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Ubaidian Culture


Definition: The Ubaidian culture is a prehistoric Mesopotamian culture first identified by Jacques de Morgan around the turn of the 19th century. The culture dates between 5500 and 4000 BC. The Ubaidians were pre-urban, who lived in large village settlements with the first temples in Mesopotamia, growing wheat, barley and lentils and raising sheep, goats, and cattle. Ubaidian sites include Lagash, Eridu and Ur, all of which became important centers for the the following Uruk civilization. The type site, Tel al'Ubaid (Iraq) was investigated by Harry Reginald Hall in the early decades of the twentieth century; other researchers associated with Ubaid culture sites include Leonard Woolley, Seton Lloyd, and Fuad Safar.

This glossary entry is part of the Dictionary of Archaeology. Sources for the term include the references listed on the front page of the Dictionary, and the websites listed in the sidebar.

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