Sunday, November 24, 2019

King Ashurbanipal: the last King in the Assyrian Empire

King Ashurbanipal, 668-626 BC was the last great King in the Assyrian Empire. His empire was extended to include Palestine, Phoenician kingdoms, Syria, Mesopotamia, Oaratu, Elam and Egypt. In his reign, the Assyrian empire had enjoyed the wealth, well-being and power.

During the first 20 years of Ashurbanipal's reign, his brother Sama S-Sum-ukin was appointed king of Babylonia, but later revolted against his brother. Ashurbanipal was victorious in the civil war and took over the kingship of Babylonia. This situation gave him direct access to all the Babylonian temple archives.

King Ashurbanipal is best known for his vast library at Nineveh, which he himself considered his greatest achievement. When Ashurbanipal created his extensive royal library in the citadel of his Assyrian capital city Nineveh (Kouyunjik) he incorporated Assyrian and Babylonian tablets into the collection.

Ashurbanipal developed the first systematically collected and catalogued library in the world. He wanted a copy of every book worth having and sent his minions across the empire to gather all the knowledge in the world. Assyrian books were mostly written on clay tablets, not on paper, in a script called cuneiform, which used little wedges to make up symbols.

Toward the end of his reign, however, the empire had grown too large and too difficult to properly defend. The Assyrian Empire was already crumbling toward the end of his reign and, with his death, fell apart completely.
King Ashurbanipal: the last King in the Assyrian Empire

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