New Books


Karen Radner — F. Janoscha Kreppner — Andrea Squitieri (ed.)
The Dinka Settlement Complex 2017.
The Final Season at Gird-i Bazar and First Work in the Lower Town
Peshdar Plain Project Publications — Volume 3

With contributions of Hero Salih Ahmed, Silvia Amicone, Andrei Ašandulesei, Peter Bartl, Kathleen Downey, Eileen Eckmeier, Jörg Fassbinder, Jean-Jacques Herr, F. Janoscha Kreppner, Abdullah Bakr Othman, Alessio Palmisano, Elsa Perruchini, Karen Radner, Jens Rohde, Marion Scheiblecker, Andrea Squitieri, Hakan Tolbas, Maximilian Weidenhiller, Felix Wolter

This report of the 2017 activities of the Peshdar Plain Project presents new data for the Dinka Settlement Complex and for the occupation of the Bora Plain on the upper reaches of the Lesser Zab near the modern district centre of Qaladze in the Neo-Assyrian and Sassanian periods, including a range of additional 14C dates derived from single year crops and human and animal remains.
Firstly, the volume details the third and final season at Gird-i Bazar, completing the excavation of all previously identified buildings and of two more pottery kilns. The star find is a pivoted stone that constitutes the upper-bearing for a potter’s wheel. As the three pottery kilns, this piece highlights the importance of pottery making at Gird-i Bazar. The surprise discovery of human remains in the filling of the private well of Building I produced the first Iron Age bodies unearthed at the Dinka Settlement Complex.
Secondly, the book reports on the first season of excavations in another area in the Lower Town, dubbed “Dinka Lower Town operation 2” (DLT2), where a test trench unearthed parts of three major structures: Buildings K (280 m2), L (800 m2) and M (650 m2), which can be demonstrated to all have been used during a common occupation phase. The pottery retrieved closely marches that known from Gird-i Bazar, and the volume includes a first typological assessment as well as data from the petrographic and residue analyses of the new pottery material. The so-called “Groovy Pottery” is now attested both in Gird-i Bazar and DLT2, and its local production can be demonstrated.
The DLT2 excavations also confirmed the accuracy of the results of the magnetometer survey in this area. The book presents the data of the 2017 continuation of this survey and offers a detailed interpretation of the lower town’s layout, its buildings and other features on the basis of the magnetogram. In addition, the book offers geographer Eileen Eckmeier’s assessment of the soils and sediments encountered in the Dinka Settlement Complex and the surrounding Bora Plain and considers their significance for landscape and site formation processes.
While the majority of the book will be of interest to anyone studying the Assyrian Empire and its eastern border region, the volume also presents new data for the occupation of the Bora Plain in the Sasanian period in the form of anthropologist Kathleen Downey’s discussion of the extensive Sasanian cemetery overlying the buildings of the Iron Age occupation of Gird-i Bazar.

198 pages, more than 180 colored pictures — content
30 x 21 cm — Hardcover

Price: € 34,80 [D]

ISBN: 978-3-935012-32-4
© PeWe-Verlag 2018



Theo de Feyter

Graben in Syrien /Digging in Syria

In ‘Graben in Syrien’ [Excavating in Syria] Theo de Feyter presents drawings, paintings and texts called forth by his observations of workers and scientists at one of the last excavations before the outbreak of the uprisings in Syria. The impressive landscape of the Euphrates reservoir forms the decorative scenery for the work of archaeologists, students and local workmen, who are exposing a Late Bronze Age town in this distant corner of the country. Archaeological field-work is a slow, laborious process carried out under difficult circumstances: De Feyter’s drawings, paintings and texts document it carefully in all its aspects.
Here is a rare view into the archaeological practice of a typical excavation in the Middle East, a practice that had to be abandoned for the time being and that, if ever taken up again, will probably never look like what de Feyter has captured. This book is already a historical document.

Theo de Feyter (born in the Netherlands, 1947) is both, an artist and an archaeologist. As archaeologist (University of Amsterdam) he has worked in Syria and in Turkey, as artist he has worked wherever his travels took him. He prefers a documentary way of drawing and has published several books of drawings and texts, e.g. ‘Mensen en ruïnes’, about a visit in Homs and Aleppo in March 2017, or ‘Syrië, een geschiedenis in ontmoetingen en plaatsen’, a book about the history and culture of Syria (both publications in Dutch).

