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Gerçin

Gerçin is a rocky hill about 7 km northeast of Zincirli Höyük. It is suspected that Gerçin hill was a cemetery for the royal family of the Sam'al kingdom, but so far it has not been officially excavated. Other than the statues below, Felix von Luschan reported finding three smaller statues in Gerçin, although all heavily damaged and missing heads and legs. These fragments are probably in the inventory of Istanbul Archaeology Museum.

Hadad Statue and Inscription of Panamuwa I
The statue was found in 1890 by Felix von Luschan and the German team. Carved of basalt stone, it stands about 3.54 meters tall and has a width of 1.13 meters around the shoulders and 0.92 meter at the bottom. On the front side of the lower half of the statue, there is a 34-line inscription written with Aramaic alphabet in Sam'alian dialect. The horned hat and the inscription indicate that this is a statue of Hadad, the version of the Storm-God in this region and time period. It is written in the first person by King Panamuwa I of Sam'al, who describes how he raised this statue of Hadad in the royal necropolis and built a temple. He asks his successors to remember him, make offerings, and help his soul live eternally with the gods. The Hadad statue dates to around 750 BCE and currently on display in Vorderasiatisches Museum in Berlin.

Panamuwa II Statue and Inscription
The cylindrical basalt block is the lower half of a statue that represents King Panamuwa II. The surviving piece is about 1.90 meters high and 0.88 meter wide. The complete statue was probably similar to the Hadad statue or the statue of a king found in Zincirli. It was found in 1888 by the German expedition in Tahtalı Pınar, a few kilometers north of Zincirli towards Gerçin, from where it may actually have originated. On the front side of the statue is a 23-line inscription written with Aramaic script in Sam'alian dialect. It is a dedication by King Barrakib to his father Panamuwa II in the year of the latter's death (ca. 732 BCE). The inscription provides information about the life and accomplishments of Panamuwa II, during whose reign Sam'al was a vassal of Assyria, and states that the king had died in Damascus while campaigning alongside the Assyrian king Tiglath-Pileser III. The statue is in the Vorderasiatisches Museum in Berlin, but apparently not on display.

Click on the pictures for larger images.

Hadad StatuePanamuwa II Statue
Storm-god statue from Gercin, Vorderasiatisches Museum - T. Bilgin, 2010 Storm-god statue from Gercin, Vorderasiatisches Museum - T. Bilgin, 2010 Lion heads from Zincirli, Vorderasiatisches Museum - T. Bilgin, 2010 gercin.uchicago.edu F. von Luschan, 1893 wsrp.usc.edu wsrp.usc.edu

Literature:
Bonatz, D. Syro-hethitische Grabdenkmal, Mainz: Zabern, 2000: 151-52 and passim.
Hermann, V. R. and D. Schloen (eds.), In Remembrance of Me: Feasting with the Dead in Ancient Middle East, OIM 37, Chicago, 2014: 58–59, 120–21.
Orthmann, W. Untersuchungen zur späthethitischen Kunst, Bonn, 1971. (Gerçin 1 & Tahtalı Pınar 1)
von Luschan, F., E. Schrader and E. Saschau, "Fünf Bildwerke aus Gerdschin," in Ausgrabungen in Sendschirli, vol. I. Berlin, 1893: 53–84.
Younger, K. L. "The Hadad Inscription," The Context of Scripture v. 2, Leiden, 2000: 156–58.
Younger, K. L. "The Panamuwa Inscription," The Context of Scripture v. 2, Leiden, 2000: 158–60.

Image sources:
Tayfun Bilgin, 2010.
Chicago-Tübingen Expedition to Zincirli, University of Chicago - zincirli.uchicago.edu
Felix von Luschan, 1893.
West Semitic Research Project, University of Southern California - wsrp.usc.edu