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A tell site of c30 hectares on the Khabur River in northeast Syria overlooking an important river crossing. Material from the Halaf and Ubaid periods indicates a long history, but the site is best known for its sequence of rich temples of the late Uruk and Jemdet Nasr periods, when it was clearly an important centre. Most famous of all is the so-called Eye Temple, richly decorated with clay cones, copper panels and gold work, in a style very similar to that found in the contemporary temples of Sumer (southern Mesopotamia). Later, in the 3rd millennium BC, Tell Brak became a provincial capital of the Akkadian empire; the palace of Naramsin of this period was more of a depot for the storage of tribute and loot than a residential seat. The city was plundered after the fall of the Akkadian empire, but the palace was rebuilt in the Ur III period by Ur Nammu.

The Macmillan dictionary of archaeology, Ruth D. Whitehouse, 1983Copied