In ancient Mesopotamia, calligraphy, as well as the ability to carefully plan the layout of a clay tablet was a valued skill, expected of any properly trained s...cribe. In a praise poem for King Sin-iddinam of the city of Larsa (c. 1785-1778 B.C.), a beautiful hand is considered the gift of the goddess Nisaba, the patron deity of scribes and grain, and is called hi-li nam-dub-sar-ra "the allure of the scribal art." This is a video of me incising cuneiform on a circular tablet that was commonly used in scribal schools. This style of tablet afforded much more space to write on than the typical cuneiform tablet, probably to give beginners more room to properly execute cuneiform signs, which have to be incised in the proper order. This tablet has a Sumerian proverb that offers perspective on materialism: "possessions are flying birds, never to find a home."
Ancient Text, Modern Tablet
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