Silver Lion Head from Ur

Sumerian Sign Value Register(1)

by Patrick C. Ryan

currently under construction (8/6/2000) Copyright 1999 Patrick C. Ryan

| ' | a | b | d | e | g(/g[~]2/(n)g[~]3) | h | i | j | k | l | m | n | p | q | r | s | s. | S | t | T | u | w | z |

Ur Nammu, Third Dynasty of Ur

All available readings for Sumerian signs in
Kurt Jaritz' Schriftarchäologie der altmesopotamischen Kultur (1967) have been listed.
With this register, all readings associated with a particular sign can be found
by doing a search for the sign number: e.g., to find what other values are associated with the sign reading bur, first find bur in the register; note the sign number, which is 646; then do a search for 646;
bur and the two other readings associated with this sign (biS and pur) will be found.
In addition, many compound signs utilizing 646 as a component will be revealed but not all since Jaritz designated with one number some signs that are easily analyzable as compounds of two or more signs; e.g. lugal, which appears as sign 280 is a clear composition of 640, gal over 611, lu2.

To find an archaic sign form, where available through the courtesy of Dr. Antonio Reguera Feo, simply search for the sign reading, e.g. bur; note the sign number (646), press here or below to display the Sumerian Archaic Sign Table file; find the sign number in its tables. If highlighted, a picture of the sign >br> will appear on the screen when the number is pressed.
To facilitate searches, several notational conventions have been employed:

Current Sumerological practice is to distinguish homophonous words by accents or subscripted numbers beginning with 4 in the order of frequency of usage. The commonest homophone is indicated by no subscript, which is followed here. The next two commonest homophones are indicated by acute and grave accents on the final vowel, e.g. , which will be rendered here as da2 and , which will be rendered here as da3.

Sumerian Archaic Sign Table


the latest revision of this document can be found at

Patrick C. Ryan * 9115 West 34th Street - Little Rock, AR 72204-4441 * (501)227-9947

1. The sign numbers are those of Jaritz' Schriftarchäologie der altmesopotamischen Kultur (1967). Unfortunately, the register materials in this book were not carefully proofed before publication so an unknown number of errors are present. I have made many corrections as I have found them but there are undoubtedly more errors present. Where I have discovered a questionable sign number assignment for a reading, I have placed a question mark after it. In some cases, the sign reading or its proper subscript may be in question, or the subscript may not be known by me, which sign reading also bears a question mark.