History Of Egypt, Chaldaea, Syria, Babylonia, and Assyria, Volume 7 (of 12)
by G. Maspero
1  2  3  4  5  6  7     Next Part
Home - Random Browse


By G. MASPERO, Honorable Doctor of Civil Laws, and Fellow of Queen's College, Oxford; Member of the Institute and Professor at the College of France

Edited by A. H. SAYCE, Professor of Assyriology, Oxford

Translated by M. L. McCLURE, Member of the Committee of the Egypt Exploration Fund


Volume VII.




/* Slumber Song—After painting bv P. Grot. Johann */



The line of Assyrian kings after Assurirba, and the Babylonian dynasties: the war between Ramman-nirari III. and Shamash-mudammiq; his victories over Babylon; Tukulti-ninip II. (890-885 B.C.)—The empire at the accession of Assur-nazir-pal: the Assyrian army and the progress of military tactics; cavalry, military engines; the condition of Assyria's neighbours, methods of Assyrian conquest.

The first campaigns of Assur-nazir-pal in Nairi and on the Khabur (885-882 B.C.): Zamua reduced to an Assyrian province (881 B.C.)—The fourth campaign in Nairi and the war on the Euphrates (880 B.C.); the first conquest of BU-Adini—Northern Syria at the opening of the IXth century: its civilisation, arts, army, and religion—The submission of the Hittite states and of the Patina: the Assyrians reach the Mediterranean.

The empire after the wars of Assur-nazir-pal—Building of the palace at Calah: Assyrian architecture and sculpture in the IXth century—The tunnel of Negub and the palace of Balawat—The last years of Assur-nazir-pal: His campaign of the year 867 in Nairi—The death of Assur-nazir-pal (860 B.C.); his character.

Shalmaneser III. (860-825 B.C.): the state of the empire at his accession—Urartu: its physical features, races, towns, temples, its deities—Shalmaneser's first campaign in Urartu: he penetrates as far as Lake Van (860 B.C.)—The conquest of Bit-Adini and of Nairi (859-855 B.C.)

The attack on Damascus: the battle of Qarqar (854 B.C.) and the war against Babylon (852-851 B.C.)—The alliance between Judah and Israel, the death of Ahab (853 B.C.); Damascus successfully resists the attacks of Assyria (849-846 B.C.)—Moab delivered from Israel, Mesha; the death of Ben-hadad (Adadidri) and the accession of Hazael; the fall of the house of Omri-Jehu (843 B.C.)—The defeat of Hazael and the homage of Jehu (842-839 B.C.). Wars in Cilicia and in Namri (838-835 B.c.): the last battles of Shalmaneser III.; his building works, the revolt of Assur-dain-pal—Samsi-ramman IV. (825-812 B.C.), his first three expeditions, his campaigns against Babylon—Bammdn-nirdri IV, (812-783 B.C.)—Jehu, Athaliah, Joash: the supremacy of Hazael over Israel and Judah—Victory of Bammdn-nirdri over Mari, and the submission of all Syria to the Assyrians (803 B.C.).

The growth of Urartu: the conquests of Menuas and Argistis I., their victories over Assyria—Shalmaneser IV. (783-772 B.C.)—Assurdan III. (772-754 B.C.)—Assur-niruri III. (754-745 B.C.)—The downfall of Assyria and the triumph of Urartu.


Assur-nazir-pal (885-860) and Shalmaneser III. (860-825)—The kingdom of Urartu and its conquering princes: Menuas and Argistis.

Assyria was the first to reappear on the scene of action. Less hampered by an ancient past than Egypt and Chaldaea, she was the sooner able to recover her strength after any disastrous crisis, and to assume again the offensive along the whole of her frontier line.

Image Drawn by Faucher-Gudin, from a bas-relief at Koyunjik of the time of Sennacherib. The initial cut, which is also by Faucher-Gudin, represents the broken obelisk of Assur- nazir-pal, the bas-reliefs of which are as yet unpublished.

During the years immediately following the ephemeral victories and reverses of Assurirba, both the country and its rulers are plunged in the obscurity of oblivion. Two figures at length, though at what date is uncertain, emerge from the darkness—a certain Irbaramman and an Assur-nadinakhe II., whom we find engaged in building palaces and making a necropolis. They were followed towards 950 by a Tiglath-pileser II., of whom nothing is known but his name.* He in his turn was succeeded about the year 935 by one Assurdan II., who appears to have concentrated his energies upon public works, for we hear of him digging a canal to supply his capital with water, restoring the temples and fortifying towns. Kamman-nirari III., who followed him in 912, stands out more distinctly from the mists which envelop the history of this period; he repaired the gate of the Tigris and the adjoining wall at Assur, he enlarged its principal sanctuary, reduced several rebellious provinces to obedience, and waged a successful warfare against the neighbouring inhabitants of Karduniash. Since the extinction of the race of Nebuchadrezzar I., Babylon had been a prey to civil discord and foreign invasion. The Aramaean tribes mingled with, or contiguous to the remnants of the Cossoans bordering on the Persian gulf, constituted possibly, even at this period, the powerful nation of the Kalda.**

* Our only knowledge of Tiglath-pileser II. is from a brick, on which he is mentioned as being the grandfather of Ramman- nirari II.

** The names Chaldaea and Chaldaeans being ordinarily used to designate the territory and people of Babylon, I shall employ the term Kaldu or Kalda in treating of the Aramaean tribes who constituted the actual Chaldaean nation.

It has been supposed, not without probability, that a certain Simashshikhu, Prince of the Country of the Sea, who immediately followed the last scion of the line of Pashe,* was one of their chiefs. He endeavoured to establish order in the city, and rebuilt the temple of the Sun destroyed by the nomads at Sippar, but at the end of eighteen years he was assassinated. His son Eamukinshurnu remained at the head of affairs some three to six months; Kashshu-nadinakhe ruled three or six years, at the expiration of which a man of the house of Bazi, Eulbar-shakinshumi by name, seized upon the crown.** His dynasty consisted of three members, himself included, and it was overthrown after a duration of twenty years by an Elamite, who held authority for another seven.***

* The name of this prince has been read Simbarshiku by Peiser, a reading adopted by Rost; Simbarshiku would have been shortened into Sibir, and we should have to identify it with that of the Sibir mentioned by Assur-nazir-pal in his Annals, col. ii. 1. 84, as a king of Karduniash who lived before his (Assur-nazir-pal's) time (see p. 38 of the present volume).

** The name of this king may be read Edubarshakin-shumi. The house of Bazi takes its name from an ancestor who must have founded it at some unknown date, but who never reigned in Chaldaea. Winckler has with reason conjectured that the name subsequently lost its meaning to the Babylonians, and that they confused the Chaldaean house of Bazi with the Arab country of Bazu: this may explain why in his dynasties Berosos attributes an Arab origin to that one which comprises the short-lived line of Bit-Bazi.

