Bullheaded Lyre

 The bullheaded lyre was found in the King’s Grave royal tomb of Private Grave (PG) 789. It was constructed with silver, gold, shell, lapis lazuli, wood and bitumen. The panel depicts a hero grasping animals and also animals that act like humans, either playing music or serving at banquet. The bottom panel showcases a scorpion man and a gazelle with human forms.

It is believed by scholars that the panels on the bullheaded lyre symbolize an underworld banquet. The front panels represent a scorpion man and gazelle and an ass playing a bull lyre. The Royal Cemetery in Ur is the burial   place of the elite members of the society who held managerial or ritual roles in the palaces or temples at Ur.

The early funerals depicted in sculpture and drawings often include musicians playing harps, lyres and other musical instruments that were found in various royal tombs. Some lyres held inlays of the feasting scenes. One of the bodies in the Great Death pit near Queen Puabi was draped over a lyre the same as the bullheaded lyre, the bones of the hands places what seemed the strings. This is proof that music has been extremely important to the Early Dynastic Mesopotamia.

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