Nimrud is an ancient Assyrian city located 30 kilometres south of the city of Mosul, 5 kilometres south of the village of Selamiyah, in the Nineveh plains in Upper Mesopotamia. It was a major Assyrian city between 1350 BC and 610 BC; the city is located in a strategic position 10 kilometres north of the point that the river Tigris meets its tributary the Great Zab. The city covered an area of 360 hectares; the ruins of the city were found within one kilometre of the modern-day Assyrian village of Noomanea in Nineveh Province, Iraq. The name Nimrud was recorded as the local name by Carsten Niebuhr in the mid-18th century. In the mid 19th century, biblical archaeologists proposed the Biblical name of Kalhu, based on a description of the travels of Nimrod in Genesis 10. Archaeological excavations at the site began in 1845, were conducted at intervals between and 1879, from 1949 onwards. Many important pieces were discovered, with most being moved to museums in Iraq and abroad. In 2013, the UK's Arts and Humanities Research Council funded the "Nimrud Project", directed by Eleanor Robson, whose aims were to write the history of the city in ancient and modern times, to identify and record the dispersal history of artefacts from Nimrud, distributed amongst at least 76 museums worldwide.
In 2015, the terrorist organization Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant announced its intention to destroy the site because of its "un-Islamic" Assyrian nature. In March 2015, the Iraqi government reported that ISIL had used bulldozers to destroy excavated remains of the city. Several videos released by ISIL showed the work in progress. In November 2016 Iraqi forces retook the site, visitors confirmed extensive destruction. Others have suggested; the Assyrian king Shalmaneser. However, the ancient city of Assur remained the capital of Assyria, as it had been since c. 3500 BC. The city gained fame when king Ashurnasirpal II of the Neo-Assyrian Empire made it his capital at the expense of Assur, he built a large palace and temples in the city, which had fallen into a degree of disrepair during the Bronze Age Collapse of the mid-11th to mid-10th centuries BC. Thousands of men worked to build an 8-kilometre-long wall surrounding a grand palace. There were many inscriptions carved into limestone including one that said: "The palace of cedar, juniper, mulberry, pistachio wood, tamarisk, for my royal dwelling and for my lordly pleasure for all time, I founded therein.
Beasts of the mountains and of the seas, of white limestone and alabaster I fashioned and set them up on its gates." The inscriptions described plunder stored at the palace: "Silver, lead and iron, the spoil of my hand from the lands which I had brought under my sway, in great quantities I took and placed therein. The inscriptions described great feasts he had to celebrate his conquests; however his victims were horrified by his conquests. The text said: "Many of the captives I have taken and burned in a fire. Many I took alive. I burned their young men and children to death." About a conquest in another vanquished city he wrote: "I flayed the nobles as many as rebelled. He wanted the city to become the luxuriant in the empire, he created a zoo and botanical gardens in the city which featured exotic animals and flowers he had brought back from his military campaigns. A grand opening ceremony with festivities and an opulent banquet in 879 BC is described in an inscribed stele discovered during archeological excavations.
By 800 BC Nimrud had grown to 75,000 inhabitants making it the largest city in the world. King Ashurnasirpal's son Shalmaneser III continued. At Nimrud he built a palace, it was twice the size and it covered an area of about 5 hectares and included more than 200 rooms. He built the monument known as the Great Ziggurat, an associated temple. Nimrud remained the capital of the Assyrian Empire during the reigns of Shamshi-Adad V, Adad-nirari III, Queen Semiramis, Adad-nirari III, Shalmaneser IV, Ashur-dan III, Ashur-nirari V, Tiglath-Pileser III and Shalmaneser V. Tiglath-Pileser III in particular, conducted major building works in the city, as well as introducing Eastern Aramaic as the lingua franca of the empire, whose dialects still endure among the Christian Assyrians of the region today. However, in 706 BC Sargon II moved the capital of the empire to Dur Sharrukin, after his death, Sennacherib moved it to Nineveh, it remained a major city and a royal residence until the city was destroyed during the fall of the Assyrian Empire at the hands of an alliance of former subject peoples, including the Babylonians, Medes, Persians and Cimmerians.