*** Our knowledge of these events is derived solely from the texts of the Babylonian Canon published and translated by G. Smith, by Pinches, and by Sayce. The inscription of Nabubaliddin informs us that Kashu-nadinakhe and Eulbar- shakinshumu continued the works begun by Simashshiku in the temple of the Sun at Sippar.

It was a period of calamity and distress, during which the Arabs or the Aramaeans ravaged the country, and pillaged without compunction not only the property of the inhabitants, but also that of the gods. The Elamite usurper having died about the year 1030, a Babylonian of noble extraction expelled the intruders, and succeeded in bringing the larger part of the kingdom under his rule.*

* The names of the first kings of this dynasty are destroyed in the copies of the Royal Canon which have come down to us. The three preceding dynasties are restored as follows:—

Five or six of his descendants had passed away, and a certain Shamash-mudammiq was feebly holding the reins of government, when the expeditions of Ramman-nirari III. provoked war afresh between Assyria and Babylon. The two armies encountered each other once again on their former battlefield between the Lower Zab and the Turnat. Shamash-mudammiq, after being totally routed near the Yalman mountains, did not long survive, and Naboshumishkun, who succeeded him, showed neither more ability nor energy than his predecessor. The Assyrians wrested from him the fortresses of Bambala and Bagdad, dislodged him from the positions where he had entrenched himself, and at length took him prisoner while in flight, and condemned him to perpetual captivity.*

* Shamash-mudammiq appears to have died about 900. Naboshumishkun probably reigned only one or two years, from 900 to 899 or to 898. The name of his successor is destroyed in the Synchronous History; it might be Nabubaliddin, who seems to have had a long life, but it is wiser, until fresh light is thrown on the subject, to admit that it is some prince other than Nabubaliddin, whose name is as yet unknown to us.

His successor abandoned to the Assyrians most of the districts situated on the left bank of the Lower Zab between the Zagros mountains and the Tigris, and peace, which was speedily secured by a double marriage, remained unbroken for nearly half a century. Tukulti-ninip II. was fond of fighting; "he overthrew his adversaries and exposed their heads upon stakes," but, unlike his predecessor, he directed his efforts against Nairi and the northern and western tribes. We possess no details of his campaigns; we can only surmise that in six years, from 890 to 885,* he brought into subjection the valley of the Upper Tigris and the mountain provinces which separate it from the Assyrian plain. Having reached the source of the river, he carved, beside the image of Tiglath-pileser I., the following inscription, which may still be read upon the rock. "With the help of Assur, Shamash, and Ramman, the gods of his religion, he reached this spot. The lofty mountains he subjugated from the sun-rising to its down-setting; victorious, irresistible, he came hither, and like unto the lightning he crossed the raging rivers."**

* The parts preserved of the Eponym canon begin their record in 893, about the end of the reign of Ramman-nirari IL The line which distinguishes the two reigns from one another is drawn between the name of the personage who corresponds to the year 890, and that of Tukulti-ninip who corresponds to the year 889: Tukulti-ninip II., therefore, begins his reign in 890, and his death is six years later, in 885.

** This inscription and its accompanying bas-relief are mentioned in the Annals of Assur-nazir-pal.

He did not live long to enjoy his triumphs, but his death made no impression on the impulse given to the fortunes of his country. The kingdom which he left to Assur-nazir-pal, the eldest of his sons, embraced scarcely any of the countries which had paid tribute to former sovereigns. Besides Assyria proper, it comprised merely those districts of Nairi which had been annexed within his own generation; the remainder had gradually regained their liberty: first the outlying dependencies—Cilicia, Melitene, Northern Syria, and then the provinces nearer the capital, the valleys of the Masios and the Zagros, the steppes of the Khabur, and even some districts such as Lubdi and Shupria, which had been allotted to Assyrian colonists at various times after successful campaigns. Nearly the whole empire had to be reconquered under much the same conditions as in the first instance. Assyria itself, it is true, had recovered the vitality and elasticity of its earlier days. The people were a robust and energetic race, devoted to their rulers, and ready to follow them blindly and trustingly wherever they might lead. The army, while composed chiefly of the same classes of troops as in the time of Tiglath-pileser I.,—spearmen, archers, sappers, and slingers,—now possessed a new element, whose appearance on the field of battle was to revolutionize the whole method of warfare; this was the cavalry, properly so called, introduced as an adjunct to the chariotry. The number of horsemen forming this contingent was as yet small; like the infantry, they wore casques and cuirasses, but were clothed with a tight-fitting loin-cloth in place of the long kilt, the folds of which would have embarrassed their movements. One-half of the men carried sword and lance, the other half sword and bow, the latter of a smaller kind than that used by the infantry. Their horses were bridled, and bore trappings on the forehead, but had no saddles; their riders rode bareback without stirrups; they sat far back with the chest thrown forward, their knees drawn up to grip the shoulder of the animal.

Drawn by Faucher-Gudin, from a bas-relief in bronze on the gate of Balawat. The Assyrian artist has shown the head and legs of the second horse in profile behind the first, but he has forgotten to represent the rest of its body, and also the man riding it.

Each horseman was attended by a groom, who rode abreast of him, and held his reins during an action, so that he might be free to make use of his weapons. This body of cavalry, having little confidence in its own powers, kept in close contact with the main body of the army, and was not used in independent manouvres; it was associated with and formed an escort to the chariotry in expeditions where speed was essential, and where the ordinary foot soldier would have hampered the movements of the charioteers.*

* Isolated horsemen must no doubt have existed in the Assyrian just as in the Egyptian army, but we never find any mention of a body of cavalry in inscriptions prior to the time of Assur-nazir-pal; the introduction of this new corps must consequently have taken place between the reigns of Tiglath-pileser and Assur-nazir-pal, probably nearer the time of the latter. Assur-nazir-pal himself seldom speaks of his cavalry, but he constantly makes mention of the horsemen of the Aramaean and Syrian principalities, whom he incorporated into his own army.

Drawn by Faucher-Gudin, from one of the bronze bas-reliefs of the gate of Balawat.

The army thus reinforced was at all events more efficient, if not actually more powerful, than formerly; the discipline maintained was as severe, the military spirit as keen, the equipment as perfect, and the tactics as skilful as in former times. A knowledge of engineering had improved upon the former methods of taking towns by sapping and scaling, and though the number of military engines was as yet limited, the besiegers were well able, when occasion demanded, to improvise and make use of machines capable of demolishing even the strongest walls.*

* The battering-ram had already reached such a degree of perfection under Assur-nazir-pal, that it must have been invented some time before the execution of the first bas- reliefs on which we see it portrayed. Its points of resemblance to the Greek battering-ram furnished Hoofer with one of his mam arguments for placing the monuments of Khorsabad and Koyunjik as late as the Persian or Parthian period.

