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Semitic Museum Purchases Important Gudean Statue

Peiffer Announces Acquisition of Ancient Carving


Most important of the purchases of the Semitic Museum in recent years is a small statue of Gudea, which dates from before 2300 B.C., Robert Henry Pfeiffer, curator of the museum anounced in his annual report to President Conant.

Carved out of black diorite, the statue shows Gudea, an ancient ruler in Southern Babylonia, seated on a stool, clasping his hands over his breast.

Although the only complete Gudean statue is in the Louvre, the specimen obtained by the Semitic Museum is missing only the head. In its headless condition it is now five inches high.

Most of the seated statues have a Sumerian cuneiform inscription in panels on the front and back. The statue of the Semitic Museum has that following inscription on the back:

"Gudea, ruler of Lagash, the faithful shepherd of the god Ningirau, who reorganized the sacred rites."

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