HALAF, TELL
   Archaeological site in the Habur valley in northern Syria. The excavations by Max von Oppenheim between 1899 and 1929 concentrated on two main occupational layers, a prehistoric (Chalcolithic) one, dating from the sixth to the fifth millennia, and a second, Iron Age layer, when the site was known as Guzan(a). The pottery from Tell Halaf associated with the prehistoric levels was so prolific and distinctive, with its polychrome painted patterns showing animals and geometric shapes, that an entire archaeological period is named the Halaf period (c. 6000–5000/4500).
   From the ninth to the seventh centuries B.C., Guzana was mainly under Assyrian domination, though governed by local Aramaean rulers. One of them built a palace, adorned with basalt stone reliefs showing mythological scenes and a portico supported by divine figures standing on lions, now displayed in the museum of Aleppo.

Historical Dictionary of Mesopotamia. . 2012.

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