The Assyrians were familiar with all the different kinds of battering-ram; the hand variety, which was merely a beam tipped with iron, worked by some score of men; the fixed ram, in which the beam was suspended from a scaffold and moved by means of ropes; and lastly, the movable ram, running on four or six wheels, which enabled it to be advanced or withdrawn at will. The military engineers of the day allowed full rein to their fancy in the many curious shapes they gave to this latter engine; for example, they gave to the mass of bronze at its point the form of the head of an animal, and the whole engine took at times the form of a sow ready to root up with its snout the foundations of the enemy's defences. The scaffolding of the machine was usually protected by a carapace of green leather or some coarse woollen material stretched over it, which broke the force of blows from projectiles: at times it had an additional arrangement in the shape of a cupola or turret in which archers were stationed to sweep the face of the wall opposite to the point of attack.

Drawn by Faucher-Gudin, from one of the bronze bas-reliefs of the gate of Balawat.

The battering-rams were set up and placed in line at a short distance from the ramparts of the besieged town; the ground in front of them was then levelled and a regular causeway constructed, which was paved with bricks wherever the soil appeared to be lacking in firmness. These preliminaries accomplished, the engines were pushed forward by relays of troops till they reached the required range. The effort needed to set the ram in motion severely taxed the strength of those engaged in the work; for the size of the beam was enormous, and its iron point, or the square mass of metal at the end, was of no light weight. The besieged did their best to cripple or, if possible, destroy the engine as it approached them.

Drawn by Faucher-Gudin, from a bas-relief brought from Nimroud, now in the British Museum.

Torches, lighted tow, burning pitch, and stink-pots were hurled down upon its roofing: attempts were made to seize the head of the ram by means of chains or hooks, so as to prevent it from moving, or in order to drag it on to the battlements; in some cases the garrison succeeded in crushing the machinery with a mass of rock. The Assyrians, however, did not allow themselves to be discouraged by such trifling accidents; they would at once extinguish the fire, release, by sheer force of muscle, the beams which the enemy had secured, and if, notwithstanding all their efforts, one of the machines became injured, they had others ready to take its place, and the ram would be again at work after only a few minutes' delay. Walls, even when of burnt brick or faced with small stones, stood no chance against such an attack.

Drawn by Faucher-Gudin, from a bas-relief from Nimroud, now in the British Museum.

The first blow of the ram sufficed to shake them, and an opening was rapidly made, so that in a few days, often in a few hours, they became a heap of ruins; the foot soldiers could then enter by the breach which the pioneers had effected.

It must, however, be remembered that the strength and discipline which the Assyrian troops possessed in such a high degree, were common to the military forces of all the great states—Elam, Damascus, Nairi, the Hittites, and Chaldaea. It was owing to this, and also to the fact that the armies of all these Powers were, as a rule, both in strength and numbers, much on a par, that no single state was able to inflict on any of the rest such a defeat as would end in its destruction. What decisive results had the terrible struggles produced, which stained almost periodically the valleys of the Tigris and the Zab with blood? After endless loss of life and property, they had nearly always issued in the establishment of the belligerents in their respective possessions, with possibly the cession of some few small towns or fortresses to the stronger party, most of which, however, were destined to come back to its former possessor in the very next campaign. The fall of the capital itself was not decisive, for it left the vanquished foe chafing under his losses, while the victory cost his rival so dear that he was unable to maintain the ascendency for more than a few years. Twice at least in three centuries a king of Assyria had entered Babylon, and twice the Babylonians had expelled the intruder of the hour, and had forced him back with a blare of trumpets to the frontier. Although the Ninevite dynasties had persisted in their pretensions to a suzerainty which they had generally been unable to enforce, the tradition of which, unsupported by any definite decree, had been handed on from one generation to another; yet in practice their kings had not succeeded in "taking the hands of Bel," and in reigning personally in Babylon, nor in extorting from the native sovereign an official acknowledgment of his vassalage. Profiting doubtless by past experience, Assur-nazir-pal resolutely avoided those direct conflicts in which so many of his predecessors had wasted their lives. If he did not actually renounce his hereditary pretensions, he was content to let them lie dormant. He preferred to accommodate himself to the terms of the treaty signed a few years previously by Ramman-nirari, even when Babylon neglected to observe them; he closed his eyes to the many ill-disguised acts of hostility to which he was exposed,* and devoted all his energies to dealing with less dangerous enemies.

* He did not make the presence of Cossoan troops among the allies of the Sukhi a casus belli, even though they were commanded by a brother and by one of the principal officers of the King of Babylon.

Even if his frontier touched Karduniash to the south, elsewhere he was separated from the few states strong enough to menace his kingdom by a strip of varying width, comprising several less important tribes and cities;—to the east and north-east by the barbarians of obscure race whose villages and strongholds were scattered along the upper affluents of the Tigris or on the lower terraces of the Iranian plateau: to the west and north-west by the principalities and nomad tribes, mostly of Aramoan extraction, who now for a century had peopled the mountains of the Tigris and the steppes of Mesopotamia. They were high-spirited, warlike, hardy populations, proud of their independence and quick to take up arms in its defence or for its recovery, but none of them possessed more than a restricted domain, or had more than a handful of soldiers at its disposal. At times, it is true, the nature of their locality befriended them, and the advantages of position helped to compensate for their paucity of numbers.

Drawn by Boudier, from a photograph by M. Binder.

Sometimes they were entrenched behind one of those rapid watercourses like the Radanu, the Zab, or the Turnat, which are winter torrents rather than streams, and are overhung by steep banks, precipitous as a wall above a moat; sometimes they took refuge upon some wooded height and awaited attack amid its rocks and pine woods. Assyria was superior to all of them, if not in the valour of its troops, at least numerically, and, towering in the midst of them, she could single out at will whichever tribe offered the easiest prey, and falling on it suddenly, would crush it by sheer force of weight. In such a case the surrounding tribes, usually only too well pleased to witness in safety the fall of a dangerous rival, would not attempt to interfere; but their turn was ere long sure to come, and the pity which they had declined to show to their neighbours was in like manner refused to them. The Assyrians ravaged their country, held their chiefs to ransom, razed their strongholds, or, when they did not demolish them, garrisoned them with their own troops who held sway over the country. The revenues gleaned from these conquests would swell the treasury at Nineveh, the native soldiers would be incorporated into the Assyrian army, and when the smaller tribes had all in turn been subdued, their conqueror would, at length, find himself confronted with one of the great states from which he had been separated by these buffer communities; then it was that the men and money he had appropriated in his conquests would embolden him to provoke or accept battle with some tolerable certainty of victory.

