See also:ancient city on the
See also:bank of the
See also:Euphrates, about 70 M . S. of
See also:Bagdad . "
See also:Babylon " is the Greek
See also:form of
See also:Babel or Bab-
See also:ili, " the
See also:gate of the
See also:god " (some-times incorrectly written " of the gods "), which again is the Semitic
See also:translation of the
See also:original Sumerian name Ka-dimirra . The god was probably Merodach or
See also:Marduk (q.v.), the divine
See also:patron of the city . In an inscription of the Kassite conqueror Gaddas the name appears as Ba-ba-lam, as if from the
See also:Assyrian babalu, " to bring "; another
See also:foreign Volksetyanologie is found in
See also:Genesis xi . 9, from balbal, " to confound." A second name of the city, which perhaps originally denoted a
See also:village or quarter, was Su-anna, and in later inscriptions it is often represented ideographically by E-ki, the pronunciation and meaning of which are uncertain . One of its
See also:oldest names, however, was Din-tir, of which the poets were especially fond; Din-tir signifies in Sumerian " the
See also:life of the
See also:forest," though a native
See also:lexicon translates it " seat of life." Uru-azagga, " the
See also:holy city," was also a title sometimes applied to Babylon as to other cities in Babylonia . Ka-dimirra, the Semitic Bab-ili, probably denoted at first E-Saggila, " the
See also:house of the lofty
See also:head," the
See also:temple dedicated to
See also:Bel-Merodach, along with its immediate surroundings . Like the other
See also:great sanctuaries of Babylonia the temple had been founded in pre-Semitic times, and the future Babylon
See also:grew up around it . Since Merodach was the son of Ea, the culture god of
See also:Eridu near Ur on the Persian Gulf, it is possible that Babylon was a colony of Eridu . Adjoining Babylon was a
See also:town called
See also:Borsippa (q.v.) . The earliest mention of Babylon is in a dated tablet of the reign of
See also:Sargon of
See also:Akkad (3800 B.c.), who is stated to have built sanctuaries there to Anunit and Ae (or Ea), and H .
Winckler may be right in restoring a mutilated passage in the
See also:annals of this
See also:king so as to make it mean that Babylon owed its name to Sargon, who made it the capital of his
See also:empire . If so, it fell back afterwards into the position of a mere provincial town and remained so for centuries, until it became the capital of " the first
See also:dynasty of Babylon " and then of Khammurabi's empire (2250 B.e.) . From this
See also:time onward it continued to be the capital of Babylonia and the holy city of western
See also:Asia . The claim to supremacy in Asia, however real in fact, was not admitted de jure until the claimant had " taken the hands " of Bel-Merodach at Babylon, and thereby been accepted as his adoptedson and the inheritor of the old Babylonian empire . It was this which made Tiglath-pileser III, and other Assyrian
See also:kings so anxious to possess themselves of Babylon and so to legitimize their power . Sennacherib alone seems to have failed in securing the support of the Babylonian priesthood; at all events he never underwent the ceremony, and Babylonia throughout his reign was in a
See also:constant state of revolt which was finally suppressed only by the
See also:complete destruction of the capital . In 689 B.C. its walls, temples and palaces were razed to the ground and the rubbish thrown into the Arakhtu, the canal wliich bordered the earlier Babylon on the south . The
See also:act shocked the religious
See also:conscience of western Asia; the subsequent
See also:murder of Sennacherib was held to be an expiation of it, and his successor Esarhaddon hastened to rebuild the old city, to receive there his
See also:crown, and make it his residence during
See also:part of the
See also:year . On his
See also:death Babylonia was left to his elder son Samas-sum-yukin, who eventually headed a revolt against his
See also:brother Assur-bani-
See also:pal of
See also:Assyria . Once more Babylon was besieged by the Assyrians and starved into surrender . Assur-bani-pal purified the city and celebrated a " service of reconciliation," but did not venture to " take the hands " of Bel . In the subsequent overthrow of the Assyrian empire the Babylonians saw another example of divine vengeance .
With the recovery of Babylonianindependence under Nabopolassar a new era of architectural activity set in, and his son
See also:Nebuchadrezzar made Babylon one of the wonders of the ancient
See also:world . It surrendered without a struggle to Cyrus, but two sieges in the reign of Darius Hystaspis, and one in the reign of
See also:Xerxes, brought about the destruction of the defences, while the monotheistic
See also:rule of
See also:Persia allowed the temples to fall into decay . Indeed part of the temple of E-Saggila, which like other ancient temples served as a fortress, was intentionally pulled down by Xerxes after his capture of the city .
