Ancient Civilizations

Ancient Mesopotamia: New Perspectives by Peter Knight

By Peter Knight

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Only the lowest exposed portions of the walls and gate survived; in 1927 these were taken to Berlin and incorporated into a reconstruction of the Ishtar Gate in the Pergamon Museum. Between 1899 and 1914, Koldewey surveyed the whole city of Babylon, establishing its plan, and excavated most of its principal buildings, including palaces, the massive walls surrounding the whole city, and the sacred precinct of the city’s patron deity, Marduk. Here he located the ziggurat that was probably the Tower of Babel; unfortunately, after the departure of the German team the local people totally destroyed it, using its bricks for construction.

Of the southern Mesopotamian civilization of Sumer and Akkad. The later nineteenth century was a time of great intellectual upheaval. The developing science of geology was revealing the immense age and gradual formation of the earth, while Charles Darwin was showing how life had evolved in all its diversity. E. In this epoch of challenge to established traditional views, many found it reassuring that archaeological research in the Near East was uncovering cities and records of individuals familiar from the Bible, thus confirming and buttressing its authenticity.

Ridpath, John Clark, Ridpath’s History of the World, 1901) Flandin, a distinguished painter, to record the finds. Despite tremendous difficulties, some maliciously created by the local Pasha, Botta managed to ship a number of the sculptures and other finds to France, where in 1847 they were displayed in the newly founded Musee des Antiquites Orientales in the Louvre. And in 1849 Botta published an impressive account of the excavations, including four volumes of Flandin’s superb illustrations. The novelty and splendor of the sculptures took Europe by storm.

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