The Nineveh Province, in which the ruins of Nimrud lie, is still the major center of Iraq's indigenous Assyrian population to this day. Ruins of a located city named "Larissa" were described by Xenophon in his Anabasis in the 5th century BC. A similar locality was described
The almond is a species of tree native to Mediterranean climate regions of the Middle East, but cultivated elsewhere. The almond is the name of the edible and cultivated seed of this tree. Within the genus Prunus, it is classified with the peach in the subgenus Amygdalus, distinguished from the other subgenera by corrugations on the shell surrounding the seed; the fruit of the almond is a drupe, consisting of an outer hull and a hard shell with the seed, not a true nut, inside. Shelling almonds refers to removing the shell to reveal the seed. Almonds are sold unshelled. Blanched almonds are shelled almonds that have been treated with hot water to soften the seedcoat, removed to reveal the white embryo; the almond is a deciduous tree. The young twigs are green at first, becoming purplish where exposed to sunlight grey in their second year; the leaves are 8 -- 13 cm long, with a 2.5 cm petiole. The flowers are white to pale pink, 3–5 cm diameter with five petals, produced singly or in pairs and appearing before the leaves in early spring.
Almond grows best in Mediterranean climates with mild, wet winters. The optimal temperature for their growth is between 15 and 30 °C and the tree buds have a chilling requirement of 300 to 600 hours below 7.2 °C to break dormancy. Almonds begin bearing an economic crop in the third year after planting. Trees reach full bearing five to six years after planting; the fruit matures in 7 -- 8 months after flowering. The almond fruit is 3.5–6 cm long. In botanical terms, it is not a nut but a drupe; the outer covering or exocarp, fleshy in other members of Prunus such as the plum and cherry, is instead a thick, grey-green coat, called the hull. Inside the hull is a reticulated, woody shell called the endocarp. Inside the shell is the edible seed called a nut. One seed is present, but two occur. After the fruit matures, the hull splits and separates from the shell, an abscission layer forms between the stem and the fruit so that the fruit can fall from the tree; the almond is native to the Mediterranean climate region of the Middle East, from Syria, Turkey and eastward to Pakistan.
It was spread by humans in ancient times along the shores of the Mediterranean into northern Africa and southern Europe, more transported to other parts of the world, notably California, United States. The wild form of domesticated almond grows in parts of the Levant. Selection of the sweet type from the many bitter types in the wild marked the beginning of almond domestication, it is unclear as to. The species Prunus fenzliana may be the most wild ancestor of the almond in part because it is native of Armenia and western Azerbaijan where it was domesticated. Wild almond species were grown by early farmers, "at first unintentionally in the garbage heaps, intentionally in their orchards". Almonds were one of the earliest domesticated fruit trees due to "the ability of the grower to raise attractive almonds from seed. Thus, in spite of the fact that this plant does not lend itself to propagation from suckers or from cuttings, it could have been domesticated before the introduction of grafting".
Domesticated almonds appear in the Early Bronze Age such as the archaeological sites of Numeria, or earlier. Another well-known archaeological example of the almond is the fruit found in Tutankhamun's tomb in Egypt imported from the Levant. Of the European countries that the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh reported as cultivating almonds, Germany is the northernmost, though the domesticated form can be found as far north as Iceland; the word "almond" comes from Old French almande or alemande, Late Latin *amandula, derived through a form amygdala from the Greek ἀμυγδάλη, an almond. The al- in English, for the a- used in other languages may be due a confusion with the Arabic article al, the word having first dropped the a- as in the Italian form mandorla. Other related names of almond include mandel or knackmandel, mandorla, amêndoa, almendra; the adjective "amygdaloid" is used to describe objects which are almond-shaped a shape, part way between a triangle and an ellipse. See, for example, the brain structure amygdala, which uses a direct borrowing of the Greek term amygdalē.