See also:Alexander was murdered in the palace of Nebuchadrezzar, which must therefore have been still
See also:standing, and cuneiform texts show that, even under the Seleucids, E-Saggila was not wholly a ruin .. The foundation of
See also:Seleucia in its neighbourhood, however, drew away the population of the old city and hastened its material decay . A tablet dated 275 B.C. states that on the 12th of Nisan the inhabitants of Babylon were transported to the new town, where a palace was built as well as a temple to which the ancient name of E-Saggila was given . With this event the
See also:history of Babylon comes practically to an end, though more than a century later we find sacrifices being still performed in its old sanctuary . Our knowledge of its topography is derived from the classical writers, the inscriptions of Nebuchadrezzar, and the excavations of the Deutsche Orientgesellschaft, which were begun in 1899 . The topography is necessarily that of the Babylon of Nebuchadrezzar; the older Babylon which was destroyed by Sennacherib having left few, if any, traces behind . Most of the existing remains lie on the E. bank of the Euphrates, the
See also:principal being three vast mounds, the Babil to the
See also:north, the Qasr or " Palace " (also known as the Mujelliba) in the centre, and the Ishan `Amran
See also:ibn `
See also:Ali, with the outlying
See also:spur of the Jumjuma, to the south . Eastward of these come the Ishan el-Aswad or " Black
See also:Mound " and three lines of rampart, one of which en-closes the Babil mound on the N. and E. sides, while a third forms a triangle with the S.E.
See also:angle of the other two . W. of the Euphrates are other ramparts and the remains of the ancient Borsippa .
We learn from
See also:Herodotus and
See also:Ctesias that the city was built on both sides of the
See also:river in the form of a square, and enclosed within a
See also:row of lofty walls to which Ctesias adds a third . Ctesias makes the outermost
See also:wall 36o stades (42 m.) in circumference, while according to Herodotus it measured 48o stades (56 m.), which would iryclude an
See also:area of about 200 sq. m . The estimate of Ctesias is essentially the same as that of Q . Curtius (v. i . 26), 368 stades, and Clitarchus (ap . Diod . Sic. ii . 7), 365 stades;
See also:Strabo (xvi . 1 . 5) makes it 385 stades . But even the estimate of Ctesias, assuming the stade to be its usual length, would imply an area of about too sq. m . According to Herodotus the height of the walls was about 335 ft. and their width 85 ft.; according to Ctesias the height was about 300 ft .
The measurements seem exaggerated, but we must remember that even in
See also:Xenophon's time (Anab. iii . 4. to) the ruined wall of
See also:Nineveh was still 150 ft.. high, and that the spaces between the 250 towers of the wall of Babylon (Ctes . 417, ap . Diod. ii . 7) were broad enough to let a four-
See also:horse chariot turn (Herod. i . 179) . The
See also:clay dug from the
See also:moat served to make the bricks of the wall, which had too
See also:gates, all of
See also:bronze, with bronze lintels and posts . The two inner enclosures were faced with enamelled tiles and represented
See also:hunting-scenes . Two other walls ran along the
See also:banks of the Euphrates and the quays with which it was lined, each containing 25 gates which answered to the number of streets they led into .
See also:Ferry-boats plied between the landing-places of the gates, and a movable drawbridge (30 ft. broad), supported on
See also:stone piers, joined the two parts of the city together . The account thus given of the walls must be grossly exaggerated and cannot have been that of an
See also:eye-witness . Moreover, the two-walls—Imgur-Bel, the inner wall, and Nimitti-Bel, the
See also:outer —which enclosed the city proper on the site of the older Babylon have been confused with the outer ramparts (enclosing the whole of Nebuchadrezzar's city), the remains of which can still be traced to the east .
