By Michael Seymour
Babylon: for eons its very identify has been a byword for luxurious and wickedness. 'By the rivers of Babylon we sat down and wept', wrote the psalmist, 'as we remembered Zion'. one of many maximum towns of the traditional international, Babylon has been eclipsed by way of its personal sinful recognition. for 2 thousand years the true, actual city lay buried whereas one other, ghostly urban lived on, engorged on bills of its personal destruction. extra lately the location of Babylon has been the centre of significant excavation: but the outstanding result of this paintings have performed little displace the numerous different attention-grabbing ways that the town has persisted and reinvented itself in tradition. Saddam Hussein, for one, notoriously exploited the Babylonian delusion to affiliate himself and his regime with its excellent previous. Why has Babylon so creatively fired the human mind's eye, with effects either reliable and unwell? Why has it been so spell binding to such a lot of, and for thus lengthy? In exploring solutions, Michael Seymour' s ebook levels greatly over area and time and embraces artwork, archaeology, background and literature. From Hammurabi and Nebuchadnezzar, through Strabo and Diodorus, to the ebook of Revelation, Brueghel, Rembrandt, Voltaire, William Blake and smooth interpreters like Umberto Eco, Italo Calvino and Gore Vidal, the writer brings to gentle a carnival of disparate resources ruled by way of the robust and intoxicating concept of depravity. but pleasing as this darkish mythology used to be and has persisted to be, at its root lies a outstanding and complex imperial civilization whose complicated state-building, legislation- making and faith ruled Mesopotamia and past for millennia, sooner than its incorporation into the nonetheless wider empire of the Achaemenid kings.
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Additional resources for Babylon: Legend, History and the Ancient City
J. N. Bremmer & N. M. Horsfall; BICS 52: London. 1987) 12-24: L. MALTEN. Aeneas. ARlV 29 (1931) 33-59; R. M. OGILVIE. A COII/memary on Liv)' Books }-5 (Oxford 1965) 33-34; W. PAPE. revised by G. E. BENSElER. Worterb/lch der griechisclzen Eigelllwmen (Braunschweig 1884); J. PERRET. US Origines de la Jegende tro)'enne de Rome (28} -31) (Paris 1942) (but cf. A. Momigliano's review in JRS 35 (1945) 99-104J. K. DOWDEN AGREEMENT i:iil' I. The Hebrew word cedilt. fonnally an abstract noun (GK § 86 k) but perhaps originally a pluml (cf.
FOSSUM, The Name of God alld the Allgel of the Lord. Samaritan and Jewish Concepts of Imen"ediatioll alld the Origill of Gnosticism (WUNT 36; TUbingen 1985); C. H. GORDON, Notcs on Proper Namcs in the Ebla Tablets, in: Eblaite Personal Names and Semitic Name-giving (A. ; ARES I; Roma 1988) 153- I58; R. S. 223-225; M. MACH, Em- wickillngsstadien des jiidischen Engelg/allbens ill \'orrabbinischer Zeit (TSAJ 34; TGbingen 1992); K. SEYBOLD. ";;:J htrbcel, nVAT2 (1974) 334-343. B. BECKING ABo~nNA TION I.
Its inhabitant'i could have revered gods with West Semitic names. Yet a location in Syria also deserves serious consideration, in view of the fact that Sepharvaim is mentioned after Hamath and Arpad in both 2 Kgs 18:34 and 19: 13 (DAY 1989:46). Since P. I). many scholars have accepted Adadmelech as a form of Hadad-melcch, -+'Hadad is king'. encouraged by the reading of Adad-milki in cuneiform sources (so J. A. MONTGOMERY & H. S. GEHMAN. Killgs [Edinburgh 1951] 476; DRIVER 1958; M. COGAN & H. tOR, /I Kings [New York 1988] 212).