Thursday, December 04, 2008

Useful Tools: Hellenistic Babylonia: Texts, Images and Names

hbtin: Hellenistic Babylonia: Texts, Images and Names, part of the Cuneiform Digital Library, is being developed under the direction of Dr. Laurie Pearce at the University of California, Berkeley.

More than 3,000 cuneiform clay tablets document the intellectual, religious, scientific, legal and economic activities in Hellenistic Mesopotamia. Originating primarily from Uruk and Babylon, these texts show that although Alexander the Great and his successors transformed much of the cultural landscape of western and central Asia, they left many native practices and institutions intact. Hellenistic Babylonia: Texts, Images and Names presents to Assyriologists, Classicists, ancient historians and others the evidence necessary for study of Mesopotamia at the time when traditional culture came under the powers of the Hellenistic world. The three linked areas of this website include up-to-date and readable publication of the materials necessary for an integrated study of Hellenistic Mesopotamia. Texts: transliterations and translations into English of texts from the major sites of Uruk and Babylon. Images: photographs of seal impressions on the archival documents. Names: prosopographical data and family trees of the great lineages of the major sites.

At the moment hbtin includes a small corpus of Achaemenid Legal texts Uruk, in transliteration and translation.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

The Persian Empire: A Corpus of Sources from the Achaemenid Period

The Persian Empire
A Corpus of Sources from the Achaemenid Period

By Amelie Kuhrt
List Price: $320.00
* ISBN: 978-0-415-43628-1
* Binding: Hardback
* Published by: Routledge
* Publication Date: 12/14/2007
* Pages: 736

This lavish set of books contains the most complete collection of raw material for reconstructing the history of the Achaemenid Persian Empire to date.

Studying Achaemenid history has been difficult in the past because original sources include texts from hugely disparate origins, many different languages and various periods in history; the risk is to rely too heavily on biased and often inaccurate Greek and Roman sources.

Amelie Kuhrt presents here an unprecedented collection of key texts to form a balanced representation of all aspects of the Empire, in translations from their original Greek, Old Persian, Akkadian, Hebrew, Aramaic, Egyptian or Latin.

Kuhrt selects from classical writers, the Old Testament, royal inscriptions, administrative documents and Babylonian historical writing, as well as the evidence of monuments, artefacts and archaeological sites. All material is accompanied by a detailed introduction to the sources and guidelines to their interpretation.

A truly monumental achievement, this collection will prove to be a major resource for any student of Persian history, from undergraduate level to the advanced scholar.

The volume includes translations of a large number of Persepolis Fortification Texts.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Thursday, November 13, 2008

The Other Gods Who Are

Wouter F.M. Henkelman, The Other Gods Who Are. Studies in Elamite-Iranian Acculturation Based on the Persepolis Fortification Texts (Achaemenid History XIV), Leiden, Nederlands Instituut voor het Nabije Oosten, 2008.

xxx + 670 pp.

"The Other Gods Who Are" presents four larger case studies in Elamite-Iranian acculturation, more specifically in the realm of religion, and does so largely on the basis of the Persepolis Fortification Archive, the richnesses of which had not been fully explored for this important subject. Treating the debated 'lan' sacrifice, the Elamite-Iranian background of the pantheon, the role of the god Humban and the older background of Persian 'paradise', the monograph aims to pave the way for a different understanding of Persian identity as a cultural construct that emerged in the Iranian highlands from a large-scale dynamic in which the Elamite state as well as the Elamites of eastern Khuzestand and of the highlands played a pivotal part. The four case studies are preceded by a survey and discussion of recent developments in Neo-Elamite history, and by a long introduction into the Persepolis Fortification Archive, which can be used separately by scholars interested in this material. Annotated translations of relevant Fortification texts are given in an appendix. Indices of proper names, text passages and Elamite and other ancient words complete the volume.

Click on the images below for a detailed table of contents

Monday, October 27, 2008

Iran: Jounal of the British Institute of Persian Studies available via JSTOR

The journal Iran, published by the British Institute of Persian Studies [RSS feed] is available online as of today at JSTOR. Content is available to JSTOR subscribers.