126 pages, 48 figures, most in color — content
24 x 17 cm — Hardcover

Price: €  24,80 [D]

ISBN:  978-3-935012-31-7
© PeWe-Verlag 2018

order book




Aron Dornauer
Proso, Sorghum, Tiger Nut. Some Minor Crops in the Cuneiform Sources.
Berliner Beiträge zum Vorderen Orient, Band 27

The so called Fertile Crescent was home of some founder crops important in early agriculture: einkorn, emmer, barley, flax, chick pea, pea, lentil, and bitter vetch. However, research on the proportions and ubiquity of cultivated, measured, delivered, processed and consumed food crops shows a dramatic dominance of the cultivation of barley. Thus, one could assume that there was no significant interspecific but only intraspecific crop diversity and that Mesopotamian agriculture was a kind of a barley monoculture.
In contrast, the plenty of cuneiform terms for cereal-like and legume-like plants might indicate some kind of biodiversity. Indeed, some cuneiform scientists specializing in crop plants and vegetables consider that some of the Sumerian še compounds, as well as their Akkadian equivalents, might be identified with millets, with some kinds of pulses such as bitter vetch and cowpea, or with some kind of tuber plants. Against this background, this study undertakes research on some Sumero-Akkadian taxa:
In the first part of this study I evaluate some terms which several specialists propose to be millet or sorghum varieties: šeʾeštub (še-eštub) = arsuppu, šemuš (še-muš₍₃/₅₎) = šeguššu, šezaḫgebar (še-ne-ge-bar), šegunu (še-gu-nu, še-gunu₃) = šegunû, še-ka, še-ka sig-ga = arsikku, še-ud-e-de₃ = duḫnu. In this context, the question that has to be asked is if it is possible that millets were cultivated in Babylonia as early as the late third millennium BC. To address this issue, the contribution of the Bronze Age Gulf trade in exchange for domesticated crops, including African and Asian millets, will be examined. Finally, the study discusses why, despite their excellent heat and drought tolerances, none of the millet species in arid Babylonia could displace the winter sown main crops.
The second part addresses the question of whether the recently proposed identification of the Akkadian crop ⁽še/ú⁾qayyātu with Cyperus esculentus, a plant that has been demonstrated to have been present in ancient Egypt but not in Mesopotamia, is supported by the cuneiform evidence. I undertake some more detailed ecotrophological research on the use of qayyātu as an intermediate in the production of beer and foodstuff. In this context, I also study some other semi-baked and fermented intermediates.

166 pages — content
24,5 x 17,5 cm — Hardcover

Price: € 33,80 [D]

ISBN: 978-3-935012-30-0
© PeWe-Verlag 2018




Eva Cancik-Kirschbaum / Babette Schnitzlein (Hrsg.)
Keilschriftartefakte. Untersuchungen zur Materialität von Keilschriftdokumenten.
Berliner Beiträge zum Vorderen Orient, Band 26

This volume contains the contributions to the workshop “Materialität des Schreibprozesses” [“Materiality of the Writing Process”], held at the Institut für Altorientalistik [Ancient Near Eastern Languages and History] in Berlin on April 29, 2013.
The articles treat the production, inscription and conventions of written documents as well as their utilization, storage and socio-cultural contexts. Various aspects of “materiality” and possibilities of their investigation are covered in an exemplary way.

With contributions by: A. Bartelmus; D. Charpin; A. Fügert & J. Rohde; J. Marzahn; A. Richardson, U. Smilansky & J. Marzahn; J. Taylo.

160 pages, numerous colored figures — content
24,5 x 17,5 cm — Hardcover

Price: € 33,80 [D]

ISBN: 978-3-935012-16-4
© PeWe-Verlag 2018



Adelheid Otto (ed.)