According to Nebuchadrezzar, Imgur-Bel was built in the form of a square, eachside of which measured " 30 aslu by the great cubit "; this would be
See also:equivalent, if
See also:Professor F . Hommel is right, to 2400 metres . Four thousand cubits to the east the great rampart was built "
See also:mountain high," which surrounded both the old and the new town; it was provided with a moat, and a
See also:reservoir was excavated in the triangle on the inner side of its south-east corner, the western wall of which is still visible . The Imgur-Bel of Sargon's time has been discovered by the German excavators
See also:running south of the Qasr from the Euphrates to the Gate of
See also:Ishtar . The German excavations have shown that the Qasr mound represents both the old palace of Nabopolassar, and the new palace adjoining it built by Nebuchadrezzar, the wall of which he boasts of having completed in 15 days . They have also laid
See also:bare the site of the " Gate of Ishtar " on the east side of the mound and the little temple of Nin-Makh (Beltis) beyond it, as well as the raised road for
See also:solemn processions (A-ibur-sabu) which led from the Gate of Ishtar to E-Saggila and skirted the east side of the palace . The road was paved with stone and its walls on either side lined with enamelled tiles, on which a procession of lions is represented . North of the mound was a canal, which seems to have been the Libilkhegal of the inscriptions, while on the south side was the Arakhtu, " the river of Babylon," the
See also:brick quays of which were built by Nabopolassar . The site of E-Saggila is still uncertain . The German excavators assign it to the `Amran mound, its tower having stood in a depression immediately to the north of this, and so place it south of the Qasr ; but E . Lindl and F . Hommel have put forward strong reasons for considering it to have been north of the latter, on a part of the site which has not yet been explored .
A tablet copied by
See also:Smith gives us interesting details as to the plan and dimensions of this famous temple of Bel; a plan based on these will be found in Hommel's Grundriss der Geographie and Geschichte
See also:alien Orients, p . 321 . There were three courts, the outer or great
See also:court, the
See also:middle court of Ishtar and Zamama, and the inner court on the east side of which was the tower of seven stages (known as the House of the Foundation of
See also:Heaven and
See also:Earth), 90 metres high according to Hommel's calculation of the measurements in the tablet; while on the west side was the temple proper of Merodach and his wife Sarpanit or Zarpanit, as well as chapels of
See also:Anu, Ea and Bel on either side of it . A winding ascent led to the
See also:summit of the tower, where there was a
See also:chapel, containing, according to Herodotus, a
See also:couch and
See also:golden table (for the showbread),but no image . The golden image of Merodach 40 ft. high, stood in the temple below, in the sanctuary called E-Kua or " House of the
See also:Oracle," together with a table, a mercy-seat and an altar—all of gold . The deities whose chapels were erected within the precincts of the temple enclosure were regarded as forming his court . Fifty-five of these chapels existedaltogether in Babylon, but some of them stood independently in other parts of the city . There are numerous gates in the walls both of E-Saggila and of the city, the names of many of which are now known . Nebuchadrezzar says that he covered the walls of some of them with blue enamelled tiles " on which bulls and dragons were pourtrayed," and that he set up large bulls and serpents of bronze on their thresholds . The Babil mound probably represents the site of a palace built by Nebuchadrezzar at the
See also:northern extremity of the city walls and attached to a defensive outwork 6o cubits in length . Since H .
See also:Rassam found remains of irrigation
See also:works here it might well be the site of the
See also:Hanging Gardens .
These consisted, we are told, of a
See also:garden of trees and
See also:flowers, built on the topmost of a series of
See also:arches some 75 ft. high, and in the form of a square, each side of which measured 400 Greek ft .
See also:Water was raised from the Euphrates by means of a
See also:screw (Strabo xvi. r . 5; Diod. ii. to . 6) . In the jumjuma mound at the
See also:southern extremity of the old city the contract and other business tablets of the Egibi
See also:firm were found . See C . J .
See also:Rich, Memoir on the Ruins of Babylon (1816), and Collected
See also:Memoirs (1839) ; A . H .
See also:Layard, Nineveh and Babylon (1853); C . P .
See also:Tiele, De Hoofdtempel
See also:van Babel (1886); A .
See also:Sayce, Religion of the Ancient Babylonians, App. ii . (1887); C . J .
See also:Ball in Records of the Past (new
See also:ser. iii . 189o) ; Mittheilungen der deutschen Orientgesellschaft (18999–1906); F . Delitzsch, lm Lande des einstigen Paradieses (19o3); F . H . Weissbach, Das Stadtbild von Babylon (1904) ; F . Hommel, Grundriss der Geographie and Geschichte des alien Orients (1904) . (A . H .
BABYLONIA AND ASSYRIA
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