List of cities of the ancient Near East

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The earliest cities in history appear in the ancient Near East. The area of the ancient Near East covers roughly that of the modern Middle East; its history begins in the 4th millennium BC and ends, depending on the interpretation of the term, either with the conquest by the Achaemenid Empire in the 6th century BC or that by Alexander the Great in the 4th century BC.

The largest cities of the Bronze Age Near East housed several tens of thousands. Memphis in the Early Bronze Age with some 30,000 inhabitants was the largest city of the time by far. Ur in the Middle Bronze Age is estimated to have had some 65,000 inhabitants; Babylon in the Late Bronze Age similarly had a population of some 50,000–60,000, while Niniveh had some 20,000–30,000, reaching 100,000 only in the Iron Age (ca. 700 BC).

The KI 𒆠 determinative was the Sumerian term for a city or city state.[1] In Akkadian and Hittite orthography, URU𒌷 became a determinative sign denoting a city, or combined with KUR𒆳 "land" the kingdom or territory controlled by a city, e.g. 𒄡𒆳𒌷𒄩𒀜𒌅𒊭 LUGAL KUR URUHa-at-ti "the king of the country of (the city of) Hatti".

Mesopotamia

Lower Mesopotamia

Meso2mil-English.JPG
NC Mesopotamia sites.jpg

(ordered from north to south)

Upper Mesopotamia

Map of Syria in the second millennium BC

(ordered from north to south)

Iran

NC Iran sites.jpg

Anatolia

Settlements of Bronze Age Anatolia, based on Hittite records.

(ordered from north to south)

The Levant

In alphabetical order:

NC Egypt Levant sites.jpg

Arabian Peninsula

The Arabian Peninsula and the Horn of Africa, separated by just a few miles of the Red Sea, have a history of related settlements, especially near the coast.

Kerma (Doukki Gel)

Horn of Africa

Egypt

See also

References

  1. ^ Electronic Pennsylvania Sumerian Dictionary (EPSD)

External links

  • Geospatial: Mapping Iraq's Ancient Cities
  • Ancient cities grew pretty much like modern ones, say scientists (February 2015), Christian Science Monitor
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