The pollination of California's almonds is the largest annual managed pollination event in the world, with close to one million hives being trucked in February to the almond groves. Much of the pollination is managed by pollination brokers, who contract with migratory beekeepers from at least 49 states for the event; this business has been affected by colony collapse disorder, causing nationwide shortages of honey bees and increasing the price of insect pollination. To protect almond growers from the rising cost of insect pollination, researchers at the Agricultural Research Service have developed a new line of self-pollinating almond trees. Self-pollinating almond trees, such as the'Tuono', have been around
Nabu is the ancient Mesopotamian patron god of literacy, the rational arts and wisdom. Nabu was worshipped by the Babylonians and the Assyrians. Nabu was known as Nisaba in the Sumerian pantheon and gained prominence among the Babylonians in the 1st millennium BC when he was identified as the son of the god Marduk. Nabu was worshipped in Babylon's sister city Borsippa, where his statue was moved to Babylon each New Year so that he could pay his respects to his father. Nabu's symbol was a stylus resting on a tablet. Clay tablets with especial calligraphic skill were used as offerings at Nabu's temple, his wife was the Akkadian goddess Tashmet. Nabu was the patron god of scribes and wisdom, he was the inventor of writing, a divine scribe, the patron god of the rational arts. Due to his role as an oracle, Nabu was associated with the Mesopotamian moon god Sin and the scribe god Ninurta. Nabu wore a horned cap, stood with his hands clasped in the ancient gesture of priesthood, he rode on a winged dragon known as Sirrush that belonged to his father Marduk.
In Babylonian astrology, Nabu was identified with the planet Mercury. Nabu was continuously worshipped until the 2nd century. Nabu's cult spread to ancient Egypt. Nabu was one of five non-Egyptian deities worshipped in Elephantine. In the Bible, Nabu is mentioned as Nebo in Isaiah 46:1 and Jeremiah 48:1. In Hellenistic times, Nabu was identified with the Greek god Apollo; as the god of wisdom, Nabu was linked by the Romans by the Egyptians with Thoth. A statue of Nabu from Nimrud, erected during the reign of the Assyrian king Tiglath-Pileser III, is on display in the British Museum. "Nebo". New International Encyclopedia. 1905
The olive, known by the botanical name Olea europaea, meaning "European olive", is a species of small tree in the family Oleaceae, found in the Mediterranean Basin from Portugal to the Levant, the Arabian Peninsula, southern Asia as far east as China, as well as the Canary Islands and Réunion. The species is cultivated in many places and considered naturalized in all the countries of the Mediterranean coast, as well as in Argentina, Saudi Arabia, Norfolk Island and Bermuda. Olea europaea is the type species for the genus Olea; the olive's fruit called the olive, is of major agricultural importance in the Mediterranean region as the source of olive oil. The tree and its fruit give their name to the plant family, which includes species such as lilacs, jasmine and the true ash trees; the word "olive" derives from Latin ŏlīva through Etruscan from the archaic Proto-Greek form *ἐλαίϝα. The word "oil" meant "olive oil", from ŏlĕum, ἔλαιον. In multiple other languages the word for "oil" derives from the name of this tree and its fruit.
The oldest attested forms of the Greek words are the Mycenaean, e-ra-wa, and, e-ra-wo or, e-rai-wo, written in the Linear B syllabic script. The olive tree, Olea europaea, is an evergreen tree or shrub native to the Mediterranean and Africa, it is short and squat, exceeds 8–15 m in height.'Pisciottana', a unique variety comprising 40,000 trees found only in the area around Pisciotta in the Campania region of southern Italy exceeds this, with correspondingly large trunk diameters. The silvery green leaves are oblong, measuring 4 -- 1 -- 3 cm wide; the trunk is gnarled and twisted. The small, feathery flowers, with ten-cleft calyx and corolla, two stamens, bifid stigma, are borne on the previous year's wood, in racemes springing from the axils of the leaves; the fruit is a small drupe 1–2.5 cm long, thinner-fleshed and smaller in wild plants than in orchard cultivars. Olives are harvested in the green to purple stage. Canned black olives have been artificially blackened and may contain the chemical ferrous gluconate to improve the appearance.
