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Art In Empire: The Royal Image And The Visual Dimensions Of Assyrian Ideology

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Chapter Summary

Throughout the period of decorated Assyrian palaces, the relationship between text and image functioned in a variety of ways. First, text can be incorporated physically onto the palace reliefs. Second, texts-as, for example, Assurnasirpal's from the Ninurta Temple adjacent to the royal palace, as well as texts on other monuments like gateway colossi or royal monoliths-lie behind the depictions. Third, there can be a more direct typological relationship between text and image, as when the attributes of Assurnasirpal 11 as contained in his regular titulary correspond directly to the four types of images of the king used in the throneroom-assumedly the most important chamber in the palace. There is much that can be learned about the institution of kingship, the ideology of rule, and the way in which Assyrian rulers viewed themselves in office from their royal images.

Keywords: Assyrian Ideology; Assyrian palaces; gateway colossi; kingship; Ninurta Temple; royal monoliths; visual dimensions



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