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Later, in the Near East, (the area between the Tigris and the Euphrates Rivers), the Sumerian, Akkadian, and Babylonian kingdoms flourished. Materials used for sculpture during this time included basalt, diorite (a type of dark, coarse-grained stone), sandstone, and alabaster. Copper, gold, silver, shells, and a variety of precious stones were used for high quality sculpture and inlays. Clay was used for pottery and terra cotta sculpture. Stone was generally rare and had to be imported from other locations. Sculptures from the Sumerian and Akkadian period generally had large, staring eyes, and long beards on the men. Votive stone sculptures of this type from 2700 BC were discovered at Tell Asmar. Many masterpieces have also been found at the Royal Cemetery at Ur (2650 BC). Among them are a wooden harp with gold and mosaic inlay with a black-bearded golden bull's head.


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