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Stone Sculpture Depicting Assyrian Goddess of Love and War Found in Iraq
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Specialists from the Museum of Archeology and Anthropology of the University of Pennsylvania, working with the Iraqi team, discovered a large stone monument with the image of the goddess Ishtar in the ancient Assyrian city of Nimrud, writes Success in UA.

Archaeologists in general have found a large number of monumental finds in Nimrud, one of the cultural heritage sites that have been seriously affected by the so-called Islamic State (ISIS) in northern Iraq.

Among the new artefacts discovered at the site are relics from a 3000-year-old temple dedicated to Ishtar, the Mesopotamian goddess of love and war and the goddess with the earliest written evidence, reports

During earlier excavations at Nimrud, the same team discovered a 2800-year-old palace belonging to the Assyrian king Adad-Nirari III, who ruled from 810 to 783 BC.

This season, the team continued working inside the palace and expanded their efforts to include the Temple of Ishtar, which burned down when Nimrud was liberated by an invading army in 612 BC.

Chief among their findings were fragments of a large stone monument depicting the goddess Ishtar in the form of a star.

"Our biggest find this season was an impressive fragment of a stone stele depicting the goddess Ishtar in the shape of a star. This is the first depiction of the goddess as Ishtar Sharrat-nifi, the divine aspect of the goddess associated with the rising planet Venus, the 'morning star', to be found in this temple dedicated to her," said Dr. Michael Danti, Program Director of the Iraq Heritage Stabilization Program and archaeologists from the University of Pennsylvania.

This season's new discoveries mostly focus on the splendor of Adad-Nirari III's reign and the wealth of ancient Nimrud. Two huge stone bases of columns discovered by archaeologists indicate that the palace was magnificently decorated with exquisitely carved columns. Evidence of a large stone pool, which researchers believe may have served as a central heating system, was found inside the throne room.

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