Englund, Robert K.


  • Institution: University of California Los Angeles
  • Email:
  • Birth Year: 1952
  • Death Year: 2020
  • This name should be presented in "Western name order"
This profile was last modified on 2024-02-17 at 05:39:39

Biography and Research

Until his retirement in July 2018, Englund taught at the Department of Near Eastern Languages and Cultures, within the Humanities Division at the University of California, Los Angeles. He has conducted his major research on the proto-cuneiform texts from late 4th millennium BC Mesopotamia, and, as principal investigator of the project Cuneiform Digital Library Initiative (CDLI), Los Angeles/Oxford/Berlin, on the electronic documentation and edition of cuneiform generally. He is editor of and contributor to the online journals Cuneiform Digital Library Journal and Bulletin (CDLJ&B), and has collaborated with UCLA CS graduate students Sai Deep Tetali and Prashant Rajput in the creation of an iPad & Android app “cdli tablet” dedicated to informal daily presentations of cuneiform artifacts. A native of the Pacific Northwest, Englund attended high school in Yakima, WA; he completed his BA at the University of California at Berkeley in 1977, and, following a year of graduate work at the University of Chicago, transferred to Dietz Edzard’s seminar at the University of Munich, where he wrote his dissertation entitled Verwaltung und Organisation der Ur III-Fischerei (The Administration and Organization of Ur III Fisheries). The thesis is concerned above all with the administration of Babylonian fisheries, focusing on an analysis of the accounting terminology in the Ur III period (ca. 2100–2000 BC) archives as a tool for understanding the organization and social position of fishermen and comparable state-dependent workers and supervisors of household economic units. He conducted post-doctoral research and taught at the Free University of Berlin in the 1980’s and 90’s, and moved to Los Angeles in 1996. Following his retirement from active university work, Englund moved with his wife Klaudia to Guemes Island north of Seattle. Bob Englund died on May 24, 2020, after a long struggle with cancer. He was 68 years old. 

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  • 1970-1972     University of Washington, Seattle (Mathematics)

  • 1974-1977     UC-Berkeley (BA, Near Eastern Studies)

  • 1977-1978     University of Chicago (Assyriology)

  • 1978-1987     University of Munich (MA, PhD, Assyriology)


  • Winter 2016:

    SEM 140b (Intermedaite Akkadian: Grammar, CH, Descent of Ishtar)

  • Spring 2016:

    HIST/ANE M104 (History of Mesopotamia & Syria)

    SEM 240 (Advanced Akkadian: Middle Assyrian Laws)



  • Robert K. Englund. Organisation and Verwaltung der Ur III-Fischerei (=Berliner Beiträge zum Vorderen Orient 10; Berlin 1990) (PDF copy [2.2 GB])
  • _____________. Archaic Administrative Documents from Uruk: The Early Campaigns (=Archaische Texte aus Uruk 5; Berlin 1994)
  • _____________. Proto-Cuneiform Texts from Diverse Collections (=Materialien zu den frühen Schriftzeugnissen des Vorderen Orients 4; Berlin 1996)
  • _____________ and Gregoire, Jean-Pierre. The Proto-Cuneiform Texts from Jemdet Nasr, I: Copies, Transliterations and Sign Glossary (=Materialien zu den frühen Schriftzeugnissen des Vorderen Orients 1; Berlin 1991)
  • _____________ and Nissen, Hans J. Die lexikalischen Listen der archaischen Texte aus Uruk (=Archaische Texte aus Uruk 3; Berlin 1993)
  • _____________ and Nissen, Hans J. Archaische Verwaltungstexte aus Uruk: Vorderasiatisches Museum II (=Archaische Texte aus Uruk 6; Berlin 2005)
  • _____________ and Nissen, Hans J. Archaische Verwaltungstexte aus Uruk: Die Heidelberger Sammlung (=Archaische Texte aus Uruk 7; Berlin 2001)
  • Bauer, Josef, Robert K. Englund, and Manfred Krebernik. Mesopotamien: Späturuk-Zeit und Frühdynastische Zeit (=Orbis Biblicus et Orientalis 160/1; Freiburg, Switzerland, 1998 [PDF copy of "Late Uruk" [67.3 MB])
  • Damerow, Peter, and Robert K. Englund, with an introduction by C. C. Lamberg-Karlovsky. The Proto-Elamite Texts from Tepe Yahya (=American School of Prehistoric Research Bulletin 39; Cambridge, Mass., 1989, 22003 [PDF copy [16.5 MB]])
  • Nissen, Hans J., Damerow, Peter, and Robert K. Englund. Frühe Schrift und Techniken der Wirtschaftsverwaltung im alten Vorderen Orient (Berlin 1990, 21991, 32004)
  • __________________________________________. Archaic Bookkeeping (Chicago 1993; revised English edition of Frühe Schrift)


