Babylon & Ishtar Gate Pictures, Images & Photos { 44 images } Created 21 Feb 2012

Pictures photos images of The Ishtar Gate Babylon tiled panels. The Ishtar Gate was the eighth gate to the inner city of Babylon. It was constructed in about 575 BC by order of King Nebuchadnezzar II on the north side of the city. Dedicated to the Babylonian goddess Ishtar, the gate was constructed using a rare blue stone called lapis lazuli with alternating rows of bas-relief of lions, dragons and aurochs. Through the gate ran the Processional Way, which was lined with walls covered in lions on glazed bricks. The bricks of the Ishtar gate were made from finely textured clay pressed into wooden forms. Each of the animal reliefs was also made from bricks formed by pressing clay into reusable molds. Seams between the bricks were carefully planned not to occur on the eyes of the animals or any other aesthetically unacceptable places. The bricks were sun-dried and then fired once before glazing. The background glazes are mainly a vivid blue, which imitates the color of the highly prized lapis lazuli. Gold and brown glazes are used for animal images. The borders and rosettes are glazed in black, white, and gold. It is believed that the glaze recipe used plant ash, sandstone conglomerates, and pebbles for silicates. This combination was repeatedly melted, cooled, and then pulverized. This mixture of silica and fluxes is called a frit. Color-producing minerals, such as cobalt, were added in the final glaze formulations. This was then painted onto the bisque-fired bricks and fired to a higher temperature in a glaze firing. After the glaze firing, the bricks were assembled, leaving narrow horizontal seams from one to six millimeters. The seams were then sealed with a naturally occurring black viscous substance called bitumen, like modern asphalt. The Ishtar Gate is only one small part of the design of ancient Babylon that also included the palace, temples, an inner fortress, walls, gardens, other gates, and the Processional Way. The lavish city was decorated with over 15 million baked bricks, according to estimates.

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Wikipedia https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ishtar_Gate
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