WINE FROM MAMMA: ALLUḪARUM-POTS IN 17TH-CENTURY bc TRADE NETWORKS
New evidence allows us to demonstrate that a regional trade connected North Syria with both central Anatolia and Babylonia well into the 17th-Century bc. Archaeological evidence indicates that a specific type of vessel, the globular flask, was produced at Zincirli Höyük in the mid-17th century for the purpose of storing and transporting wine. The simultaneous appearance of these vessels as far afield as Kültepe and Sippar-Amnānum lines up with Late Old Babylonian attestations of alluḫarum-pots in 17th-c. texts from Sippar, Babylon, and Dūr-Abiešuḫ. These, we argue, must refer to the same vessels called aluārum in earlier Old Assyrian texts from Kültepe from the 19th century. Taken together, this evidence points towards the existence of a previously unsuspected trade network centered on the ancient Syrian state of Mamma that thrived in the decades between the collapse of the Old Assyrian Trade Network and the accession of Hattušili I. Through a dialogue between textual and archaeological materials, we are not only able to reveal the persistence of long-distance exchange for a century previously believed to lack it, but provide more context for the political transformations taking place at the end of the Middle Bronze Age.
Morgan, KR; Richardson, S
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