Standard of Ur

This multi-paneled object made of shell, red limestone and lapis lazuli was excavated in an ancient royal cemetery in southern Iraq dating to 2600 B.C. What can it tell us about war, peace, kingship, and death in Mesopotamia?

Code of Hammurabi

Standing over 7 feet tall, the Code of Hammurabi is a towering monument that records the earliest compilation of laws in the world. Concepts of punishment like "an eye for an eye" are found here as well as a call for justice across the land.

The Tigris River

The physical environment of the Middle East played a large role in the development of permanent settlements and early civilization. The Tigris and Euphrates Rivers provided water, food, and transportation for the communities of Mesopotamia.

Cuneiform Tablet

Did you know one of the earliest forms of writing in the world developed in the ancient Middle East? The languages of Sumerian and Akkadian were written on clay tablets using a reed stylus to create wedge-shaped letters known today as cuneiform.


The Ancient Middle East Education and Research Institute promotes broader public and scholarly understanding of our shared human experience that derives from the cultures and civilizations of the ancient Middle East.

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Proposed Projects

Teacher Workshops
Tools and knowledge to make history come alive
Museum Connection
Making local museums a vital component to school curricula
Oriental Institute, University of Chicago
Games to Learn By
Yes! Video games can be fun, interactive and educational!


Phone: +1 (510) 338-7815

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