Phone number: +44 (0)1223 760570

Email: jt812@cam.ac.uk

Dr Jonathan Tenney

Fellow, Curator of Works of Art, Director of Studies in Archaeology
University Positions
University Lecturer in Assyriology
Specialising in
Cuneiform Languages

Jonathan Tenney uses the methodologies of philology and social science to analyse archaeological evidence and cuneiform tablets from ancient Mesopotamia (Iraq, Iran, and Syria).

Academic interests

Jonathan Tenney’s academic interests include: 

  • Cuneiform
  • Akkadian and Sumerian languages
  • Historical demography of Mesopotamia
  • Settlement and environment
  • Comparative slavery
  • Religious and political ideologies in Mesopotamia.

Degrees obtained

  • BA, Edinboro University of Pennsylvania.
  • PhD, University of Chicago.

Awards and prizes

  • Outstanding Dissertation Prize by The American Academic Research Institute in Iraq, 2009.


Jonathan Tenney is an Assyriologist specialising in the archaeological and documentary evidence from Mesopotamia. He has written extensively on the Late Bronze Age and early Iron Age of Babylonia.

His past research has considered Babylonian population dynamics and socio-legal institutions, urbanism in southern Babylonia, the exchange of knowledge and text from Babylonia to Assyria, and the development of state ideologies. His current work considers the materiality, processes, and social maps used in the composition of bureaucratic records and the epistemological methodology Assyriologist's use to study them.

Other interests

Cycling and other endurance sports, pets.

Department link


Publications, links and resources

Please visit Jonathan Tenney’s faculty page for a selection of his key publications to date.

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