AH Vocabulary: 2. The Ancient Near East
The great audience hall in ancient Persian palaces.
A curved structural member that spans an opening and is generally composed of wedge-shaped blocks (voussoirs) that transmit the downward pressure laterally. See also thrust.
|blind arcade||An arcade having no actual openings, applied as decoration to a wall surface.|
The chamber at the center of an ancient temple; in a classical temple, the room (Greek, naos) in which the cult statue usually stood.
|city-state||An independent, self-governing city.|
|conceptual representation||The representation of the fundamental distinguishing properties of a person or object, not the way a figure or object appears in space at a specific moment. See composite view.|
Latin, "wedge-shaped." A system of writing used in ancient Mesopotamia, in which wedge-shaped characters were produced by pressing a stylus into a soft clay tablet, which was then baked or otherwise allowed to harden.
|cylinder seal||A cylindrical piece of stone usually about an inch or so in height, decorated with an incised design, so that a raised pattern was left when the seal was rolled over soft clay. In the ancient Near East, documents, storage jars, and other important possessions were signed, sealed, and identified in this way. Stamps seals are an earlier, flat, form of seal used for similar purposes.|
The use of perspective to represent in art the apparent visual contraction of an object that extends back in space at an angle to the perpendicular plane of sight.
|frieze||The part of the entablature between the architrave and the cornice; also, any sculptured or painted band in a building. See register.|
|ground line||In paintings and reliefs, a painted or carved baseline on which figures appear to stand.|
|heraldic composition||A composition that is symmetrical on either side of a central figure.|
|hierarchy of scale||An artistic convention in which greater size indicates greater importance.|
In Islamic architecture, a vaulted rectangular recess opening onto a courtyard.
Assyrian guardian in the form of a man-headed winged bull.
A picture, usually stylized, that represents an idea; also, writing using such means; also painting on rock. See also hieroglyphic.
|register||One of a series of superimposed bands or friezes in a pictorial narrative, or the particular levels on which motifs are placed.|
|stamp seal||A cylindrical piece of stone usually about an inch or so in height, decorated with an incised design, so that a raised pattern was left when the seal was rolled over soft clay. In the ancient Near East, documents, storage jars, and other important possessions were signed, sealed, and identified in this way. Stamps seals are an earlier, flat, form of seal used for similar purposes.|
|stele(pl. stelae)|| |
A carved stone slab used to mark graves or to commemorate historical events.
|stylus||A needlelike tool used in engraving and incising; also, an ancient writing instrument used to inscribe clay or wax tablets.|
|votive offering||A gift of gratitude to a deity.|
In ancient Mesopotamian architecture, a monumental platform for a temple
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