2334-2154 BC

The Akkadian Empire

Sargon of Akkad founded the Akkadian empire – generally considered as the world’s first empire, by uniting the Sumerian and Akkadian speaking people of Mesopotamia. The empire ruled ancient Mesopotamia and expanded to rule Dilum and Magan (modern Bahrain and Oman, respectively). Akkadian is also the language spoken from circa (2600 BC) until the first and second centuries BC. The texts written from (2600 BC – 2000 BC) use the Old Akkadian Language, which developed into two related dialects: Babylonian (from 2000 BC onwards) and Assyrian (from 2000 BC to 600 BC). The period witnessed a great literary text including the poetry of world’s first recognised author: Enheduanna who was an Entu priestess of the Sin temple in Ur and the daughter of Sargon of Akkad.

2334-2154 BC

2004– 1594 BC

The Old Babylonian Empire

The Old Babylonian Period focuses on the Dynasty of Hammurabi, which belonged to a powerful ethnic group known as the Amorites.
The period witnessed monumental military and political expansion along with great literary achievements, most renowned of which being Hammurabi’s Code of Laws. The laws were engraved on a stele that was looted in ancient times and rediscovered in the city of Susa in Iran in (1901).

2004– 1594 BC

1594– 1162 BC

The Middle Babylonian Period

The middle Babylonian period is divided into two successive dynasties: the Kassite dynasty, which was founded by an ethnic group foreign to Mesopotamia and the Isin Dynasty. The Kassites, whose capital was in Dur-Kurigalzu (modern day Aqar Quf) ruled Babylon for nearly (500) years and transformed it into an international power.

1594– 1162 BC

2000– 1500 BC

The Old Assyrian Empire

Starting as a small city state, serving as an economic centre with little military influence, Assyria was transformed into a political regional power. Despite the constant conflicts and the turmoil that befall the region towards the end of this period, Assyria did not disappear from the political arena, but emerged as a powerful territorial state with a strong military force.

2000– 1500 BC

1500– 911 BC

The Middle Assyrian Empire

This period marked Assyria’s rise to a powerful territorial kingdom and ascendancy as an empire. The empire experienced phases of expansion and decline during this period yet it remained a dominant power in northern Mesopotamia.

In this period the sophisticated road system recognised as the first of its kind throughout the history of the Ancient.

1500– 911 BC

911– 612 BC

The Neo-Assyrian Empire

The Neo-Assyrian period marks the greatest phase of Assyrian history becoming the greatest empire until its demise in (612) BC: the Assyrian empire ruled all of Mesopotamia, Levant, Egypt, Anatolia, Arabia and modern day Iran and Armenia.

Neo-Assyrian kings also sought knowledge: libraries were built to nurture and maintain scribal culture and scholarship. The library founded by King Ashurbanipal in Nineveh is considered the first significant, largest and most comprehensive library in world history

911– 612 BC

626– 539 BC

The Neo-Babylonian, Chaldean, Empire

The Neo-Babylonian Empire was founded by king Nabopolassar, His son Nebuchadnezzar led successful military campaigns and is renowned for his military prowess and monumental building efforts across Mesopotamia, most famous of which is the Ishtar Gate of Babylon.

The period witnessed great and unprecedented economic growth, rise in population, cultural and artistic renaissance.

626– 539 BC

Aramaean period

Aramaean period

The Arameans, a Semitic people, appeared in history with the end of the second millennium BC, in the northwest of Mesopotamia. They were able, between the twelfth and eighth centuries BC, to form many states that controlled large countries in the island and Mesopotamia.

The Aramaeans occupied major positions in Mesopotamia, and scholars and sages such as Ahiqar al-Hakim.
During the first millennium BC, the Aramaic language took off and became an official language in some countries of the ancient world and the language of life in the Fertile Crescent. The Aramaeans, after the development of their language, came up with their own alphabet in the seventh century BC, and then developed a lot in the sixth century BC to become the language of diplomacy at the time.

 

Aramaean period

Our Language

Our Language

The influx of the Aramaean into Mesopotamia during the first millennium BC manifested in a close language contact between their Aramaic language and the Akkadian dialects of Babylonia and Assyria where both influenced each other and developed into a unique common Mesopotamian language. During the first century AD, the dialect of Urhay became the official literary liturgical and Academical, the language is referred to as Syriac, whilst the common term is either (Gushma or Suryaya). Although standard Syriac shares almost the same lexicon with the modern syriac yet it differs in terms of morphology. The native term used to refer to their modern spoken and written language is (Sureth) and it is academically known as (Neo-Aramaic). Sureth displays very ancient lexical and morphological features, linking it directly to the common language that was developed during the first millennium BC in ancient Mesopotamia.

Our Language