend over neighbouring cities and districts within his own country, we can hardly conclude that he exercised an effective control over more distant regions. In fact, we must treat his references to foreign lands as evidence of commercial, not of political, expansion.

Gudea's reign may be regarded as marking a revival of Sumerian prosperity, consequent on the decay of Semitic influence and power in the north. The fact that he was able to import his wood and stone from Syria, and float it unmolested down the Euphrates, argues a considerable weakening of the northern cities. Whether Akkad, or some other city, still claimed a nominal suzerainty over the southern districts it is impossible to say, but it is at least clear that in the reign of Gudea no such claim was either recognized or enforced. We may suppose that Lagash and the other great cities in the south, relieved from the burden of Semitic domination, enjoyed a period of peace and tranquillity, which each city employed for the development of her material resources. The city of Ur was soon to bring this state of affairs to a close, by claiming the hegemony among the southern cities and founding the kingdom of Sumer and Akkad by force of arms. But during Gudea's reign Ur appears to have made no movement, and Lagash and the other great cities of the land may be pictured as maintaining commercial relations with each other, unhampered by the striving of any one of them for political supremacy.

It is possible that we may trace the unparalleled building activity, which characterized Gudea's reign, in part to a development in the art of building, which appears to have taken place at about this period. It has been suggested that both Gudea and Ur-Engur, the founder of the Dynasty of Ur, participated in the same great architectural movement, and proof of this has been seen in their common employment of the smaller square brick, measuring from about twelve to thirteen inches, which was more easy to handle than the larger bricks employed by Ur-Bau and at the time of the Dynasty of Akkad. The inherent advantages of this form of brick are attested by its retention, with but slight variations, down to the end of the Babylonian empire. That Gudea himself set considerable store by the form of the bricks which he employed would seem to follow from the passage in his first cylinder-inscription, where he describes the ceremonies with which he inaugurated their manufacture, including the offer of sacrifices and the pouring of a libation into the sacred mould. The use of an improved material may well have incited him to rebuild the greater number of the sanctuaries in Lagash on their ancient sites, but enlarged and beautified in accordance with the new architectural ideas. From another passage in his texts it would seem that he definitely claimed to have inaugurated a novel form of building, or decoration, such as no patesi before him had employed. The meaning of the phrase is not quite certain, but it may, perhaps, have reference to the sculptured reliefs with which he adorned E-ninnu. It may also refer to the use of raised pilasters for the adornment of facades and external walls, a form that is characteristic of later Babylonian architecture, but is not found in the remains of buildings at Lagash before Gudea's time.

In addition to E-ninnu, the great temple of the city-god Ningirsu, Gudea records that he rebuilt the shrines dedicated to Bau and Ninkharsag, and E-anna, the temple of the goddess Ninni, and he erected temples to Galalim and Dunshagga, two of Ningirsu's sons. In Uru-azagga he rebuilt Gatumdug's temple, and in Girsu three temples to Nindub, Meslamtaea, and Nindar, the last of whom was associated with the goddess Nina, in whose honour he made a sumptuous throne. In Girsu, too, he built a temple to Ningishzida, his patron god, whom he appears to have introduced at this time into the pantheon of Lagash. One of the most novel of his reconstructions was the E-pa, the temple of the seven zones, which he erected for Ningirsu. Gudea's building probably took the form of a tower in seven stages, a true ziggurat, which may be compared with those of Ur-Engur. But the work on which he most prided himself was the rebuilding of E-ninnu, and to this he devoted all the resources of his city. From a study of the remains of this temple that were uncovered at Tello by M. de Sarzec, it would appear that Gudea surrounded the site of Ur-Bau's earlier building with an enclosure, of which a gateway and a tower, decorated with pilasters in relief, are all that remains. These were incorporated in the structure of the late palace at Tello, a great part of which was built with bricks from the ancient temple. It is difficult to determine the relation of these slight remains at Tello, either to the building described by Gudea himself, or to the plan of a fortified enclosure which one of the statues of Gudea, as an architect, holds upon his knees. That the plan was intended, at any rate, for a portion of the temple is clear from the inscription, to the effect that Gudea prepared the statue for E-ninnu, which he had just completed.

