Yale University Library
Babylonian Collection

This cuneiform clay tablet, written in Akkadian, is one of three in the Yale Babylonian Collection that are the oldest known cookbooks in the world. This tablet dates to about 1750 B.C., the time of Hammurabi, and describes 25 recipes for meat and vegetable stews. Elaborate and often calling for rare ingredients, the recipes probably represent Mesopotamian haute cuisine meant for the royal palace or the temple.

Web address http://www.yale.edu/nelc/babylonian.html
LocationSterling Memorial Library, 130 Wall Street, New Haven
Access policyBy appointment only
ContactUlla Kasten
Email addressulla.kasten@yale.edu
Number of photographsApprox. 15,600
Date range1890-2009
Geographic coverage

The Near East




Photographic holdings in the Yale Babylonian Collection include early 20th century historical images of archaeological sites and excavations, and photographs of ancient tablets, seals, and other objects in the collection, as well as artifacts in other museums.

The photographs are a mix of documentation of the more than 40,000 tablets and objects held in the collection. The major part are archival photographs of archeological sites, excavations, and objects held or once held in other countries or museums. In some cases because of wars the objects may no longer exist. There are photographs of Dura Europos from the 1930s and 1940s, which would complement the collection of materials at the Yale University Art Gallery.

Included are an estimated more than 1,000 panoramic views, more than 2,000 lantern slides, 2,000 albumen prints most are in albums or mounted with pressure sensitive tape to board, and more than 2,000 black-and-white prints.

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