The extraordinary state of preservation of the Royal Palace G of Ebla (c. 2400-2300 BC) with a large amount of materials sealed by the destruction levels and the presence of central and temporary archives in several rooms of the official wings of the palatial complex allow a detailed analysis of the distribution and types of the various indicators of exchange and the control of exchange. Economic written documents, sealings (cretulae, bullae and jar-sealings) and balance weights attest to the economic activities conducted within the palace and provide integrated information regarding administrative procedures. Together with these indicators, unworked precious materials (in particular lapis lazuli), imported items, and objects manufactured from imported materials show the palace administration’s control over luxury goods production and Ebla’s extended interregional exchange network. In addition to the administrative archives (with thousands of tablets), the management and movement of goods is recorded by the use of cylinder seals on sealings and on pottery vessels. In the palace were found around two hundred clay sealings with cylinder-seal impressions and more than fifty storage jars with seal impressions. Cretulae come from various functional contexts, with significant concentrations only in the northern storerooms and central archive, whilst seal-impressed jars were scattered in various quarters, including the northern warehouse, the units of the Central Quarter devoted to processing foodstuffs, and the ‘kitchen’ which opened at the bottom of the Ceremonial Staircase. The third category of indicators of administrative management of goods is represented by balance weights, a fundamental tool enabling the palace administration to check and record disbursement and incoming quantities of precious materials and objects. More than forty stone weights were retrieved in the palace, with at least two significant concentrations that permit the localization of weight sets. The evaluation of the archaeological indicators, based on the distribution and associations of these various categories of object, makes readily identifiable the ‘places’ appointed to house single or multiple parts of the procedural chain of administrative activity: the final stage in the codification of economic transactions consisted of written cuneiform texts on clay tablets; the interim level of recording is represented by the cretulae used to seal goods of various sorts; and the most crucial steps in recording, when goods enter or leave the palace, are distinguished by various forms of weighing operation.

Tablets, Sealings and Weights at Ebla: Administrative and Economic Procedures at the beginning of the Archaic State in Syria, 2016.

Tablets, Sealings and Weights at Ebla: Administrative and Economic Procedures at the beginning of the Archaic State in Syria

PEYRONEL, LUCA
2016

Abstract

The extraordinary state of preservation of the Royal Palace G of Ebla (c. 2400-2300 BC) with a large amount of materials sealed by the destruction levels and the presence of central and temporary archives in several rooms of the official wings of the palatial complex allow a detailed analysis of the distribution and types of the various indicators of exchange and the control of exchange. Economic written documents, sealings (cretulae, bullae and jar-sealings) and balance weights attest to the economic activities conducted within the palace and provide integrated information regarding administrative procedures. Together with these indicators, unworked precious materials (in particular lapis lazuli), imported items, and objects manufactured from imported materials show the palace administration’s control over luxury goods production and Ebla’s extended interregional exchange network. In addition to the administrative archives (with thousands of tablets), the management and movement of goods is recorded by the use of cylinder seals on sealings and on pottery vessels. In the palace were found around two hundred clay sealings with cylinder-seal impressions and more than fifty storage jars with seal impressions. Cretulae come from various functional contexts, with significant concentrations only in the northern storerooms and central archive, whilst seal-impressed jars were scattered in various quarters, including the northern warehouse, the units of the Central Quarter devoted to processing foodstuffs, and the ‘kitchen’ which opened at the bottom of the Ceremonial Staircase. The third category of indicators of administrative management of goods is represented by balance weights, a fundamental tool enabling the palace administration to check and record disbursement and incoming quantities of precious materials and objects. More than forty stone weights were retrieved in the palace, with at least two significant concentrations that permit the localization of weight sets. The evaluation of the archaeological indicators, based on the distribution and associations of these various categories of object, makes readily identifiable the ‘places’ appointed to house single or multiple parts of the procedural chain of administrative activity: the final stage in the codification of economic transactions consisted of written cuneiform texts on clay tablets; the interim level of recording is represented by the cretulae used to seal goods of various sorts; and the most crucial steps in recording, when goods enter or leave the palace, are distinguished by various forms of weighing operation.
eng
26
49
66
18
FR
internazionale
comitato scientifico
STAMPA
Settore L-OR/05 - Archeologia e Storia Dell'Arte Del Vicino Oriente Antico
1
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/10808/21997
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