Babylon - the pearl of the ancient world: interesting legends about the semi-legendary place
In ancient times, Babylon had played an important role on the political arena. This city was considered the first metropolis. At different times, he went from one conquest to another - was staying in the doldrums, and then was newly reborn. However, Babylon remained in history as the semi-legendary place.
Babylon - the first metropolis of the ancient world
Babylon is called the first "metropolis" of the ancient world. The convenient location near the river Euphrates and favorable climate have made this city the capital of Babylonia. In times of the greatest prosperity, its population reached 200 000 people.
Ziggurat - temple in the center of Babylon
Ziggurat - is a multi-stage construction, situated in the center of Babylon.
In the center of Babylon is located Ziggurat. This iconic, multi-stage construction at first performed the function of the temple, and then became an administrative center. Its height reaches 90 meters. During his stay in Babylon in the XVI century, European explorers mistook massive ruins of Ziggurat for the legendary Tower of Babel.
King Hammurabi - author of the first code of laws
During the reign of King Hammurabi (1793-1950 BC) the territory of Babylonia has increased several times. For 43 years of rule the governor distinguished himself as a skilled military leader and politician. Before our time has reached the Code of Hammurabi, which is the oldest known code of laws. The 282 positions specifically stipulate the obligations regarding wages, marriage, slaves' sale, rents, theft and so on.
The Reign of Nebuchadnezzar II - peak of development of Babylon
The most successful ruler of Babylon, by the legend, is considered to be Nebuchadnezzar II. After several hundred years of decline, during the stay of the king in power, the country began to develop in all directions. The era of the reign of Nebuchadnezzar is also called the "Renaissance of Babylon." King led many wars, conquering new territories, developed the culture, the country's economy. Under his rule, there were built the famous Hanging Gardens, which became one of the Seven Wonders of the World.
Hanging Gardens of Babylon
Hanging Gardens of Babylon were created, by the legend, during the reign of King. The king of Babylon set up a hanging garden for his wife Amitis. A woman, who grew up in Midia (area with lush vegetation), had suffered in a dusty and noisy Babylon. Handmade Park reminded her of home. However, in the history of the park it is left erroneous name - "Hanging Gardens of Babylon", although the ruler reigned for 200 years before Nebuchadnezzar.
Alexander the Great proclaimed Babylon the capital of his Asian power
When in 331 BC Alexander the Great came with his army to Babylon, the city surrendered without a fight, and by the legend, the commander was declared king of Babylon. He made the city the capital of all the conquered territories of the Asian campaign. Alexander the Great did not destroy the policy, and, on the contrary, ordered to restore the pagan temples. Famed commander died in Babylon during the feast. After his death, the city was taken by the Parthians. They founded their capital: Seleucia and Ksetifon and Babel gradually fell into disrepair and became a deserted place.
By the end of the XIX century Babylon was considered a myth or a legend, until in 1899 the German archaeologist Robert Koldewey did not find him. The excavations lasted for several decades. Today Babylon is in the list of the most visited ancient cities in the world.
The fall of Babylon – is a legend or just a myth?
The fall of Babylon happened more than once. In essence, is difficult to name the conqueror, which has caused him the final blow. Maybe it was the Parthians who destroyed Babylon in 140 BC. But after that it was still great and rich, quietly and gradually emptying. The noisiest echo of the fall of Babylon was the conquest of his troops of the Persian king Darius. There are two legends about this historical event.
Babylon - excavations and discoveries
Archaeologists, however, argue whether Gardens of Babylon mounted to the summer palace of the king in the northern corner of the enclosure, a double walled city area of 16 square kilometers, or were in the western part of the palace complex, right down to the waters of the Euphrates, along which stretches the city of Babylon. There is a dispute about the legend, whether there were the gardens, as well as if she existed at all.
Religion and rituals of Babylon
Scientists say that Semiramide, queen of Babylon, by the legend, willingly gave her favor to men. Queen Semiramide was called "Whore of Babylon" for centuries. This is not surprising to hear about the sovereign of the city, where the main religious act was copulation of supreme god - patron of Babylon Marduk-Bel with the priestess of the local women in his own temple Esagila (E-Sagila, "House of raising the head") at the top of the temple tower Etemenanki ("base Home heavens and the earth"), known popularly as the tower of Babel. The ritual performed by replacing Marduk-Bel on the chief priest of Babylon - the king.