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Level 5

5AACHI25 The World from Babylon: 911-ca.550 BC

Credit value: 15
Module convenor/tutor 2019/20: Dr Lindsay Allen
Teaching pattern 2019/20: 1-hour lecture and 1-hour seminar (weekly, over 10 weeks).
Teaching pattern pre-2019/20: 10 x 2-hour seminar (weekly)

Availability: Please see module list for relevant year

Assessment 2019/20: 750-word commentary (30%); 1 x 2,000 word essay (70%)

Pre-2019/20 Assessment:

2 x 2,000-word essays (the higher marked essay is weighted at 70% while the lower is weighted at 30%)


Students are reassessed in the failed elements of assessment and by the same methods as the first attempt.

The modules offered in each academic year are subject to change in line with staff availability and student demand: there is no guarantee every module will run. Module descriptions and information may vary between years.

Urban life began in southern Mesopotamia; by the time the city of Babylon was conquered by the Persian king Cyrus in the sixth century BCE, the city’s population could look back on two and a half thousand years of literate scientific, religious and philosophical activity in the densely cultivated zone reaching from the Persian Gulf in the south to the modern area of Kurdistan in the north. 

This module gives students an introduction to Babylonian and Assyrian culture and civilization, from the vantage point of Babylon, Mesopotamia’s ‘cultural metropolis’, in the first millennium BCE.

Suggested introductory reading

This is suggested reading and purchase of these books is not mandatory.

  • Kuhrt, Amélie(1996) The Ancient Near East, 3000-330 BC Routledge
  • Matthews, Roger(2003) The archaeology of Mesopotamia: theories and approaches London & New York
  • Van der Mieroop, M.(2004) A History of the Ancient Near East ca. 3000-323 BC Blackwell
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