Mesopotamian Protective Spirits

The Ritual texts


Author: Wiggerman
Wiggerman's study of Mesopotamian monsters bridges the gap between text and image. Wooden and clay figures of monstrous spirits such as Hairy-One (lahmu), Bison-Bull (kusarikku), and Furious-Snake (mušhuššu) stand guard at the entrances to buildings to protect the inhavitants from demonic intruders. Deriving his information from the ritual texts that describe the production and installation of these figures, the author identifies the monsters of the texts with objects from the archaeological record and presents a detailed discussion of the identities and histories of a variety of Mesopotamian monsters.