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A Microhistorical Study of the Neo-Assyrian Healer Kiṣir-Aššur
In Medicine in Ancient Assur Troels Pank Arbøll offers a microhistorical study of a single exorcist named Kiṣir-Aššur who practiced medical and magical healing in the ancient city of Assur (modern northern Iraq) in the 7th century BCE. The book provides the first detailed analysis of a healer’s education and practice in ancient Mesopotamia based on at least 73 texts assigned to specific stages of his career. By drawing on a microhistorical framework, the study aims at significantly improving our understanding of the functional aspects of texts in their specialist environment. Furthermore, the work situates Kiṣir-Aššur as one of the earliest healers in world history for whom we have such details pertaining to his career originating from his own time.
The three-volume publication of the results of archaeological excavations at the UNESCO heritage site of El-Zuma in Sudan, investigated by PCMA University of Warsaw and the National Corporation for Antiquities and Museums in Khartoum, presents an Early Makurian elite tumuli cemetery from the 5th–6th centuries AD. This period in ancient Nubian history, preceding the rise of the Christian kingdoms, has long been understudied. Informed analyses by an array of specialists on the team cover the archaeological and bioarchaeological evidence from the tombs (Volume 1) as well as the abundant ceramics (Volume 2) and small finds, especially jewellery, weaponry and personal accessories (Volume 3). The outcome is a people-oriented view of an elite community in ancient Nubia at the dawn of a new age in its history.