Olea europaea contains a seed referred to in American English as a pit or a rock, in British English as a stone. The six natural subspecies of Olea europaea are distributed over a wide range: Olea europaea subsp. Europaea Olea europaea subsp. Europaea var. sylvestris, considered the "wild" olive of the Mediterranean, is a variety characterized by a smaller tree bearing noticeably smaller fruit. O. e. subsp. Cuspidata O. e. subsp. Guanchica O. e. subsp. Cerasiformis O. e. subsp. Maroccana O. e. subsp. Laperrinei The subspecies O. e. maroccana and O. e. cerasiformis are hexaploid and tetraploid. Wild growing forms of the olive are sometimes treated as the species Olea oleaster; the trees referred to as white and black olives in Southeast Asia are not olives, but species of Canarium. Hundreds of cultivars of the olive tree are known. An olive's cultivar has a significant impact on its colour, size and growth characteristics, as well as the qualities of olive oil. Olive cultivars may be used for oil, eating, or both.
Olives cultivated for consumption are referred to as table olives. Since many olive cultivars are self-sterile or nearly so, they are planted in pairs with a single primary cultivar and a secondary cultivar selected for its ability to fertilize the primary one. In recent times, efforts have been directed at producing hybrid cultivars with qualities useful to farmers, such as resistance to disease, quick growth, larger or more consistent crops. Fossil evidence indicates the olive tree had its origins some 20–40 million years ago in the Oligocene, in what is now corresponding to Italy and the eastern Mediterranean Basin; the olive plant was first cultivated some 7,000 years ago in Mediterranean regions. The edible olive seems to have coexisted with humans for about 5,000 to 6,000 years, going back to the early Bronze Age, its origin can be traced to the Levant based on written tablets, olive pits, wood fragments found in ancient tombs. The immediate ancestry of the cultivated olive is unknown. Fossil Olea pollen has been found in Macedonia and other places around the Mediterranean, indicating that this genus is an original element of the Mediterranean flora.
Fossilized leaves of Olea were found in the palaeosols of the volcanic Greek island of Santorini and were dated about 37,000 BP. Imprints of larvae of olive whitefly Aleurolobus olivinus were found on the leaves; the same insect is found today on olive leaves, showing that the plant-animal co-evolutionary relations have not changed since that time. Other leaves found on the same island are dated back to 60,000 BP, making them the oldest known olives from the Mediterranean; as far back as 3000 BC, olives were grown commercially in Crete. Olives are not native to the Americas. Spanish colonists brought the olive to the New World, where its cultivation prospered in present-day Peru and Chile; the first seedlings from Spain were planted in Lima by Antonio de Rivera in 1560. Olive tree cultivation spread along the valleys of South America's dry Pacific coast where the climate was
Phoenicia was a thalassocratic, ancient Semitic-speaking Mediterranean civilization that originated in the Levant Lebanon, in the west of the Fertile Crescent. Scholars agree that it was centered on the coastal areas of Lebanon and included northern Israel, southern Syria reaching as far north as Arwad, but there is some dispute as to how far south it went, the furthest suggested area being Ashkelon, its colonies reached the Western Mediterranean, such as Cádiz in Spain and most notably Carthage in North Africa, the Atlantic Ocean. The civilization spread across the Mediterranean between 1500 BC and 300 BC. Phoenicia is an ancient Greek term used to refer to the major export of the region, cloth dyed Tyrian purple from the Murex mollusc, referred to the major Canaanite port towns, their civilization was organized in city-states, similar to those of ancient Greece, centered in modern Lebanon, of which the most notable cities were Tyre, Arwad, Berytus and Carthage. Each city-state was a politically independent unit, it is uncertain to what extent the Phoenicians viewed themselves as a single nationality.
In terms of archaeology, language and religion there was little to set the Phoenicians apart as markedly different from other residents of the Levant, such as their close relatives and neighbors, the Israelites. Around 1050 BC, a Phoenician alphabet was used for the writing of Phoenician, it became one of the most used writing systems, spread by Phoenician merchants across the Mediterranean world, where it evolved and was assimilated by many other cultures, including the Roman alphabet used by Western civilization today. The name Phoenicians, like Latin Poenī, comes from Greek Φοίνικες; the word φοῖνιξ phoînix meant variably "Phoenician person", "Tyrian purple, crimson" or "date palm" and is attested with all three meanings in Homer. The word may be derived from φοινός phoinós "blood-red", itself related to φόνος phónos "murder", it is difficult to ascertain which meaning came first, but it is understandable how Greeks may have associated the crimson or purple color of dates and dye with the merchants who traded both products.