The journal IRAN presents articles on the whole spectrum of Persian Studies, including articles on Persian arts, archaeology, history, literature, linguistics, religion and philosophy. This includes but is not limited to work sponsored by the Institute. There are also sections on recent archaeological research and shorter notices. The journal publishes articles in English, French and German and ranging in time from the Palaeolithic up to the Qajar Period. As one of the foremost journals in the field, IRAN is sold and distributed to a wide range of libraries, institutions and individuals throughout the world.

Iran (Arts & Sciences V)
Release Content:
Vols. 1 - 41 (1963 - 2003)
Moving Wall: 4 years
Publisher: British Institute of Persian Studies
ISSN: 0578-6967

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Persepolis Fortification Archive (PFA) Project Annual Report 2007-2008

 [The following is a very slightly altered (addition of hyperlinks) version of the text of an 

2007-2008 Annual Report

The main aims of the Persepolis Fortification Archive Project are to record the Archive and to make the record available widely and continuously. The PFA Project pursues these aims in collaboration with projects at other institutions. A legal emergency clouds the future of the Persepolis Fortification tablets (see’s_Persian_heritage_crisis), so Project members work with a constant tension between the need for fast work against an uncertain deadline and the need for precise results that will make serious work on the PFA possible even if access to the original tablets is interrupted.

One phase of the Project, carried out in collaboration with the West Semitic Research Project (WSRP) at the University of Southern California and supported by a two-year grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, captures two sets of very high-resolution images of Aramaic Fortification tablets and a sample of the uninscribed, sealed Fortification tablets. One set is made with high-resolution scanning backs, long exposures, polarized and filtered lighting (fig. 1); another set is made with a polynomial texture mapping (PTM) apparatus, producing images that allow the viewer to manipulate the apparent angle and intensity of the lighting (fig. 2). Since the set-up, training, and shakedown phase described in last year’s Annual Report, Dennis Campbell (Ph.D., NELC), John Nielsen (Ph.D., NELC), Clinton Moyer (Ph.D. candidate, Cornell), and Miller Prosser (Ph.D. candidate, NELC) have made image sets of about 750 items.

Figure 1. Pre-scan of an uninscribed Persepolis Fortification tablet

Figure 2. Two prints from a PTM image set: an Aramaic Persepolis Fortification tablet, apparent lighting from lower left (top) and upper right (bottom)

The number of setups required for thorough recording of these awkwardly shaped objects is larger than first projected, but the work flow has been growing smoother and faster, so by the end of 2008, we expect to have very high-quality records of at least 1,100 items, including all the monolingual Aramaic documents identified so far. As of July 2008, images of about seventy items are available on the Web site of the WSRP, InscriptiFact (fig. 3), another 120 are being reviewed for public display, and a procedure is in place for rolling out additional groups of images at more or less regular intervals.

Figure 3. Selected images of a Persepolis Fortification Aramaic Tablet (PFAT) displayed on InscriptiFact, showing results of different filtered lightings from high-resolution images and different lighting angles from a PTM image set

A second phase of the Project makes conventional digital images of Elamite Fortification tablets, concentrating first on more than 2,600 documents that were edited by the late Richard T. Hallock, but never published (the so-called PF-NN texts), and secondarily on more than 2,000 documents published by Hallock in Persepolis Fortification Tablets (OIP 92 [1969], available for free download). During 2007–2008, the crew of photographers and editors included undergraduates Ivan Cangemi, Elizabeth Davidson, and Madison Krieger (all Classics); graduate students Lori Calabria, Jennifer Gregory, Megaera Lorenz, and Elise MacArthur (all NELC); volunteers Irene Glasner, Louise Golland, and Siwei Wang; as well as Gregory Hebda (B.A., University of New Hampshire) and Joseph Rosner (undergraduate, Brown University). As of July 2008, we have useful image sets of about 1,700 of the PF-NN documents and about 600 of the published documents (including all those restored to Iran in 2004, fig. 4). By early 2009 we anticipate that all the PF-NN documents will be recorded in this way.

Figure 4. Selected digital images of a published Elamite Persepolis Fortification tablet returned to Iran in 2004

A third phase, carried out in collaboration with the Cuneiform Digital Library Initiative at UCLA, makes fast flat-bed scans of previously unphotographed Elamite texts beginning with the well-studied and collated items published in OIP 92. Preliminary versions of online editions of these texts, some with accompanying images, can be viewed on the CDLI Web site [click on “CDLI Search” and enter “OIP 092” in the form under “Primary Publication”]) (figs. 5–6).

