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ARCH 21908: Archaeology of the Ancient Near East : Middle Bronze Age Mesopotamia (Ur III)

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Middle Bronze Age Mesopotamia (Ur III)

The drought that ended the Akkadian Empire set into motion events in the Middle Bronze Age (about 2,100–1,550 BCE) that could not be undone. This included migration of Semitic and Indo-European people, particularly Amorites and Hurrians whose arrival changed the course of history. One Amorite, Hammurabi, founded the Babylonia in southern Mesopotamia; while the Hurrians founded the Mitanni kingdom in northern Mesopotamia, who briefly dominated Assyria. Hurrians also made up a large part of the Hittite Empire that was founded in present-day Turkey at the time that Babylonia and Assyria began vying for control over Mesopotamia.

Key Sites

Assur (Iraq)

Babylon (Iraq)

Hattusa (Turkey)

Isin (Iraq)

Lagash (Iraq)

Larsa (Iraq)

Nineveh (Iraq)

Key Citations

Bryce, Trevor

2002  Life and Society in the Hittite World. Oxford University Press, Oxford.

Campbell, Dennis R. M.

2016  The introduction of Hurrian religion into the Hittite empire. Religion Compass 10(12):295–306. DOI:10.1111/rec3.12225.

Goddeeris, Anne

2009  The Old Babylonian Economy. In The Babylonian World, edited by Gwendolyn Leick, pp. 198–209. Routledge, New York.

Leemans, W. F.

1960  Foreign trade in the old Babylonian period as revealed by texts from Southern Mesopotamia. Brill, Leiden.

Lewy, Wildegard

1966  Assyria c.2600-1816 B.C. In The Cambridge Ancient History. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge.

McMahon, Augusta

2016  Mitanni Kingdom. In The Encyclopedia of Empire, pp. 1–3. Wiley.

Stephen, W. Richard

1979  The Rise of the Hittite Empire: A Comparison of Theories on the Origins of the State. Mid-American Review of Sociology 4(1):39–55.

Whiting, Robert

1995  Amorite Tribes and Nations of Second-Millenium Western Asia. In Civilizations of the Ancient Near East, edited by Jack Sasson, pp. 1231–1242. Scribner, New York.

Wilhelm, Gernot 1945-

1995  The kingdom of Mitanni in second-millennium upper Mesopotamia. In Civilizations of the ancient Near East, edited by John Baines and Jack Sasson, 2:pp. 1243–1254. Scribner, New York.

Yoffee, Norman

1998  The Economics of Ritual at Late Old Babylonian Kish. Journal of the Economic and Social History of the Orient 41(3):312–343. DOI:10.1163/1568520981436219.

Höflmayer, Felix, and Matthew J. Adams

2017   The Early/Middle Bronze Age transition in the Ancient Near East: chronology, C14, and climate change, held at the Oriental Institute of the University of Chicago, 7-8 March 2014." Oriental Institute seminars. Oriental Institute of the University of Chicago, 2017.