Immediately on his accession, Assur-nazir-pal turned his attention to the parts of his frontier where the population was most scattered, and therefore less able to offer any resistance to his projects.*

* The principal document for the history of Assur-nazir-pal is the "Monolith of Nimrud," discovered by Layard in the ruins of the temple of Ninip; it bears the same inscription on both its sides. It is a compilation of various documents, comprising, first, a consecutive account of the campaigns of the king's first six years, terminating in a summary of the results obtained during that period; secondly, the account of the campaign of his sixth year, followed by three campaigns not dated, the last of which was in Syria; and thirdly, the history of a last campaign, that of his eighteenth year, and a second summary. A monolith found in the ruins of Kurkh, at some distance from Diarbekir, contains some important additions to the account of the campaigns of the fifth year. The other numerous inscriptions of Assur-nazir-pal which have come down to us do not contain any information of importance which is not found in the text of the Annals. The inscription of the broken Obelisk, from which I have often quoted, contains in the second column some mention of the works undertaken by this king.

He marched towards the north-western point of his territory, suddenly invaded Nummi,* and in an incredibly short time took Gubbe, its capital, and some half-dozen lesser places, among them Surra, Abuku, Arura, and Arubi. The inhabitants assembled upon a mountain ridge which they believed to be inaccessible, its peak being likened to "the point of an iron dagger," and the steepness of its sides such that "no winged bird of the heavens dare venture on them." In the short space of three days Assur-nazir-pal succeeded in climbing its precipices and forcing the entrenchments which had been thrown up on its summit: two hundred of its defenders perished sword in hand, the remainder were taken prisoners. The Kirruri,** terrified by this example, submitted unreservedly to the conqueror, yielded him their horses, mules, oxen, sheep, wine, and brazen vessels, and accepted the Assyrian prefects appointed to collect the tribute.

* Nummi or Nimmi, mentioned already in the Annals of Tiglath-pileser I., has been placed by Hommel in the mountain group which separates Lake Van from Lake Urumiah, but by Tiele in the regions situated to the southeast of Nineveh; the observations of Delattre show that we ought perhaps to look for it to the north of the Arzania, certainly in the valley of that river. It appears to me to answer to the cazas of Varto and Boulanik in the sandjak of Mush. The name of the capital may be identified with the present Gop, chief town of the caza of Boulanik; in this case Abuku might be represented by the village of Biyonkh.

** The Kirruri must have had their habitat in the depression around Lake frumiah, on the western side of the lake, if we are to believe Schrader; Jelattre has pointed out that it ought to be sought elsewhere, near the sources of the Tigris, not far from the Murad-su. The connection in which it is here cited obliges us to place it in the immediate neighbourhood of Nummi, and its relative position to Adaush and Gilzan makes it probable that it is to be sought to the west and south-west of Lake Van, in the cazas of Mush and Sassun in the sandjak of Mush.

The neighbouring districts, Adaush, Gilzan, and Khubushkia, followed their example;* they sent the king considerable presents of gold, silver, lead, and copper, and their alacrity in buying off their conqueror saved them from the ruinous infliction of a garrison. The Assyrian army defiling through the pass of Khulun next fell upon the Kirkhi, dislodged the troops stationed in the fortress of Nishtun, and pillaged the cities of Khatu, Khatara, Irbidi, Arzania, Tela, and Khalua; ** Bubu, the Chief of Nishtun,*** was sent to Arbela, flayed alive, and his skin nailed to the city wall.

* Kirzau, also transcribed Gilzan and Guzan, has been relegated by the older Assyriologists to Eastern Armenia, and the site further specified as being between the ancient Araxes and Lake Urumiah, in the Persian provinces of Khoi and Marand. The indications given in our text and the passages brought together by Schrader, which place Gilzan in direct connection with Kirruri on one side and with Kurkhi on the other, oblige us to locate the country in the upper basin of the Tigris, and I should place it near Bitlis- tchai, where different forms of the word occur many times on the map, such as Ghalzan in Ghalzan-dagh; Kharzan, the name of a caza of the sandjak of Sert; Khizan, the name of a caza of the sandjak of Bitlis. Girzan-Kilzan would thus be the Roman province of Arzanene, Ardzn in Armenian, in which the initial g or h of the ancient name has been replaced in the process of time by a soft aspirate. Khubushkia or Khutushkia has been placed by Lenormant to the east of the Upper Zab, and south of Arapkha, and this identification has been approved by Schrader and also by Delitzsch; according to the passages that Schrader himself has cited, it must, however, have stretched northwards as far as Shatakh-su, meeting Gilzan at one point of the sandjaks of Van and Hakkiari.

** Assur-nazir-pal, in going from Kirruri to Kirkhi in the basin of the Tigris, could go either by the pass of Bitlis or that of Sassun; that of Bitlis is excluded by the fact that it lies in Kirruri, and Kirruri is not mentioned in what follows. But if the route chosen was by the pass of Sassun, Khulun necessarily must have occupied a position at the entrance of the defiles, perhaps that of the present town of Khorukh. The name Khatu recalls that of the Khoith tribe which the Armenian historians mention as in this locality. Khaturu is perhaps Hatera in the caza of Lidjo, in the sandjak of Diarbekir, and Arzania the ancient Arzan, Arzn, the ruins of which may be seen near Sheikh-Yunus. Tila-Tela is not the same town as the Tela in Mesopotamia, which we shall have occasion to speak of later, but is probably to be identified with Til or Tilleh, at the confluence of the Tigris and the Bohtan-tcha. Finally, it is possible that the name Khalua may be preserved in that of Halewi, which Layard gives as belonging to a village situated almost halfway between Rundvan and Til.

*** Nishtun was probably the most important spot in this region: from its position on the list, between Khulun and Khataru on one side and Arzania on the other, it is evident we must look for it somewhere in Sassun or in the direction of Mayafarrikin.

In a small town near one of the sources of the Tigris, Assur-nazir-pal founded a colony on which he imposed his name; he left there a statue of himself, with an inscription celebrating his exploits carved on its base, and having done this, he returned to Nineveh laden with booty.

Drawn by Boudier, from a sketch taken by Layard.

A few weeks had sufficed for him to complete, on this side, the work bequeathed to him by his father, and to open up the neighbourhood of the northeast provinces; he was not long in setting out afresh, this time to the north-west, in the direction of the Taurus.*

* The text of the "Annals" declares that these events took place "in this same limmu," in what the king calls higher up in the column "the beginning of my royalty, the first year of my reign." We must therefore suppose that he ascended the throne almost at the beginning of the year, since he was able to make two campaigns under the same eponym.