From Pottery to Chronology: The Middle Euphrates Region in Late Bronze Age Syria. Proceedings of the International Workshop in Mainz (Germany), May 5-7, 2012.
Mit With contributions of Felix Blocher, Annie Caubet, Costanza Coppini, Berthold Einwag, Thomas L. McClellan, Adelheid Otto, Anne Porter, Ferhan Sakal, Glenn M. Schwarz and Peter Werner.
Münchener Abhandlungen zum Alten Orient, Band 1 (MAAO-1)

This volume is the result of an “International Workshop on the Chronology of the Late Bronze Age (15th-13th Century BC) in Northern Syria (Upper Syrian Euphrates Area): Emar, Tall al-Qitar, Tall Munbaqa, Umm el-Marra and Tall Bazi“. It took place on May 5-7, 2012 at the Johannes Gutenberg-Universität Mainz. The need for the workshop was felt by the excavators of the mentioned sites, because a considerable number of LBA sites has been investigated in the Upper Euphrates area by now, but the relative and absolute chronology of most sites is still a matter of debate.
The workshop in Mainz tried to tackle the problem of the dating of the Late Bronze Age of the Upper Syrian Euphrates region with the most simple and obvious method. The excavators and pottery specialists of the relevant sites were for the first time brought together. Each team was asked to present its stratified ceramic material and to explain their methods of dating: had the pottery sequence been dated by parallel with another settlement? If so, with which settlement? Or had the stratified material been dated by internal criteria, by written documents or by other well datable objects such as seals, tools and weapons, imported pottery or others? Or had it been dated by radiocarbon or other scientific analyses? The defined aim, which was circulated among the participants in advance, was “By putting together and by comparing the relevant stratified material, it should be possible to discern the consistencies and differences within the material and the reasons for them.”
It was hoped that the date of the relevant levels and of the various destructions would become evident, when the reliability of the dating of the ‘Tablet Building’ at Hadidi to the 15th century was questioned and when each mission laid open its own dating methods, thereby avoiding the circularity of assumptions that had hitherto prevailed. This was not only achieved, but it was also able to establish new chronological anchor points for the Upper Euphrates valley.

232 pages, 129 figures, some colored — content
30 x 21,5 cm — Hardcover

Price: €  58,00 [D]

ISBN:  978-3-935012-29-4
© PeWe-Verlag 2018

order book




Stefanie Martin-Kilcher / Jacqueline Wininger

Syene III. Untersuchungen zur römischen Keramik und weiteren Funden aus Syene / Assuan (1.-7. Jahrhundert AD). Grabungen 2001 — 2004.
With contributions by Sylvia Fünfschilling, Daniel Keller and Johanna Sigl.
Beiträge zur ägyptischen Bauforschung und Altertumskunde, Band 20.

Syene (Aswan) was the southern-most town of the Roman Empire. Since the year 2000, systematic rescue excavations have been carried out by the Swiss Institute of Architectural and Archaeological Research on Ancient Egypt in Cairo, in cooperation with the Ministry of Antiquities.
The pottery studied in this volume comes from stratigraphically well-observed archaeological structures of the excavations from the 1st to 4th campaigns and was analysed within the framework of a project of the University of Berne, Institut für Archäologische Wissenschaften, Archäologie der Römischen Provinzen.
The work is divided into four parts A-D, with a substantial summary in English:
Part A: structures, contexts, catalogue of pottery and plates.
Part B: pottery, relative and absolute chronology; types; synthesis.
Part C: glass, metal and bone artefacts, animal bones.
Part D: annex (pottery): bibliography, typological series; color plates.

For the first time for Upper Egypt, characteristic, chronologically valid contexts of pottery can now be observed. Furthermore, from the later 1st century BC up until the 7th century AD a typological development for many forms can be traced. Finally, the analysis of the pottery yields results and perspectives on trade and cultural developments.

432 pages, 262 figurs, 39 plates, many in color — content
35 x 24,3 cm — Hardcover

Price: €  85,00 [D]

ISBN:  978-3-935012-27-0
© PeWe-Verlag 2017

order book




Karen Radner — F. Janoscha Kreppner — Andrea Squitieri (ed.)
Unearthing the Dinka Settlement Complex.
The 2016 Season at Gird-i Bazar and Qalat-i Dinka
Peshdar Plain Project Publications — Volume 2

With contributions of Mark Altaweel, Silvia Amicone, Andrei Ašandulesei, Christoph Berthold, Francesca Chelazzi, Vera Egbers, Jörg Fassbinder, Tina Greenfield, Zahra Hashemi, Jean-Jacques Herr, F. Janoscha Kreppner, Alessia Palmisano, Elsa Perruchini, Karen Radner, Melissa Rosenzweig, Marion Scheiblecker, Andrea Squitieri

