Map source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Amarnamap.png Info source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Old_Assyrian_period Map of the Ancient Near East during the Amarna Period (ca. 1350 BC), showing the great powers of the day: Egypt (green), Hatti (yellow), the Kassite kingdom of Babylon (purple), Assyria (grey), and Mitanni (red). Lighter areas show direct control, darker areas represent spheres of influence. The extent of the Achaean/Mycenaean civilization is shown in orange. NOTE: the Amarna Period was the reign of Akhenaten (Amenhotep IV, 1353-1336 BC)
For hundreds of years the Assyrians occupiedlands that were bordered by more powerfulcivilizations. As a result, the Assyrians werefrequently attacked by their neighbors. Theconstant threat of attack led the Assyrians todevelop what would become the most powerfularmy in the region.
By 650 B.C. the Assyrians had conquered avast empire, stretching between the PersianGulf, the Red Sea, the Mediterranean Sea, theBlack Sea, and the Caspian Sea.
EXPANSION ASIRIA En el mapa se aprecia claramente el proceso paralelo de expansión de las dos potencias rivales, y aunque hasta la fecha no habían chocado con fuerza, a partir de ahora lucharan, entre otras cosas, por el control del las tierras al otro lado del Eufrates, los reinos neohititas y arameos, libres hasta el momento, que se sepa, de guerras de gran envergadura, se van a ver obligados a movilizar todos sus recursos para hacer frente al, principalmente, poderoso ejército asirio
Cuando Tiglat-Pileser avanzasobre Siria para poner fin al avanceurarteo en la región, los nuevosvasallos de Sarduri II se preparanpara la batalla, el propio rey urarteoacude con sus fuerzas, el choqueserá en el territorio de Kummukh,en Kishtan, y la victoria aplastantepara los asirios. Tras expulsar aUrartu de todos los territorios aambos lados del Eufrates, TiglatPileser se revuelve contra el líderarameo de la resistencia en Siria,Mati´El de Arpad. Tras tres años deasedio la ciudad es conquistada,ahora, y en el plazo de 8 años,todos los estados desde el Eufrateshasta la frontera egipcia sesometerán voluntariamente o por lafuerza, los estados neohititasquedaran, en su mayor parte, solosujetos a tributo.
5000 B.C. – First site of Ninevah inhabited4750 B.C. – First temple of Ashur built2000 B.C. – The Assyrians in Cappadocia began trade with the city ofAshur in tin and textiles.1760 B.C. – Hammurabi of Babylon conquers Ashur ending the earlyAssyrian Empire.1500 B.C. – Assyria subject to Mitanni rule.1365 B.C. – Ashur-uballit lays the foundations of the first AssyrianEmpire1363 B.C. – Ashur-ubalit revolts against Mitanni rule and founds theAssyrian Empire.1273 B.C. – Shalmanesar of Assyria conquers the Mitanni.1240 B.C. – Assyrians attack Babylon.1115 B.C. – Tiglath-Pileser establishes the second Assyrian Empire.1115 B.C. - The Aramean invasions of Assyria begin.1114 – 1076 B.C. – Reign of Tiglath-Pileser I of Assyria.934 B.C. – Usher-dan II establishes the Neo-Assyrian Empire880 B.C. – Ashur-nasirpal II mosves the Assyrian capital to Calah.856 B.C. – Shalmeneser III of Assyrian defeats the first known king ofUrartu774 B.C. – Assyrian incursions of Phoenicia begin.752 B.C. – Aramaic is made an official language of the empirealongside Akkadiam.
Timeline continued745 B.C. – Tiglath Pileser III rebuilds the decaying Assyrian empire.722 B.C. – Sargon II reorganizes the Assyrian empire into 70 provinces.705 B.C. – Capital moved to Dur Sharrukin and Assyria attacks Jerusalem.700 B.C. – Sennacherib moves the capital to Ninevah.689 B.C. – Assyrians destroy Babylon.671-651 B.C. – Assyrians rule in Egypt.612 B.C. – Medes ally with Babylonia to conquer Assyria.609 B.C – Ashur – Uballit II, the last Assyrian king, is defeated at Harran and the Assyrian Empire came to its end.
Assyrian Empire was ruled from Ninevah. They were harsh rulers,whose kings ruled their kingdom through local leaders. Communicationbetween cities was done by messengers on horseback.
