April 9, 2012

Gilman’s ‘ancient’ cuneiform tablet is topic of museum chat

The art (or crime) of copying ancient artifacts is an old one. At a Johns Hopkins Archaeological Museum Chat on Tuesday, April 10, in 150 Gilman, experts will talk about the ‘ancient’ cuneiform tablet written for Daniel Coit Gilman, the first president of The Johns Hopkins University, and other objects from the past, and the relatively modern works they inspired.

From 12:15 to 12:30 p.m., Paul Delnero, assistant professor in Near Eastern Studies, will decipher texts from ancient Mesopotamian cuneiform tablets and also decode the cuneiform tablet written in the late 19th century for Gilman.

From 12:30 to 12:45 p/m., Sanchita Balachandran, curator/conservator of the museum, will discuss a group of terracotta figurines that in 2010 were pieced back together from hundreds of fragments and are now on display in the museum. These so-called Tanagra figurines, supposed to date from the last quarter of the 4th century BCE, might actually have been made in the 19th century. The ancient (and not-so-ancient) objects discussed will be available for visitors to examine up close.