This report of the 2016 activities of the Peshdar Plain Project presents new data for the occupation of the Bora Plain on the upper reaches of the Lesser Zab near the modern district centre of Qaladze in the Neo-Assyrian and Sassanian periods.
The book details the results of the first test excavations at the citadel of Qalat-i Dinka and of the on-going excavations at the settlement quarter of Gird-i Bazar. Here, a continuous excavated area of 625 m2 has been uncovered, occupied by several well-appointed multi-room houses with courtyards, wells and drainage systems and an open area around a pottery kiln, which was found complete with its last load.
The book also presents the results of the geophysical exploration of the Bora Plain: on the one hand, the continuation of the magnetometer survey of the entire Neo-Assyrian settlement, now recognised to be a complex of at least 60 hectares, and on the other hand, the new electrical resistivity tomography (ERT) investigations of the ancient qanat irrigation system that seems to be connected to the Neo-Assyrian settlement.
The three chapters on the pottery of Gird-i Bazar present a first overview of the attested chaînes opératoires, the updated fabric classification on the basis of thin section petrography analysis and the first results of the residue analysis performed on a selection of vessels. Another chapter is devoted to the small finds of the Neo-Assyrian occupation.
A chapter on the bioarchaeology of Gird-i Bazar presents preliminary results of the analysis of the animal bones and of the palaeobotanical remains from the Neo-Assyrian settlement and discusses the Sassanian-period graveyard, now dated by 14C analysis, on top of the ruins of the Neo-Assyrian occupation.

186 pages, more than 180 colored pictures — content
30 x 21 cm — Hardcover

Price: € 33,80 [D]

ISBN: 978-3-935012-28-7
© PeWe-Verlag 2017




Ralph Lübbe
Knochen- und Zahnfunde im Indusgebiet.
Betrachtungen zur Abgrenzung des Früh- und Reif-Harappa-Komplexes und seines südasiatischen Umfeldes

In the Neolithic and Chalcolithic periods as well as in the Bronze Age the culture of the Indus valley is among the first urban high cultures. Its surface area exceeds that of Egypt and Mesopotamia taken together. The largest cities were at a distance of up to 200 km from each other, while Mesopotamian towns were often just 20 km apart.
As the early phases are usually compared to the Sumerian and Akkadian cultures, the respective research is pursued not within the discipline of Indology but is subsumed under Near Eastern Archaeology.
So far the focus has been on writing and the material culture; an approach from the view-point of human biology and anthropology would provide a new understanding. It is too little known that excavations of this third high culture of Antiquity have brought to light a great variety of bones and teeth. Analyses of these finds allow an insight into continuity and breaks in the development of civilization.
The osteological analysis of bones and teeth allows to draw a picture of the way of living, the customary diet, the preparation of food, hygiene, identity and the standard of living. One has just begun to call in the assistance of genetics and molecular biology. Disease pictures have been described that will be of interest to epidemiologists. Exemplary disease symptoms and recognizable causalities offer explanations for sequential processes and socio-biological connections.
Linguistic observation cannot offer explanations for population leaps. It may, on the contrary, be more to the point to try and explain transmitted events (Aryan invasion, Rigveda) with the help of anthropometrics and gene pools.
In periods of transition the development of homo sapiens in South Asia is marked by negative adaptation of stress; a reduced diet and diminished robustness are consequences of the farmer’s increased dependence on carbo-hydrates compared to that of the hunter/gatherer. Mobility and a lower exposure to germs lie, to this day, at the bottom of a high “tribal share”.
Questions need to be answered concerning the beginning and the end of the high culture, preceding cultures have to be defined but also factors hastening the decline, such as tectonic events, lack of rain and monsoon or the salinization of arable soil.
Modern tribal structures and strict caste rules prescribing endogamy are helpful for the analysis: they allow for hypotheses based on the limited exchange of gene pools among the population groups.
In Neolithic societies, in Egypt and Babylonia war was omnipresent. Harappa in its heyday appears remarkably peaceful: no walls, no finds of weapons, no lesions on the bones. The high level of civilization ("water luxury") will be described as part of the historical development of rise and decline.
It is worthwhile to give the osteological material – “thinner” in comparison with European material – a much closer look and develop surprising hypotheses. The study is meant as a concentrated but comprehensive overview about the state of the findings, from the standpoint of a medical man and a historian of the Ancient Near East. By the way, a German study of the palaeo-pathology of South Asia is still lacking.

