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The statue is Gudea, King of Lagash, circa 2100 BCE.

The kingdom of Lagash was part of what is called the
Sumerian Renaissance.

The civilized world seemed very old in Gudea's day.
Much was known.

Writing had been invented over a thousand years before.
Astronomical observations were systematized. Elaborate public works and court rituals existed.

But mankind in 2100 BCE was only at the beginning.

The civilized world seems very old today, as it did then.
Much more is known.

But we also are only at the beginning.

Statue in the British Museum -- Photograph by O. Johns
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