Mesopotamian Art and Architecture

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Ancient Mesopotamian art and architectural works are among the oldest in the world, dating back over 7,000 years. The works first appear in northern Mesopotamia prior to the Ubaid Period (c. 5000-4100 BCE) and then developed in the south during the Uruk Period (4100-2900 BCE) in Sumer which established the first historical civilization.

More about: Mesopotamian Art and Architecture


  • c. 5000 BCE - 651 CE
    Art and architecture becomes fully developed throughout Mesopotamia's history.
  • c. 5000 BCE - 4100 BCE
    Art and architecture develops during the Ubaid Period in Mesopotamia.
  • 4100 BCE - 2900 BCE
    The Warka Vase and Mask of Warka are among the great art works of the Uruk Period; arch is first used in buildings.
  • 2900 BCE - 2334 BCE
    Ziggurats are further developed along with temple and palace complexes during the Early Dynastic Period; artworks include the Royal Standard of Ur.
  • 2334 BCE - 2218 BCE
    Art and architecture are further refined in the Akkadian Period; figures cast in metal become more common.
  • 2047 BCE - 1750 BCE
    During the Ur III Period, the Great Ziggurat of Ur is completed; foundation figures and votive figures are more detailed.
  • c. 2000 BCE - 1600 BCE
    Monumental architecture continues to develop during the Old Babylonian Period; stele crafted in detail to explicitly honor gods.
  • c. 1307 BCE - 612 BCE
    During the Assyrian and Neo-Assyrian periods, some of the most famous wall reliefs are created for the palaces of the kings.
  • 626 BCE - 539 BCE
    The Ishtar Gate of Babylon is built during the Neo-Babylonian Period.
  • c. 550 BCE - 651 CE
    The Achaemenid through the Sassanian Persian empires continue the legacy of the art and architecture of Mesopotamia.