A hand-cast replica of The Flood Tablet from Nineveh, northern Iraq (Neo-Assyrian), dated to the 7th century BC. This small replica measures 15cm tall by 13cm wide by 3cm thick.
The Flood Tablet is one of the Museum's most famous cuneiform tablets from Mesopotamia (one of the earliest known systems of writing). The tablet is famous because it is inscribed with the Babylonian account of the Flood as part of the Epic of Gilgamesh: a long poem which is one of the earliest surviving works of literature. This object caused a sensation when it was first deciphered in the 19th century because of its similarity to the Flood story in the Book of Genesis.
The Assyrian King Ashurbanipal (reigned 669-631 BC) collected a library of thousands of cuneiform tablets in his palace at Nineveh. The best known of these is the story of Gilgamesh, the legendary ruler of the city of Uruk, and his search for immortality. The Flood Tablet is the eleventh of the Epic, and describes the meeting of Gilgamesh with Utnapishtim, the hero of the Flood.
This reproduction is cast in resin from a mould of the original.