The detailed account of the building of this temple, which Gudea has left us, affords a very vivid picture of the religious life of the Sumerians at this epoch, and of the elaborate ritual with which they clothed the cult and worship of their gods. The record is given upon two huge cylinders of clay, one of which was inscribed while the work of building was still in progress, and the other after the building and decoration of the temple had been completed, and Ningirsu had been installed within his shrine. They were afterwards buried as foundation-records in the structure of the temple itself, and so have survived in a wonderfully well-preserved condition, and were recovered during the French excavations at Tello. From the first of the cylinders we learn that Gudea decided to rebuild the temple of the city-god in consequence of a prolonged drought, which was naturally ascribed to the anger of the gods. The water in the rivers and canals had fallen, the crops had suffered, and the land was threatened with famine, when one night the patesi had a vision, by means of which the gods communicated their orders to him.

Gudea tells us that he was troubled because he could not interpret the meaning of the dream, and it was only after he had sought and received encouragement from Ningirsu and Gatumdug that he betook himself to the temple of Nina, the goddess who divines the secrets of the gods. From her he learnt that the deities who had appeared to him in his vision had been Ningirsu, the god of his city, Ningishzida, his patron deity, his sister Nidaba, and Nindub, and that certain words he had heard uttered were an order that he should build E-ninnu. He had beheld Nindub drawing a plan upon a tablet of lapis-lazuli, and this Nina explained was the plan of the temple he should build. Nina added instructions of her own as to the gifts and offerings the patesi was to make to Ningirsu, whose assistance she promised him in the carrying out of the work. Gudea then describes in detail how he obtained from Ningirsu himself a sign that it was truly the will of the gods that he should build the temple, and how, having consulted the omens and found them favourable, he proceeded to purify the city by special rites. In the course of this work of preparation he drove out the wizards and sorcerers from Lagash, and kindled a fire of cedar and other aromatic woods to make a sweet savour for the gods and, after completing the purification of the city, he consecrated the surrounding districts, the sacred cedar-groves, and the herds and cattle belonging to the temple. He then tells us how he fetched the materials for the temple from distant lands, and inaugurated the manufacture of the bricks with solemn rites and ceremonies.

We are not here concerned with Gudea's elaborate description of the new temple, and of the sumptuous furniture, the sacred emblems, and the votive objects with which he enriched its numerous courts and shrines. A large part of the first cylinder is devoted to this subject, and the second cylinder gives an equally elaborate account of the removal of the god Ningirsu from his old shrine and his installation in the new one that had been prepared for him. This event took place on a duly appointed day in the new year, after the city and its inhabitants had undergone a second course of purification. Upon his transfer to his new abode Ningirsu was accompanied by his wife Bau, his sons, and his seven virgin daughters, and the numerous attendant deities who formed the members of his household. These included Galalim, his son, whose special duty it was to guard the throne and place the sceptre in the hands of the reigning patesi Dunshagga, Ningirsu's water- bearer Lugal-kurdub, his leader in battle Lugal-sisa, his counsellor and chamberlain Shakanshabar, his grand vizir Uri-zi, the keeper of his harim Ensignun, who tended his asses and drove his chariot and Enlulim, the shepherd of his kids. Other deities who accompanied Ningirsu were his musician and flute-player, his singer, the cultivator of his lands, who looked after the machines for irrigation, the guardian of the sacred fish-ponds, the inspector of his birds and cattle, and the god who superintended the construction of houses within the city and fortresses upon the city-wall. All these deities were installed in special shrines within E-ninnu, that they might be near Ningirsu and ready at any moment to carry out his orders.

