30 Facts About Babylonia


Babylonia was an ancient Akkadian-speaking state and cultural area based in central-southern Mesopotamia (present-day Iraq and parts of Syria).

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Babylonia's reign was concerned with establishing statehood amongst a sea of other minor city states and kingdoms in the region.

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Babylonia was followed by Sumu-la-El, Sabium, and Apil-Sin, each of whom ruled in the same vague manner as Sumu-abum, with no reference to kingship of Babylon itself being made in any written records of the time.

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Babylonia conducted major building work in Babylon, expanding it from a small town into a great city worthy of kingship.

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Babylonia's conquests gave the region stability after turbulent times, and coalesced the patchwork of small states into a single nation; it is only from the time of Hammurabi that southern Mesopotamia acquired the name Babylonia.

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Babylonia was followed by Ammi-Ditana and then Ammi-Saduqa, both of whom were in too weak a position to make any attempt to regain the many territories lost after the death of Hammurabi, contenting themselves with peaceful building projects in Babylon itself.

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Babylonia experienced short periods of relative power, but in general proved to be relatively weak under the long rule of the Kassites, and spent long periods under Assyrian and Elamite domination and interference.

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Babylonia then had to contend with the Suteans, ancient Semitic-speaking peoples from the southeastern Levant who invaded Babylonia and sacked Uruk.

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Babylonia describes having "annihilated their extensive forces", then constructed fortresses in a mountain region called Hihi, in the desert to the west as security outposts, and "he dug wells and settled people on fertile lands, to strengthen the guard".

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When Hur-batila, the successor of Tepti Ahar took the throne of Elam, he began raiding the Babylonia, taunting Kurigalzu to do battle with him at Dur-Sulgi.

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Babylonia maintained friendly relations with Suppiluliuma I, ruler of the Hittite Empire.

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Babylonia remained weak during this period, with whole areas of Babylonia now under firm Aramean and Sutean control.

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Babylonia remained in a state of chaos as the 10th century BC drew to a close.

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The Chaldeans settled in the far southeast of Babylonia, joining the already long extant Arameans and Suteans.

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Adad-nirari II twice attacked and defeated Shamash-mudammiq of Babylonia, annexing a large area of land north of the Diyala River and the towns of Hit and Zanqu in mid Mesopotamia.

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Babylonia made further gains over Babylonia under Nabu-shuma-ukin I later in his reign.

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Babylonia briefly fell to another foreign ruler when Marduk-apla-usur ascended the throne in 780 BC, taking advantage of a period of civil war in Assyria.

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Babylonia was a member of the Chaldean tribe who had a century or so earlier settled in a small region in the far southeastern corner of Mesopotamia, bordering the Persian Gulf and southwestern Elam.

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Shalmaneser IV attacked him and retook northern Babylonia, forcing a border treaty in Assyria's favour upon him.

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Babylonia appears to have been in a state of chaos during this time, with the north occupied by Assyria, its throne occupied by foreign Chaldeans, and civil unrest prominent throughout the land.

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Babylonia took advantage of this and rebelled under Nabopolassar, a previously unknown malka of the Chaldeans, who had settled in southeastern Mesopotamia by c 850 BC.

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Babylonia is credited with building the fabled Hanging Gardens of Babylon.

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Babylonia was deposed and killed during the same year in a palace conspiracy.

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The population of Babylonia became restive and increasingly disaffected under Nabonidus.

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Babylonia seemed to have left the defense of his kingdom to his son Belshazzar, occupying himself with the more congenial work of excavating the foundation records of the temples and determining the dates of their builders.

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Babylonia spent time outside Babylonia, rebuilding temples in the Assyrian city of Harran, and among his Arab subjects in the deserts to the south of Mesopotamia.

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Babylonia had always been more vulnerable to conquest and invasion than its northern neighbour, and without the might of Assyria to keep foreign powers in check and Mesopotamia dominant, Babylonia was ultimately exposed.

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Babylonia was absorbed into the Achaemenid Empire in 539 BC, becoming the satrapy of Babirush.

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The paucity of stone in Babylonia made every pebble precious, and led to a high perfection in the art of gem-cutting.

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Babylonia supported the heliocentric theory where the Earth rotated around its own axis which in turn revolved around the Sun.

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