While hundreds of people have volunteered at the Oriental Institute over the years, only two people have been there since the beginning. NBC 5's LeeAnn Trotter reports.
See the chronicle of news about the Oriental Institute
A collaborative project intended to focus ideas and thoughts on the history of the Oriental Institute of The University of Chicago.
"The cataloging of the Museum Archives has only just begun, but already users can search, sort, and display over 7,000 records and attached media (such as digitized photographs, negatives, and documents)."
Documenting the remnants of an ancient civilization is a race against the ravages of weather and city expansion, and few places pose more challenges for preservation than Egypt’s rapidly changing environment.
At the Chicago House, UChicago’s outpost in Luxor, Egypt, a team of Oriental Institute archaeologists and other specialists has traditionally used a 90-year-old process to create precise line drawings of the inscriptions and reliefs. Though the Epigraphic Survey team captured details too slight to show up clearly on photographs, it was difficult to account for complications such as repainted walls, ancient graffiti, or even ancient attempts to rewrite history.
“Sometimes there are surprises, such as when we found traces of a figure of the 18th Dynasty female King Hatshepsut (1508–1458 B.C.), and her cartouche (her name in hieroglyphs) emerging from a wall erased by her coregent and successor Thutmosis III, who, long after her death, attempted to suppress all memory of her reign,” says W. Raymond Johnson, field director of the Epigraphic Survey...
March 4, 2015
The deliberate vandalism and destruction of heritage from Mosul’s Library, the Mosul Museum, and the archaeological site of Nineveh at Mosul constitute a moral and cultural outrage that adds to the growing spiral of despair from both Iraq and Syria concerning heritage, looting, and damage due to armed conflict. Without the past, we cannot understand our present, and without understanding our present, we cannot plan for our future. We hope that whatever remnants of this shattered heritage still surviving in Mosul may be salvaged and restored, but it is already clear that so much has been irreparably destroyed or looted. Mosul’s heritage is an important part of Mesopotamian civilization and the heritage of the entire world.
The Oriental Institute of the University of Chicago is a leading institution for the study of the ancient Middle East that focuses on research, heritage and knowledge preservation, and public education. Iconic artifacts from Iraq on display in the Museum of the Oriental Institute are accessible today for all to see. Many are counterparts to objects on display in the Iraq Museum, Baghdad, that come from the Oriental Institute’s excavations in Iraq. The Oriental Institute’s colossal human-headed winged bull, or Lamassu, was excavated from Khorsabad, ancient Dur Sharrukin, several miles north of Mosul. Carved in the late eighth century BC during the reign of King Sargon II (721–705 BC), it is one of the finest examples of Assyrian sculptor’s art in the world. At the site of Nineveh and in the Mosul Museum, similar sculptures have been smashed and mutilated in minutes by the Islamic State. The Oriental Institute condemns this callous eradication of the cultural treasures of Mesopotamia. We extend our deepest sympathies to the families of the people who are suffering in northern Iraq and Syria, and offer our support to the archaeological and heritage community of Iraq to help document, salvage, and restore the heritage of Mosul and other provinces of Iraq affected by looting and destruction.
We support the joint statement published by the Association of Art Museum Directors (AAMD), the Archaeological Institute of America (AIA), and the Society for American Archaeology (SAA), as well as statements from the American Schools of Oriental Research (ASOR) and The American Academic Research Institute in Iraq (TAARII).
The Assyrian Dictionary of the Oriental Institute of the University of Chicago (CAD)
- Martha T. Roth
- Editorial Board:
- Robert D. Biggs, John A. Brinkman, Miguel Civil, Walter Farber, Erica Reiner, Martha T. Roth, Matthew W. Stolper.
- † sold as set with pt. 1