4 June 2015
This lot is offered without a reserve
A NEO-BABYLONIAN CLAY CUNEIFORM FOUNDATION CYLINDER
REIGN OF NEBUCHADNEZZAR II, 604-562 B.C.
Barrel-shaped, with a hollow interior, with approximately thirty-five lines of Babylonian cuneiform recording Nebuchadnezzar II's restoration of the Ebabbar Temple of Shamash in Sippar reading: "Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon, provider for the Esagil and the Ezida, son of Nabopolassar, king of Babylon, I am. I rebuilt Ebabbar, the temple of Shamash in Sippar, for Shamash, who prolongs my days. Shamash, great lord, look upon my beautiful works with pleasure, and grant me as present a long life, satisfaction with old age, a firm throne and a long dynasty. Accept my prayers graciously. To your lofty command, which is not to be altered, may (this) work, my handiwork, last forever. May my offspring flourish in kingship, and may it be firm in the land. Wherever I raise my hands to you, lord Shamash, may my path be open to destroy my enemies. You are indeed Shamash, may your furious weapons, which are not rivaled, go at my side to destroy my enemy. Like the bricks of Ebabbar that are firm forever, may my years extend down to distant days"
4 15/16 in. (12.5 cm.) long
with Elias S. David (1891-1969), New York; thence by descent.
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Among the surviving foundation cylinders from the reign of Nebuchadnezzar II, more than twenty with the present inscription are known (see NBK C23 in R. da Riva, The Neo-Babylonian Royal Inscriptions, an Introduction).
This lot is offered without reserve.
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