girsu

Foundation nail dedicated by Gudea of Lagash to Ningirsu for the building of the E-ninnu. Terracotta, ca. 2120 BC. May come from Tello, ancient Girsu.


For Ningirsu, the powerful hero of Enlil, his king, Gudea, prince of Lagash, accomplished what had to be; his temple of E-innu, the shining thunder-bird, he built and restaured.

Foundation Pegs, from Ningirsu Temple, Girsu

Each peg has a very faint cuneiform inscription of Gudea, the ruler of the city-state of Lagash.
Foundation pegs were buried in the foundation of buildings to magically protect them and preserve the builder’s name for posterity. In this case, the peg is supported by a god (Mesopotamian gods are usually depicted wearing horned headdresses).
Kingdom of Lagash, c. 2130 BCE. Possibly from Tello (ancient Girsu), Temple of Ningirsu, southern Mesopotamia, Iraq. (The British Museum, London)

Sumerian Stone Mace Head 

Made of marble, this mace head from the late third millennium BCE would have been fixed to a wooden or metal staff. Used as a weapon in earlier periods, by this time in Mesopotamian history, the mace had become a symbol of authority – a ceremonial object rather than a practical weapon. This mace head bears an inscription in Sumerian by Gudea, a ruler of Lagash, and the inscription states that the object is dedicated to the god Ningišzida, who is connected with vegetation and the underworld. (Source)

Girsu, c. 2200-2100 BCE.

Hearst Museum of Anthropology, University of California at Berkeley. Photo courtesy of CDLI.