He rapidly skirted the left bank of the Tigris, burned some score of scattered hamlets at the foot of Nipur and Pazatu,* crossed to the right bank, above Amidi, and, as he approached the Euphrates, received the voluntary homage of Kummukh and the Mushku.** But while he was complacently engaged in recording the amount of vessels of bronze, oxen, sheep, and jars of wine which represented their tribute, a messenger of bad tidings appeared before him. Assyria was bounded on the east by a line of small states, comprising the Katna*** and the Bit-Khalupi,**** whose towns, placed alternately like sentries on each side the Khabur, protected her from the incursions of the Bedawin.

* Nipur or Nibur is the Nibaros of Strabo. If we consider the general direction of the campaign, we are inclined to place Nipur close to the bank of the Tigris, east of the regions traversed in the preceding campaign, and to identify it, as also Pazatu, with the group of high hills called at the present day the Ashit-dagh, between the Kharzan-su and the Batman-tchai.

** The Mushku (Moschiano or Meshek) mentioned here do not represent the main body of the tribe, established in Cappadocia; they are the descendants of such of the Mushku as had crossed the Euphrates and contested the possession of the regions of Kashiari with the Assyrians.

*** The name has been read sometimes Katna, sometimes Shuna. The country included the two towns of Kamani and Dur- Katlimi, and on the south adjoined Bit-Khalupi; this identifies it with the districts of Magada and Sheddadiyeh, and, judging by the information with which Assur-nazir-pal himself furnishes us, it is not impossible that Dur-Katline may have been on the site of the present Magarda, and Kamani on that of Sheddadiyeh. Ancient ruins have been pointed out on both these spots.

**** Suru, the capital of Bit-Khalupi, was built upon the Khabur itself where it is navigable, for Assur-nazir-pal relates further on that he had his royal barge built there at the time of the cruise which he undertook on the Euphrates in the VIth year of his reign. The itineraries of modern travellers mention a place called es-Sauar or es- Saur, eight hours' march from the mouth of the Khabur on the right bank of the river, situated at the foot of a hill some 220 feet high; the ruins of a fortified enclosure and of an ancient town are still visible. Following Tomkins, I should there place Suru, the chief town of Khalupi; Bit-Khalupi would be the territory in the neighbourhood of es-Saur.

Drawn by Faucher-Gudin, from a sketch by Layard.

They were virtually Chaldaean cities, having been, like most of those which flourished in the Mesopotamian plains, thoroughly impregnated with Babylonian civilisation. Shadikanni, the most important of them, commanded the right bank of the Khabur, and also the ford where the road from Nineveh crossed the river on the route to Harian and Carche-mish. The palaces of its rulers were decorated with winged bulls, lions, stelae, and bas-reliefs carved in marble brought from the hills of Singar. The people seem to have been of a capricious temperament, and, nothwithstanding the supervision to which they were subjected, few reigns elapsed in which it was not necessary to put down a rebellion among them. Bit-Khalupi and its capital Suru had thrown off the Assyrian yoke after the death of Tukulti-ninip; the populace, stirred up no doubt by Aramaean emissaries, had assassinated the Harnathite who governed them, and had sent for a certain Akhiababa, a man of base extraction from Bit-Adini, whom they had proclaimed king. This defection, if not promptly dealt with, was likely to entail serious consequences, since it left an important point on the frontier exposed: and there now remained nothing to prevent the people of Adini or their allies from spreading over the country between the Khabur and the Tigris, and even pushing forward their marauding bands as far as the very walls of Singar and Assur.

Drawn by Faucher-Gudin, from Layard's sketch

Without losing a moment, Assur-nazir-pal marched down the course of the Khabur, hastily collecting the tribute of the cities through which he passed. The defenders of Sura were disconcerted by his sudden appearance before their town, and their rulers came out and prostrated themselves at the king's feet: "Dost thou desire it? it is life for us;—dost thou desire it? it is death;—dost thou desire it? what thy heart chooseth, that do to us!" But the appeal to his clemency was in vain; the alarm had been so great and the danger so pressing, that Assur-nazir-pal was pitiless. The town was handed over to the soldiery, all the treasure it contained was confiscated, and the women and children of the best families were made slaves; some of the ringleaders paid the penalty of their revolt on the spot; the rest, with Akhiabaha, were carried away and flayed alive, some at Nineveh, some elsewhere. An Assyrian garrison was installed in the citadel, and an ordinary governor, Azilu by name, replaced the dynasty of native princes. The report of this terrible retribution induced the Laqi* to tender their submission, and their example was followed by Khaian, king of Khindanu on the Euphrates. He bought off the Assyrians with gold, silver, lead, precious stones, deep-hued purple, and dromedaries; he erected a statue of Assur-nazir-pal in the centre of his palace as a sign of his vassalage, and built into the wall near the gates of his town an inscription dedicated to the gods of the conqueror.

* The Laqi were situated on both banks of the Euphrates, principally on the right bank, between the Khabur and the Balikh, interspersed among the Sukhi, of whom they were perhaps merely a dissentient fraction.

Six, or at the most eight, months had sufficed to achieve these rapid successes over various foes, in twenty different directions—the expeditions in Nummi and Kirruri, the occupation of Kummukh, the flying marches across the mountains and plains of Mesopotamia—during all of which the new sovereign had given ample proof of his genius. He had, in fine, shown himself to be a thorough soldier, a conqueror of the type of Tiglath-pileser, and Assyria by these victories had recovered her rightful rank among the nations of Western Asia.

The second year of his reign was no less fully occupied, nor did it prove less successful than the first. At its very beginning, and even before the return of the favourable season, the Sukhi on the Euphrates made a public act of submission, and their chief, Ilubani, brought to Nineveh on their behalf a large sum of gold and silver. He had scarcely left the capital when the news of an untoward event effaced the good impression he had made. The descendants of the colonists, planted in bygone times by Shalmaneser I. on the western slope of the Masios, in the district of Khalzidipkha, had thrown off their allegiance, and their leader, Khulai, was besieging the royal fortress of Damdamusa.* Assur-nazir-pal marched direct to the sources of the Tigris, and the mere fact of his presence sufficed to prevent any rising in that quarter. He took advantage of the occasion to set up a stele beside those of his father Tukulti-ninip and his ancestor Tiglath-pileser, and then having halted to receive the tribute of Izalla,** he turned southwards, and took up a position on the slopes of the Kashiari.

