French diplomat and antiquarian best known for his work in Iraq. While posted as French Consul to Mosul between 1840 and 1843 he excavated a number of sites, including Khorsabed, which he believed to be the ancient city of Nineveh. In 1843 he uncovered, for the first time, structures relating to the Assyrian Empire. He and others were struck by the magnificence of the art and decoration lavished on the buildings, especially the great winged bulls. With the recovery of loot his primary objective, Botta uncovered much of great importance in a short time. Many of the sculptures from Khorsabed are now in the Louvre in Paris.
F. H. McGovern and J. N. McGovern, 1986, Portrait of Paul‐Émile Botta. Biblical Archaeologist, 49.2