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Cuneiform Cones and Tablets

Cuneiform Cones and Tablets

At over 4,000 years old, the oldest non-book items in the Buffalo & Erie County Public Library’s Rare Book Collection is our small but notable collection of cuneiform. These came from an archaeological expedition led by Edgar James Bank and sponsored by University of Chicago. The collection is made up of four cones and four tablets. The cones date from about 2150 BCE, and were uncovered in the Mesopotamian cities of Umma and Erech. The tablets date from 2300 BCE, and are from Umma and Nippur. Most of our tablets and cones are business records, consisting of receipts and bills of sale; others are temple records.