Proud Assyrian

W h o  a r e  w e?
Sumerians, Akkadians, Amorites, Assyrians, Chaldeans, or Arab?

hey call us Iraqi Christians?  This name does not match who we are, we call ourselves:
Suryaya et Bet-Nahren            (in Aramaic)
Suryaya et Mesopotamia        (in Greek)
Suryaya et Belad Al-Rafidane   (in Arabic)

In the ancient times, our country was occupied by several races:
Sumerians, Akkadians, Amorites, Assyrians, and Chaldeans which they’ve merged together as a Sumero-Akkadian culture.

The Sumerians                  Sumerian King - Anu 
They called their portion of the region “The Land of Shinar”, which included only the southern part of Iraq.  I think of the Sumerians as mysterious and magical people and they were to the point that; the invaders that overthrew them adapted their culture and became more or less Sumerians.
I truly say that these people were the engineers of the human civilization; they’ve created the first and one of kind civilization out of nothing. 
They’re credited with the invention of the Wheel and writing at 3500 BC, which was the longest used writing system in history 3300BC-200AD, they were first to give a number a value and to recognize the concept of a Zero, they invented the Seeder plow, sanitation technology, Glass, the Arch, Column, Dome and the Sail, they employed mathematics on base 60 (360 degrees in a circle), 60 minutes in an hour, and hundreds of other things that they contributed to the human race. 

The Akkadians
                Sargon of Akkad
Were a Semitic people which they must have appeared in Mesopotamian stage around the third millennium BC, where they occupied the central portion of the region. 2350 BC was a turning point in the history of Mesopotamia when their military leader, Sargon the great was the first in recorded history to create an empire or multi-ethnic state. His empire included the land between the Tigris and Euphrates rivers, part of modern day Turkey, part of eastern Mediterranean, Elam modern day southwest Iran. The centre of his empire was based in the city of Agade, which later became the city of Babylon.

   -Sarru-kinu (the true king)
This had become the dream of every Mesopotamian monarch and leader. From then on until this day, to keep the Tigris Euphrates valleys from the tributaries to the Persian Gulf, absolutely united and it’s the right of every Mesopotamian.

They had allot of influence on Mesopotamia to the point that large vocabulary of the Akkadian language is still exists in the so called Aramaic language that we started speaking it around the eighths century BC. Also when king Sargon had conquered the city of Assur where they accepted Sargon of Akkad as their king and called him Sargon the 1st which later will show the Akkadian influence on the Assyrians by resembling them as a warlike people.

Mesopotamia had entered a chaotic period around 2000 BC, and by 1900 BC a group of Semitic people called Amorite or the old Babylonians, had taken control of the city of Babylon (previously the city of Akkad) and eventually all of Mesopotamian region which lasted from 1900-1600 BC, is called the old Babylonian period.

The most known monarch of the Amorites is King Hammurabi (1792-1750 BC) where he is credited with the most famous legal text in history called the code of Hammurabi.  He had collected all previous Sumerian law codes such as code of Ur-Nammu 2200 BC, laws of Eshnunna 1900 BC, and code of Lipit-Ishtar 1850 BC, and added to them and put them in one cylindrical diorite monument inscribed with 282 laws, which is also called the Steele of Hammurabi. 

The Assyrians        Ashur-Assyrian King
Their reign over Mesopotamia is one of my favourite periods in ancient history. Even though the Assyrian culture was already a Sumero-Akkadian based culture, when they rose to power, they have taken all the ancient Mesopotamian knowledge and poured it into their culture with their own improvements. They have spread the Mesopotamian culture far and wide throughout the ancient world through their military conquests and trade.

The Assyrians were Semitic people living in northern Mesopotamia with long history in the area. But they were officially mentioned for the first time when Sargon the great conquered the
city of  "Assur" as it's called by the Akkadian languege in 2350 BC.  Even the temple of Ishtar at Ashur was built around 2900 BC and its location was already a settlement by 5000 BC.   
Because of Assyria’s luxurious location, at ancient trade routes which made it an envy to others, it had to become a war like nation; therefore, the Assyrian state was forged out of war, invasion, and conquest, to the point that there was a dramatic growth in science and mathematics to satisfy their war machine. They had the largest standing army ever seen in the Middle East, and were among the first to invent the Longitude and Latitude in geographical navigation. 
They have developed a sophisticated medical science which influenced medical science as far away as Greece.
The greatest Assyrian monarch in my opinion was "Ashurbanipal"(668-626 BC) a warrior and a scholar, which makes him a true "Philosopher King".
 He extended the empire to its furthest borders, and also began a project of assembling a library of Tablets of all the literature of Mesopotamia. Thirty thousand tablets still remain of his great library in the city of Nineveh; these tablets are archaeologist’greatest source of knowledge of Mesopotamian culture, myth, and literature.
Semitic people who first came to southern Mesopotamia around 1000 BC, and as all other previous newcomers to the Mesopotamian stage, adapted the existing Sumero-Akkadian or I should say Assyro-Babylonian culture, since the Chaldean came at a time where the Assyrians and Babylonians had totally absorbed the Sumerian culture and called it their own.

Around the end of the eighths’ century BC, there was an attempt to seize the Babylonian crown by a Chaldean tribe, and they have succeeded in two occasions, but they were over powered by the Assyrians. With the death of Ashurbanipal (626 BC), Nebopolassar, a Chaldean leader, seized the throne and established the Chaldean empire (Neo-Babylonian Empire) which lasted 78 years. The empire flourished under his son Nebuchadnezzar ll, but it declined thereafter and came to an end when Babylon fell to Cyrus in 539 BC, and with it ended the Semitic rule over Mesopotamia and replaced by Indo-European race.   

The only contribution to Mesopotamian cultures as far as my knowledge, is their alphabet. Around 1400 BC, the migration of the Arameans to Mesopotamia had started and by ninth century BC, they have penetrated Assyria. They have created several independent scattered kingdoms on the Euphrates. Most people think that we speak the Aramean language, but I say that is not true because all of the inhabitants of Mesopotamia spoke Akkadian and it is not possible for this language to disappear, just because the Mesopotamians had adapted the Aramean alphabit.


we should ask ourselves these questions:
Which of these groups mentioned above did we come from?
Should it make any difference if we know which of those groups we belong to?  
Isn’t time for us to forget our differences and begin to build up the unity of our peoples?

They all sound like powerful groups of people, almost super beings.  We speak the same language, we choose the same religion and we all belong to the Land between the two rivers. Which means, we’re practically a family, but why it doesn’t feel like that?

Thank you and God bless!


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