Definition of cylinder seal in English:

cylinder seal


  • A small barrel-shaped stone object with a hole down the centre and bearing an incised design or cuneiform inscription, originally for rolling on clay when soft to indicate ownership or authenticate a document, used chiefly in Mesopotamia from the late 4th to the 1st millennium BC.

    • ‘Those cabinets contained arguably the world's finest collection of absolutely exquisite cylinder seals and the world's finest collection of Greek, Roman, Islamic and Arabic gold and silver coins.’
    • ‘On display are marvelous examples of statuary, jewelry, architectural elements, cylinder seals, and various decorative objects.’
    • ‘Despite the disaster in the museum, virtually all 80,000 of the institution's cuneiform tablets appear to be safe, as do most of the precious Mesopotamian cylinder seals.’
    • ‘More than 50 museums from countries in Europe, Asia and the Middle East contributed nearly 400 rare works of art including sculpture, jewelry, vessels, weapons, inlays, cylinder seals and tablets.’
    • ‘The earliest known gems are cylinder seals made in Babylon about 4000 BC.’