By Daniel E. Fleming
This quantity examines the political panorama of the traditional close to East in the course of the archive of over 3,000 letters present in the royal palace of Mari. those letters show a wealthy variety of political actors, encompassing significant kingdoms, smaller states and diverse tribal cities. Mari's specific contribution to the traditional facts is its view of tribal association, made attainable specifically through the truth that its king, Zimri-Lim, was once, firstly, a tribal ruler who claimed Mari as an administrative base and resource of status. those archaic political traditions aren't basically in contrast to the kinds of pre-democratic Greece, and so they provide clean cause to acknowledge a cultural continuity among the classical international of the Aegean and the older close to East. This e-book bridges the parts of archaeology, historic and classical historical past, early heart and close to East, and political and social historical past.
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Additional resources for Democracy's Ancient Ancestors: Mari and Early Collective Governance
A note on prominent terms In the historical sketch just offered, I have had to make several decisions about how to render important terms that will come up repeatedly in this study. ” One of the most notable results of recent Mari study has been the complete reorientation of how Samsi-Addu’s kingdom is viewed. Samsi-Addu began his rule from the city of Ekallatum, north of the city of Aˇsˇsur on the ˇ hna in the upper Habur basin Tigris River. He then took over the city of Se ˘ of the later Assyrian ˘ ˇ and changed its name to Subat-Enlil.
This is not to underestimate the importance of collectivity in the southern Mesopotamian political tradition, and it is my hope that others will continue to investigate ancient Sumerian political patterns. My choice of western and “upper” Mesopotamia may also be provocative in light of the powerful monarchies that also characterize these regions. Piotr Steinkeller has argued convincingly that we can see a striking contrast between the relatively weak kingship of early third-millennium Sumer and a much more authoritarian version associated ﬁrst with Kiˇs and then with the late third-millennium empire of Agade (Akkad; 1993, esp.
In southern Mesopotamia, the kingdom centered at Ur quickly lost its grip on the region and gave up ground on all fronts before falling to Elam, the major kingdom of southern Iran. The leaders of Ur identiﬁed the crisis especially with people identiﬁed as “westerners,” or Amorrites (Akkadian Amurrˆum, Sumerian Mar-tu), as shown by the “Amorrite wall” that Ur built to stave them off, without noticeable effect. 19 The evidence for the transition from Ur III to Isin dominance is as fascinating as conclusions are elusive.
Democracy's Ancient Ancestors: Mari and Early Collective Governance by Daniel E. Fleming