New PDF release: A Companion to the Ancient Near East

Ancient Classical

By Daniel C. Snell

A spouse to the traditional close to East bargains scholars and normal readers a accomplished review of close to japanese civilization from the Bronze Age to the conquests of Alexander the good.

  • Covers the civilizations of the Sumerians, Hittites, Babylonians, Assyrians, Israelites and Persians
  • Places specific emphasis on social and cultural heritage
  • Covers the legacy of the traditional close to East within the medieval and smooth worlds
  • Provides an invaluable bibliographical advisor to this box of study

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Additional resources for A Companion to the Ancient Near East

Example text

Are Western scholars who characterize Ancient Near Eastern states as oppressive and exploitative subliminally affected by their opinions of the modern states of Iraq, Syria, and Turkey? Labeling Time and Locating Sites Time blocks and cultural labels are basic vocabulary elements in all archaeological discourse and some generalization is inevitable. But for Near Eastern prehistory, our time units are often over-long; for example the Ubaid period, 5800–4000 B C E , or the Levantine Pre-Pottery Neolithic period, 8200–5600 B C E , are about 2,000 years each.

Wars, destructions, and deportations intended to break local resistance and to provide manpower opened large voids in the productive structure of the empire, and the attempt to colonize marginal lands proved ineffective. Establishment of the empire had been based on the physical and cultural destruction of the annexed areas; the maintenance of the empire proved a very hard task on such a depleted productive basis. After Assurbanipal, twenty years of wars over succession to the throne were sufficient to bring the empire to its final collapse.

In the extreme western periphery, in Greece, a few small city-states were still left, however. The expeditions by Darius (490) and Xerxes (480) tried to eliminate that minor anomaly and to absorb the distant and almost irrelevant appendix of the Near Eastern world. But things went differently from what the Persians planned, and the struggle between the universal empire and the last city-states not only ended in the unpredictable rebuff of the Persians, but also generated in Greek, and later European, minds the opposition between East and West, between despotism and democracy, slavery and freedom, magic and rationality, and redistribution and enterprise, which was to mark world history for many millennia to come.

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