From 3500 BC to 600 BC many great civilizations developed in SW Asia
In the 14th century B.C. Assyria was still limited to the area around Nineveh and Assur. Its greatest expansion was in the 7th century. In 854 Shalmanassar clashed with the allied armies of 11 kings, including king Ahab of Israel; in 732 Damascus was taken by Piglath-pileser III; in 722 Samaria fell to Sargon II (II Kings 17:6); in 701 Jerusalem was besieged by Sennacherib (II Kings 19), who destroyed Babylon in 689; in 670 the Assyrian king Essarhaddon conquered Egypt and defeated Tirhakah, king of Ethiopia (II Kings 19:9).
Assyrian aggression: Tiglat P.III• Like a lion on the Serenget, Assyria represented the lion, and the Serengeti represented the Middle East.• Tiglath-pileser IIIs first footstep outside of Assyria stained the desert floor blood red. Im not joking! None shall be weary nor stumble among them; none shall slumber nor sleep; neither shall the girdle of their loins be loosed, nor the latchet of their shoes be broken: Whose arrows are sharp, and all their bows bent, their horses hoofs shall be counted like flint, and their wheels like a whirlwind: Isaiah 5:27-28• In order to secure his holdings, Tiglath-pileser III sent his new professional army to secure his empire by attacking the upstart Syrian-Urartu alliance that posed a potential threat as they had in the past.• Tiglath-pileser III Led his forces towards the Aramaean Syrian tribes which had always given Assyria trouble.• Powerful Aramaean tribes had invaded the Kingdom of Babylonia from the south, taken the cities of Sippar and Dur-Kurigalzu, undermined the Babylonian way of life, as well as threatening to destabilize Assyrias power, influence, and prestige they had done to that of Babylonia.• Because of this, the weakened state of Babylonia needed a champion.• Assyrias hatred for the troublesome Aramaeans gave them the reason to strike, and to reestablish their rule over Babylonia.• Tiglath-pileser III would go on pushing further south for sometime, winning battle after battle with his new army.• Gaining ever more confidence after each engagement with the enemy before turning east and crossing the Tigris River.• While on the east side of the Tigris Tiglath-pileser III began attacking along the mountains of Elam, taking many nomadic tribes captive.• He then turned westward crossing the Tigris, and began his assault on the Aramaeans till he pushed them out of the cities of Sippar, and Dur-Kurigalzu, and continued to push south till he reached Nippur, an ancient city of Babylon, before turning back.• The people of Babylon looked to Tiglath-pileser III as the savior of Babylonia which in turn did not bode well for Nabonassar, the King of Babylon.• Tiglath-pileser III began by setting up a new government in Babylonia and placing the kingdom under the suzerainty of Assyria. Never before had Babylonia been under the complete rule of Assyria. Thus Nabonassar became a mere vassal king, a symbol of state and not power. While the real King was Tiglath- pileser III, the conqueror and savior of Babylonia.
TIGLAT – PILESER III Tiglath-Pileser III. Stone panel, AssyrianAsshur, 8th or 7th century BC artwork, ca. 728 BC. bas-relief (Louvre) From the Central Palace in Nimrud.
Rebirth of Assyria 745 BCE• The event, the Northern Ten Tribes, and much of the Middle east, were about to become dissembled by the powerful Assyrian Empire under their king Tiglath-pileser III also know as Pul in (1 Chronicles 5:26).• Tiglath-pileser III is regarded as the founder of the second Assyrian empire.• The origins of Tiglath-pileser are obscure and we do not know his real name for sure, but it may have been Pul.• We shall discuss the name Pul later.• The name Tiglath-pileser is a name he took once he ascended the throne.• What we can say is that he must have been a charismatic man with the ability to lead, and because of this he was able to seize the crown of Assyria, and unite the warring factions into a single unit, and provide a network of security and trade within the empire.• That would one day extend to those he conquered, or made into vassals attached to the Assyrian empire.• What we have here is what the History Channel would call Man, Moment, and Machine.• The moment was now for Assyria.• All one has to do is look in the bible and realize that Assyria had no outside threats.• The Hittites, and Egyptians, are a shell of their former glory, and imposed no threat to the Assyrian borders.• The once United Kingdom of Israel under King David, and King Solomon, was divided and to busy fighting amongst themselves, and worshiping other gods they knew not before.• Syria was not even a threat.• Phoenicia was unstable on land, and had no real standing army other then those they relied on.• The rest of the smaller tribal groups were mere principalities, or city states similar to Phoenicia.
