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Civilizations of Ancient Iraq

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Opis



Tells the fascinating story of ancient Mesopotamia from the earliest settlements ten thousand years ago to the Arab conquest in the 7th century. This book traces the rise and fall of successive civilizations and people in Iraq over the course of millennia - from the Sumerians and Assyrians to the Persians, Seleucids, Parthians, and Sassanians.

In "Civilizations of Ancient Iraq", Benjamin and Karen Foster tell the fascinating story of ancient Mesopotamia from the earliest settlements ten thousand years ago to the Arab conquest in the seventh century. Accessible and concise, this is the most up-to-date and authoritative book on the subject. With illustrations of important works of art and architecture in every chapter, the narrative traces the rise and fall of successive civilizations and people in Iraq over the course of millennia - from the Sumerians, Babylonians, and Assyrians to the Persians, Seleucids, Parthians, and Sassanians. Ancient Iraq was home to remarkable achievements. One of the birthplaces of civilization, it saw the world's earliest cities and empires, writing and literature, science and mathematics, monumental art, and innumerable other innovations. "Civilizations of Ancient Iraq" gives special attention to these milestones, as well as to political, social, and economic history. And because archaeology is the source of almost everything we know about ancient Iraq, the book includes an epilogue on the discovery and fate of its antiquities.; Compelling and timely, "Civilizations of Ancient Iraq" is an essential guide to understanding Mesopotamia's central role in the development of human culture.

Illustrations ix Preface xi CHAPTER 1: IN THE BEGINNING Of Tigris and Euphrates 1 The First Villages 7 From the Foothills to the Plains 12 CHAPTER 2: THE BIRTHPLACE OF CIVILIZATION The First Cities 15 From City to State 27 Sumerians Abroad 29 Setting Words on Clay 30 The Uruk Phenomenon 33 CHAPTER 3: EARLY CITY-STATES New Polities 35 Ur and the Royal Graves 36 When Kingship Came down from Heaven 39 Shuruppak, City of Wisdom 40 A Tale of Two Cities 42 CHAPTER 4: KINGS OF THE FOUR QUARTERS OF THE WORLD The First Empire 51 Naram-Sin: When Kingship Went up to Heaven 55 A Golden Age of Sumerian Culture 61 Management and Crisis 67 CHAPTER 5: THE AGE OF HAMMURABI The Amorites 71 Rim-Sin, King of Larsa 73 Shamshi-Adad, King of Upper Mesopotamia 74 Hammurabi, King of Babylon 76 Arts of the Table and Bedroom 81 The Epic of Gilgamesh 83 The End of Amorite Rule 85 CHAPTER 6: BABYLONIA IN THE FAMILY OF NATIONS The Kassites 87 Kassite Statecraft and Society 90 The Club of Great Powers 93 Science and Literature 94 The Hurrians 99 The End of Kassite Rule 100 CHAPTER 7: THE ASSYRIAN ACHIEVEMENT The Rise of Assur 105 The Middle Assyrian Empire 109 The Neo-Assyrian Empire 113 Assurnasirpal II and Nimrud 115 Sennacherib and Nineveh 119 The Library of Assurbanipal 123 The Fall of Assyria 126 CHAPTER 8: THE GLORY OF BABYLON The Last Babylonian Empire 129 Nabonidus, King of Babylon 132 Learning and Memory in Babylonia 134 Works and Days 140 The Persian Empire 142 CHAPTER 9: MESOPOTAMIA BETWEEN TWO WORLDS Alexander the Great and the Seleucids 147 Antiochus I Soter, King of Asia 149 The Realm and Its Economy 152 The Culture of Hellenistic Babylonia 154 The Rise of Parthia 156 Mithridates I and the Reunification of Iraq 158 Parthian Iraq 160 Roman Armies in Iraq 164 The End of Mesopotamian Civilization 166 CHAPTER 10: SASSANIAN IRAQ The Sassanian Empire and Religious Pluralism 168 By the Waters of Babylon: Judaism in Iraq 173 Christianity in Iraq 176 Sassanian Society, Statecraft, and Economy 178 Arab Settlement in Iraq 180 Sassanian Art 182 Shapur I and Shapur II 184 The Sassanians and Byzantium 187 Prelude to Conquest 189 EPILOGUE: Discovery and Destruction of Ancient Iraq Exploration and Decipherment 191 Archaeology Past and Present 198 The Nation of Iraq and Cultural Heritage 201 The Gulf War and Cultural Destruction 205 The Iraq War and Cultural Devastation 206 Notes 211 Bibliography 231 Index 283
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