The Standard of Ur

Image courtesy of the British Museum

I figured for my first post I would pick an object that’s special to me since it’s one of the first wow factor objects I’ve been introduced to in an archaeology class. It also helped that I’ve seen it for real at the British Museum where it’s exhibited and it’s actually smaller than I thought it would be (approximately the size of a shoe box if you want to get an idea).

It’s made of lapis lazuli with shell, which makes it pretty fancy but like many other archaeological objects, it doesn’t have a clear function. The two main sides of it have representations of processions, one in time of peace (the one shown in the picture) and the other in war time (which you can check out here).

It’s about 4500 years old (third millenium BC) and comes from the Royal tombs of Ur, a site that has yielded pretty awesome finds which will be featured in future posts, so stay tuned.


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