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      THE CITY AND LANDSCAPE OF UR: AN AERIAL, SATELLITE, AND GROUND REASSESSMENT

      Iraq
      Cambridge University Press (CUP)

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          Abstract

          New fieldwork at Ur has begun to investigate urban scale, city organization, and the environment of the city's hinterland. Analysis of new sources of declassified aerial and satellite imagery from the 1950s and 1960s, recent unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) photos, and a systematic surface collection show that Ur may have expanded to between 120–500 hectares in size during its later periods of habitation, far larger than the sixty hectare maximum size previously estimated. Traces of buried architecture visible in the UAV photos and topographic models generated from UAV photos allow for the generation of hypotheses about the city plan of Ur during the Late Larsa/Old Babylonian and Neo Babylonian periods. Relict watercourses mapped in the vicinity of the main mound indicate how the city might have been supplied with water in some periods. Alongside this site-based work, historical aerial and satellite imagery provide an updated picture of ancient hydrology, environment, and settlement patterns around Ur.

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          CORONA Satellite Photography and Ancient Road Networks: A Northern Mesopotamian Case Study

          Jason A Ur (2003)
          Middle-eastern archaeologists are winning new information from declassified military photographs taken 25 years ago. This study shows how pictures of north-eastern Syria are revealing the routeways, and by inference the agricultural systems of Mesopotamia in the early Bronze Age.
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            Form and Meaning in the Earliest Cities: A New Approach to Ancient Urban Planning

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              Patterns of looting in southern Iraq

              The archaeological sites of Iraq, precious for their bearing on human history, became especially vulnerable to looters during two wars. Much of the looting evidence has been anecdotal up to now, but here satellite imagery has been employed to show which sites were looted and when. Sites of all sizes from late Uruk to early Islamic were targeted for their high value artefacts, particularly just before and after the 2003 invasion. The author comments that the ‘total area looted … was many times greater than all the archaeological investigations ever conducted in southern Iraq and must have yielded tablets, coins, cylinder seals, statues, terracottas, bronzes and other objects in the hundreds of thousands’.
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                Author and article information

                Journal
                applab
                Iraq
                Iraq
                Cambridge University Press (CUP)
                0021-0889
                2053-4744
                October 18 2019
                : 1-34
                Article
                10.1017/irq.2019.7
                a8c48431-9402-412d-be4c-1af21fe2d2c8
                © 2019

                https://www.cambridge.org/core/terms

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