  • Robert K. Englund. “Dilmun in the Archaic Uruk Corpus,” in: D. T. Potts, ed., Dilmun: New Studies in the Archaeology and Early History of Bahrain (=BBVO 2; Berlin 1983) 35-37 (PDF copy [400 KB])
  • _____________. “Exotic Fruits,” in: D. T. Potts, ed., Dilmun: New Studies in the Archaeology and Early History of Bahrain (=BBVO 2; Berlin 1983) 87-89 (PDF copy [340 KB])
  • _____________. “Administrative Timekeeping in Ancient Mesopotamia,” Journal of the Economic and Social History of the Orient 31 (1988) 121-185 (PDF copy [3.3 MB])
  • _____________. “Archaic Dairy Metrology,” Iraq 53 (1991) 101-104 (PDF copy [2 MB]; see the CDLI entry of the inscription)
  • _____________. “Fragment of an EnTEMEna Bowl,” Altorientalische Forschungen 18 (1991) 188-189 (PDF copy [710 KB]; see the CDLI entry)
  • _____________. “Hard Work: Where Will It Get You? Labor Management in Ur III Mesopotamia,” Journal of Near Eastern Studies 50 (1991) 255-280 (PDF copy [13.7 MB]; see the CDLI entry of Berlin 57)
  • _____________. “Ur III Sundries,” Acta Sumerologica 14 (1992) 77-102 (PDF copy [10.8 MB])
  • _____________. “Late Uruk Period Cattle and Dairy Products: Evidence from Proto-Cuneiform Sources,” in: Bulletin of Sumerian Agriculture 8/2 (Warminster, 1995) 33-48 (PDF copy [1.2 MB])
  • _____________. “There’s a Rat in my Soup!,” AoF 22 (1995) 37-55 (PDF copy [6 MB])
  • _____________. “Question Mark Retrieval,” NABU 1995: 38 (PDF copy [728 KB])
  • _____________. “Regulating Dairy Productivity in the Ur III Period,” Orientalia 64 (1995) 377-429 (PDF copy [3.2 MB])
  • _____________. “Late Uruk Pigs and Other Herded Animals,” in: U. Finkbeiner, R. Dittmann and H. Hauptmann, eds., Festschrift Boehmer (Mainz 1995) 121-133 (PDF copy [7.7 MB])
  • _____________. “The Proto-Elamite Script,” in: P. Daniels and W. Bright, eds., The World’s Writing Systems (New York/Oxford 1996) 160-164 (PDF copy [2.3 MB])
  • _____________. “Elam iii. Proto-Elamite,” in: Encyclopaedia Iranica VIII/3 (Costa Mesa, CA, 1998) 325-330 (PDF copy [2.3 MB])
  • _____________. “Die Erfindung der Schrift in Uruk,” in: W. Seipel and A. Wieczorek, eds., Von Babylon bis Jerusalem vol. 2 (Milan 1999) 251-254 (PDF copy [3.4 MB])
  • _____________. “Diffusione ed evoluzione della scrittura,” in: S. Petruccioli, ed., Storia della Scienza vol. 1: La scienza antica (Rome 2001) 326-334 (PDF copy [2.9 MB])
  • _____________. “Grain Accounting Practices in Archaic Mesopotamia,” in: J. Høyrup and Peter Damerow, eds., Changing Views on Ancient Near Eastern Mathematics (=BBVO 19; Berlin, 2001) 1-35 (PDF copy [792 KB])
  • _____________. “Notes on SET 274", Cuneiform Digital Library Bulletin 2002:2 (PDF copy [56 KB])
  • _____________. “The Ur III Collection of the CMAA", Cuneiform Digital Library Journal 2002:1 (PDF copy [1 MB])
  • _____________. “The Year: “Nissen returns joyous from a distant island" “, Cuneiform Digital Library Journal 2003:1 (PDF copy [2.4 MB])
  • _____________. “Worcester Slaughterhouse Account", Cuneiform Digital Library Bulletin 2003:1 (PDF copy [88 KB])
  • _____________. “Proto-Cuneiform Account-Books and Journals,” in: Michael Hudson and Cornelia Wunsch, eds., Creating Economic Order: Record-keeping, Standardization and the Development of Accounting in the Ancient Near East (CDL Press: Bethesda, Maryland, 2004) 23-46 (PDF copy [716 KB])
  • _____________. “Banks in Banning,” in: H. Waetzoldt, ed., Von Sumer nach Ebla und Zurück (= Festschrift Pettinato; Heidelberger Orientverlag: Heidelberg 2004) 35-44 (PDF copy [6.5 MB])
  • _____________. “The State of Decipherment of Proto-Elamite,” in: Stephen D. Houston, ed., The First Writing: Script Invention as History and Process (Cambridge University Press: Cambridge, UK, 2004) 100-149 (PDF copy [1.6 MB])
  • _____________. “An Examination of the “Textual” Witnesses to Late Uruk World Systems,” in: Yushu Gong and Yiyi Chen, eds., A Collection of Papers on Ancient Civilizations of Western Asia, Asia Minor and North Africa (= Oriental Studies Special Issue; Beijing 2006) 1-38 (PDF copy [12.1 MB])
  • _____________. “Proto-Elamisch,” in: Michael P. Streck, ed., Reallexikon der Assyriologie 11/1-2 (Berlin, 2006) 21-26 (PDF copy [3.4 MB])