Rebirth of Assyria• From the view that I & 2 Kings gives us, as well as I & 2 Chronicles, one could easily say the Middle East was easy to take because it was so fragmented.• The Machine was the powerful Assyrian army.• Tiglath-pileser III rejuvenated the Assyrian army by changing the methods in which it used to be conducted.• In the past Assyria relied on their provincial governors to supply the army.• Military forces were really provincial militias made up of your typical workforce, and the only permanent army was the royal guards.• What Tiglath-pileser III did was reorganize the army into a permanent standing fighting force that over time became a professional army.• By creating a permanent army, Tiglath-pileser III had a tighter control on his Kingdom due to the fact that the army was loyal to him, and not to provincial governors that provided the army temporally.• Because of this, Tiglath-pileser III transformed the population back into a model military society based on war and expansion, and to quench the thirst of their rejuvenated philosophy, which was the worship of war.
• The ANCIENT FIRST Kingdom of Assyria, c. 1900 B.C. – Became dominant city- state due to control of trade between Anatolia and Mesopotamia – Encouragement of private enterprise rather than state monopoly
THE NEW ASSIRIANNew EmpireSemitic-speaking people who exploited the use of iron weaponsto build an empire by 700 B.C.Semitic-SpeakingSpoke Semitic languageIncluded Territory Fromincluding Mesopotamia, some of the Iranian Plateau, AsiaMinor, Syria, Palestine, and Egypt.
• Assyrian Expansion After securing Babylon and driving out the Aramaean raiders. Tiglath-pileser III was to turn his army loose on the known world. His first campaign of aggression would be against Northern Syria an ally of Urartu. Urartu was a rival to Assyria, and at the time was gaining much influence over the former vassals of Assyria. This posed a threat to Assyria. Because of the threat it imposed on the weakened state of Assyria Tiglath- pileser III decided it was time to take action, and to restore the right of Assyrias might. Tiglath-pileser III didnt want to take the chance of invading Urartu head on. The Kingdom of Urartu was located on a mountainous plateau of what is today eastern Turkey, and Armenia, and leads up into the Caucasus Mountains with Lake Van in the middle of the kingdom. It would have been difficult for the Assyrian army to invade head on. This may indicate that the Assyrian army wasnt built for mountainous warfare. Tiglath-pileser III knew that he had to ether conquer them, or to beat them so badly that he could come back later and finish the job. The Kingdom of Urartu would be no joke for Assyria. Tiglath-pileser III assembled his army, crossed the Euphrates, and headed for Northern Syria to the city of Arpad. Before Tiglath-pileser III reached the city of Arpad, a coalition was already assembled to counter the Assyrians. The armies of Urartu were led by King Sardui II, and the armies of Arpad were led by King Matiil, as well as many other Syrian tribal kings. Both the coalition and Assyria would meet head on. The Assyrians were victorious. Over 70,000 are said to have been slain or captured. Tiglath-pileser III was to then turn his attention back to the land of Medes conquering them on the Iranian plateau. Tiglath-pileser III would deport 65,000 and later another 154,000. Also the Syrians would suffer from deportation as 30,000 were placed in the region of the Zargos Mountains. From what we read in a time span of 6 to 5 years the Assyrian army had conquered a vast amount of land in a short time. I dont want to get off track but its important that we take a look at the speed and structure of the Assyrian army. The person I recommend that all should read who take interest in Military History is a man by the name of Richard A. Gabriel. Richard Gabriel is probably the leading expert in military history. What Im about to show you are some passages from the book that he, and Karen Metz collaborated on. The title of the book is "From Sumer to Rome":
3.- Periodo Asirio (1360 –612 a.c.) surge unnacionalismo religioso,violento en el Norte deMesopotamia: Asiria. Pocoa poco intervienen en lossucesos políticos delterritorio y gracias a lacreación de un ejércitodividido, por vez primera,en tres armas (infantería-artillería-caballería) realizanuna rápida expansión que,con los reinados de SargónII y Asurbanipal,alcanzará su máximaextensión, incluyendo Siria,Palestina y Egipto. Sucapital es Ninive
• The first strong Assyrian state was formed in the late Bronze Age in the wake of the decline of the Mitanni, a confederation of tribes living along the upper reaches of the Tigris River.• In the fourteenth century B.C.E., Ashururballit led his people in an expansion westward, during which they came to control the upper arch of the Fertile Crescent for approximately a century.• The Assyrians ran up against the power of Aram (situated in modern-day Syria), which blocked their access to western trade routes.• Still, the early success coupled with the continued fighting against Aram made the Assyrian army strong and experienced, able to defend itself and mount major raids far to the south and west.• With this powerful military, Assyria dominated the Near East by the 900s B.C.
