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Old Assyrian Archives


Admission requirements

Knowledge of Akkadian grammar and cuneiform writing.


The Old Assyrian dialect of Akkadian is known from the thousands of letters and administrative documents excavated in the lower town of Kültepe, the ancient city of Kanesh. This course will introduce the student to the grammar and vocabulary of Old Assyrian and the accompanying writing system, and to the historical and economic background of the Assyrian presence in Central Anatolia. A representative selection of texts will be read and special attention will be paid to the archival context of these documents.

Course objectives

Students following this course will acquire a thorough knowledge of Old Assyrian grammar and writing and insight into the historical and economic context of the documents.

Students will be able to read Old Assyrian texts from copies or photos of the cuneiform original, and to translate these into English and provide a grammatical analysis. Furthermore, they will be acquainted with the most important scholarly literature on these topics.


The timetables are available through My Timetable.

Mode of instruction

  • Seminar

Assessment method


  • Paper

  • Oral presentation and contribution in seminars

Oral presentation: Students are expected to be actively engaged in discussion of the content and issues raised within the documents read each week, and to be able to summarize the material they have studied for the rest of the group in English.

Assessment additional course objectives for the ResMa students:
Research Master students will be expected to address more complex theoretical issues in all their work and in particular in their final paper. They may be asked to engage in the lecturer’s research (e.g. by commenting on work-in-progress), if this seems suitable.


  • Paper: 70%

  • Oral presentation and contribution in seminars: 30%


The final grade for the course is established by determining the weighted average. The grade for the final paper should be satisfactory.

Inspection and feedback

Students will be invited to discuss the paper and the other results for this seminar (participation and oral presentation) individually with the teacher, as soon as the results have been published.

Reading list

To be announced on Brightspace.


Enrolment through uSis is mandatory.
General information about uSis is available on the website.

Registration Studeren à la carte en Contractonderwijs

Registration Contractonderwijs.


For substantive questions, contact the lecturer listed in the right information bar. For questions about enrolment, admission, etc, contact the Education Administration Office: Arsenaal


Not applicable.