The important place which ritual and worship occupied in the national life of the Sumerians is well illustrated by these records of the building and consecration of a single temple. Gudea's work may have been far more elaborate than that of his predecessors, but the general features of his plan, and the ceremonies and rites which he employed, were doubtless fixed and sanctified by long tradition. His description of Ningirsu's entourage proves that the Sumerian city-god was endowed with all the attributes and enjoyed all the privileges of the patesi himself, his human counterpart and representative. His temple was an elaborate structure, which formed the true dwelling-place of its owner and his divine household and it included lodgings for the priests, treasure-chambers, store-houses, and granaries, and pens and stabling for the kids, sheep and cattle destined for sacrifice. It is interesting to note that in the course of building Gudea came across a stele of Lugal-kisalsi, an earlier king of Erech and Ur. From the name which he gave it we may infer that he found it in Girnun, which was probably one of the shrines or chapels attached to E-ninnu and he carefully preserved it and erected it in the forecourt of the temple. In the respect which he showed for this earlier record, he acted as Nabonidus did at a later day, when he came across the foundation-inscriptions of Naram-Sin and Shagarakti-Buriash in the course of his rebuilding of E-babbar and E-ulmash, the temples of Shamash and of the goddess Anunitu.

Of the article productions of Gudea's period the most striking that have come down to us are the series of diorite statues of himself, which were found together in the late palace at Tello. From the inscriptions upon them it is clear that they were originally prepared by the patesi for dedication in the principal temples of Lagash, which he either founded or rebuilt. Three were installed in E-ninnu, of which one is the statue of the architect with the plan, and another, a seated figure, is the only one of the series of colossal proportions. Three more were made for the temple of Bau, and others for Ninni's temple E-anna, and the temples of the goddesses Gatumdug and Ninkharsag. The small seated figure, destined for the temple of Ningishzida, is the only one of which we possess the head, for this was discovered by Commandant Cros during the more recent diggings at Tello, and was fitted by M. Heuzey to the body of the figure which had been preserved in the Louvre for many years. From the photographic reproduction it will be seen that the size of the head is considerably out of proportion to that of the body and it must be admitted that even the larger statues are not all of equal merit. While in some of them the stiffness of archaic convention is still apparent, others, such as the seated statues for E-ninnu and that of the architect with the rule from the temple of Gatumdug, are distinguished by a fine naturalism and a true sense of proportion.

Some interesting variations of treatment may also be noted in two of the standing statues from the temple of Bau. One of these is narrow in the shoulders and slender of form, and is in striking contrast to the other, which presents the figure of a strong and broad-shouldered man. It would seem that the statues were sculptured at different periods of Gudea's life, and from the changes observable we may infer that he ascended the throne while still a young man and that his reign must have been a long one. The diorite which he used for them was very highly prized for its durability and beauty, and the large block that was required for his colossal figure appears, when the carving was completed, to have been regarded as far more precious than lapis-lazuli, silver, and other metals. Certainly the preparation of so hard a stone presented more difficulty than that of any other material, and that Gudea's sculptors should have learnt to deal successfully with such large masses of it argues a considerable advance in the development of their art.

The small copper figures of a kneeling god grasping a cone are also characteristic of Gudea's period, but in design and workmanship they are surpassed by the similar votive figure which dates from Ur-Bau's reign. A fine example of carving in relief is furnished by the oval panel, in which Gudea is represented as being led into the presence of his god a similar scene of worship, though on a smaller scale, is engraved upon his cylinder-seal. A happy example of carving in the round, as exhibited by smaller objects of this period, is his small mace-head of breccia decorated with the heads of three lions. In design this clearly resembles the mace-head referred to on one of the statues from E-ninnu, though, unlike it, the small mace-head was probably not gilded, since the inscription upon it mentions the mountain in Syria whence the breccia was obtained. But other carved objects of stone that have been recovered may well have been enriched in that way, and to their underlying material they probably owe their preservation. The precious metal may have been stripped from these and the stone cores thrown aside but similar work in solid gold or silver would scarcely have escaped the plunderer's hands.

With the exception of the period of drought, in consequence of which Gudea decided to rebuild Ningirsu's temple, it is probable that during the greater part of his reign the state of Lagash enjoyed unparalleled abundance, such as is said to have followed the completion of that work. The date-formula for one of his years of rule takes its title from the cutting of a new canal which he named Ningirsu-ushumgal, and there is no doubt that he kept the elaborate system of irrigation, by which Lagash and her territories were supplied with water, in a perfect state of repair. Evidence of the plentiful supplies which the temple-lands produced may be seen in the increase of the regular offerings decreed by Gudea. On New Year's day, for instance, at the feast of Bau, after he had rebuilt her temple, he added to the marriage-gifts which were her due, consisting of oxen, sheep, lambs, baskets of dates, pots of butter, figs, cakes, birds, fish, and precious woods, etc. He also records special offerings of clothing and wool which he made to her, and of sacrificial beasts to Ningirsu and the goddess Nina. For the new temple of Gatumdug he mentions the gift of herds of cattle and flocks of sheep, together with their herdsmen and shepherds, and of irrigation-oxen and their keepers for the sacred lands of E-ninnu. Such references point to an increase in the revenues of the state, and we may infer that the people of Lagash shared the prosperity of their patesi and his priesthood.

