Présentation du site

Explored by French researchers since 1933, Larsa (200 ha) is one of the largest metropolises in Mesopotamia, which it dominated at the beginning of the second millennium BC. After a thirty-year hiatus, work resumed in 2019. Several programmes are underway. The city’s urban planning is the subject of a multidisciplinary approach combining analysis of imagery, surveys and excavations. The focus has been on the town’s envelope and hydraulic network. The route of the city walls was discovered (5,376 m) and several hundred canals were mapped, both inside and outside the city walls, covering an area of 1,200 ha (as at 2022). In the centre of the city, an initial excavation of the hydraulic structures discovered is uncovering the city’s Grand Canal (22m wide) and the baked brick bridge that crossed it. Two other excavations focused on the monumental heart of the city (site B50) and the housing (site B48-49). In B50, a large temple was discovered (7250 m2), which yielded inscribed bricks of King Sin-iddinam. This may have been the Gipar that this king had rebuilt for the priestesses of Shamash. In B48-49, two sumptuous residences are being excavated. Residence B49 covers 1480 m2 and included several courtyards. A small room (1598) contained the private archives of the owner’s family, Etellum, grand vizier to the kings Gungunum and Abi-sare (1905-1895 BC). The violent destruction of the building sheds new light on the end of his reign.

Preliminary reports are available at