The Cyrus Cylinder is one of the most celebrated discoveries from the ancient world, with a legacy that resounds to this day. Inscribed on the orders of the Persian king Cyrus II (ruled 559-530 B.C.), the cylinder recounts how he conquered the city of Babylon in 539 B.C. and instituted reforms throughout the region, restoring sanctuaries that had become dilapidated and permitting exiled peoples to return home.
According to Timothy Potts, Director of the J. Paul Getty Museum: "The Cyrus Cylinder is one of the most important works to have survived from the ancient world.