• Initially, the Assyrians’ main objective was to expand to the Mediterranean coast in order to control the major trade routes of ancient times.• Assyrian armies finally overcame the resistance of nations led by Aram, and they captured the major city of Damascus in 732 B.C.E.• Old Testament accounts tell of Assyrian attacks into Samaria and Judah, and fighting against the Egyptians.• Assyria established empire status under the leadership of Sargon II (722–705 B.C.E.), who named himself after the Sumerian leader Sargon the Great, the first well- known conqueror.• Sargon II’s son Sennacherib maintained the lands his father had conquered, and raided Asia Minor after 700 B.C.E.• Sennacherib established control over Phoenician towns on the Mediterranean coast all the way to the Egyptian frontier.
• The last of the great emperors was Esarhaddon (681– 668 B.C.E.), who came to the throne by murdering his father Sennacherib.• To secure his frontiers, Esarhaddon coupled diplomacy with warfare.• He entered into agreements with the Medes to the east and the Cimmerians to the north, but also invaded Egypt, a nation seemingly always in rebellion against the Assyrian demands for tribute.• By the end of Esarhaddon’s reign, Assyrian territory stretched from the Persian Gulf across the Fertile Crescent and halfway down the Nile in Egypt.• Assurbanipal was the last of the Assyrian kings.• More of a scholar than a warrior, he let his generals punish the rebellious while he established a large library at Nineveh
Map of the Ancient Near East during the Amarna Period, showing the great powers of the period:Egypt (green), Hatti (yellow), the Kassite kingdom of Babylon (purple), Assyria (grey), and Mittani (Lighter areas show direct control, darker areas represent spheres of influence.The extent of the Achaean/Mycenaean civilization is shown in orange. PERIODO AMARNA Ca. 1350 BC
• The Assyrian Empire came to an abrupt end in 612 B.C.• Three hundred years of warfare, both conquests and the suppression of almost constant rebellions, had put a serious strain on Assyrian manpower.• The birthrate had not kept up with the casualty rate, and the Assyrians had been obliged to use conscript troops, who proved of doubtful loyalty.• Agreements with neighbors lapsed, and enemies pressed from all directions.• Ultimately the Medes led a coalition that laid siege to the Assyrian capital city of Nineveh, which fell after three months, spelling the end of the empire, an end more celebrated than lamented.• The biblical prophet Nahum wrote, “All who hear the news of you clap their hands over you.• For upon whom has not come your unceasing evil?” Nahum summed it up perfectly;• Assyria had built and maintained its empire by military force and terror, showing no mercy to any defeated foe, whether in conquest or rebellion.
• The Assyrians were the first people to institutionalize cruelty to control the lands they acquired.• Towns destroyed in battle were left in ruins as an example to other possible foes.• Ashurnasipal bragged, “I caused great slaughter. I destroyed, I demolished, I burned. I took their warriors prisoner and impaled them on stakes before their cities. I flayed the nobles, as many as had rebelled, and spread their skins out on the piles [of dead bodies].Many of the captives I burned in a fire. Many I took alive; from some I cut off their hands to the wrist, from others I cut off their noses, ears and fingers; I put out the eyes of many soldiers. I burnt their young men and women to death.”• This boast was not just Ashurnasipal’s; every leader acted in the same fashion.• It is not surprising that they had to deal with constant rebellion; they certainly inspired no loyalty from their subjects.
