Blog

News

  • Launch of “Prosobab” — Our online prosopographical database of Babylonia (620-330 BCE) (7/5/2019) - By Caroline Waerzeggers We are proud to launch Prosobab — our online prosopographical database of Babylonia (620-330 BCE). Here you can find information on individuals who lived in southern Mesopotamia under Persian rule (539-330 BCE) and in the preceding period of the Neo-Babylonian Empire. In addition to person data, Prosobab collects information on the texts and… ...
  • Congratulations Uzume! (1/30/2019) - By Persia & Babylonia We are proud of our team member Uzume Z. Wijnsma who has been chosen by Elsevier as one of the 30 talents under 30! As she said in an interview with Leiden University, it is great publicity also for Assyriology and Egyptology in general! The weekly Elsevier newspaper, in which the… ...
  • Archives in Context – an outreach initiative of the “Persia & Babylonia” project (12/5/2018) - By Melanie Groß We are pleased to present our web-based initiative Archives in Context. With Archives in Context we aim at introducing our research to a wider audience. Short articles and brief explanations of specialist terms give an insight into the ancient documentation left behind by inhabitants of 1st millennium BCE Babylonia and the ways… ...
  • Vacancy for Research assistants (11/28/2017) - By Persia & Babylonia The Leiden University Institute of Area Studies invites applications for three or four 1.5-year research assistant positions in Assyriology. The assistants will enter data drawn from Babylonian cuneiform sources into a prosopographical database. This relational database is a key research tool to be established within the scope of the ERC-funded project,… ...

Events

  • 100 jaar assyriologie in Leiden (3/11/2020) - By Caroline Waerzeggers Op 13 december 2019 vond de conferentie "100 Years of Assyriology in Leiden" plaats in het Paviljoen van het Museum Volkenkunde Leiden. Dit was het laatste evenement in een reeks feestelijkheden rondom het honderdjarig bestaan van de leerstoel Assyriologie in Leiden. Professor Veenhof opende de conferentie met een lezing over de vroegste… ...
  • Masterclass about “Registration Practices” coming up soon! (9/23/2019) - By Persia & Babylonia From 7 to 10 October Johannes Hackl (Leipzig University) will be teaching the masterclass “Registration Practices in Late Period Babylonia and Their Supposed Precursors: A Reassessment” at Leiden University. “When G. van Driel presented his survey of the taxation system in the Neo-Babylonian and Achaemenid periods, he cautiously entertained the possibility… ...
  • Autumn lecture series 2019 (6/18/2019) - By Persia & Babylonia Coming fall, the Persia and Babylonia project will host a series of lectures at Leiden University. The series will consist of four lectures given by four international scholars on different aspects of the Achaemenid Empire. Anyone who’s interested in Achaemenid things is most welcome to attend! So mark your calendars for… ...
  • Poster presentation at Rencontre (7/31/2018) - By Persia & Babylonia At the Rencontre Assyriologique Internationale held at Innsbruck, the Persia and Babylonia team presented a poster titled PROSOBAB. Prosopography of Babylonia (c. 620–330 BCE): an online database. ...
  • Persia and Babylonia Workshop (6/28/2018) - By Persia & Babylonia Disambiguation of individuals in Late-Babylonian letters Yuval Levavi (Bar-Ilan University) 5 July 2018, 12-13 hrs Lipsius 204 Leiden University Neo-Babylonian scribes were mostly satisfied with using first name base in their letters. That, in addition to the practice not to date proper letters, make the task of prosopography especially complicated. It… ...
  • Onomastics Training Week (4/10/2018) - By Persia & Babylonia From 29 May to 1 June, the Persia & Babylonia project is organising an interactive Onomastics Training Week in Venice, Italy. During this week, participating graduate students (MA/PhD) will learn from experts about the many-faceted name material in Neo-Babylonian and Late Babylonian sources. This includes names in other languages such as… ...
  • Orientalists Day (12/21/2017) - By Persia & Babylonia On 25 January 2018, the Persia & Babylonia project is organising the annual Orientalists Day at Leiden University. This symposium about the Ancient Near East is meant for students, scholars and interested people. There will be lectures in both Dutch and English. If you wish to attend, please send an e-mail to persiababylonia@hum.leidenuniv.nl.… ...
  • Inaugural lecture by Caroline Waerzeggers (12/5/2017) - By Persia & Babylonia On Friday 1 December, Caroline Waerzeggers presented her inaugural lecture before an audience of family, friends, colleagues and students. "The future of Assyriology is sitting right in front of me," she concluded. During the inaugural lecture With the Persia & Babylonia project team ...

Interviews

  • Radio interview with Uzume Wijnsma (6/15/2020) - Uzume Wijnsma, our team member, will be interviewed (in Dutch) on the nightly radio program Focus on NPO Radio 1 (https://www.nporadio1.nl/radio-focus). The interview will be streamed live in the early hours of Wednesday, 17 June from 2:00 a.m. - 3:00 a.m. (CEST 02:00 - 03:00). Afterwards, it will be available on the NPO Focus website… ...
  • Interview with Caroline Waerzeggers (1/31/2020) - By Persia & Babylonia On the 18th of November 2019, Caroline Waerzeggers gave a lecture in San Damaso Ecclesiastical University at Madrid during the conference on Jews in Babylonia (Judíos en Babylonia). The topic of her talk was “Israel during the Babylonian Exile: New Insights from cuneiform texts”. She was shortly interviewed by the organisers.… ...
  • 3D scanning and the future of clay tablets (7/31/2018) - By Nicky van de Beek In June, Annelies Van de Ven (Melbourne University) joined us for a week to 3D scan a number of cuneiform clay tablets from the Böhl collection at the Netherlands Institute for the Near East. At the end of the week she gave a workshop to present the first results. We interviewed… ...
  • Architecture, Archaeology, and Iraqi Palaces – An Interview with Dr. David Kertai (3/20/2018) - By Uzume Wijnsma Dr. David Kertai is an expert on the Assyrian Empire and the architecture of Mesopotamia (present-day Iraq). He is currently affiliated with the Martin Buber Society in Jerusalem, and he is conducting research on the architecture of ancient Babylonian palaces. David recently visited Leiden for a conference on Nineveh at the National… ...
  • Assyriology: an Alice in Wonderland house – An interview with Dr. Seth Richardson (12/7/2017) - By Uzume Wijnsma Dr. Seth Richardson is a historian who mostly studies the Old Babylonian period (ca. 2000-1600 BCE) of ancient Iraq. Among his topics are the ancient state and political legitimacy. In 2017 he gave a guest lecture at Leiden University. First things first: Why did you choose to go into Assyriology? That's a… ...