  • _____________. “Three Texts from Uqair,” Cuneiform Digital Library Notes 2006:2
  • _____________. “New Hits for Erlenmeyer 152,” Cuneiform Digital Library Notes 2007:1
  • _____________. “A Minnesota Estate,” Cuneiform Digital Library Notes 2007:2
  • _____________. “Would We Have Noticed the Loss of the Iraqi Museum?: The Case for the Virtual Duplication of Cultural Heritage Collections,” in: James O'Donnell, ed., Digitizing the Humanities: The Richard W. Lyman Award Lectures (Research Triangle Park, North Carolina, 2007) 23-31 (PDF copy [752 KB])
  • _____________. “The Smell of the Cage,” Cuneiform Digital Library Journal 2009:4 (PDF copy [720 KB]) [reprinted in: Festschrift Ivanov (2010) 68-94]
  • _____________. “BU!,” in Alexandra Kleinerman and Jack M. Sasson, eds., Why Should Someone Who Knows Something Conceal It? Cuneiform Studies in Honor of David I. Owen on His 70th Birthday (Bethesda, MD, 2010: CDLI Press) 95-114 (PDF copy [3.8 MB])
  • _____________. “Recently Published Catalogues of Cuneiform Collections,” Cuneiform Digital Library Notes 2010:4
  • _____________. “A Note on one of Kazuya Maekawa’s Ur III Contributions,” Cuneiform Digital Library Notes 2011:3
  • _____________. “The State of CDLI’s Ur III Transliterations,” Cuneiform Digital Library Notes 2011:4
  • _____________. “Notes on KIDa,” Cuneiform Digital Library Notes 2011:6
  • _____________. “Accounting in Proto-Cuneiform,” in K. Radner & E. Robson, eds., The Oxford Handbook of Cuneiform Culture (Oxford 2011) 32-50 (PDF copy [1.3 MB])
  • _____________. “Equivalency Values and the Command Economy of the Ur III Period in Mesopotamia,” in J. Papadopoulos & G. Urton, eds., The Construction of Value in the Ancient World (Los Angeles 2012) 427-458 (PDF copy [0.8 MB])
  • _____________. “Versilberte Arbeit: Äquivalenzenfestsetzung in der Ur-III-Zeit,” in H. Neumann, ed., Wissenskultur im Alten Orient: Weltanschauung, Wissenschaften, Techniken, Technologien. CDOG 4 (Münster 2012) 121-152 (PDF copy [1.1 MB])
  • _____________. “Seals and Sealing in CDLI files,” Cuneiform Digital Library Notes 2014:4
  • _____________. “The Late Uruk Period Texts,” in I. Spar & M Jursa, Cuneiform Texts in the Metropolitan Museum of Art vol. 4 (2014) 338-340
  • _____________. “From Banning to Changchun: Cuneiform Studies Online, Today and Tomorrow,” The Ancient Near East Today 2015 III/3
  • Robert K. Englund, Peter Damerow, Jürgen Renn, Stephen J. Tinney, and Bertrand Lafont. “A note to clarify CDLI’s policy of open access, and of fair use of published images of cuneiform inscriptions,” Cuneiform Digital Library Notes 2012:3
  • Damerow, Peter, and Robert K. Englund. “Die Zahlzeichensysteme der Archaischen Texte aus Uruk,” in: M. W. Green and H. J. Nissen, Zeichenliste der Archaischen Texte aus Uruk (=ATU 2; Berlin 1987) 117-166 (PDF copy [4.8 MB])
  • _____________________________. “Bemerkungen zu den vorangehenden Aufsätzen von A. A. Vaiman unter Berücksichtigung der 1987 erschienenen Zeichenliste ATU 2,” Baghdader Mitteilungen 20 (1989) 133-138 (PDF copy [2.5 MB])
  • Damerow, Peter, Robert K. Englund, and Hans J. Nissen. “Die Entstehung der Schrift,” Spektrum der Wissenschaft, February 1988, 74-85 (reprinted in: J. Dittami, ed., Signale und Kommunikation [Heidelberg/Berlin/Oxford 1993] 150-161, and B. Riese, ed., Sprache und Schrift: Ein Lesebuch [= Verständliche Forschung; Heidelberg/Berlin/Oxford, 1994] 90-101) (PDF copy [10.7 MB])
  • __________________________________________. “Die ersten Zahldarstellungen und die Entwicklung des Zahlbegriffs,” Spektrum der Wissenschaft, March 1988, 46-55 (reprinted in: B. Riese, ed., Sprache und Schrift, 102-111) (PDF copy [11.4 MB])
  • __________________________________________. “Zur rechnergestützten Bearbeitung der archaischen Texte aus Mesopotamien,” Mitteilungen der Deutschen Orient-Gesellschaft 121 (1989) 139-152 (PDF copy [2.2 MB])
  • __________________________________________. “Indrukken in Klei: Het begin van det getal,” Natuur & Techniek 59 (1991) 696-707 (PDF copy [5.9 MB])
  • __________________________________________. “Die Geburt der Schrift,” die waage 30 (1991) 2-7 (PDF copy [2.1 MB])


