Known as the Burney Relief, this sculpture from Mesopotamia, which has been dated to around 2,000 BC, depicts a woman with many of the features displayed in the statue of Ninkharsag overleaf. Our interpretation is that when the old gods were denigrated, in order to replace them with new gods, such a disturbing characterisation was seen to be necessary, in order to downgrade her memory. The measuring rod and ring, symbols of rule and law, are needlessly repeated in each hand and bent. The horned turban is exaggerated. The drooping wings, naked body, crows feet, sheep/goat bell necklace, and accompanying owls, complete the re-branding of this Shining One, Kharsag biologist, farmer and wife of Enlil, as the Hag of the Night.
From Daily Telegraph, Tuesday March 9, 2004