Iraq

A pair of rock reliefs found at Rabana-Merquly may depict Natounissar, an ancient Adiabene king linked to the lost city of Natounia.

Cool Finds

Why Archaeologists Think They've Found the Lost City of Natounia

New research draws on rock reliefs and ancient coins to link the Rabana-Merquly fortress in Iraq to a vassal state of the Parthian Empire

Archaeologists got brief access to the city during another drought in 2018, but this is the first time they managed a comprehensive site study.

Cool Finds

Drought in Iraq Reveals 3,400-Year-Old City

Archaeologists raced against time to map the once-submerged ancient metropolis

The bowls were probably created in what is now Iraq between the fourth and eighth centuries C.E.

1,500-Year-Old 'Magic Bowls' Seized in Jerusalem Raid

Ancient Mesopotamians used the vessels, which were inscribed with incantations, to ward off demons, disease and other misfortune

Christie accompanied her second husband, Max Mallowan, on digs in Egypt and Syria. During these expeditions, she helped catalog, illustrate and restore artifacts, in addition to managing everyday operations.

Based on a True Story

How Agatha Christie's Love of Archaeology Influenced 'Death on the Nile'

In the 1930s, the mystery writer accompanied her archaeologist husband on annual digs in the Middle East

Earlier this month, U.S. officials agreed to return two seized cuneiform artifacts to the Iraqi consulate in Los Angeles.

U.S. Returns 4,000-Year-Old Cuneiform Tablet and Prism to Iraq

An investigator says the artifacts were "almost certainly" looted from the Middle Eastern country

Damage assessment mission to the Mosul Cultural Museum, 2019.

How the Smithsonian Protects Cultural Heritage Around the World

In the wake of crisis and disaster, rescue workers led by the Smithsonian step in to safeguard irreplaceable treasures

Children stand on the surrounding wall at Tabira Gate, the entrance to Assur, first capital of the Assyrian empire in present day Shirqat, Iraq.

At the Iraqi Site of Assur, Ancient History Stands at Risk of Destruction

In its time, the Assyrian capital faced waves of invasions and abandonment. Now a small team of archaeologists are protecting it from more modern threats

Detail of Ronald N. Sherr's General Colin Powell, 2012, oil on canvas

History of Now

Colin Powell, First Black Secretary of State, Dies of Covid-19 at 84

The decorated general broke racial barriers in the U.S. military but attracted criticism for his part in paving the way for the Iraq War

Hobby Lobby acquired the cuneiform tablet for display at the Museum of the Bible in Washington, D.C.

Smuggled Gilgamesh Dream Tablet Returns to Iraq

Forfeited by Hobby Lobby in July, the ancient artifact will be repatriated in a ceremony held at the Smithsonian's National Museum of the American Indian

“With this new tablet, we can actually see for the first time why they were interested in geometry: to lay down precise land boundaries,” says researcher Daniel Mansfield.

Babylonians Used Applied Geometry 1,000 Years Before Pythagoras

Calculations inscribed on a clay tablet helped ancient people document property boundaries, new research suggests

A proposed government plan will move the A303 highway, pictured here in the distance behind Stonehenge's iconic structures, underground. But Unesco warned in a report Monday that the efforts might endanger the site's OVU, or outstanding universal value.

Unesco Weighs Changes to Stonehenge's Cultural Heritage Status

A new report also cited Venice and the Great Barrier Reef as sites that might be placed on the World Heritage in Danger list

A new book  Incredible Archaeology: Inspiring Places From Our Human Past, out this month from Smithsonian Books, explores some of the world's most spectacular ancient wonders.

Twelve Ancient and Enduring Places Around the World

From Smithsonian Books, towering temples, dramatic works of art and early settlements that have stood the test of time

Kleicha are ready to be delivered in their gift boxes. Each year the family creates different packaging, which some recipients collect.

How to Make the Ancient Iraqi Cookie that Signals the End of Ramadan

Made with rosewater, nigella seed and stuffed with dates or nuts, the bite-size 'kleicha' evokes layers of meaning and memory

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