Bringing a Long-Lost Library Back to Life

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Science  03 May 2002:
Vol. 296, Issue 5569, pp. 834-835
DOI: 10.1126/science.296.5569.834

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MOSUL, IRAQ-- A stone's throw from the ancient city of Nineveh, Iraq intends to erect a center for cuneiform research. Scholars argue that the new center, dubbed the Saddam Institute after Iraq's president, could leave a lasting legacy if it were to encourage preservation and cataloging of the thousands of tablets languishing in the Iraq Museum in Baghdad, as well as prepare for an onslaught of new ones. Others, however, are dubious about the scientific payoff of a tablet-based project in a digital age.