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Eye idol, Middle to Late Uruk; 3500–3100 B.C.
Syria, Tell Brak (ancient Nagar)
Alabaster (gypsum); H. 3.6 cm, W. 2.6 cm
Purchase, Gift of Colt Archaeological Institute Inc., 1988 (1988.323.8)

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Note to the Reader

Description



This type of figurine, made of stone and having incised eyes, has been excavated at Tell Brak, where thousands were found in a building now called the Eye Temple. Many are incised with multiple sets of eyes, others with jewelry, and still others with representations of "children"—smaller eyes and body carved on the body of the larger idol. The idols are thought to be offerings—wide eyes demonstrate attentiveness to the gods in much Mesopotamian art.

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