Figure 5. An Elamite Persepolis Fortification tablet on CDLI

Figure 6. An enlarged “fat cross” display of flatbed scans of the tablet shown in figure 5, on CDLI

Graduate students Andrew Dix, Seunghee Yie (both NELC), and Wayne Munsch (Divinity) are preparing updated transliterations in PFA Project standard form, entering corrections and revisions made since the original publication, and making scans of the unphotographed tablets. A complete set of corrected transliterations and images will be available online in early 2009, and as PFA Project editor Wouter Henkelman (Amsterdam and Paris) supplies revised translations and notes, this will become the revised, corrected, and updated edition of Hallock’s fundamental work on the archive, Persepolis Fortification Tablets.

The streams of images and editions coming from all these phases pour into the Online Cultural Heritage Research Environment, based in Chicago (OCHRE). As the Elamite texts published in OIP 92 are completed for presentation via CDLI, they will also be imported into OCHRE, and as PF-NN texts and images are entered in OCHRE, they are also prepared for export to CDLI. At the same time PFA Project editor Annalisa Azzoni (Vanderbilt University) prepares online editions of the Aramaic texts, PFA Project editor Mark Garrison (Trinity University) prepares analytical entries of uninscribed, sealed texts. All the editors are collaborating with OCHRE specialist Sandra Schloen in preparing a first version of a user interface that will make an interconnected sample of Fortification documents of all categories — Aramaic, Elamite, Uninscribed, and Miscellaneous — publicly available for complex views and searches by the end of 2008 (fig. 7).

Figure 7. A previously unpublished Persepolis Fortification Elamite tablet in OCHRE, showing transliteration (center), correlation of translation and text (left), image marked up with transliteration (upper right), and result of glossary search on an Elamite word in line 6 (lower right)

Detailed cataloging of the immense unstudied balance of PFA tablets and fragments has taken a backseat to triage, for the time being, as PFA Project editors search the storage boxes for items that are in good enough condition to reward immediate recording and presentation, and for other items that require immediate conservation to prepare them for recording and presentation. During 2007–2008, the results of this triage included selection and classification of several hundred uninscribed tablets, with a stunning variety of seal impressions and sealing patterns; recording and preliminary readings of more than 100 new Elamite tablets and fragments (fig. 8); infrequent but steady identification of previously unrecognized monolingual Aramaic documents; and painstaking cleaning and conservation of more than 300 tablets (fig. 9).

Figure 8. Selected Elamite Fortification tablets, recently read and cataloged

Figure 9. Conservator Monica Hudak cleans a Persepolis Fortification tablet

The PFA Project continues to be fortunate in gaining support within and beyond the University community. Humanities Division Computing stepped up in the emergency to provide storage for the rapidly growing volume of PFA Project digital data and support for file movement among collaborating projects. The PARSA Community Foundation generously renewed its support for conservation of PFA tablets for the coming year, the Iran Heritage Foundation offers support for some of our pressing equipment needs, and substantial grants from the National Endowment for the Humanities and from the Getty Foundation assure continuing support for some phases of the Project and some Project staff for the coming two years.

There have been many occasions to plead for the unique importance of the PFA and to try to engage the scholarly and general audiences with the work and aspirations of the PFA Project. In November and December 2007, I summarized the Project at workshops, at UCLA and Johns Hopkins, convened by the collaborating projects CDLI and WSRP. In March 2008, I described the Archive and the Project during a daylong lecture series on The Presence of Iran in the Ancient World, sponsored by the Razi family at the University of California at Irvine (RealAudio version available). Early in April 2008, I spoke on the Project to digital information specialists at the Spring Task Force Meeting of the Coalition for Networked Information. Later in April, I spoke to Zoroastrian communities in Dallas and Houston (alongside presentations by Zoroastrian scholars Almut Hintze [London] and Jennifer Rose [Berkeley]), to the presidential dinner of the American Society for Clinical Investigation and American Association of Physicians, and to members of the Oriental Institute.