Robert S. P. Beekes has suggested a pre-Greek origin of the ethnonym; the oldest attested form of the word in Greek may be the Mycenaean po-ni-ki-jo, po-ni-ki borrowed from Ancient Egyptian: fnḫw, although this derivation is disputed. The folk etymological association of Φοινίκη with φοῖνιξ mirrors that in Akkadian, which tied kinaḫni, kinaḫḫi "Canaan" to kinaḫḫu "red-dyed wool"; the land was natively known as its people as the knʿny. In the Amarna letters of the 14th century BC, people from the region called themselves Kenaani or Kinaani, in modern English understood as/equivalent to Canaanite. Much in the sixth century BC, Hecataeus of Miletus writes that Phoenicia was called χνα khna, a name that Philo of Byblos adopted into his mythology as his eponym for the Phoenicians: "Khna, afterwards called Phoinix"; the ethnonym survived in North Africa until the fourth century AD. Herodotus's account refers to the myths of Europa. According to the Persians best informed in history, the Phoenicians began the quarrel.
These people, who had dwelt on the shores of the Erythraean Sea, having migrated to the Mediterranean and settled in the parts which they now inhabit, began at once, they say, to adventure on long voyages, freighting their vessels with the wares of Egypt and Assyria... The Greek historian Strabo believed. Herodotus believed that the homeland of the Phoenicians was Bahrain; this theory was accepted by the 19th-century German classicist Arnold Heeren who said that: "In the Greek geographers, for instance, we read of two islands, named Tyrus or Tylos, Aradus, which boasted that they were the mother country of the Phoenicians, exhibited relics of Phoenician temples." The people of Tyre in South Lebanon in particular have long maintained Persian Gulf origins, the similarity in the words "Tylos" and "Tyre" has been commented upon. The Dilmun civilization thrived in Bahrain during the period 2200–1600 BC, as shown by excavations of settlements and Dilmun burial mounds. However, some claim there is little evidence of occupation at all in Bahrain during the time when such migration had taken place.
Canaanite culture developed in situ from the earlier Ghassulian chalcolithic culture. Ghassulian itself developed from the Circum-Arabian Nomadic Pastoral Complex, which in turn developed from a fusion of their ancestral Natufian and Harifian cultures with Pre-Pottery Neolithic B farming cultures, practicing the domestication of animals, during the 6200 BC climatic crisis which led to the Neolithic Revolution in the Levant. Byblos is attested as an archaeological site from the Early Bronze Age; the Late Bronze Age state of Ugarit is considered quintessentially Canaanite archaeologically though the Ugaritic language does not belong to the Canaanite languages proper. The Canaanite-Phoenician alphabet consists of all consonants. Starting around 1050 BC, this script was used for the writing of Phoenician, a Northern Semitic language, it is believed to be one of the ancestors of modern alphabets. B
Iraq the Republic of Iraq, is a country in Western Asia, bordered by Turkey to the north, Iran to the east, Kuwait to the southeast, Saudi Arabia to the south, Jordan to the southwest and Syria to the west. The capital, largest city, is Baghdad. Iraq is home to diverse ethnic groups including Arabs, Assyrians, Shabakis, Armenians, Mandeans and Kawliya. Around 95% of the country's 37 million citizens are Muslims, with Christianity, Yarsan and Mandeanism present; the official languages of Iraq are Kurdish. Iraq has a coastline measuring 58 km on the northern Persian Gulf and encompasses the Mesopotamian Alluvial Plain, the northwestern end of the Zagros mountain range and the eastern part of the Syrian Desert. Two major rivers, the Tigris and Euphrates, run south through Iraq and into the Shatt al-Arab near the Persian Gulf; these rivers provide Iraq with significant amounts of fertile land. The region between the Tigris and Euphrates rivers known as Mesopotamia, is referred to as the cradle of civilisation.