While Gudea devoted himself to the service of his gods, he does not appear to have enriched the temples at the expense of the common people. He was a strict upholder of traditional privileges, such as the freedom from taxation enjoyed by Gu-edin, Ningirsu's sacred plain but he did not countenance any acts of extortion on the part of his secular or sacred officials. That Gudea's ideal of government was one of order, law, and justice, and the protection of the weak, is shown by his description of the state of Lagash during the seven days he feasted with his people after the consecration of E-ninnu. He tells us that during this privileged time the maid was the equal of her mistress, and master and slave consorted together as friends the powerful and the humble man lay down side by side and in place of evil speech only propitious words were heard the laws of Nina and Ningirsu were observed, and the rich man did not wrong the orphan, nor did the strong man oppress the widow. This reference to what was apparently a legal code, sanctioned by the authority of the city-god and of a goddess connected with the ancient shrine of Eridu, is of considerable interest. It recalls the reforms of the ill-fated Urukagina, who attempted to stamp out the abuses of his time by the introduction of similar legislation. Gudea lived in a happier age, and he appears to us, not as a reformer, but as the strong upholder of the laws in force.

That the reign of Gudea was regarded by the succeeding generations in Lagash as the golden age of their city may perhaps be inferred from his deification under the last kings of the Dynasty of Ur. There is no evidence that, like Sar-Gani-sharri and Naram-Sin, he assumed divine honours during his own lifetime, for in his inscriptions his name is never preceded by the determinative of divinity, and it also occurs without the divine prefix upon the seals of Gimdunpae, his wife, and of Lugal-me, his scribe. In the later period his statues were doubtless worshipped, and it has been suggested that the perpetual offerings of drink and food and grain, which he decreed in connection with one of them, prove that it was assimilated from the first to that of a god. But the names of his statues suggest that they were purely votive in character, and were not placed in the temples in consequence of any claim to divinity on Gudea's part.

It was the custom of the Sumerian patesis to give long and symbolical names to statues, stelae and other sacred objects which they dedicated to the gods, and Gudea's statues do not form an exception to this rule. Thus, before he introduced the statue with the offerings into E-ninnu, he solemnly named it : "For my king have I built this temple may life be my reward!". A smaller statue for E-ninnu was named : "[The-Shepherd] who loveth his king am I may my life be prolonged!", while to the colossal statue for the same temple he gave the title : "Ningirsu the king whose weighty strength the lands cannot support hath assigned a favourable lot unto Gudea the builder of the temple." The small standing statue for the temple of Ninkharsag bore the equally long name : "May Nintud (i.e. Ninkharsag) the mother of the gods the arbiter of destinies in heaven and upon earth prolong the life of Gudea who hath built the temple!", and another small statue for the temple of Bau was named "The lady the beloved daughter of the pure heaven the mother goddess Bau in Esilsirsir hath given Gudea life". The statue for the temple of Ningishzida was named "To Gudea the builder of the temple hath life been given," and that for E-anna bore the title "Of Gudea the man who hath constructed the temple may the life be prolonged!". It will be seen that these names either assert that life and happiness have been granted to Gudea, or they invoke the deity addressed to prolong his life. In fact, they prove that the statues were originally placed in the temples like other votive objects, either in gratitude for past help, or to ensure a continuance of the divine favour.

