Lugal-Zage-Si (lugal-zag-ge4-si = LUGAL.ZAG.GI4.SI 𒈗𒍠𒄄𒋛; frequently spelled Lugalzaggesi, sometimes Lugalzagesi or "Lugal-Zaggisi") of Umma (reigned c. 2294 - 2270 BC short chronology) was the last Sumerian king before the conquest of Sumer by Sargon of Akkad and the rise of the Akkadian Empire, and was considered as the only king of the third dynasty of Uruk. He united Sumer briefly as a single kingdom.[3]

Prisoner in a cage, probably king Lugalzagesi of Uruk due to his oversize figure, being hit on the head with a mace by Sargon of Akkad.[2] Akkadian Empire victory stele circa 2300 BCE. Louvre Museum.
King of Sumer
Reignc. 2294 - 2270 BC (SC)
SuccessorSargon of Akkad (Akkadian Empire)
Dynasty3rd Dynasty of Uruk


Lugal-Zage-Si pursued an expansive policy. He began his career as énsi of Umma, from where he conquered several of the Sumerian city-states including Kish, where he overthrew Ur-Zababa; Lagash, where he overthrew Urukagina; Ur, Nippur, and Larsa; as well as Uruk, where he established his new capital. He ruled for 25 (or 34) years according to the Sumerian King List.[4]

Lugal-Zage-Si claimed in his inscription that Enlil gave to him "all the lands between the upper and the lower seas", that is, between the Mediterranean Sea and the Persian Gulf.[5] Although his incursion to the Mediterranean was, in the eyes of some modern scholars, not much more than "a successful raiding party", the inscription "marks the first time that a Sumerian prince claimed to have reached what was, for them, the western edge of the world".[5] (Historical accounts from much later tablets asserted that Lugal-Anne-Mundu of Adab, a slightly earlier king, had also conquered as far as the Mediterranean and the Taurus mountains, but contemporary records for the entire period before Sargon are still far too sketchy to permit scholars to reconstruct actual events with great confidence.)

According to later Babylonian versions of Sargon's inscriptions, Sargon of Akkad captured Lugal-Zage-Si after destroying the walls of Uruk, and led him in a neck-stock to Enlil's temple in Nippur.

See also


  1. McIntosh, Jane R. (2017). Mesopotamia and the Rise of Civilization: History, Documents, and Key Questions. ABC-CLIO. ISBN 978-1440835469. p. 167
  2. Nigro, Lorenzo (1998). "The Two Steles of Sargon: Iconology and Visual Propaganda at the Beginning of Royal Akkadian Relief". Iraq. British Institute for the Study of Iraq. 60: 85–102. doi:10.2307/4200454. JSTOR 4200454.
  3. "Middle East & Africa to 1875". Sanderson Beck. 1998–2004. Retrieved 2006-11-27.
  4. 259ff. (The Electronic Text Corpus of Sumerian Literature).
  5. Crawford, Harriet E.W. Sumer and the Sumerians. Cambridge University Press, 2004. ISBN 0-521-53338-4. Page 33.
Regnal titles
Preceded by
Nanniya of Kish
King of Sumer
c. 2296 - 2271 BC (short)
Succeeded by
Sargon of Akkad
Preceded by
Ensi of Uruk
c. 2296 - 2271 BC (short)
Succeeded by
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