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Tell Agrab is located east of ancient Eshnunna

Coordinates: 33°34′00″N 44°46′00″E / 33.566667°N 44.766667°E / 33.566667; 44.766667 Tell Agrab (or Aqrab) (modern Y, Iraq) was an ancient Near East city 15 miles east of Eshnunna in the Diyala region.



Tell Agrab was occupied during the Jemdet Nasr and Early Dynastic periods through the Akkadian and Larsa periods. It was during the Early Dynastic period that monumental building occurred, including the Shara Temple. There is no evidence that it was occupied after the end of the third millennium.


The site of Tell Agrab is encompased by a 500 by 600 meter rectangle with a height of around 12 meters.

Though it had been subject to illegal digging earlier, the site was officially excavated in 1936 and 1937 by a team from the Oriental Institute of Chicago which was also working at Eshnunna, Khafajah and Tell Ishchali during that time. [1] The dig was led by Seton Hall.

The primary excavation effort was on the large Early Dynastic temple, which was dedicated to Shara according to a bowl inscription. Only the western end of the Shara Temple was studied, the rest being badly eroded. The temple was about 60 meters square and was surrounded by a wall 6 meters wide with large supporting butresses. The presence of sling stones and a sappers tunnel indicated an attack in the Early Dynastic era. Aside from a number of treasure caches and cylinder seals [2] found, the most notable find was a copper chariot pulled by four onagers, one of the earliest examples known.


  1. ^ [1] Pre-Sargonid Temples in the Diyala Region. Pinhas Delougaz and Seton Lloyd with chapters by Henri Frankfort and Thorkild Jacobsen, Oriental Institute Publication 58, 1942
  2. ^ [2] Henri Frankfort with a chapter by Thorkild Jacobsen, Stratified Cylinder Seals from the Diyala Region, Oriental Institute Publication 72, 1955


  • John Bagnell Bury et al., The Cambridge Ancient History, Cambridge University Press, 1925, ISBN 0521077915
  • [3] Jean M. Evans, The Square Temple at Tell Asmar and the Construction of Early Dynastic Mesopotamia ca. 2900-2350 B.C.E, American Journal of Archaeology, Boston, Vol. 111, Iss. 4; pg. 599, Oct 2007

See also

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