Such evidence as we possess would seem to show that at the time of Gudea no Sumerian ruler had ever laid claim to divine rank. It is true that offerings were made in connection with the statue of Ur-Nina during Lugal-anda's reign, but Ur-Nina had never laid claim to divinity himself. Moreover, other high personages treated their own statues in the same way. Thus Shagshag, the wife of Urukagina, made offerings in connection with her own statue, but there is no evidence that she was deified. In fact, during the earlier periods, and also in Gudea's own reign, the statue was probably intended to represent the worshipper vicariously before his god. Not only in his lifetime, but also after death, the statue continued to plead for him. The offerings were not originally made to the statue itself, but were probably placed near it to represent symbolically the owner's offerings to his god.

This custom may have prepared the way for the practice of deification, but it did not originate in it. Indeed, the later development is first found among the Semitic kings of Akkad, and probably of Kish, but it did not travel southward until after the Dynasty of Ur had been established for more than a generation. Ur-Engur, like Gudea, was not deified in his own lifetime, and the innovation was only introduced by Dungi. During the reigns of the last kings of that dynasty the practice had been regularly adopted, and it was in this period that Gudea was deified and his cult established in Lagash along with those of Dungi and his contemporary Ur-Lama. By decreeing that offerings should be made to one of his statues, Gudea no doubt prepared the way for his posthumous deification, but he does not appear to have advanced the claim himself. That he should have been accorded this honour after death may be regarded as an indication that the splendour of his reign had not been forgotten.

Gudea was succeeded upon the throne of Lagash by his son Ur-Ningirsu, and with this patesi we may probably establish a point of contact between the rulers of Lagash and those of Ur. That he succeeded his father there can be no doubt, for on a ceremonial mace-head, which he dedicated to Ningirsu, and in other inscriptions we possess, he styles himself the son of Gudea and also patesi of Lagash. During his reign he repaired and rebuilt at least a portion of E-ninnu, for the British Museum possesses a gate-socket from this temple, and a few of his bricks have been found at Tello recording that he rebuilt in cedar- wood the Gigunu, a portion of the temple of Ningirsu, which Gudea had erected as symbolical of the Lower World. Moreover, tablets have been found at Tello which are dated in his reign, and from these we gather that he was patesi for at least three years, and probably longer. From other monuments we learn that a highly placed religious official of Lagash, who was a contemporary of Dungi, also bore the name of Ur-Ningirsu, and the point to be decided is whether we may identify this personage with Gudea's son.

Ur-Ningirsu, the official, was high-priest of the goddess Nina, and he also held the offices of priest of Enki and high-priest of Anu. Moreover, he was a man of sufficient importance to stamp his name upon bricks which were probably used in the construction of a temple at Lagash. That he was Dungi's contemporary is known from an inscription upon a votive wig and head-dress in the British Museum, which is made of diorite and was intended for a female statuette. The text engraved upon this object states that it was made by a certain Bau-ninam for his lady and divine protectress, who was probably the goddess Bau, as an adornment for her gracious person, and his object in presenting the offering was to induce her to prolong the life of Dungi, "the mighty man, the King of Ur." The important part of the text concerns Bau-ninam's description of himself as a craftsman, or subordinate official, in the service of Ur-Ningirsu, "the beloved high-priest of Nina". From this passage it is clear that Ur-Ningirsu was high-priest in Lagash at a period when Dungi (Shulgi), king of Ur, exercised suzerainty over that city. If therefore we are to identify him with Gudea's son and successor, we must conclude that he had meawhile been deposed from the patesiate of Lagash, and appointed to the priestly offices which we find him holding during Dungi's reign.

The alternative suggestion that Ur-Ningirsu may have fulfilled his sacerdotal duties during the lifetime of Gudea while he himself was still crown-prince, is negatived by the subsequent discovery that during the reign of Dungi's father, Ur-Engur (Ur Nammu), another patesi, named Ur-abba, was on the throne of Lagash for tablets have been found at Tello which are dated in the reign of Ur-Engur and also in the patesiate of Ur-abba. To reconcile this new factor with the preceding identification, we must suppose that Ur-Ningirsu's deposition occurred in the reign of Ur-Engur, who appointed Ur-abba as patesi in his place. According to this view, Ur-Ningirsu was not completely stripped of honours, but his authority was restricted to the purely religious sphere, and he continued to enjoy his priestly appointments during the early part of Dungi's reign. There is nothing impossible in this arrangement, and it finds support in account-tablets from Tello, which belong to the period of Ur-Ningirsu's reign. Some of the tablets mention supplies and give lists of precious objects, which were destined for "the king", "the queen", " the king's son", or "the king's daughter", and were received on their behalf by the palace-chamberlain. Although none of these tablets expressly mention Ur-Ningirsu, one of the same group of documents was drawn up in the year which followed his accession as patesi, another is dated in a later year of his patesiate, and all may be assigned with some confidence to his period. The references to a "king" in the official account-lists point to the existence of a royal dynasty, whose authority was recognized at this time in Lagash. In view of the evidence afforded by Bau-ninam's dedication we may identify the dynasty with that of Ur.

