Hassuna culture

The Hassuna culture is a Neolithic archaeological culture in northern Mesopotamia dating to the early sixth millennium BC (6000-5500 B.C.). It is named after the type site of Tell Hassuna in Iraq. Other sites where Hassuna material has been found include Tell Shemshara, Yarim Tepe, Arpachiyah.


Geographic distributions of the partially overlapping Halaf, Hassuna, and Samarra cultures

By around 6500 BC people had moved into the foothills (piedmont) of northernmost Mesopotamia where there was enough rainfall against the “dry” areas unsuitable for agriculture in some southern and eastern places in Mesopotamia. These were the first farmers in northernmost Mesopotamia – in the northern part of present-day Syria and north-east of Iraq. They made the first comprehensive and extensive Neolithic culture on the territory of present-day Iraq and Syria – Hassuna culture.

According to the calibrated C14 chronology ASPRO, the culture is dated to the period 6500-5700 BC (before Christ). From the influences of Hassuna culture has developed other cultures of Mesopotamia. They are culture Halaf, Samarra, Ubaid.

graf vývoje kultur Mezopotámie (konvenční datování)

Chart of the development of the cultures in Mesopotamia (conventional dating) 

They made Hassuna-style pottery (cream slip with reddish paint in linear designs – CSBW and red burnt engobe RSBW). Fine painted pottery replaced earlier types of coarse ceramics DFBW – pottery style with a dark surface. Hassuna people lived in small villages or hamlets ranging from 2 to 8 acres (3.2 ha). Hand axes, sickles, grinding stones, baskets, bakery ovens and numerous bones of domestic animals reflect settled agricultural life. Female figurines have been associated with the cult. Containers with funerals, in which it was located also food is subject to the belief in an afterlife. Relationship Hassuna style pottery with pottery style of Yarmoukian, Jericho, Wadi Rabah indicates how Neolithic culture in the near east has expanded.

Typology of Hassuna style pottery:

CSBW ceramics:



RSBW ceramics:



Anthropomorphic sculpture of the Samarra-Hassuna culture:

Material Alabaster (gypsum)

 hassuna idol4 iraq museum   

   hassuna idol3         



Anthropomorphic sculpture of the Hassuna culture:

Material ceramics DFBW, RSBW style 


kultura-Hassuna-figurka z-Yarim-Tepe-muzeum Bagdad, Iraq


Hassuna culture, figurine from YarimTepe, Museum of Bagdad, Iraq          



Map of important neolithic settlements of Mesopotamia (Syria, Iraq):