• Despite this negative characteristic, the Assyrians contributed to society and culture.• Some of the world’s oldest roads were built in the time of Sargon II.• This road system allowed for freer trade and the development of a postal system.• The Assyrian Empire was the first to construct aqueducts.• Adopting cuneiform script from the Babylonians, the Assyrians became the world’s first serious historians.• They established a number of libraries, where they recorded scientific knowledge acquired on their own and from Babylon.• They also inaugurated the first widespread use of iron.• Though iron was used by the Hittites, the Assyrians were the first to use the metal for weapons.• As more iron-producing territory came under their control, it became the most common metal in tool production, far outperforming anything made from bronze.• Their artists are regarded as masters of relief work, with realistic and emotional portrayals of kings at war and sport.
• The Assyrians are best remembered, however, for their accomplishments in warfare.• Using chariots (already invented), they were the first to add cavalry to their army, which often proved the decisive factor in their victories.• Assyria was the first state, but certainly not the last, to build its society around the armed forces.• They established what may be called the first true empire, because whereas most previous warriors cam paigned mainly for loot and tribute, the Assyrians established political control by appointing governors in conquered lands.• Had they had the statesmanship skills to match their military prowess, they could not only have lasted longer as an empire, but they would also have had an even greater impact on the progress of ancient society and culture.
"Native-Ruled" Babylonian Empire (1125 - 732 BC): Nebuchadrezzar I (not to beconfused with Nebuchadnezzar of Biblical notoriety) re-established Babylonia, drivingout the Elamites, and reasserting native Mesopotamian rule for the first time incenturies. The city of Babylon became prominent once again, but it did not projectinfluence much beyond city borders. Many other previously greatMesopotamian/Sumerian city-states regressed, resembling villages more than city-states.Babylon managed to defend itself against the much more powerful Assyrian Kingdom tothe north.Failed Assyrian Invasion of Babylonia (1120 BC): Assyria also attempted to capitalizeupon the collapse of the Kassite Empire in Southern Mesopotamia, but failed to unseatthe conquering Elamites from SW Iran.Assyrian Expansion to Mediterranean Sea (1120 - 1100 BC): Assyria draws nearer tomatching its ancient glory, by establishing control over the all important Phoeniciancoastal area, and its valuable ports. Reassertion of Assyrian Control (911 - 745 BC): After a long periodof weakness from about 1100 - 911 BC, Assyria began to assert itsdominance once again. Before 911 BC, nomadic tribes hadundermined its ability to maintain control over its empire, reducing it toa collection of affiliated and often independent cities and settlements.From 911 BC to 745 BC, Assyrian kings successfully wagedcampaigns to return these territories to its rule.Babylonia Captured by Assyria (732 BC): Assyria conquers Babylonand all of Babylonia. Rule in Babylonia would prove tumultuous though,as the Assyrians would face multiple revolts there until it becameindependent in 627 BC.
CONQUISTAS ASIRIASAssyrian Deportations.To suppress uprisings, the Assyrianswould deport portions of conquerednations to the northern regions of theirempire, where they intermixed withNorthern Mesopotamian peoples.Tens of thousands of Syrians andIsraelites were deported in this manner.
• Nomadic Raids in Assyria (627 BC): Nomadic tribes such as the Scynthians from the north, and the Iranian Medes from the east, began to infiltrate Assyrian borders at will, penetrating as far as Egypt. This is likely due to Assyria being overextended from its overly ambitious expansionism. The Assyrian Empire proceeded to quickly crumble as a result.• Babylon Independence (627 BC): As a result of the crumbling condition of the Assyrian Empire, Babylon was able to assert its independence, taking control over the city and surrounding Mesopotamian regions. Babylonians continued to battle the remnants of the Assyrian army in expanding their sphere of control to the north.• Fall of Assyrian Capital of Nineveh (612 BC): The capital, and heart of the Assyrian Empire, was destroyed by Babylonian and Median armies, effectively ending the Assyrian Empire. A remnant of the Assyrian army survived, continuing the fight to revive the empire.• Battle of Megiddo (605 BC): Egypt sent forces to the north, defeating Judah along the way, in order to join the remaining Assyrian troops. They met at Megiddo, where they encountered the advancing Babylonian army. The Assyrian-Egyptian army was defeated by the Babylonians, extinguishing the final hope for the Assyrian Empire.
End of Assyrian Empire (605 BC): After being completely defeated, the Assyriansremained a distinct "nation" of people in Northern Mesopotamia, but would foreverexist under the rule of foreign masters.