Archeologists in Iraq have uncovered a temple dedicated to the goddess Ishtar in the ancient city of Babylon, 56 miles south of Baghdad. Ishtar was the goddess of love in Babylonia and Assyria. Under various names, the cult of the mother goddess spread throughout the ancient Near East.

?Cuneiform inscriptions on the 25 artifacts found at the temple indicate that the building dates back to the old Babylonian era, and to the reign of King Hammurabi (1792-1750 BC) in particular,? according to a researcher at the Antiquities and Heritage Department.

The excavation team found a house with an open courtyard and many rooms, with graves inside the house in a temple area. A plumbing system consisting of a well and two canals used to carry water to the temple and the houses and clay basins to collect the water were also discovered.

The team uncovered jars, clay tablets, and seals used at that time, as well as toys. They say that ?Artifacts included a relief on a clay tablet of a woman breast-feeding her child, the first ever to be found.?

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