The earliest zoomorphic stamp seals appear to have first been produced in Ancient Mesopotamia, from the 7th millennium BC onwards, usually pierced for suspension and worn around the neck as an identity marker. Seals engraved with depiction of animals, such as recumbent rams, fish or lions, are testimony to the cultural syncretism of Ancient Mesopotamian glyphic art. Stylistically, seals from the Jemdet Nasr period appear adherent to Uruk tradition, however in a less elaborate form. Stamp and cylinder seals from the Uruk/Jemdet Nasr period possess extremely significant cultural value, not only testifying the development of Mesopotamian glyphic art, but also inspiring the glyphic art of the later Early Dynastic and Akkadian periods.
To discover more about the ancient Sumerians, please visit our relevant blog post: Ancient Sumer and its Art.