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Mesopotamia: Inventing Our World

  • Statue of King Ashurnasirpal II
  • The Epic of Gilgamesh, Tablet VI, Clay, Nineveh, Library of Ashurbanipal, 7th century BCE. © The Trustees of the British Museum.
  • Bead head-dress with gold leaf pendants
  • Striding Lion, Southern Citadel throne room facade, Babylon. c. 750-539 BCE. © Royal Ontario Museum.
  • Lyre (frontal view). Gold, lapis, and shell - four mythical scenes on plaque below bulls head. 2650-2550 BCE. Iraq, Ur. L: 191cm, W: 20cm, H: 167cm. Courtesy of the University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology (Penn Museum), Philadelphia, P.A.
  • The Dying Lion, from Nineveh, North Palace, c. 645–640 BCE.

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Garfield Weston Exhibition Hall, Michael Lee-Chin Crystal, Level 2B

Ancient Mesopotamia

The world we live in was born in Mesopotamia more than 3,000 years ago. Home to the world’s first great cities, the land “between the rivers” is the birthplace of writing, of codified laws, of urban planning, of long-distance trade, and of empire-building.

ROM Ancient Cultures, in collaboration with the British Museum, presents Mesopotamia: Inventing Our World,exploring this legacy through an astounding array of artifacts—most never before seen in Canada.

Drawn from the British Museum’s extraordinary collections as well as the ROM’s and from the University of Chicago Oriental Institute Museum, the University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology, and the Detroit Institute of Arts, this is your only opportunity to see these priceless objects under one roof.

Plus: Experience a unique 3-D re-creation of mysterious Babylon, take advantage of many hands-on opportunities and join us for illuminating public lectures and events that delve deeper into this ancient culture.

Access the audio archive of Explore Mesopotamia, a series of informative and entertaining lectures delving into the archaeology, art and innovation of Mesopotamia.



Clemens Reichel

Associate Curator