An article in the Winter 2008 issue of Tableau, the publication of the University of Chicago Division of Humanities discusses the legal crisis and the Project’s responses for the University community and its alumni. The PFA Project Weblog provides the greater online audience with a variety of articles from news and scholarly media, about the Archive, the lawsuit, and other matters connected with Achaemenid archaeology and epigraphy. PFA Project Editor and Oriental Institute Research Associate Charles E. Jones (Institute for the Study of the Ancient World, New York), reports that the blog has been viewed more than 18,600 times in the twelve months after July 2007, by more than 11,100 visitors, 1,700 of whom made repeat visits. After the home page, the most popular entries so far are “What Are the Persepolis Fortification Tablets?” (originally published in the Oriental Institute News & Notes, Winter 2007), and the announcement of our most extraordinary discovery “An Old Persian Text in the Persepolis Fortification Archive” (with a link to the full online publication).

Extraordinary items continue to appear as the material is sifted. The impressions of two seals with Achaemenid imagery and Egyptian hieroglyphic inscriptions (to be published by Project Editor Mark Garrison and Oriental Institute Professor Robert Ritner, fig. 10) are the most engaging of these discoveries, emblematic of the value of the PFA. Seals of this kind are very rare, but impressions that tie the owners of such seals to a specific place, moment, and institutional context are unique to the PFA. With discoveries of this kind, the PFA Project not only adds depth and density to knowledge of the Archive itself, but also creates links to other strands in the common project of the Oriental Institute.

Figure 10. Impression of an Achaemenid cylinder seal with an Egyptian hieroglyphic inscription, on an uninscribed Fortification tablet


This Annual Report is republished here with the kind permission of the Oriental Institute Membership Office. The Oriental Institute Annual Reports are available for members as one of the privileges of membership. They are not for sale to the general public. They contain yearly summaries of the activities of the Institute’s faculty, staff, and research projects, as well as descriptions of special events and other Institute functions.

See linked data for Persepolis via awld.js 

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Tangent: Reusing achaemenid art

Achaemenid inspired body art
[First posted 9/24/08, updated 5/16/13]

If you know of other things like this, please leave a comment.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Persepolis at the Internet Archive

A number of traveler's accounts and works of early scholarship on Persepolis are beginning to emerge in open access formats at the Internet Archive. Among these are:

Travels in Assyria, Media and Persia : including a journey from Bagdad by Mount Zagros, to Hamadan, the ancient Ecbatana, researches in Ispahan and the ruins of persepolis (Volume 1) - Buckingham, James Silk, 1786-1855

Travels in Assyria, Media and Persia : including a journey from Bagdad by Mount Zagros, to Hamadan, the ancient Ecbatana, researches in Ispahan and the ruins of persepolis (Volume 2) - Buckingham, James Silk, 1786-1855

Nineveh and Persepolis : an historical sketch of ancient Assyria and Persia, with an account of the recent researches in those countries - Vaux, William Sandys Wright, 1818-1885

Narrative of a residence in Koordistan : and on the site of ancient Nineveh; with journal of a voyage down the Tigris to Bagdad and an account of a visit to Shirauz and Persepolis (Volume 1) - Rich, Cladius James, 1787-1820

Observations made on a tour from Bengal to Persia, in the years 1786-7; with a short account of the remains of the celebrated palace of Persepolis and other interesting events - Francklin, William, 1763-1839

Remains of lost empires: sketches of the ruins of Palmyra, Nineveh, Babylon, and Persepolis, with some notes on India and the Cashmerian Himalayas - Myers, P. V. N. (Philip Van Ness), 1846-1937

Friday, August 22, 2008

MDPs online

This is not strictly speaking Persepolis related, but certainly worth noting. The Internet Archive has posted online the first 16 volumes of the publications of the Mission archéologique en Iran (cited variously as Délégation en Perse; Mission archéologique de Susiane; Mission archéologique de Perse, and commonly known as MDP).

Of particular interest for Persepolis is V. Scheil's MDP IX: Textes Elamites-Anzanites : troisieme serie. If you simply must use a hard copy, you might be able to find one at a library near (or not so near) you, or you might borrow mine, if you're nice to me!

Thursday, August 07, 2008

NIAC Facebook group: "Save Persepolis Artifacts!"

