Monday, February 23, 2015

Ancient history of Mesopotamia

The name ‘Mesopotamia’ is from Greek, ‘between the rivers’. It was coined by the Romans for the area between the Euphrates and the Tigris, which for some centuries was Rome’s easternmost province.

In contemporary usage Mesopotamia has acquired a broader meaning, referring not just to the land between the two main rivers but also to their tributaries and valleys, so describing an area that includes not only Iraq but also eastern Syria and south-eastern Turkey.

About 30,000 years ago, groups of Neanderthalers preferred to roam in areas where the climate supported a wide variety of game and edible plants and fruits so a sojourn could be e extended to the maximum length of time.

They lived by hunting wild goats, sheep, cattle and boar, deer, bear, fox and other animals as well as by collecting turtles, molluscs, snails and doubtlessly other edible substances as well.

From about 10,000 BC onward there are hints that the Near East was developing differently from neighboring regions. According to DNA analysis, 2000 years earlier modern man had found his way from East Africa to the Near East, where he encountered Neanderthalers.

Though they lived side by side for long periods, their coexistence ended in total victory for modern man.

In the Neolithic period (10,000 – 6,000 BC) other areas on the lee side of mountain ridges, in Syria and Anatolia became inhabited and the first densely occupied settlements with permanent architecture appeared.

The growing of crops on a regular basis gave rises to more permanent settlements, which historians refer to as Neolithic farming villagers or towns. One of the oldest and most extensive agricultural villages was Catal Huyuk, located in modern-day Turkey.

Its walls enclosed 32 acres, and its population probably reached six thousand inhabitants during its high point from 6700 to 5700 BC.

During the height of the Uruk period (3400-3200 BC), southern Mesopotamia had close economic links to northern and eastern neighboring regions.

The first unified state was that founded by Sargon of Akkad around 2350 BC. The Akkad dynasty was the first experiment with centralization; after it demise the country reverted to the particularism of independent city-sates.
Ancient history of Mesopotamia

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