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Signs from Silence

Signs from Silence

Charvát, Petr

subjects: history, archaeology

paperback, 322 pp., 1. edition
published: april 2017
ISBN: 978-80-246-3130-1
recommended price: 420 czk



The monograph Signs from Silence: Ur of the first Sumerians tells the story of the Sumerian city of Ur at the beginning of the third pre-Christian millennium (c. 2,900–2,700). In terms of research focusing on the emergence of one of the first statehood foci of human history—the pristine state of ancient Mesopotamia—, the author takes up evidence on a critical phase of early Mesopotamian social development. At the beginning of the third pre-Christian millennium, the men and women of Ur took up actions that decided whether the material and spiritual heritage of the preceding Late Uruk cultural-development phase (c. 3,500–3,200), when the first state, organized religion, sciences and the arts had emerged in ancient Mesopotamia, will stand up to the test of time, or whether it will vanish into thin air, as it happened in other civilizational complexes. The author has based his conclusions on the testimony of written texts, archaeology and iconography. Guided by this evidence, he portrays the ways and means by which the men and women of Ur treated the material and spiritual heritage of the Late Uruk civilization. Their activities defined the coordinates system within which the early Mesopotamian state subsequently developed through the nearly three millennia of its existence.