Digital Nineveh Archives


In an effort to preserve the rich archaeological history of Nineveh, the US National Endowment for the Humanities has provided funding for this digitization project. Based at the University of California, Berkeley, the main objective of the Digital Nineveh Archives is to establish an online resource for Nineveh, allowing researchers to continue to add content and commentary in perpetuity.

During the late 8th and 7th centuries B.C., the city of Nineveh was the capital of the Assyrian empire and the cultural, economic and political epicentre of the world. After its fall in 612 BCE the site itself gradually faded into obscurity, though its legendary status persisted throughout the ensuing centuries. Tragically, today the 750 hectare ancient site and its immediate surroundings are being rapidly obliterated by the developing city of Mosul, and the war in Iraq has brought new levels of destruction to the 160 year history of archaeological excavation in this once great imperial capital. In an effort to counteract the loss and to preserve and disseminate the rich archaeological record of Nineveh, the United States National Endowment for the Humanities has provided funding for a two-year digitization project being directed by Eleanor Barbanes Wilkinson and David Stronach (UC Berkeley). With this grant, the Berkeley Expedition field records are serving as the basis for a comprehensive archaeological reckoning of both the upper and Lower Town areas of the site of Nineveh. All of the available Berkeley field records, as well as some newly-found unpublished data, have been digitized, geographically coordinated within a three-dimensional matrix, and incorporated into a searchable database. Our objective is to establish the main context for meaningful analysis of currently unlinked sets of data from different areas of the site, allowing the fundamental data to be immediately accessible to researchers who would otherwise have to wait years for the reports to be published conventionally, if they were able to obtain them at all. We hope that it will directly benefit Iraqi archaeologists, educators, museum workers, students and anyone continuing excavation in Nineveh or other related research.

This is a multi-researcher, multi-institutional, multi-lingual (English and Arabic) project.

Project Team:
Principle Investigator (Project Directors):
David Stronach, University  of California at Berkeley
Eleanor Barbanes Wilkinson, Durham University
Media Architect (Associate Director):
Michael Ashley, University of California at Berkeley
Senior Advisor:
Tony J. Wilkinson, University of Durham
Advisor, Nineveh Lower Town Project:
Stephen Lumsden, Carsten Niebuhr Institute
Project Manager, CyArk
Elizabeth A. Lee
Consultants, Open Access and Creative Commons Licensing:
Eric Kansa, Alexandria Archive Institute
Sarah Whitcher Kansa, Alexandria Archive Institute
Geographical Information Specialist:
Nico Tripcevich, University of California at Berkeley
Advisor, Internet Programming and Communications
Noah Wittman, University of California at Berkeley
Arabic Translation
Amr Gaber, Durham University
Media Designer:
Adrian Van Allen


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