That is until now. This autumn, the British Museum presents I Am Ashurbanipal: King Of The World, King Of Assyria, the first major exhibition exploring and reviving this ancient empire and the great, unknown king who ruled it.
Ashurbanipal on horseback hunting a lion.
An innovative, and at times immersive, display will bring to life the tumultuous story of Ashurbanipal’s reign. Learn about life at the great Assyrian court, Ashurbanipal's bloody conquest of Egypt, the crushing defeat of his rebellious older brother, and his ruthless campaigns against all who defied his rule.
Ashurbanipal strived to be the most learned man in the world, and unlike his predecessors he could read and write. During his reign, the self-proclaimed 'king of the world' assembled one of the greatest surviving ancient libraries. For the purpose of this exhibition, the British Museum will recreate the King’s library, which boasted the largest known collection of texts ever accumulated.
The exhibition will also showcase a number of artifacts from the British Museum's unparalleled Assyrian collection alongside artifacts, never seen before in the UK, from museums around the world. In total, over 200
objects will be displayed, from lavish wall paintings, to intricate ivory
carvings and colossal stone statues.
An Assyrian protective deity, a lamassu (left) and cuneiform tablet from Ashurbanipal's library (right)
But there's also a poignant element to I Am Ashurbanipal: King Of The World, King Of Assyria. Many of the objects featured in the upcoming exhibition originate from archaeological heritage sites in Iraq that have been targeted and destroyed by Daesh (IS) in recent years.
The exhibition will close with a section highlighting the challenges faced in protecting Iraqi cultural heritage under threat and will showcase the work of the ‘Iraq Emergency Heritage Management Training Scheme’.
Following successful past British Museum exhibitions exploring unknown peoples, empires, and cultures, I Am Ashurbanipal: King Of The World, King Of
Assyria’ promises to reignite public imagination and shed light on the wonders of
this great king whose empire mysteriously crumbled and vanished after his death.
|What||I Am Ashurbanipal: King Of The World, King Of Assyria, British Museum|
|Where||British Museum, Great Russell St, London, WC1B 3DG | MAP|
|Nearest tube||Holborn (underground)|
08 Nov 18 – 24 Feb 19, 10:00 AM – 6:00 PM
|Website||Read more here|