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Salih said the artefacts date back to the eighth century BC in the Assyrian period and hail from the palace of King Esarhaddon whose existence in the area was known to Iraqi archaeologists.

Two mural sculptures in white marble show the winged bulls with only the sides and feet showing.

DATING THE REIGNS OF THE KINGS OF JUDAH AND ISRAEL • Documents • Old Testament Documents The annals of the Assyrian Empire discovered by archaeologists record 12 years between the reigns of King Ahab of Israel and King Jehu of Israel.

However, the Biblical record records 14 years between the reigns of these two kings with two kings between them, Ahaziah who ruled for two years and Jehoram who ruled 12 years ( 1 Kings ; 2 Kings 3:1).

Historians call this method the "accession year" system or the "post-dating" system.