* The position of Khalzidipkha or Khalzilukha, as well as that of Kina-bu, its stronghold, is shown approximately by what follows. Assur-nazir-pal, marching from the sources of the Supnat towards Tela, could pass either to the east or west of the Karajah-dagh; as the end of the campaign finds him at Tushkhan, to the south of the Tigris, and he returns to Nairi and Kirkhi by the eastern side of the Karajah-dagh, we are led to conclude that the outgoing march to Tela was by the western side, through the country situated between the Karajah-dagh and the Euphrates. On referring to a modern map, two rather important places will be found in this locality: the first, Arghana, commanding the road from Diarbekir to Khar-put; the other, Severek, on the route from Diarbekir to Orfah. Arghana appears to me to correspond to the royal city of Damdamusa, which would, thus have protected the approach to the plain on the north-west. Severek corresponds fairly well to the position which, according to the Assyrian text, Kinabu must have occupied; hence the country of Khalzidipkha (Khalzilukha) must be the district of Severek.

** Izalla, written also Izala, Azala, paid its tribute in sheep and oxen, and also produced a wine for which it continued to be celebrated down to the time of Nebuchadrezzar II. Lenormant and Finzi place this country- near to Nisibis, where the Byzantine and Syrian writers mention a district and a mountain of the same name, and this conjecture is borne out by the passages of the Annals of Assur-nazir-pal which place it in the vicinity of Bit-Adini and Bit-Bakhiani. It has also been adopted by most of the historians who have recently studied the question.

At the first news of his approach, Khulai had raised the blockade of Damdamusa and had entrenched himself in Kinabu; the Assyrians, however, carried the place by storm, and six hundred soldiers of the garrison were killed in the attack. The survivors, to the number of three thousand, together with many women and children, were, thrown into the flames. The people of Mariru hastened to the rescue;* the Assyrians took three hundred of them, prisoners and burnt them alive; fifty others were ripped up, but the victors did not stop to reduce their town. The district of Nirbu was next subjected to systematic ravaging, and half of its inhabitants fled into the Mesopotamian desert, while the remainder sought refuge in Tela at the foot of the Ukhira.**

* The site of Mariru is unknown; according to the text of the Annals, it ought to lie near Severek (Kinabu) to the south-east, since after having mentioned it, Assur-nazir-pal speaks of the people of Nirbu whom he engaged in the desert before marching against Tela.

** Tila or Tela is the Tela Antoninopolis of the writers of the Roman period and the present Veranshehr. The district of Nirbu, of which it was the capital, lay on the southern slope of the Karajah-dagh at the foot of Mount Urkhira, the central group of the range. The name Kashiari is applied to the whole mountain group which separates the basins of the Tigris and Euphrates to the south and south-west.

The latter place was a strong one, being surrounded by three enclosing walls, and it offered an obstinate resistance. Notwithstanding this, it at length fell, after having lost three thousand of its defenders:—some of its garrison were condemned to the stake, some had their hands, noses, or ears cut off, others were deprived of sight, flayed alive, or impaled amid the smoking ruins. This being deemed insufficient punishment, the conqueror degraded the place from its rank of chief town, transferring this, together with its other privileges, to a neighbouring city, Tushkhan, which had belonged to the Assyrians from the beginning of their conquests.* The king enlarged the place, added to it a strong enclosing wall, and installed within it the survivors of the older colonists who had been dispersed by the war, the majority of whom had taken refuge in Shupria.**

* From this passage we learn that Tushkhan, also called Tushkha, was situated on the border of Nirbu, while from another passage in the campaign of the Vth year we find that it was on the right bank of the Tigris. Following H. Rawlinson, I place it at Kurkh, near the Tigris, to the east of Diarbekir. The existence in that locality of an inscription of Assur-nazir-pal appears to prove the correctness of this identification; we are aware, in fact, of the particular favour in which this prince held Tushkhan, for he speaks with pride of the buildings with which he embellished it. Hommel, however, identifies Kurkh with the town of Matiato, of which mention is made further on.

** Shupria or Shupri, a name which has been read Ruri, had been brought into submission from the time of Shalmaneser I. We gather from the passages in which it is mentioned that it was a hilly country, producing wine, rich in flocks, and lying at a short distance from Tushkhan; perhaps Mariru, mentioned on p. 28, was one of its towns. I think we may safely place it on the north-western slopes of the Kashiari, in the modern caza of Tchernik, which possesses several vineyards held in high estimation. Knudtzon, to whom we are indebted for the reading of this name, places the country rather further north, within the fork formed by the two upper branches of the Tigris.

He constructed a palace there, built storehouses for the reception of the grain of the province; and, in short, transformed the town into a stronghold of the first order, capable of serving as a base of operations for his armies. The surrounding princes, in the meanwhile, rallied round him, including Ammibaal of Bit-Zamani, and the rulers of Shupria, Nairi, and Urumi;* the chiefs of Eastern Nirbu alone held aloof, emboldened by the rugged nature of their mountains and the density of their forests. Assur-nazir-pal attacked them on his return journey, dislodged them from the fortress of Ishpilibria where they were entrenched, gained the pass of Buliani, and emerged into the valley of Luqia.**

* The position of Bit-Zamani on the banks of the Euphrates was determined by Delattre. Urumi was situated on the right bank of the same river in the neighbourhood of Sumeisat, and the name has survived in that of Urima, a town in the vicinity so called even as late as Roman times. Nirdun, with Madara as its capital, occupied part of the eastern slopes of the Kashiari towards Ortaveran.

** Hommel identifies the Luqia with the northern affluent of the Euphrates called on the ancient monuments Lykos, and he places the scene of the war in Armenia. The context obliges us to look for this river to the south of the Tigris, to the north-east and to the east of the Kashiari. The king coming from Nirbu, the pass of Buliani, in which he finds the towns of Kirkhi, must be the valley of Khaneki, in which the road winds from Mardin to Diarbekir, and the Luqia is probably the most important stream in this region, the Sheikhan-Su, which waters Savur, chief town of the caza of Avinch. Ardupa must have been situated near, or on the actual site of, the present Mardin, whose Assyrian name is unknown to us; it was at all events a military station on the road to Nineveh, along which the king returned victorious with the spoil.

