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Transcript
ANCIENT MESOPOTAMIA:
EMERGENCE OF CITIES
AND STATES
3000-2000 BCE
Meso
potamos
Mesopotomos
MESOPOTAMIA:LAND
BETWEEN THE RIVERS
The Euphrates
River
The Tigris River
Mesopotamian
Plain
Irrigation: The Mesopotamian
System
• Water is transported
from the rivers to these
surrounding plains to
provide water for
agriculture
• This can also bring
more sediments and
make the area more
fertile.
• This is at the heart of
the Mesopotamian
settlement system
Salinization
• Irrigation water is a dilute solution of various salts
• Irrigation water not absorbed into the soil
evaporates, leaving behind a thin crust of
dissolved salts
• The accumulation of these salts, called
salinization stunts crop growth, lowers yields,
and eventually kills plants and ruins the land
Mudbricks for
buildings
Clay sickle for
Harvesting
ANCIENT SUMERIAN
MESOPOTAMIAN:
• CITIES: ERIDU, URUK, UBAID,UR, NIPPUR,
LAGASH, KISH, KHAFAJE, ESHNUNNA
• Sumerians were the first ethnic group to live in
the area
• KA.KA.DI = the Black headed ones
• Redistributive: political and economic centers
• Commercial: centers of trade
• Ceremonial: seats of Mesopotamian gods
• Agricultural, pastoral, aquaculture, industrial,
commercial, cultic, administrative activities
Sumerian period Uruk/ Warka -first city
(home of Gilgamesh)
 Anu
 Inanna
(Ištar)
Religion
• The insecurity of life in Mesopotamia reflected in
Sumerian religion
• Religion was based on the things that dominated
their agricultural life– the Sky, Storms, Mother
Earth etc.
• Pantheon of gods throughout most of Meso history
• BUT Each city state always had its own patron deity
• Sumerian pantheon continued to be worshipped in
later periods, but under dif names, head of
Pantheon changed based on which city/ empire was
in charge
Sumerian Deities were
anthropomorphic
Not only looked human,
but had many human
virtues – good and bad
Immortal with control over
humans and the human
world
An or Anu was the original head of the
pantheon, but later gets usurped by Enlil –
both god of sky/ air
Nippur becomes the holy city for all Sumer
for a long time
Feeding the gods
• Would serve the god two meals a day
• Accompanied by music, incense
• Statue would be hidden by a curtain
Sumerian votive
statues (2600 BCE):
Represented the
worshippers 24/7
White Temple
White Temple
PRIEST-KING
• SUMERIAN PRIEST WERE THE
FIRST KNOWN RULERS
• 3000-2600 BC
• POWER DIVIDED AMONG THE
PRIESTS, ADMINISTRATORS AND
WARRIORS
• AWILUM WAS THE CLASS OF
FREED MAN
• LARGE BODY OF SLAVES BELOW
THAT
Functions of the temples
• House of the god
• Worship, care, and feeding of the deities
• Storage and display of statues, votive
gifts
• Owned property
• Specialized craft production
• Storage of agricultural surplus
• Promoted trade
PICTOGRAPHIC WRITING
• URUK
• 3200 BC
• ACCOUNTS of
ECONOMICAL
ACTIVITIES
• WRITTEN and KEPT
in the TEMPLES
LANGUAGE UNKNOWN
Developments from trade
Writing?
• Earliest texts arise from economic needs –
accounting
• Initially start off as tokens sealed in clay
envelopes
• Then wedge shaped marks were inscribed on
clay tablets with a reed stylus
• The script is called CUNEIFORM (cuneus is
the word for wedge in Latin)
• First cuneiform symbols were pictograms,
then ideograms (standardized figures
representing objects or abstract concepts),
latter adding of syllabic symbols provided
more flexibility
STAMP & CYLINDER SEALS
• Starts with Neolithic but Cylinder Seals become
common in the Early Dynastic Period 3000 BC
• Administrative tools of the bureaucracy
• Symbol of ownership, symbol of authority and control
• Iconography of seals: scenes from life, mythology,
ceremonies
SUMERIAN
King Sargon of Akkad -first empire
Subartu/Assyria
Akkad
Sumer
• First King called
Sharu-ukin
• Means “True King”
• Become Sargon in
English
Akkadian Empire
• Centered on the city of Akkad or Agade
• Ruled by a single dynasty of 5 kings dating
to 2340-2200
• Largely a conglomeration of different groups
under a single military power
• Establishment of Akkadian empire made the
Akkadian language the international
language of the Near East
• Akkadian Art also became standard
Akkadian Empire
Later Kings of Akkad
•Rimush
•Manishtushu
•Narim-Sin
•Sharkallishari
Victory Stele of Narim-Sin
•New Approach to Art
•Depiction of Historical events
•Head dress with horns
•Landscapes depicted
•Naturalism in human forms
End of Akkadian Empire
• Sometime around 2159 Akkad is sacked by
Gutians from the north
• Shattering of Akkadian empire back into city
states
• Lagash became prominent city in the south
under king Gudea
The
Ur III Period
Ki-Engi & Ki-Uri
King of Sumer &
Akkad
Ziggurat
SHAD –
Mountain
Residential Quarters
The Babylonian Period
Hammurrapi
• An Amorite leader who
came to the throne after
his father
• Reigned for 43 years
• At first was vassal of the
main power of the time –
Assyria
• Eventually takes over all
of the N and the S of
Mesopotamia, bringing
the Golden Age of
Babylonian history
Hammurappi’s Law Code
• Found at Susa by French
• In Louvre today
• It is believed to have
originally sat in Sippar
• Taken to Susa by
Elamites in Middle
Elamite period
• Sets out general outline
of society and how
different groups interact
• Also how groups should
be governed given the
different levels of society
End of the Old B Period
• Most will say it crumbled right after the death
of Hamurappi – bit of an exaggeration
• Far in the north new groups began to
emerge – non-Semites – Indo-Europeans
• Groups from somewhere north of the Black
Sea, move into Anatolia
• Major Kingdom of the Hittites, based in
Hattusha
• Babylon was sacked in 1595 in a lightening
raid by the Hittites leaving political chaos
URBAN REVOLUTION?
GORDON CHILDE’S 10
CRITERIA
• Monumental
architecture: temples,
around 100,000 people
fortification walls,
Full-time specialization
irrigation canals,
Concentration of surplus
palaces, storage areas
Class-structured society
• Invention of Writing
State organization as a
political form, existence of a • Long-distance trade
• Standardized,
ruling class
monumental art-work
• Arithmetic, geometry,
astronomy
• Large settlements and high
population Uruk: Population
•
•
•
•