Statue of Prince Gudea with a Vase of Flowing Water (detail), Neo-Sumerian period, about 2120 BC, dolerite. Musée du Louvre, Department of Near Eastern Antiquities, Paris. Gift of Boisgelin, 1967 (de Clercq collection). Image © Scala/Art Resource, NY Statue of Prince Gudea with a Vase of Flowing Water (detail), Neo-Sumerian period, about 2120 BC, dolerite. Musée du Louvre, Department of Near Eastern Antiquities, Paris. Gift of Boisgelin, 1967 (de Clercq collection). Image © Scala/Art Resource, NY

This exhibition is temporarily closed as part of Getty's measures against the coronavirus (COVID-19). Please check back for information on our future reopening.

Mesopotamia—the land "between the rivers" in modern-day Iraq—was home to the ancient Sumerians, Babylonians, and Assyrians. Among their many achievements are the creation of the earliest known script (cuneiform), the formation of the first cities, the development of advanced astronomical and mathematical knowledge, and spectacular artistic and literary accomplishments. The exhibition covers three millennia from the first cities in about 3200 BC to Alexander the Great’s conquest of Babylon in 331 BC.

Exhibition organized by the Musée du Louvre, Paris, and the J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles.

Musée du Louvre
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Selected Works

Publications

Mesopotamia: Civilization Begins

Mesopotamia: Civilization Begins

Edited by Ariane Thomas and Timothy Potts


Purchase this and other publications in the Getty Museum Store

Uruk: First City of the Ancient World

Uruk: First City of the Ancient World

Edited by Nicola Crüsemann, Margarete van Ess, Markus Hilgert, and Beate Salje.
English translation edited by Timothy Potts

Assyrian Palace Sculptures

Assyrian Palace Sculptures

Paul Collins

Mobile

Discover the art of ancient Mesopotamia's first cities, kings, and writing with Getty Museum Director Tim Potts and Louvre curator Ariane Thomas.

Experience the tour on your smartphone using our free GettyLink Wi-Fi.


Take the mobile audio tour: getty.edu/mesopotamia

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