At Ardupa a brief halt was made to receive the ambassadors of one of the Hittite sovereigns and others from the kings of Khanigalbat, after which he returned to Nineveh, where he spent the winter. As a matter of fact, these were but petty wars, and their immediate results appear at the first glance quite inadequate to account for the contemporary enthusiasm they excited. The sincerity of it can be better understood when we consider the miserable state of the country twenty years previously. Assyria then comprised two territories, one in the plains of the middle, the other in the districts of the upper, Tigris, both of considerable extent, but almost without regular intercommunication. Caravans or isolated messengers might pass with tolerable safety from Assur and Nineveh to Singar, or even to Nisibis; but beyond these places they had to brave the narrow defiles and steep paths in the forests of the Masios, through which it was rash to venture without keeping eye and ear ever on the alert. The mountaineers and their chiefs recognized the nominal suzerainty of Assyria, but refused to act upon this recognition unless constrained by a strong hand; if this control were relaxed they levied contributions on, or massacred, all who came within their reach, and the king himself never travelled from his own city of Nineveh to his own town of Amidi unless accompanied by an army. In less than the short space of three years, Assur-nazir-pal had remedied this evil. By the slaughter of some two hundred men in one place, three hundred in another, two or three thousand in a third, by dint of impaling and flaying refractory sheikhs, burning villages and dismantling strongholds, he forced the marauders of Nairi and Kirkhi to respect his frontiers and desist from pillaging his country. The two divisions of his kingdom, strengthened by the military colonies in Nirbu, were united, and became welded together into a compact whole from the banks of the Lower Zab to the sources of the Khabur and the Supnat.

During the following season the course of events diverted the king's efforts into quite an opposite direction (B.C. 882). Under the name of Zamua there existed a number of small states scattered along the western slope of the Iranian Plateau north of the Cossaeans.* Many of them—as, for instance, the Lullume—had been civilized by the Chaldaeans almost from time immemorial; the most southern among them were perpetually oscillating between the respective areas of influence of Babylon and Nineveh, according as one or other of these cities was in the ascendant, but at this particular moment they acknowledged Assyrian sway. Were they excited to rebellion against the latter power by the emissaries of its rival, or did they merely think that Assur-nazir-pal was too fully absorbed in the affairs of Nairi to be able to carry his arms effectively elsewhere? At all events they coalesced under Nurramman, the sheikh of Dagara, blocked the pass of Babiti which led to their own territory, and there massed their contingents behind the shelter of hastily erected ramparts.**

* According to Hommol and Tiele, Zamua would be the country extending from the sources of the Radanu to the southern shores of the lake of Urumiah; Schrader believes it to have occupied a smaller area, and places it to the east and south-west of the lesser Zab. Delattre has shown that a distinction must be made between Zamua on Lake Van and the well-known Zamua upon the Zab. Zamua, as described by Assur- nazir-pal, answers approximately to the present sandjak of Suleimaniyeh in the vilayet of Mossul.

** Hommol believes that Assur-nazir-pal crossed the Zab near Altin-keupru, and he is certainly correct: but it appears to me from a passage in the Annals, that instead of taking the road which leads to Bagdad by Ker-kuk and Tuz-Khurmati, he marched along that which leads eastwards in the direction of Suleimaniyeh. The pass of Babiti must have lain between Gawardis and Biban, facing the Kisse tchai, which forms the western branch of the Radanu. Dagara would thus be represented by the district to the east of Kerkuk at the foot of the Kara-dagh.

Assur-nazir-pal concentrated his army at Kakzi,* a little to the south of Arbela, and promptly marched against them; he swept all obstacles before him, killed fourteen hundred and sixty men at the first onslaught, put Dagara to fire and sword, and soon defeated Nurramman, but without effecting his capture.

* Kakzi, sometimes read Kalzi, must have been situated at Shemamek of Shamamik, near Hazeh, to the south-west of Erbil, the ancient Arbela, at the spot where Jones noticed important Assyrian ruins excavated by Layard.

As the campaign threatened to be prolonged, he formed an entrenched camp in a favourable position, and stationed in it some of his troops to guard the booty, while he dispersed the rest to pillage the country on all sides.

One expedition led him to the mountain group of Nizir, at the end of the chain known to the people of Lullume as the Kinipa.* He there reduced to ruins seven towns whose inhabitants had barricaded themselves in urgent haste, collected the few herds of cattle he could find, and driving them back to the camp, set out afresh towards a part of Nizir as yet unsubdued by any conqueror. The stronghold of Larbusa fell before the battering-ram, to be followed shortly by the capture of Bara. Thereupon the chiefs of Zamua, convinced of their helplessness, purchased the king's departure by presents of horses, gold, silver, and corn.** Nurramman alone remained impregnable in his retreat at Nishpi, and an attempt to oust him resulted solely in the surrender of the fortress of Birutu.*** The campaign, far from having been decisive, had to be continued during the winter in another direction where revolts had taken place,—in Khudun, in Kissirtu, and in the fief of Arashtua,**** all three of which extended over the upper valleys of the lesser Zab, the Radanu, the Turnat, and their affluents.

* Mount Kinipa is a part of Nizir, the Khalkhalan-dagh, if we may-judge from the direction of the Assyrian campaign.

** None of these places can be identified with certainty. The gist of the account leads us to gather that Bara was situated to the east of Dagara, and formed its frontier; we shall not be far wrong in looking for all these districts in the fastnesses of the Kara-dagh, in the caza of Suleimaniyeh. Mount Nishpi is perhaps the Segirmc-dagh of the present day.

*** The Assyrian compiler appears to have made use of two slightly differing accounts of this campaign; he has twice repeated the same facts without noticing his mistake.

**** The fief of Arashtua, situated beyond the Turnat, is probably the district of Suleimaniyeh; it is, indeed, at this place only that the upper course of the Turnat is sufficiently near to that of the Radanu to make the marches of Assur-nazir-pal in the direction indicated by the Assyrian scribe possible. According to the account of the Annals, it seems to me that we must seek for Khudun and Kissirtu to the south of the fief of Arashtua, in the modern cazas of Gulanbar or Shehrizor.

The king once more set out from Kakzi, crossed the Zab and the Eadanu, through the gorges of Babiti, and halting on the ridges of Mount Simaki, peremptorily demanded tribute from Dagara.* This was, however, merely a ruse to deceive the enemy, for taking one evening the lightest of his chariots and the best of his horsemen, he galloped all night without drawing rein, crossed the Turnat at dawn, and pushing straight forward, arrived in the afternoon of the same day before the walls of Ammali, in the very heart of the fief of Arashtua.** The town vainly attempted a defence; the whole population was reduced to slavery or dispersed in the forests, the ramparts were demolished, and the houses reduced to ashes. Khudun with twenty, and Kissirtu with ten of its villages, Bara, Kirtiara, Dur-Lullume, and Bunisa, offered no further resistance, and the invading host halted within sight of the defiles of Khashmar.***

* The Annals of Assur-nazir-pal go on to mention that Mount Simaki extended as far as the Turnat, and that it was close to Mount Azira. This passage, when compared with that in which the opening of the campaign is described, obliges us to recognise in Mounts Simaki and Azira two parts of the Shehrizor chain, parallel to the Seguirme-dagh. The fortress of Mizu, mentioned in the first of these two texts, may perhaps be the present Guran-kaleh.

