Since the erection and maintenance of important buildings such as palaces and temples were the responsibilities of the Mesopotamian kings, they often commemorated their contributions. Inscribed tablets made of metal or stone were placed in a box beneath the foundations or, in the shape of a cone-shaped peg, inserted into the brickwork of the walls. The inscriptions could be short, just containing the name and title of the king and the name of the building, and sometimes the date, such as in which year of his reign the building was dedicated. They could also be much longer and furnish information about important events that took place at the time, such as resumes of military campaigns (especially in Assyrian inscriptions).
   When a building was renewed, the foundation box was searched for, and a new one could be added to the one discovered. Therefore, many building inscriptions were addressed to “future kings” who were exhorted to treat these documents with due respect, and terrible curses were heaped on those who would cast them aside or break

Historical Dictionary of Mesopotamia. . 2012.

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