It was here that mankind first began to read, create laws and live in cities under an organised government—notably Uruk, from which "Iraq" is derived. The area has been home to successive civilisations since the 6th millennium BC. Iraq was the centre of the Akkadian, Sumerian and Babylonian empires, it was part of the Median, Hellenistic, Sassanid, Rashidun, Abbasid, Mongol, Safavid and Ottoman empires. The country today known as Iraq was a region of the Ottoman Empire until the partition of the Ottoman Empire in the 20th century, it was made up of three provinces, called vilayets in the Ottoman language: Mosul Vilayet, Baghdad Vilayet, Basra Vilayet. In April 1920 the British Mandate of Mesopotamia was created under the authority of the League of Nations. A British-backed monarchy joining these vilayets into one Kingdom was established in 1921 under Faisal I of Iraq; the Hashemite Kingdom of Iraq gained independence from the UK in 1932. In 1958, the monarchy was overthrown and the Iraqi Republic created.
Iraq was controlled by the Arab Socialist Ba'ath Party from 1968 until 2003. After an invasion by the United States and its allies in 2003, Saddam Hussein's Ba'ath Party was removed from power, multi-party parliamentary elections were held in 2005; the US presence in Iraq ended in 2011, but the Iraqi insurgency continued and intensified as fighters from the Syrian Civil War spilled into the country. Out of the insurgency came a destructive group calling itself ISIL, which took large parts of the north and west, it has since been defeated. Disputes over the sovereignty of Iraqi Kurdistan continue. A referendum about the full sovereignty of Iraqi Kurdistan was held on 25 September 2017. On 9 December 2017, then-Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi declared victory over ISIL after the group lost its territory in Iraq. Iraq is a federal parliamentary republic consisting of one autonomous region; the country's official religion is Islam. Culturally, Iraq has a rich heritage and celebrates the achievements of its past in both pre-Islamic as well as post-Islamic times and is known for its poets.
Its painters and sculptors are among the best in the Arab world, some of them being world-class as well as producing fine handicrafts, including rugs and carpets. Iraq is a founding member of the UN as well as of the Arab League, OIC, Non-Aligned Movement and the IMF; the Arabic name العراق al-ʿIrāq has been in use since before the 6th century. There are several suggested origins for the name. One dates to the Sumerian city of Uruk and is thus of Sumerian origin, as Uruk was the Akkadian name for the Sumerian city of Urug, containing the Sumerian word for "city", UR. An Arabic folk etymology for the name is "well-watered. During the medieval period, there was a region called ʿIrāq ʿArabī for Lower Mesopotamia and ʿIrāq ʿAjamī, for the region now situated in Central and Western Iran; the term included the plain south of the Hamrin Mountains and did not include the northernmost and westernmost parts of the modern territory of Iraq. Prior to the middle of the 19th century, the term Eyraca Arabic was used to describe Iraq.
The term Sawad was used in early Islamic times for the region of the alluvial plain of the Tigris and Euphrates rivers, contrasting it with the arid Arabian desert. As an Arabic word, عراق means "hem", "shore", "bank", or "edge", so that the name by folk etymology came to be interpreted as "the escarpment", viz. at the south and east of the Jazira Plateau, which forms the northern and western edge of the "al-Iraq arabi" area. The Arabic pronunciation is. In English, it is either or, the American Heritage Dictionary, the Random House Dictionary; the pronunciation is heard in US media. In accordance with the 2005 Constitution, the official name of the state is the "Republic of Iraq". Between 65,000 BC and 35,000 BC northern Iraq was home to a Neanderthal culture, archaeological remains of which have been discovered at Shanidar Cave This same region is the location of a number of pre-Neolithic cemeteries, dating from 11,000 BC. Since 10,000 BC, Iraq was one of centres of a Caucasoid Neolithic culture (k
A lamassu is an Assyrian protective deity depicted as having a human head, the body of a bull or a lion, bird wings. In some writings, it is portrayed to represent a female deity. A less used name is shedu, which refers to the male counterpart of a lamassu. Lammasu represent parent-stars or constellations. In art, lamassu were depicted as hybrids, with bodies of either winged bulls or lions and heads of human males; the motif of a winged animal with a human head is common to the Near East, first recorded in Ebla around 3000 BCE. The first distinct lamassu motif appeared in Assyria during the reign of Tiglath-Pileser II as a symbol of power. Assyrian sculpture placed prominent pairs of lamassu at entrances in palaces, facing the street and internal courtyards, they were represented in high relief. From the front they appear to stand, from the side, in earlier versions have five legs, as is apparent when viewed obliquely. Lumasi do not appear as large figures in the low-relief schemes running round palace rooms, where winged genie figures are common, but they sometimes appear within narrative reliefs protecting the Assyrians.
