About the project

Tepe Gawra, kurdish for “the great mound”, is situated in Northeastern Iraq, 24 km north-east of the Tigris River at Mosul. The site offers an almost continuous sequence of occupation from the 5th to the 2nd millennium BCE.

The “Round House” itself dates to the transition from the late Ubaid to the early Uruk period, around 4000 BCE, corresponding to level XI-A in Tepe Gawra; the largest structure of this occupation level, it is situated near the centre of the mound.

Data from architectural and small-find analyses suggest that the fortified building was probably built for administrative purposes. Our architectural reconstruction is based upon these analyses, the excavation reports, and related literature. Since the reconstruction is, of course, only tentative, we decided to illustrate the level of certainty in the model through colour coding: the green parts of the building show the height of its excavated remains, yellow the certain parts based on archaeological data, and red the highly speculative upper parts of the structure.


  • Margueron, J.-C. 1983: La Maison Ronde de Tepe Gawra, in: Syria 60, 12–24.
  • Margueron, J.-C. 1999: Du plan au volume: les bases méthodologiques de la restitution architectural, in: Kühne/Bernbeck/Bartl (Hrsg.), Fluchtpunkt Uruk. Archäologische Einheit aus methodischer Vielfalt. Schriften für Hans-Jörg Nissen, 191–200.
  • Rothman, M.S. 2002: Tepe Gawra: The Evolution of a small, prehistoric center in northern iraq, University Museum Monograph 112.
  • Speiser, E.A. 1935: Excavations at Tepe Gawra, Bd. I, Philadelphia.
  • Speiser, E.A. 1936: On some recent finds from Tepe Gawra, in: BASOR 62, 10–14.
  • Tobler, A.J. 1950: Excavations at Tepe Gawra, Bd. II, Philadelphia.