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An Exhibition of Ancient Mesopotamian Art

A Gathering of the Gods - the Power of Mesopotamian Religion

View #1
Sumerian Creme Calcite Female Face with Lapis Lazuli Inlaid Eyebrows and Eye Rims
Mari area, Syria; 2600-2350 BC; Height 1.8 inches

The woman has plump cheeks, a straight mouth and a large nose broken at the tip. Bitumen was used to attach the blue lapis lazuli eye rims (with eyeballs now missing) and the incised inlaid eyebrows. This adhesive was also used on the concave back of the face to affix it to a composite statue. A serrated edge at the top of her forehead shows where her hair (probably also of lapis lazuli) was glued. Few examples of Sumerian inlaid eyes and eyebrows in lapis lazuli have survived.