A History of Babylonia and Assyria, 2 volumes by Robert William Rogers

By Robert William Rogers

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They could find no better type of intellect and knowledge than the head of the man; of strength, than the body of the lion; of rapidity of motion, than the wings of the bird. These winged human-headed lions were not idle creations, the offspring of mere fancy; their meaning was written upon them. They had awed and instructed races which flourished three thousand years ago. Through the portals which they guarded kings, priests, and warriors had borne sacrifices to their altars long before the wisdom of the East had penetrated to Greece, and had furnished its mythology with symbols long recognized by the Assyrian votaries.

As he requested me to discontinue my operations until the sensation in the town had somewhat subsided, I returned to Nimroud and dismissed the workmen, retaining only two men to dig leisurely along the walls without giving cause for further interference. I ascertained by the end of March the existence of a second pair of winged human-headed lions, differing from those previously discovered in form, the human shape being continued to the waist and finished with arms. In one hand each figure carried a goat or stag, and in the other, which hung down by the side, a branch with three flowers.

His book was soon translated into German and made a distinct impression upon Grotefend, then deeply absorbed in his efforts to decipher the records of the Achaemenian kings. In its English form it became known in France, there to inspire the archaeologist, 77 A. L. Millin, to publish in facsimile a small inscribed stone brought several years before from the neighbor. hood of Baghdad to Paris by the botanist Michaux. The article of Millin called this little inscription a "Persepolitan monument," though his own statements show that it came not from Persepolis, but from Babylonia.

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