Cuneiform and Library Images



Cuneiform, or wedge-shaped writing, was an ancient form of communication originating in Mesopotamia (present-day Iraq).  Considered the earliest form of writing, and most often using clay as the medium of choice, the topics of concern were primarily business transactions:  temple recordings, listings of provisions taken on a journey, records of sales, etc.  Succeeding pictographs, cuneiform eventually died out and  was replaced by Phoenian script.



Acquired in 1913 from Edgar J. Banks, Truman State University's collection of fifteen ancient  artifacts includes baked and unbaked clay tablets, Palestinian oil lamps, a Babylonian cylinder seal, and a votive cone. 



In the fall of 1999, Truman student Michael Murawski, with the assistance of art photographer Bryna Campbell,  created, as part of an Undergraduate Research Project initiative, a brochure entitled Reading the Past: Ancient Mesopotamian Objects in the Violette Historical Museum.  This brochure details information about the cuneiform collection held by the University, including acquisition, cataloging, and placement in the E.M. Violette Museum, a short description and catalog list of objects in the Museum's care, the history of cuneiform tablets, and background information on the Student Research Project.  Many thanks to both individuals for the use of their information and photographs in this exhibit.




For information concerning this exhibit contact:

 Exhibits Gallery Special Collections  |  Pickler Memorial Library  


Direct questions and comments to the Library WebMaster
Copyright 1996-2006 by Truman State University, Kirksville, Missouri. All Rights Reserved.

Last Modified 17 July 2009 by al