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Encyclopedia > Babylonian Empire

Ancient Mesopotamia
Cities / Empires
Sumer: UrukUrEridu
Akkadian Empire: Agade
Assyria: AssurNineveh
Kings of Sumer
Kings of Assyria
Kings of Babylon
Cuneiform script
Enuma Elish

Babylonia was an ancient state in Iraq), combining the territories of Sumer and Akkad. Its capital was Babylon. The earliest mention of Babylon can be found in a tablet of the reign of Sargon of Akkad, dating back to the 23rd century BC.



The Babylonians began to dominate southern Mesopotamia under their sixth ruler, Hammurabi (17801750 BC). He was a highly efficient ruler, famous for the code of laws that he laid down, and he gave the region stability after turbulent times. It was one of ancient Mesopotamia's major empires.

Babylon became the central power of Mesopotamia. The armies of Babylonia were well-disciplined, and they conquered the city-states of Isin, Elam, and Uruk, and the strong Kingdom of Mari. But Mesopotamia had no clear boundaries, making it vulnerable to attack. Trade and culture thrived for 150 years, but then the Hittites sacked Babylon in 1595 BC. Its cities continued for 100 years under different foreign rulers. Then, for 500 years, Babylon was overshadowed by Assyria before its rise to greatness.

Mathematics and science

The mathematicians of Babylonia devised a system of counting based on the number 60, from which we get the number of seconds in a minute and of minutes in an hour and the number of degrees (60×6) in a circle. Babylonian scholars developed early sciences and astrology from the knowledge they gained from the Sumerians.


The city of Babylon, the main city of Babylonia, was found on the Euphrates River, about 110 kilometres south of modern Baghdad, just north of what is now the Iraqi town of al-Hillah.

See also

Many of these articles were originally based on content from the 1911 Encyclopędia Britannica. Update as needed.

External link

  Results from FactBites:
20. The Last Babylonian Empire and the Empire of Darius I. Wells, H.G. 1922. A Short History of the World (0 words)
To the south of this in a great crescent was a new Chaldean Empire, the Second Babylonian Empire, which rose to a very great degree of wealth and power under the rule of Nebuchadnezzar the Great (the Nebuchadnezzar of the Bible).
Cambyses went mad and was accidentally killed, and was presently succeeded by Darius the Mede, Darius I, the son of Hystaspes, one of the chief councillors of Cyrus.
The Persian Empire of Darius I, the first of the new Aryan empires in the seat of the old civilizations, was the greatest empire the world had hitherto seen.
  More results at FactBites »



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