Tuesday, December 27, 2011

News from the CDLI: Fondation Martin Bodmer cuneiform collection

Fondation Martin Bodmer cuneiform collection in CDLI
The Cuneiform Digital Library Initiative (CDLI), in partnership with the Fondation MartinBodmer, Cologny, Switzerland (Bodmer Museum, ), is pleased to announce the addition of new digital content to its web offerings. 

Though modest in numbers, the twenty-six select cuneiform artifacts in the Bodmer Museum in fact cover a very broad swath of Babylonian history, ranging from five proto-cuneiform tablets from the late 4th millennium BC, through Early Dynastic royal and legal inscriptions (ca. 2800-2400 BC), an Old Akkadian votive stone vase dedicated to the divinized Naram-Sin (ca. 2300 BC), a group of eight Ur III accounts (ca. 2050 BC), two 2nd millennium administrative and royal inscriptions, down to a barrel text of the great neo-Babylonian king Nebuchadnezzar II (600 BC). 

Facilitated by the kind assistance of University of Geneva graduate student Émilie Pagé-Perron, one of us (Vacin) was able to scan the artifacts as part of a digitization mission to the Musées d’art et d’histoire Genève (currently in preparation for web release), and the results of the Bodmer effort have now been added to CDLI pages and are viewable through a dedicated Bodmer web page

The Ur III account FMB 39.2 is assigned to University of Geneva graduate student Emmert Clevenstine. The majority of the remaining artifacts, including seven further Ur III texts, appear to be unpublished, and we welcome publication references, or notices of interest in publishing these texts by specialists, sent to us directly or the CDLI

The imaging at Cologny and post-capture processing at UCLA were made possible by funding from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation; they are part of the on-going mission of CDLI to ensure the long-term digital preservation of ancient inscriptions on cuneiform tablets, and, in furtherance of humanities research, to provide free global access to all available text artifact data. 

For the CDLI and the Bodmer: Ludek Vacin, Max Planck Institute for the History of Science, Berlin Sylviane Messerli, Foundation Martin Bodmer, Cologny, Switzerland.

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