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Sunday, 10 June 2012

Assyrian reliefs at the British Museum

Sennacherib (704-681 BC) restoring peace in Babylon





As I mentioned in my last post, here are some photos of the Assyrian reliefs at the British Museum, that I took on our visit there last year. Hopefully they will inspire me in painting my Neo-Assyrian and Neo-Babylonian armies. The amazing collection at the British Museum comes from Ashurnasirpal II's (883-859 BC) Northwest Palace at Nimrud, Tiglath-Pileser III's (744-727 BC) Central Palace at Nimrud, Sargon II's (721-705 BC) Palace at Khorsabad, Sennacherib's (704-681 BC) Southwest Palace at Nineveh and Ashurbanipal's (668-c.631 BC) Southwest Palace at Nineveh. Some of the photos are a bit mixed up in terms of chronology and place but for further information on the reliefs check out the British Museum Press books.







Colossal bull-lamassus (gate guardian) 




























Ashurnasirpal II (883-859 BC) lion hunting







Ashurbanipal (668-c.631BC) lion hunting scenes




























Assyrian sling stones the size of cricket balls



6 comments:

  1. I think it's the last picture which just blew me away. I had absolutely no idea that sling stones could be that big. Shot that size propelled by sling would surely smash shields, armour and wearer with ease. I just wonder at the distance they would be effective at. Food for thought for the wargames table. I feel the need to find out more! Thanks for posting the photos.

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  2. Thanks Jason, I think you're right sling stones that size would have been pretty devastating. The combined bow and sling formations the Assyrians employed would have been very effective and quite scary to face. It maybe that they used larger sling stones mainly for sieges?

    Mike

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  3. Those pictures are really cool! Inspiration sure if your hunting lions with siege engines...lol They are great though! I did not know that the one relief of the siege engine was there in the British museum.

    cheers.

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  4. Thanks RazorOne223, the reliefs are really cool. I do have a siege engine but still have to paint it and the armies!

    Mike

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  5. The reliefs are the most amazing thing I have seen. Some look like they have just be carved and the detail is amazing.
    They cannot fail to inspire.

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  6. Thanks Colin, the detail on the reliefs is amazing, some have really intricate designs on the tunics etc. They were originally all painted and traces of paint are still visible on some. The British Museum is incredible and the books on the reliefs are well worth owning.

    Mike

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