The acceptance of the synchronism carries with it the corollary that with Ur-Ningirsu's reign we have reached another turning point in the history, not only of Lagash, but of the whole of Sumer and Akkad. It is possible that Ur-Engur (Ur Nammu) may have founded his dynasty in Ur before Gudea's death, but there is no evidence that he succeeded in forcing his authority upon Lagash during Gudea's patesiate and, in view of the comparative shortness of his reign, it is preferable to assign his accession to the period of Gudea's son. Sumer must have soon acknowledged his authority, and Lagash and the other southern cities doubtless formed the nucleus of the kingdom on which he based his claim to the hegemony in Babylonia. This claim on behalf of Ur was not fally-substantiated until the reign of Dungi, but in Sumer Ur-Engur appears to have met with little opposition. Of the circumstances which led to Ur-Ningirsu's deposition we know nothing, but we may conjecture that his acknowledgment of Ur-Engur's authority was not accompanied by the full measure of support demanded by his suzerain. As Gudea's son and successor he may well have resented the loss of practical autonomy which his city had enjoyed, and Ur-Engur may in consequence have found it necessary to remove him from the patesiate. Ur-abba and his successors were merely vassals of the kings of Ur, and Lagash became a provincial city in the kingdom of Sumer and Akkad.


Historical Periods

During the reign of Gudea in the ancient city of Lagash, the great city temples were adorned with several statues of him. While Lagash collapsed many centuries ago, the Statue of Gudea (which dates back to ca. 2090 B.C.) still sits pretty.

  • Louvre Museum, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

The Royal Acquaintances Memi and Sabu, on the other hand, dates back to the Fourth Dynasty (ca. 2575–2465 B.C.) of ancient Egypt.

Appearance

The Royal Acquaintances Memi and Sabu were made from limestone while the statue of Gudea is a stone sculpture made from diorite.

The Statue of Gudea portrays him as a ruler that he was, seated before his subjects with his hands folded into a prayer or greeting gesture, while the Royal Acquaintances Memi and Sabu depict the intimacy of Memi and Sabu standing side-by-side, with Memi’s left hand hanging down Sabu’s shoulder and her right hand wrapped around his waist.

One thing both statues have in common is the presence of inscriptions. The inscriptions on the statue of Memi and Sabu suggested they were acquainted with a royal family, while that of the statue of Gudea described him as royalty and a hero, expressing the wish for him to live long.

Significance

The level of intimacy observed in the Royal Acquaintances Memi and Sabu suggests they were a couple, so the statue could be a depiction of love. However, while their hands tell us they may have been lovers, their facial expressions say otherwise. It seems they were connected physically and not emotionally. Both husband and wife are dressed in similar clothes, which means they belonged to the same social class. Furthermore, the simplicity of their clothes shows they were probably commoners or servants.

This, however, isn’t the case with the Statue of Gudea. The Statue of Gudea represents royalty and power – this is evident in the portrayal of Gudea. The statue shows him seated, wearing a royal robe like he was about to address his subjects, unlike the Royal Acquaintances Memi and Sabu, which shows them standing, like subjects.

Purpose

Just like many others, the statue of Gudea was made to be placed in the great temples of Lagash Gudea built. Placing his statue in the temples was a way of preserving his legacy for the next generations to come and for the people to continue serving and worshipping him like a god.

The Royal Acquaintances Memi and Sabu were made to be buried with the dead (most likely their masters), to continue serving them even in the afterlife.


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