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    Jemdet Nasr.—An account by Mr. Ernest Mackay of the archæology of Jemdet Nasr, Iraq, excavated by the joint Field Museum-Oxford Expedition, is published as Anthropological Memoirs, vol. 1, No. 3, of the Field Museum of Natural History, Chicago. The site, which is situated about fifteen miles northeast of Kish, has now been identified as the ancient Kid-Nun-(ki). It consists of a chain of mounds running east-north-east by west-south-west, about 850 metres long by 180 metres wide, the largest mound being roughly 360 metres by 180 metres. The pottery and small antiquities point to a close kinship with the lower levels of Susa and Musyan. Thus, the identity or close similarity in the design of seals of unusual or curious type is explicable only as due to a close connexion; resemblances in methods of working vessels of stone, and in the shapes of several types of pottery, point in the same direction. The painted pottery of Jemdet Nasr is probably rather later than that of Musyan and Susa ii.; but, on the other hand, it is earlier than the time of Cemetery A, at Kish. Notwithstanding the absence of burials, the objects found prove the existence of an advanced chalcolithic civilisation in Babylonia at an early period. The system of writing had barely emerged from the pictographic stage, but weaving, fishing, agriculture, and pottery-making, in which the inhabitants excelled, were practised. The brick-making is superior to any other in pre-Sargonic times; but in size and shape the bricks are peculiar, being flat instead of plano-convex. Many objects from the Indus valley resemble those of Jemdet Nasr. It is concluded that the inhabitants were not Sumerian but a people conquered by the Sumerians. Prof. Langdon, however, relying to a certain extent on later evidence, says it is impossible not to regard them as Sumerians. Taking 3500 B.C. as the date of the destruction of Jemdet Nasr by fire, he thinks occupation of the site may go so far back as 4000 B.C.

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    Research Items. Nature 129, 26–28 (1932) doi:10.1038/129026a0

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