  • Robert K. Englund. Review of D. Schmandt-Besserat, Before Writing, in: Science 260 (11 June 1993) 1670-1671 (PDF copy [2.1 MB])
  • _____________. Review of B. Lafont and F. Yıldız, Tablettes cunéiformes de Tello au Musée d’Istanbul I, in: Archiv für Orientforschung 40-41 (1993-1994) 98-103 (PDF copy [5.3 MB])
  • _____________. Review of P. Steinkeller, Third-Millennium Legal and Administrative Texts in the Iraq Museum, Baghdad, in: Bulletin of the School of Oriental and African Studies 57 (1994) 588-590 (PDF copy [1.8 MB])
  • _____________. Review of D. Frayne, The Early Dynastic List of Geographical Names, in: Orientalische Literaturzeitung 90 (1995) 162-169 (PDF copy [1.8 MB])
  • _____________. Review of F. Yıldız and T. Gomi, Die Umma-Texte aus den Archäologischen Museen zu Istanbul III, in: Archiv für Orientforschung 42-43 (1995-1996) 226-228 (PDF copy [3.1 MB])
  • _____________. Review of D. Schmandt-Besserat, How Writing Came About, in: Written Language and Literacy 1 (1998) 257-261 (PDF copy [1.9 MB])
  • _____________. Review of D. Sahrhage, Fischfang und Fischkult im alten Mesopotamien, in: Archiv für Orientforschung 46-47 (1999-2000) 259-260 (PDF copy [2.1 MB])
  • _____________. Review of T. Gomi and F. Yıldız, Die Umma-Texte aus den Archäologischen Museen zu Istanbul IV, in: Archiv für Orientforschung 46-47 (1999-2000) 255-257 (PDF copy [2.8 MB])
  • _____________. Review of B. Lafont and F. Yıldız, Tablettes cunéiformes de Tello au Musée d’Istanbul II, in: Archiv für Orientforschung 46-47 (1999-2000) 257-259 (PDF copy [3 MB])
  • _____________. Review of G. Visicato, The Power and the Writing: The Early Scribes of Mesopotamia, in: Journal of the American Oriental Society 121 (2001) 498-500 (PDF copy [1.1 MB])
  • _____________. Review of P. Charvat, On People, Signs and States: Spotlight on Sumerian Society, ca. 3500-2500 B.C., in: Archiv für Orientforschung 48-49 (2001-2002) 498-500 (PDF copy [2.1 MB])
  • _____________. Review of H. Martin, et al., The Fara Tablets in the University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology, in: Journal of Cuneiform Studies 54 (2002) 125-130 (PDF copy [4.2 MB])
  • _____________. Review of K. Szarzynska, Sheep Husbandry and Production of Wool, Garments and Cloths in Archaic Sumer, in: Journal of the American Oriental Society 124 (2004) 204 (PDF copy [1.1 MB])
  • _____________. Review of J.-J. Glassner, The Invention of Cuneiform: Writing in Sumer, in: Journal of the American Oriental Society 125 (2005) 113-116 (PDF copy [3.9 MB])