The NIAC - National Iranian American Council blog: niacINsight: Beltway insights for the Iranian-American community, has posted the following anouncement

NIAC has created a group on Facebook entitled “Save Persepolis Artifacts!” Priceless 2,500 year old Persian tablets - currently on display at some of America’s preeminent institutions - may be put up for auction as plaintiffs seek to recover court-awarded damages against the Iranian government. NIAC has been following developments in the case closely and will be acting as Amicus Curiae for the lawsuits. To read a background analysis of the case click here.

NIAC believes that to auction off these ancient artifacts would be detrimental, not only to world history, but also to the practice of cultural and academic exchange. Most important to us, however, is the devastating effect that their sale would have on the Iranian-American community. These objects form an important element of Iranian-American cultural identity and historical pride. To sell them would be to punish Iranian Americans for the actions of a government they do not support.

Please show your support for our fight by joining the group!

Monday, July 28, 2008

The Parsa Community Foundation Grant to the Persepolis Fortification Archive Project

The Persian Mirror reports on the Parsa Community Foundation grant to the Persepolis Fortification Archive Project.

For over 80 years, the University of Chicago’s Oriental Institute has been a pioneer and innovator in exploring the world's earliest civilizations in the ancient Near East. In 1933, the Institute discovered thousands of clay tablets and fragments during their archeological excavations of historic sites in Iran. These ancient artifacts are on long-term loan from the government of Iran and were left in the Institute's care for purposes of translation, study and publication. They make up the Persepolis Fortification Archive (PFA) and constitute a rich source for the research of the history, languages, art and society of the 2,500 year-old Achaemenid Persian Empire. The artificats are in danger of being seized and put up for public auction to compensate plaintiffs in a private lawsuit against the government of Iran. The institute is operating under emergency conditions to prevent interruption of the preservation of these tablets and PARSA CF's continuing support will fund conservators in prompt delivery of digital photography, translation and editing. The University of Chicago is a second-time PARSA CF grantee and a model conservation effort.

This is the second time the Parsa Community Foundation has made a grant to the Persepolis Fortification Archive Project.

Friday, June 20, 2008

Related: Achaemenid monumental gateways at Pasargadae, Susa and Persepolis

Just appeared from ProQuest/UMI. If your institution has a license, you can download a copy of this free-of-charge

Achaemenid monumental gateways at Pasargadae, Susa and Persepolis

by Codella, Kim Christopher, Ph.D., University of California, Berkeley, 2007, 251 pages; AAT 3306108
Abstract (Summary)

This dissertation is an examination of Achaemenid monumental gateways built between c. 546 and 331 BCE at the three Achaemenid sites of Pasargadae, Susa and Persepolis. These gates were unique in that they were in essence large columned reception halls that also functioned at portals to these three important Achaemenid sites. Pasargadae, Susa and Persepolis offer the only known surviving examples of Achaemenid gateways and their development is traced over two centuries of time. While Achaemenid architecture and design has been examined in previous studies, this work focuses on the gateways as a means to understanding important elements of Achaemenid imperial construction and design. Examined in chronological order, the development and function of these gates is placed in the wider context of Achaemenid architectural, artistic and ceremonial programs. While serving as monumental entrances, these buildings were intrinsically linked to the buildings to which they led, as well as being integrated to site's plan as a whole.

A clear development is traced from the first gate examples at Pasargadae, which show connections to the earlier Neo-Assyrian world, down to the standardization of gateways under the reign of Darius I and Xerxes I at Susa and Persepolis as well as those of later rulers. In conclusion, as with so many Achaemenid imperial buildings, these gates demonstrate a clear and well planned program that projects an image of stability, coherence and cooperation in the Achaemenid world.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Stronach, David
School: University of California, Berkeley
School Location: United States -- California
Keyword(s): Achaemenid, Gates, Persia, Monumental gateways, Pasargadae, Susa, Persepolis
Source: DAI-A 69/03, Sep 2008
Source type: Dissertation
Subjects: Archaeology
Publication Number: AAT 3306108
ISBN: 9780549528258
ProQuest document ID: 1495959311