Research trips

  • The revival of the Sippar tablets in the Böhl Collection and the stories they tell (4/21/2020) - By Melanie Groß The Liagre Böhl Collection of the Nederlands Instituut voor het Nabije Oosten (NINO) in Leiden comprises the largest collection of cuneiform clay tablets in the Netherlands. F.M.Th. de Liagre Böhl (1882–1976), Professor of Assyriology at Leiden University (1927–1952), had acquired more than 3,000 cuneiform tablets during his travels to the Middle East… ...
  • A seal is worth a thousand words (10/22/2019) - By Uzume Wijnsma Anyone who is familiar with the NINO (Nederlands Instituut voor het Nabije Oosten) knows how precious its collection of antiquities is. Ca. 3000 cuneiform tablets are stored in the institute – the largest collection of its kind in the Netherlands. One can also find a variety of seals, statuettes, and terracotta heads… ...
  • From Iran with love (5/16/2019) - By Uzume Wijnsma It’s 6.30 AM. And instead of ignoring my alarm clock in bed, which I normally do at this hour, I’m standing outside looking at a barely visible piece of rock. It is located half-way up a mountain. And an ugly scaffold obscures most of it from view for the passers-by down below.… ...
  • Of museums, foxes… and cuneiform (10/28/2018) - By Ivo Dos Santos Martins When the last rays of sun were rolling out, as the days grew cold, the trees unfolded and the lectures and borrels began in Leiden, I found myself lost in London. I have flown across the Channel to enjoy a two-month-long self-imposed academic exile in this Babylon-on-Thames in the wake of… ...
  • An ancient Near Eastern scholarly hub in the capital of the Alps (8/14/2018) - By Evelien Vanderstraeten From 16-20 July, leading and upcoming scholars in Ancient Near Eastern Studies gathered at the Leopold-Franzens University in Innsbruck (Austria) for the 64th edition of the Rencontre Assyriologique Internationale (RAI). During one week the beautiful city of Innsbruck was the scientific hub where old and new friends met, swords were drawn as discussions… ...
  • Onomastics training week in Venice: Names, names, names (6/12/2018) - By Nicky van de Beek & Maarja Seire From 29 May to 1 June, members of the Persia & Babylonia project and graduate students from other universities participated in an intensive onomastics training week in Venice. At Ca' Foscari University, they studied and dissected a great variety of names found in Babylonian sources. Altogether there… ...
  • Across the Ocean – A trip to the USA in the service of Assyriology (1/9/2018) - By Melanie Groß In mid-November 2017, when the sky over Leiden was grey and draped with clouds, I was given the opportunity to cross the big pond for a three week work and study trip. I visited some major cities on the east coast of the United States, which all had been founded in the… ...
  • Mesopotamia in Marburg: The 63rd Rencontre Assyriologique Internationale (11/14/2017) - By Maarja Seire This summer I visited the 63rd Rencontre Assyriologique Internationale (RAI). This conference is closely connected to the work of the International Association for Assyriology (IAA) and is organised by a host institution, which this year was the Philipps-Universität Marburg. In fact, RAI takes place at different institutions every year. In the majority… ...

Exhibitions

  • Game of Thrones: Conspiracy, treason and murder in Neo-Assyrian times! (3/29/2019) - By Evelien Vanderstraeten Game of Thrones… I know… Don’t worry! It will only get worse. References, one-liners and memes will appear in abundance on social media, as we are so close to the air date of the eighth and final season of this fantasy TV show. Finally the battle for the Iron Throne will come… ...
  • Iran in Assen… An “intentional” exhibition? (9/11/2018) - By Ivo Dos Santos Martins Warning: Enter the room with a big flock of people! Otherwise, you won’t get it! Sure, you may like your exhibitions a little bit quieter. But, in this case, silence will just ruin the experience. This exhibition will be all the more engaging if the room is alive, crowded, populated… ...
  • António de Gouveia and the Fascination with Persepolis (2/3/2018) - By Ivo Dos Santos Martins Until 6 May 2018 the National Museum of Antiquities (Rijksmuseum van Oudheden) in Leiden is hosting the exhibition Fascination with Persepolis. This exhibition is inspired by the work of photo-historian Dr. Corien Vuurman whose doctoral dissertation was published in 2015. Although relatively small, the exhibition takes full advantage of its… ...

Humans-of-Babylonia

  • Getting to know the Babylonians: Tappašar and the death of her husband (7/5/2018) - By Lidewij van de Peut Let me introduce you to Tappašar, a lady who lived in Babylon in the 6th century BCE. She is the daughter of Nabû-mušētiq-uddi, also known as Niqūdu, from the family of Nūr-Sîn. Her husband was Gimillu, the son of Marduk-šumu-ibni, from the family of Nappāhu (‘Smith’). I became acquainted with… ...