Dr Jacob L. Dahl
University Lecturer in Assyriology; Fellow of Wolfson
Faculty / College Address:
I am a specialist of the pre-Classical cultures and languages of the Near East. I have written on early Babylonian socio-economic history, early Near Eastern writing systems, and Sumerian literature. I work on the decipherment of proto-Elamite, the last undeciphered writing system from the ancient Near East with a substantial number of sources (more than 1600 tablets divided between the Louvre Museum and the National Museum of Iran). Initially inspired and influenced by archaic cuneiform from Mesopotamia, proto-Elamite was a very short-lived writing system (ca. 3100 - 2900 BC) used across much of what today constitute the Islamic Republic of Iran.
As a co-PI of the Cuneiform Digital Library Initiative <http://cdli.ucla.edu> I seek to document and safeguard Mesopotamia’s contribution to our shared world history by making its ancient records available freely online.
- late 3rd millennium BC administrative history, publication of 350 texts in Oslo
- joint publication (on-line) of ca. 300 Ur III texts in Aleppo National Museum, Syria, with Dr Bertrand Lafont (CNRS, Paris)
- joint publication (on-line) of ca. 90 Ur III texts in the Institut Chatolique de Paris, with Dr Bertrand Lafont
- publication of ca. 150 proto-Elamite texts and fragments in the Louvre
- re-edition of ca. 1000 proto-Elamite texts and fragments in the Louvre
- proto-Elamite sign-list
- edition of new proto-Elamite texts from Iran with colleagues from Teheran University
- History and Civilizations of the Ancient Near East
- Akkadian and Sumerian texts, all levels
- Dahl, Jacob L., The Ruling Family of Ur III Umma: A Prosopographical Analysis of a Provincial Elite Family in Southern Iraq ca. 2100-2000 BC (= PIHANS 108, Leiden 2007).
- Barjamovic, Gojko, Jacob L. Dahl, Ulla Susanne Koch, Walter Sommerfeld, and Joan Goodnick Westenholz (eds.), Akkade is King. A collection of papers by friends and colleagues presented to Aage Westenholz on the occasion of his 70th birthday 15th of May 2009. (PIHANS 118)
- Dahl, Jacob L., “Land Allotments During The Third Dynasty of Ur: Some Observations,” AoF 29/2 (2002) 330-338.
- Dahl, Jacob L., “The Quest for Eternity. Studies in Neo-Sumerian Systems of Succession,” 117-136, in: J.-G. Dercksen, ed., Assyrian and Beyond, Studies Presented to Mogens Trolle Larsen (Leiden, 2004).
- Dahl, Jacob L., “Complex Graphemes in Proto-Elamite,” Cuneiform Digital Library Journal (CDLJ) 2005:003 Cuneiform Digital Library Journal 2005:3.
- Dahl, Jacob L., “Animal Husbandry in Susa During the Proto-Elamite Period,” SMEA 47 (2005) 81-134.
- Dahl, Jacob L., “Early Swine Herding,” 31-38 in: B. Lion et C. Michel, eds., De la domestication au tabou : Le cas des suidés dans le Proche- Orient ancien, Travaux de la Maison René-Ginouvès 1 (Paris, 2006).
- Dahl, Jacob L., & Hebenstreit, Laurent F., “19 Ur III texts in a Private Collection”, Revue d’Assyriologie, 101 (2007), 35-49.
- Dahl, Jacob L., “ Early Writing in Iran, a Reappraisal,” Iran 47 (2009), 23-31.
- Dahl, Jacob L., “A Babylonian Gang of Potters,” in Kogan, L. et. al. (eds.)., Proceedings of the 53e Rencontre Assyriologique InternationaleVol. 2: City Administration in the Ancient Near East (Moscow 2010).
- Dahl, Jacob L., “Naming Ur III Years”, p. 85-93 in Kleinerman, A. and Jack M. Sasson (eds.), Why Should Someone Who Knows Something Conceal it? Cuneiform Studies in Honor of David I. Owen on His 70th Birthday. (CDL Press, Bethesda 2010).
- Dahl, Jacob L., “The Statue of Nin-e’iga”, p 55-65 in Barjamovich, G., et. al. (eds.), Akkade is King. A collection of papers by friends and colleagues presented to Aage Westenholz on the occasion of his 70th birthday 15th of May 2009. (PIHANS 118, Leiden 2011).
- Dahl, Jacob L., Petrie, C.A. and Potts, D.T., “Chronological Parameters of the Earliest Writing System in Iran”, in C.A. Petrie (ed.), Ancient Iran and its Neighbours: Local Developments and Long- range Interactions in the 4th Millennium BC. (forthcoming).
- Dahl, Jacob L., Hessari, M. and Yousefi, R., “The proto-Elamite tablets from Tepe Sofalin”, (forthcoming).
- Dahl, Jacob L., “The marks of writing”, (forthcoming).
- Dahl, Jacob L., “A Paleographic Study of Sumerian ku(dr), ‘to enter’.” (forthcoming).
Notes and Reviews:
- Dahl, Jacob L., “Proto-Elamite Sign Frequencies,” CDLB 2002:001 (2002) Cuneiform Digital Library Bulletin 2002:1
- Dahl, Jacob L., “A Note on Ur III Text Duplicates,” CDLB 2003:005
- (2003) Cuneiform Digital Library Bulletin 2003:5
- Dahl, Jacob L., Review of Dominique Charpin, Dietz Otto Edzard, Marten Stol, Mesopotamien: Die altbabylonische Zeit, Review of Biblical Literature 02/2005
- Dahl, Jacob L., “Revisiting Bala,” review article (Tonia Sharlach: Provincial Taxation and the Ur III State), JAOS 126.1 (2006), 77 - 88.
- Earl, Graeme, Philip Basford, Alexander Bischoff, Alan Bowman, Charles Crowther, Jacob L. Dahl, Michael Hodgson, Leif Isaksen, Eleni Kotoula, Kirk Martinez, Hembo Pagi and Kathryn E. Piquette, “Reflectance Transformation Imaging Systems for Ancient Documentary Artefacts” (Electronic Visualisation and the Arts (EVA 2011))
- Dahl, Jacob L., Jack Green, Kathryn E. Piquette, “Exploring Ancient Writings at the Ashmolean Museum with Advanced Digital Technologies” (Ashmolean Museum Department of Antiquities, Current Research Website, Feb. 2011)
Boards and Committees:
- Member of the Steering Board of the British Association for the Ancient Near East (BANEA)
- Editor of CDLJ (http://cdli.ucla.edu/pub.html)
- co-Principal Investigator of the Cuneiform Digital Library Initiative (http://cdli.ucla.edu)
- Principal Investigator of the Electronic Text Corpus of Sumerian Literature (http://etcsl.orinst.ox.ac.uk/)
- Moudhy al-Rashid (Mental Illness and Mental Health in Ancient Mesopotamia)
- Christopher Metcalf (shared with classics) (Aspects of Early Greek and Babylonian Hymnic Poetry)
- John Nicholas Reid (The Evolution of Slavery and Labour Practices in Early Mesopotamia from Uruk to the Fall of Babylon in the Longue Durée)