122 pages with 70 images — content
29 x 21 cm — Softcover

Price: € 19,80 [D]

ISBN: 978-3-935012-23-2
© PeWe-Verlag 2017




Nele Diekmann
Talbot's Tools. Notizbücher als Denklabor eines viktorianischen Keilschriftforschers.
Berliner Beiträge zum Vorderen Orient, Band 25

Much has been written about the decipherment, in the course of the 19th century, of ancient systems of writing, for instance the Egyptian hieroglyphs or the Assyrian-Babylonian cuneiform script. But rarely do we learn more about the details of the researchers’ methods when they were trying to solve an equation with many unknown quantities. How exactly did they proceed on their way to an understanding of the structure and meaning of the unknown signs? And which instruments were available towards the solution of such complex intellectual riddles?
The publication is concerned with just that question. What was the role in the research process of the numerous notebooks which the Victorian scholar William Henry Fox Talbot (1800-1877) left behind? They provide an opportunity to observe how thinking and writing supplement each other and interact to produce results on the page that could not possibly have been reached just “in the mind“. In his notebooks Talbot categorizes, orders, experiments and corrects; the publication aims at analysing those partially superimposed processes and elucidate them with many examples.
In addition to matters of script research, in general, the volume gives a detailed overview over the early history of cuneiform research: it begins with the first reports by travellers to the Middle East, continues with the successful decipherments by Henry Rawlinson (1810-1895) and Edward Hincks (1792-1866) and even includes the power and information policies among scholarly circles of the Victorian society.
The book thus touches upon several disciplines: it treats to the same degree questions of the theory of script, the history of science and of Ancient Near Eastern Studies.

294 pages with 84 images — content
24,5 x 17,5 cm — Hardcover

Price: € 33,80 [D]

ISBN: 978-3-935012-21-8
© PeWe-Verlag 2017




Johanna Sigl

Syene II. Die Tierfunde aus den Grabungen von 2000 - 2009. Ein Beitrag zur Umwelt- und Kulturgeschichte einer oberägyptischen Stadt von der pharaonischen Spät- bis in die Mameluckenzeit.
Beiträge zur ägyptischen Bauforschung und Altertumskunde, Band 19.

More than 2500 years ago, on the east bank of the Nile, opposite the Pharaonic town of Elephantine on the island of the same name, the town of Syene, predecessor of today’s Assuan, came into existence. The partner towns formed the gateway to Nubia and Central Africa. They lay on the route of most trade expeditions on their way to procure gold, ivory and other goods for Egypt and the whole Mediterranean. Due to their strategic importance at the south border of the country both towns must also be seen as permanent military strong-points undergoing continuous change in the composition of their inhabitants: soldiers and mercenaries as well as merchants of many nations lived there for shorter or longer periods and brought their respective cultural and religious traditions to the First Cataract. While Elephantine provides an almost complete insight into the first two and a half millennia of Egyptian history, the exploration of Syene builds a bridge via the Islamic Middle Ages to the Modern Era.
The examination of faunal remains from the excavations of the “Schweizerisches Institut für Ägyptische Bauforschung und Altertumskunde” in Kairo in cooperation with the Assuan inspectorate of the Egyptian Ministry of Antiquities allows a deep view, from the Late Period of ancient Egypt until the 15th century A.D., into the ways that the inhabitants of Syene made use of animals. So far the archaeozoological exploration of Egypt lacks a study of skeletal material of that time span as well as of domesticated and wild animals from all families: this volume closes the gap, at least for the area around the First Cataract.
The presentation of the material according to the identified species is accompanied by a detailed description of the methodological background as well as by comparisons with faunal studies all over Egypt from Pharaonic times to the Modern Age. The ideas discussed with regard to individual species are supplemented by the interpretation of the complete material as to changes in the ways of utilizing domesticated animals, as to preferences in the diet or as to knowledge of breeding. Faunal remains are also used as a possible means of information about trade routes to and from Assuan in the course of the roughly 2500 years of the town’s history. A special attempt has been made to throw light on the questions after shelter for the animals, the supply with fodder and the size of the herds of domesticated animals needed for the meat part in the diet of Syene’s inhabitants.

328 pages, with 82 black-and-white and 24 color pictures, 1 CD-ROM — content
35 x 24,3 cm — Hardcover

Price: €  112,00 [D]

ISBN:  978-3-935012-22-5
© PeWe-Verlag 2017

order book