Babylonian clay tablets

Babylonian clay tablets, baked clay, cuneiform inscriptions.

Ca. 2350 B.C.

These two clay tablets are original temple receipts.


Pieces of Ancient German Corduroy Road

Pieces of Ancient German Corduroy Road.

Ca. 2000 B.C.

Workers cutting peat in a bog near Oldenburg Germany in 1936 found the remains of a corduroy road or swamp bridge built for the two wheeled ox-carts of the ancient Germans. The road was constructed by pegging a layer of planks over logs which in turn rested on piles of branches. These pieces were in the possession of Rudolph Hommel, an archeologist with a special interest in ancient transportation, and were given to the library by his wife.


Egyptian Wheat

Egyptian Wheat

Ca. 1200 B.C.

From the earliest dynasties, wheat was Egypt’s staple crop. This grain was found in the effects of archaeologist Rudolph P. Hommel wrapped in a piece of paper labeled, "1200 B.C.," which would place it in the New Empire Period in which the Great Temples at Karnak and Abu-Simbel were built. Such “Mummy Wheat” can be a hoax perpetrated by modern Egyptians on unsuspecting visitors; so its authenticity remains in doubt.


Chinese Seal

Chinese Seals. Anonymous; probably Song Dynasty, ca. 960 A.D.

Ca. 960 A.D.

These figures were probably Taoist Talismans or Incantation Seals. Seals were primarily used in place of personal signatures in China from the early Dynasties until modern times. Inscriptions and quotations from the classics often appeared with the bearer’s name. The Chinese Seal Collection was given to the University by Professor Herman Patrick Johnson.