Sunday, February 23, 2014

Sumer and Akkad

During the third millennium, Sumerians and Akkadians emerge.  Sumerians are the most important of the two.  They kept writing accounts in temples and palaces which composed religious and literary texts.  They also developed Sculpture, architecture, religious imagery, and literary styles as well as views on kingship, law, and society.  This all roughly occurred in 2900-2300 B.C.  The Sumerians also began arithmetic, astronomy, botany, and medicine.
All cities revolved around the temple with a priest ruler.  Eventually they separate into a secular ruler a ruler in war.  This led to the rise of kingship.  The palace and temple were of course right next to each other.  The kings were representatives of deities and would commission and support the construction of temples. 
Akkad is a city that became an Empire around 2300B.C, founded by King Sargon.  They spoke a Semetic language.  Akkadians borrowed from the Sumerians, script religious imagery, scientific principles and literary styles.  It did of course contain it's own cultural elements such as its own deities though they are sometimes identified with Sumerian Gods.
The Kings would call themselves King of the Four Quarters of the World, and had themselves deified, yet they were unable to prevent the local revolts and rebellions. 
We then have the Sumerian Renaissance 2100-2000B.C
with the Kings of Ur also known as the "Third Dynasty of Ur" who create another Empire. There are actually 100,000 clay tablets that inform the history of the Empire. 
This Empire of Ur was overthrown by invaders known as Amorites.  They took over the river valleys and cut off grain supply.  Around the same time Egypt begins to suffer from doubts, so do the Mesopotamians. 
That's it for this post. 

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