University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology

Events Calendar

Beer for Ningirsu: Archaeological Evidence for Brewing at Tell al-Hiba, Ancient Lagash

Saturday 19 November 2016, 11:05am - 11:20am
by This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.Hits : 2259

Darren Ashby, Junior Fellow, will give a talk in Session 10B. Archaeology of Mesopotamia at the 2016 ASOR Annual Meeting, November 16–19, San Antonio, Texas.

This paper presents the material evidence for brewing in an Early Dynastic III (2600–2350 B.C.E.) building from Tell al-Hiba, ancient Lagash, and discusses the similarities and differences between the brewing practices known from textual sources and those identified in the structure. In 1975, the Al-Hiba Expedition, led by Dr. Donald P. Hansen, uncovered the remains of a multiroom building with a large oven, ceramic vats, and a baked brick basin, which the excavators identified as a brewery. is building is located in the area of the Bagara, a temple complex dedicated to the god Ningirsu, and is adjacent to another building that should be identified as a temple based on its form and contents.

The importance of beer in the political, economic, and social life of Early Dynastic southern Mesopotamia is well known from textual and visual sources. In contrast, archaeological evidence for the production and consumption of beer is very fragmentary. Textual and visual sources from the state of Lagash, which included Tell al-Hiba, document the involvement of temple households in the production and consumption of beer in a variety of contexts. The building from Tell al-Hiba serves as a complement to these other sources and it expands our knowledge of brewing practices in antiquity.


Location : San Antonio Ballroom B, La Cantera Resort and Spa, San Antonio, Texas
Contact : This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.