Make your own free website on Tripod.com
HOME / Table of Contents = Civilizations - Cultures - Areas - Regions - Prehistory
Other Archaeological Sites / The Neolithic of the Levant (500 Page Book Online)

Eridu Phase (Tell Abu Shahrain)

The Oriental Institute of Chicago

View of Early Excavations at Eridu The most southerly and possibly also the earliest city-state of Sumer in southern Mesopotamia. A sounding excavated underneath a ziggurat of the late 3rd millennium BC revealed a sequence of 18 religious buildings. The earliest building was a simple mud-brick shrine resting on virgin sand. By the time of its tenth rebuilding it had acquired the standard form of the Sumerian temple with tripartite plan consisting of a long central room flanked by symmetrically grouped side chambers and was built on a substantial platform. The earliest phase of occupation - named the Eridu Phase - is dated to circa 5000 BC; this is followed by the Hajji Muhammed Phase: both of these precede the fully developed Ubaid Cultural Period. They are often regarded as early or proto-Ubaid.

The settlement at Eridu can also be regarded as proto-urban from the beginning; it grew into a substantial city by the Early Dynastic Period; and two royal palaces of this period have been excavated. Outside the temple precinct a large cemetery of the late Ubaid Period was found; this contained perhaps 1000 graves of which circa 200 were excavated. Grave goods include painted pottery vessels, terracotta figurines and baked clay tools such as sickles and shaft-hole axes ... (AHSFC)

The History of the Ancient Near East Electronic Compendium