Damerow, Peter, and Robert K. Englund. 1989. [Yahya (Damerow1989Yahya)]

Damerow, Peter, Robert K. Englund, and Hans J. Nissen. 1991. “Indrukken in Klei. Het Begin van Het Getal.” Natuur En Techniek 59/9: 696–707. [Natuur en techniek 59/9, p.696-707 (Damerow1991)]

Englund, Robert K. 1988. “Administrative Timekeeping in Ancient Mesopotamia.” Journal of the Economic and Social History of the Orient 31: 121–85. [JESHO 31, p.121-185 (Englund1988timekeeping)]

Englund, Robert K. 1990. Organization Und Verwaltung Der Ur III-Fischerei. Vol. 10. BBVO. Dietrich Reimer Verlag: Berlin. [Englund1990-116 (Englund1990-116)]

Englund, Robert K. 1990. Organisation Und Verwaltung Der Ur III-Fischerei. Berliner Beiträge Zum Vorderen Orient, Band 10. Berlin: Dietrich Reimer. [BBVO 10 (Englund1990Fischerei)]

Englund, Robert K. 1991. [JNES 50, 255-280 (Englund1991-19727)]

Englund, Robert K., Jean-Pierre Grégoire, and Roger J. Matthews. 1991. The Proto-Cuneiform Texts from Jemdet Nasr. I: Copies, Transliterations and Glossary. Materialien Zu Den Frühen Schriftzeugnissen Des Vorderen Orients (MSVO), Band 1. Berlin: Gebr. Mann. [MSVO 1 (Englund1991MSVO1)]

Englund, Robert K. 1992. “Ur III Sundries.” Acta Sumerologica 14: 77–102. [ASJ 14, p.77-102 (Englund1992sundries)]

Englund, Robert K. 1993-1994. “Review of Tablettes Cunéiformes de Tello Au Musée d’Istanbul, Datant de l’époque de La III Dynastie d’Ur I.” Archiv Für Orientforschung 40–41. [AfO 40-41 (pp.98-103) (Englund1993-1994AfO40-41)]

Englund, Robert K., and Hans J. Nissen. 1993. Die Lexikalischen Listen Der Archaischen Texte Aus Uruk. Archaische Texte Aus Uruk, Band 3. Berlin: Gebr. Mann. [ATU 3 (Englund1993ATU3)]

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Founder and previous director at CDLI



Created Type Description Role Status
2023-06-09 at 15:05:06 artifact Author approved
2023-06-09 at 12:27:55 artifact Author approved
2023-06-08 at 17:35:40 atf Author approved
2023-06-08 at 16:36:28 artifact Author approved
2020-05-11 at 09:28:42 atf Creator approved
2020-05-08 at 09:34:31 atf Creator approved
2020-05-07 at 14:23:49 atf Creator approved
2020-05-04 at 16:25:00 atf Creator approved
2020-04-27 at 17:34:09 atf Creator approved
2020-04-27 at 12:39:54 atf Creator approved

Page 1 of 4,401, showing 10 record(s) out of 44,009 total

Page 1 of 4,401, showing 10 record(s) out of 44,009 total

Cite this Author
CDLI contributors. 2024. “Englund, Robert K. - Authors.” Cuneiform Digital Library Initiative. February 23, 2024. https://cdli.mpiwg-berlin.mpg.de/authors/630.
CDLI contributors. (2024, February 23). Englund, Robert K. - Authors. Cuneiform Digital Library Initiative. https://cdli.mpiwg-berlin.mpg.de/authors/630
CDLI contributors (2024) Englund, Robert K. - Authors, Cuneiform Digital Library Initiative. Available at: https://cdli.mpiwg-berlin.mpg.de/authors/630 (Accessed: February 23, 2024).
	note = {[Online; accessed 2024-02-23]},
	author = {{CDLI contributors}},
	year = {2024},
	month = {feb 23},
	title = {Englund, {Robert} {K}. - {Authors}},
	howpublished = {https://cdli.mpiwg-berlin.mpg.de/authors/630},

AU  - CDLI contributors
DA  - 2024/2/23/
PY  - 2024
ID  - temp_id_769121972440
M1  - 2024/2/23/
TI  - Englund, Robert K. - Authors
UR  - https://cdli.mpiwg-berlin.mpg.de/authors/630
ER  - 
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