Architecture of the Ancient Near East flashcards |

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Ziggurat

A temple elevated on a tiered artificial mound constructed of sun-dried brick bonded together with bitumen, reed matting, or rope, and finished with weather-resistant kiln-fired brick. It rose from a rectangular base with battered or inward sloping walls in a series of stepped platforms, culminating in a high temple at the top. In the center of one side there was a set of stairs that gave access to the temple on top. Financial center of the city.

Niche

Indentation in the wall for the purpose of displaying a statue, vase, or some sort of object.

Crenellation

Fortified wall type. Were battlements in a castle or other types of buildings.

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Terracotta cones

Small clay cones that were pressed into a wall of wet plaster with the pointed end in, creating an mosaic. The outer ends were often painted black, red, or white.

Cuneiform

Wedge shaped style of writing developed by the Sumerians.

Cylinder seal

Piece of stone in the shape of a cylinder and had pictograms, and a message on it. They were used to roll on a clay tablet to roll on a message. First photo copier.

Stela

A vertical upright stone with a message on it. They were placed in cities and plazas. The stone had laws of business and trade.

Pilaster

Flattened column attached to an wall. Used for ornament, not support.

Audience hall (Hall of 100 Columns)

King Xerxes's throne room completed by Artaxerxes, was the largest roofed space in the palace of Persepolis. Most of the palace was constructed of stone. Stone columns supported wooden roof beams resting on the double-headed capitals carved in the form of bulls and lions.

Hypostyle hall

Rows of columns equally spaced, enclosed by walls. Supports a roof on top.

City States

Independent urban communities and were the first literate civilizations.

Khorsabad, Assyria (Iraq), c. 720 BCE

Fortified Assyrian Citadel with a palace and town with fortified, deep walls. Has towers around it. Has a Ziggurat and the palace. Rooms organized courtyards open to the sky. The royal city was built by Sargon II. The palace area was designed by orthogonal geometry and was organized by a series of courts. The palace's courts were surrounded by rectangular rooms. At the entrance to the palace was carved winged bulls with human heads on stone blocks.

Ziggurat of Ur, Sumeria, Mesopotamia, c. 2100 BCE

Neo-Sumerian Ziggurat. Only ziggurat that retains some of its architectural details. Its original height was 70ft with a 200x150ft base.

Stela of King Hammurabi (king of Babylon)

Babylonian. Shamash - sun god, on stone with Hammurabi handing him a scepter. Message is that Hammurabi was given power and laws from the sun god.

Hanging Gardens of Babylon

Had a series of platforms that held gardens at each level. It was watered by a paddle wheel system from the river. The gardens surrounded the palace.

The temple of Marduk (Tower of Babel) and palace, c. 575 BCE

The ziggurat of Babylon. It had fortified walls and a pattern grid and courtyards like Assyrian citadels.

Gate of Ishtar c. 575 BCE

Entrance Gate of Babylon, had one of the first paved roads lead to it. Has a large portal (door) and is flanked on both sides with a double height tower and crenelations. It is a blue color from a glaze from lapis lazuli (a blue stone) and had gold from crushed gold leaf as ornament. The lion represented the king and was a political image.

Votive Figures, Square Temple - Eshunna, Iraq, c. 2700 BCE

Ritual figures. Each one represented a family (may be the head of the household). Each statue was different. They all have their hands clasped and have eyes looking straight out, looking past you. Has a chant of a prayer on the statue, praying that their gods will take care of them from bad things. The statue prayed for the family continually.

Palace of Darius and Xerxes at Persepolis (Iran) 518-460 BCE

The ceremonial capital of Persia, founded by King Darius. The palace has resemblances of Egyptian temple gates and hypostyle halls, Hittite audience chambers, and Mesopotamian sculpted animal motifs. The palace had a terrace 1500x900ft that contained reception courts, banquet rooms, and audience halls in a loose orthogonal layout.

Column

Base+shaft+capitol

Gudea

Neo-Sumerian, ruler of the city state of Lagash in Southern Mesopotamia.

Assyrian Citadels

Had an fortified wall. Contained an city and a palace on a plateau. The palace area was designed by orthogonal geometry and was organized by a series of courts. On the axis with the ramparts was the 7 stage ziggurat representing the cosmic order of the 7 planets. The palace's courts were surrounded by rectangular rooms. Ex: Khorsabad

Winged bulls with human heads

Sculptural figures that guard the main entry of the Assyrian palace in Khorsabad.

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Sun-dried brick

Main building material of Sumerians. Caused their architecture to be laid out in rectangular shapes.

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Causeway

Paved, elevated road.

Flickr Creative Commons Images

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