The colossal entranceway figures were followed by a hero grasping a wriggling lion colossal in scale and in high relief. In the palace of Sargon II at Dur-Sharrukin, a group of at least seven lamassu and two such heroes with lions surrounded the entrance to the "throne room", "a concentration of figures which produced an overwhelming impression of power." They appear on cylinder seals. Notable examples include those at the Gate of All Nations at Persepolis in Iran, the British Museum in London, the Louvre in Paris, the National Museum of Iraq in Baghdad, the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York and the University of Chicago Oriental Institute. Several examples left in situ in northern Iraq were destroyed in the 2010s by the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant when they occupied the area, as were those in the Mosul Museum. Lamassu represent parent-stars, or constellations, they are depicted as protective deities. In the Sumerian Epic of Gilgamesh, they are depicted as physical deities as well, where the lammasu iconography originates, these deities could be microcosms of their microcosmic zodiac, parent-star, or constellation.
Although lamassu had a different iconography and portrayal in the culture of Sumer, the terms "lamassu", "alad", "shedu" evolved throughout the Assyro-Akkadian culture from the Sumerian culture to denote the Assyrian-winged-man-bull symbol and statues during the Neo-Assyrian Empire. Female lamassu were called "apsasû"; the motif of the Assyrian-winged-man-bull called Aladlammu and Lamassu interchangeably is not the lamassu or alad of Sumerian origin, which were depicted with different iconography. These monumental statues were called aladlammû or lamassu which meant "protective spirit". In Hittite, the Sumerian form dlamma is used both as a name for the so-called "tutelary deity", identified in certain texts with Inara, a title given to similar protective gods; the lamassu is a celestial being from ancient Mesopotamian religion bearing a human head, bull's body, sometimes with the horns and the ears of a bull, wings. It appears in Mesopotamian art; the lamassu and shedu were household protective spirits of the common Babylonian people, becoming associated as royal protectors, were placed as sentinels at entrances.
The Akkadians associated the god Papsukkal with the god Išum with shedu. To protect houses, the lamassu were engraved in clay tablets, which were buried under the door's threshold, they were placed as a pair at the entrance of palaces. At the entrance of cities, they were sculpted in colossal size, placed as a pair, one at each side of the door of the city, that had doors in the surrounding wall, each one looking towards one of the cardinal points; the ancient Jewish people were influenced by the iconography of Assyrian culture. The prophet Ezekiel wrote about a fantastic being made up of aspects of a human being, a lion, an eagle and a bull. In the early Christian period, the four Gospels were ascribed to each of these components; when it was depicted in art, this image was called the Tetramorph. The British 10th Army, which operated in Iraq and Iran in 1942–1943, adopted the lamassu as its insignia. A bearded man with a winged bull body appears on the logo of the United States Forces – Iraq. A man with a bull's body is found among the creatures that make up Aslan's army in The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe by C. S. Lewis.
He appears at the Stone Table, challenging the White Witch "with a great bellowing voice". In the film Alexander, lamassu are seen at the Ishtar Gate in Babylon. In the Disney movie Aladdin, a gold lamassu can be found in the scene where Aladdin and Abu enter the cave in the desert to find the lamp. Michael Rakowitz, a Northwestern University professor of Art Theory & Practice won a Fourth Plinth commission to recreate the Lamassu that stood in Nineveh, from 700 BC until it was destroyed by ISIS in 2015. Rakowitz's sculpture will be displayed in London's Trafalgar Square beginning in 2018. Lammasu and shedu are two distinct types of good-aligned creatures in the role-playing game Dungeons & Dragons. Lammasu appear in the Magic: The Gathering trading card game as the white card Hunted Lammasu in the Ravnica expansion, as well as the white card Venerable Lammasu found in the Khans of Tarkir expansion. In the Games Workshop miniatures wargame, War