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

The geographical background of the Persepolis tablets

Available in open access from PQDT Open

The geographical background of the Persepolis tablets
by Arfaee, Abdolmajid, Ph.D., The University of Chicago, 2008, 150 pages; AAT 3300414
Abstract (Summary)
This study treats the historical and administrative geography of the regions of southwestern Iran around the Achaemenid Persian palace complex at Persepolis during the fifth century BC. It relies on the evidence of two groups of administrative documents excavated at Persepolis by the Oriental Institute of the University of Chicago: 2,120 published texts and fragments, along with 2,553 unpublished pieces, from the Persepolis Fortification, written in the reign of Darius I, supplemented by 237 published texts and fragments from the Persepolis Treasury, written in the reigns of Xerxes I and Artaxerxes I.

The documents record commodities transported among places around Persepolis, and paid out to support workers, officials, travelers and livestock. Frequently occurring impressions of a few seals used by regional offices make it possible to identify administrative districts. Records of movement and storage make it possible observe networks of connections among the places within the districts. Records of outlays make it possible to infer the hinterlands of some nodes in these networks. Records of supplies for parties of travelers make it possible to establish the sequence of stations along the route connecting Persepolis to Susa in the northwest. At least four securely located places provide points of reference for placing the inferred districts, networks and routes in the geographical realities of southwestern Iran. The evidence of the Achaemenid administrative documents can sometimes be supplemented by medieval and early modern Iranian and Arabic geographers' descriptions of settlement and routes, and sometimes by archaeological evidence of Achaemenid occupation.

The known Achaemenid administrative texts from Persepolis mention 115 places five times or more. Of these, 88 are discussed here, located in three main administrative districts: 50 in a large region centering on Persepolis (Chapter II); 10 in a smaller region to the northwest, around the modern plain of Kamfiruz (Chapter III); and 28 in a region farther to the northwest, along the route that connected Persepolis to Susa, including modern area of Fahliyan (Chapter IV).

Advisor: Hallock, Richard T.
School: The University of Chicago
School Location: United States -- Illinois
Keyword(s): History of Ancient Persia, Geography of Ancient Persia, Administration of Ancient Persia, Elamite language, Persepolis Fortification Tablets, Persia
Source: DAI-A 69/01, Jul 2008
Source type: Dissertation
Subjects: Ancient languages, Ancient civilizations
Publication Number: AAT 3300414
ISBN: 9780549450542
ProQuest document ID: 1472133081

Thursday, April 03, 2008

Abdol Majid Arfa'i: PT 10a, Collated and Completed

Tell Baratkama, the treasurer, Tarkawiš says: “28 karša, 61⁄2 shekels of silver, is to be issued to plasterers(?) whose apportionments are set by Ramazitra. Sheep/goats and wine are its (the silver’s) counterpart. [They made] … at(?) Hiyamazika(?) from month x to [month y]. [… …] [14 men, x shekel and y] liulith each is to go to them, 9 men, 1 shekel and 1 liulith each is to go to them. 9 men, 1 shekel each is to go to them. Total 32 men. Pidapirma and his companion(s) made the accounting(?) of that silver.”

ARTA: Achaemenid Research on Texts and Archaeology, 2008:1

Monday, March 17, 2008

News from Achemenet

[From the Lettre du Collège de France, No. 22. A facsimile of the pages appears following the text below]


Colloque de novembre 2007

La Chaire et le GDR 2538 du CNRS ont organisé au Collège de France un colloque achéménide. Après l’archéologie en 2003 (Persika 6, 2005), la Transition en 2004 (Persika 9, 2006), les archives de Persépolis en 2006 (Persika 12, à paraître en 2008), le thème choisi était : Organisation des pouvoirs et contacts culturels dans l’empire achéménide (9- 10 novembre 2007). Réunis à l’invitation de Pierre Briant et de Michel Chauveau (EPHE et GDR 2538), près de 20 spécialistes (Grande-Bretagne, Autriche, Suisse, Italie, Allemagne, République Tchèque, France, Pays-Bas) ont, à travers leur expérience scientifique spécifique, traité du problème central et récurrent que posent l’existence et l’histoire d’un empire, à savoir la cohabitation, au sein d’un même ensemble politique, de populations diverses par la langue, la religion et les moeurs, le système de représentations culturelles, les traditions sociales et politiques, etc. Concernant l’empire achéménide, les réflexions sur ce thème sont aussi anciennes que les premières publications et réflexions sur l’histoire et la structure des grands empires territoriaux. La publication en nombre croissant de corpus documentaires venant des différents pays de l’empire permet, mieux que par le passé, de sortir de la monoculture classique, et d’articuler au mieux documents écrits, archéologiques et iconographiques. Le renouvellement en cours de la documentation et de la réflexion a également conduit les organisateurs à accorder une place particulièrement importante à l’Égypte sous domination achéménide (10 communications), de la même façon qu’en 2004, la question de la Transition avait été organisée prioritairement autour de la Babylonie achéménide. Les actes seront publiés dans la collection Persika (de Boccard). Comme les précédents volumes, celui-ci sera réalisé par Salima Larabi.

