By Charles River Editors
*Includes old debts describing Assur and the Assyrians
*Includes a bibliography for additional reading
*Includes a desk of contents
“All who pay attention the inside track of your destruction clap their arms for pleasure. Did not anyone break out your unending cruelty?” - Nahum 3:19
In northern Iraq, at the banks of the Tigris River, lie the ruins of the traditional urban of Aššur. This was once the 1st capital and crucial non secular middle of the Assyrian Empire. beneath the canopy of sand and soil are nearly six meters of dense stratigraphic layers that show the passage of millennia. identified at the present time as Qal’at Sherqat, and likewise as Kilah Shregat, the town dates again to the third millennium BCE. In that point interval, the Assyrian military grew to become the most important but obvious, and their warriors have been either the best and most harsh within the land. They conquered an empire from the Persian Gulf to the Mediterranean Sea; they despoiled the nice urban of Babylon, and so they enslaved the tribes of Israel. Even the pharaoh of Egypt paid them tribute. No military had ever carried conflict so far.
Indeed, Aššur was once the center of 1 of antiquity’s such a lot notorious warfare machines. while students learn the historical past of the traditional close to East, a number of wars that had tremendous brutal effects (at least by means of sleek criteria) frequently stand out. compelled removing of whole populations, sieges that decimated whole towns, and wanton destruction of estate have been all strategies utilized by a few of the peoples of the traditional close to East opposed to one another, however the Assyrians have been the 1st humans to make battle a technology. whilst the Assyrians are pointed out, photographs of battle and brutality are one of the first that spring to mind, even though their tradition prospered for almost 2,000 years.
Like a couple of old members and empires in that quarter, the unfavourable conception of historic Assyrian tradition used to be handed down via Biblical bills, and whatever the accuracy of the Bible’s depiction of sure occasions, the Assyrians sincerely performed the function of adversary for the Israelites. certainly, Assyria (Biblical Shinar) and the Assyrian humans performed a major function in lots of books of the outdated testomony and are first pointed out within the booklet of Genesis: “And the start of his nation was once Babel and Erech, and Akkad, and Calneh, within the land of Shinar. Out of that land went forth Ashur and outfitted Nineveh and the town Rehoboth and Kallah.” (Gen. 10:10-11).
Although the Biblical bills of the Assyrians are one of the finest and are frequently corroborated with different old assets, the Assyrians have been even more than simply the enemies of the Israelites and brutal thugs. A old survey of historical Assyrian tradition finds that even if they have been the excellent warriors in their time, they have been additionally very good retailers, diplomats, and hugely literate those who recorded their heritage and non secular rituals and beliefs in nice aspect. The Assyrians, like their different associates in Mesopotamia, have been literate and built their very own dialect of the Akkadian language that they used to jot down tens of hundreds of thousands of files within the cuneiform script (Kuhrt 2010, 1:84).
Although warfare performed this sort of important position in Assyrian society, they have been additionally energetic and filthy rich investors, and alternate used to be a necessary a part of Aššur’s development from its earliest levels. surprisingly, even in the course of army campaigns, retailers from the town engaged in advertisement interactions with the “enemy,” for instance with the Aramaeans in the course of the campaigns of Adad Nirari II. in preference to different towns in Mesopotamia, Aššur’s place intended that it was once in particular subjected to the impacts of its many friends in southern Mesopotamia; Anatolia, Syria, the Zagros Mountains, or even from the barbarian tribes north of the Caucasus Mountains. Their presence may be visible this present day within the structure and artifacts of the ruined urban.
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Extra resources for Assur: The History and Legacy of the Ancient Assyrian Empire’s Capital City
The characteristic elements of “empires” were not invented by the Persians or Romans but had been developed and refined long before these great powers by the Assyrians.  The problem with such empires is that they were diverse and multiethnic, which has historically made them difficult to unify, let alone maintain, over long periods of time. Around the time of the rise of the Assyrian Empire, the responsibility of the well-being and social order of the city-state’s population shifted from goods to people, as great palaces for royal elites emerged in cities across the region.
104] In return, the Assyrian merchants brought much wealth, most of it plundered from their military campaigns or crafted in the workshops of Aššur and Nineveh. One of the most important exports from Aššur would have been glass products, faience, and glazes of various types and colors.  The strategic location of the city meant that the Assyrian rulers could monitor the traffic and trade that moved along the Tigris River Valley. By the beginning of the 2nd millennium BCE, grave goods recovered from burial tombs at the Old Palace site indicate the complexity and scale of the trading network Aššur was part of.
Nahum 3:19 In northern Iraq, on the banks of the Tigris River, lie the ruins of the ancient city of Aššur. This was the first capital and the most important religious center of the Assyrian Empire. Underneath the cover of sand and soil are almost six meters of dense stratigraphic layers that reveal the passage of millennia. Known today as Qal’at Sherqat, and also as Kilah Shregat, the city dates back to the 3rd millennium BCE. In that time period, the Assyrian army became the largest yet seen, and their warriors were both the greatest and cruelest in the land.
Assur: The History and Legacy of the Ancient Assyrian Empire’s Capital City by Charles River Editors