Archéologie et bases de données sur internet. Travaux en cours : Open-mélodie

Depuis septembre 2007, José Paumard (maître de conférences de Génie informatique à Paris-XIII), travaille au Collège de France sous forme d’une convention avec son université. II est rattaché aux chaires des professeurs Pierre Briant et John Scheid, dans le cadre d’un projet qui intéresse les deux chaires, et même au-delà. II s’agit de l’écriture et la publication d’Open-mélodie, plateforme logicielle open-source et libre. Dès le début de la conception et de la construction de la plateforme aujourd’hui utilisée par le MAVI, l’objectif était de pouvoir accueillir d’autres projets articulés sur des bases de données historico- archéologiques, qui se heurtent aujourd’hui trop souvent à des difficultés techniques pratiquement impossibles à surmonter. La publication en open-source d’Open-mélodie constituera, à terme, une solution performante, économique et pérenne, s’inscrivant dans les grands efforts internationaux de mise à disposition de données historiques et archéologiques sur l’Internet (par exemple OAI : http://www.openarchives. org/).

Une première version du coeur du système (recouvrant la gestion des données et des utilisateurs) est actuellement en phase de test, ce qui a permis de lancer les premiers travaux en vue de la réalisation de son interface Internet. Le MAVI, d’une part, et, d’autre part, le programme dirigé par John Scheid sur les sanctuaires d’Italie, en bénéficieront en primeur. Une mise en ligne de la plateforme devrait être réalisée à l’été 2008. Open-mélodie sera disponible pour tous les projets qui en feront la demande.

Développement des sites web MAVI et

Outre les enrichissements apportés au contenu du MAVI (de nouvelles conventions avec des musées sont sur le point d’être finalisées), la deuxième rénovation du site achemenet depuis le lancement de la première version en juillet 2000 a été achevée en novembre 2007. L’on a voulu faciliter la navigation d’une rubrique à l’autre. Des entrées ont été ajoutées, ainsi que la possibilité d’apposer des signets (bookmarks) sur des pages choisies. Dans le même temps, grâce à l’intervention technique de José Paumard et de Philippe Bertin, Wouter Henkelman prépare la mise en ligne sur le site d’une base de données sur les tablettes de Persépolis (translittérées par R. Hallock avant 1979), sur l’édition desquelles il travaille avec le groupe de l’Oriental Institute de Chicago. Cette base devrait être disponible au printemps prochain. Ultérieurement la publication en ligne des tablettes ainsi éditées et traduites sera également assurée par Wouter Henkelman sur Achemenet. Enfin, depuis la dernière rentrée, Pierre Briant est assisté de Wouter Henkelman en qualité de co-directeur d’Achemenet et du MAVI, et de Yannick Lintz (Musée du Louvre) en qualité de co-directrice du MAVI. José Paumard continue d’assurer la co-direction technique des deux sites, et Salima Larabi est chargée du secrétariat éditorial.

Un cours sur les tablettes de Persépolis à Paris<>br>

Pour la première fois, un cours portant spécifiquement sur les tablettes élamites de Persépolis, dans leurs caractéristiques linguistiques et philologiques ainsi que dans la dimension qu’elles ont déjà acquise dans le domaine de l’histoire achéménide, est présenté à Paris, à l’École pratique des hautes études : il est assuré par Wouter Henkelman, maître de conférences associé près de la chaire.

Click on these images for higher resolution