** Hommel thinks that Ammali is perhaps the present Suleimaniyeh; it is, at all events, on this side that we must look for its site.

*** I do not know whether we may trace the name of the ancient Mount Khashmar-Khashmir in the present Azmir-dagh; it is at its feet, probably in the valley of Suleimanabad, that we ought to place the passes of Khashmar.

One kinglet, however, Amika of Zamru, showed no intention of capitulating. Entrenched behind a screen of forests and frowning mountain ridges, he fearlessly awaited the attack. The only access to the remote villages over which he ruled, was by a few rough roads hemmed in between steep cliffs and beds of torrents; difficult and dangerous at ordinary times, they were blocked in war by temporary barricades, and dominated at every turn by some fortress perched at a dizzy height above them. After his return to the camp, where his soldiers were allowed a short respite, Assur-nazir-pal set out against Zamru, though he was careful not to approach it directly and attack it at its most formidable points. Between two peaks of the Lara and Bidirgi ranges he discovered a path which had been deemed impracticable for horses, or even for heavily armed men. By this route, the king, unsuspected by the enemy, made his way through the mountains, and descended so unexpectedly upon Zamru, that Amika had barely time to make his escape, abandoning everything in his alarm—palace, treasures, harem, and even his chariot.* A body of Assyrians pursued him hotly beyond the fords of the Lallu, chasing him as far as Mount Itini; then, retracing their steps to headquarters, they at once set out on a fresh track, crossed the Idir, and proceeded to lay waste the plains of Ilaniu and Suani.**

* This raid, which started from the same point as the preceding one, ran eastwards in an opposite direction and ended at Mount Itini. Leaving the fief of Arashtua in the neighbourhood of Suleimaniyeh, Assur-nazir-pal crossed the chain of the Azmir-dagh near Pir-Omar and Gudrun, where we must place Mounts Lara and Bidirgi, and emerged upon Zamru; the only-places which appear to correspond to Zamru in that region are Kandishin and Suleimanabad. Hence the Lallu is the river which runs by Kandishin and Suleimanabad, and Itini the mountain which separates this river from the Tchami-Kizildjik.

** I think we may recognise the ancient name of Ilaniu in that of Alan, now borne by a district on the Turkish and Persian frontier, situated between Kunekd ji-dagh and the town of Serdesht. The expedition, coming from the fief of Arashtua, must have marched northwards: the Idir in this case must be the Tchami-Kizildjik, and Mount Sabua the chain of mountains above Serdesht.

Despairing of taking Amika prisoner, Assur-nazir-pal allowed him to lie hidden among the brushwood of Mount Sabua, while he himself called a halt at Parsindu,* and set to work to organise the fruits of his conquest.

* Parsindu, mentioned between Mount Ilaniu and the town of Zamru, ought to lie somewhere in the valley of Tchami- Kizildjik, near Murana.

He placed garrisons in the principal towns—-at Parsindu, Zamru, and at Arakdi in Lullume, which one of his predecessors had re-named Tukulti-Ashshur-azbat,* —"I have taken the help of Assur." He next imposed on the surrounding country an annual tribute of gold, silver, lead, copper, dyed stuffs, oxen, sheep, and wine. Envoys from neighbouring kings poured in—from Khudun; Khubushkia, and Gilzan, and the whole of Northern Zamua bowed "before the splendour of his arms;" it now needed only a few raids resolutely directed against Mounts Azira and Simaki, as far as the Turn at, to achieve the final pacification of the South. While in this neighbourhood, his attention was directed to the old town of Atlila,** built by Sibir,*** an ancient king of Karduniash, but which had been half ruined by the barbarians. He re-named it Dur-Assur, "the fortress of Assur," and built himself within it a palace and storehouses, in which he accumulated large quantities of corn, making the town the strongest bulwark of his power on the Cossaean border.

*The approximate site of Arakdi is indicated in the itinerary of Assur-nazir-pal itself; the king comes from Zamru in the neighbourhood of Sulei-manabad, crosses Mount Lara, which is the northern part of the Azmir-dagh, and arrives at Arakdi, possibly somewhere in Surtash. In the course of the preceding campaign, after having laid waste Bara, he set out from this same town (Arakdi) to subdue Nishpi, all of which bears out the position I have indicated. The present town of Bazian would answer fairly well for the site of a place destined to protect the Assyrian frontier on this side.

** Given its position on the Chaldaean frontier, Atlila is probably to be identified with the Kerkuk of the present day.

*** Hommel is inclined to believe that Sibir was the immediate predecessor of Nabubaliddin, who reigned at Babylon at the same time as Assur-nazir-pal at Nineveh; consequently he would be a contemporary of Ramman-nirari III. and of Tukulti-ninip II. Peiser and Rost have identified him with Simmash-shikhu.

Drawn by Boudier, from a photograph by M. de Morgan.

The two campaigns of B.C. 882 and 881 had cost Assur-nazir-pal great efforts, and their results had been inadequate to the energy expended. His two principal adversaries, Nurramman and Amika, had eluded him, and still preserved their independence at the eastern extremities of their former states. Most of the mountain tribes had acknowledged the king's supremacy merely provisionally, in order to rid themselves of his presence; they had been vanquished scores of times, but were in no sense subjugated, and the moment pressure was withdrawn, they again took up arms. The districts of Zamua alone, which bordered on the Assyrian plain, and had been occupied by a military force, formed a province, a kind of buffer state between the mountain tribes and the plains of the Zab, protecting the latter from incursions.

Assur-nazir-pal, feeling himself tolerably safe on that side, made no further demands, and withdrew his battalions to the westward part of his northern frontier. He hoped, no doubt, to complete the subjugation of the tribes who still contested the possession of various parts of the Kashiari, and then to push forward his main guard as far as the Euphrates and the Arzania, so as to form around the plain of Amidi a zone of vassals or tutelary subjects like those of Zamua. With this end in view, he crossed the Tigris near its source at the traditional fords, and made his way unmolested in the bend of the Euphrates from the palace of Tilluli, where the accustomed tribute of Kummukh was brought to him, to the fortress of Ishtarati, and from thence to Kibaki. The town of Matiate, having closed its gates against him, was at once sacked, and this example so stimulated the loyalty of the Kurkhi chiefs, that they ha*tened to welcome him at the neighbouring military station of Zazabukha. The king's progress continued thence as before, broken by frequent halts at the most favourable points for levying contributions on the inhabitants.1 Assur-nazir-pal encountered no serious difficulty except on the northern slopes of the Kashiari, but there again fortune smiled on him; all the contested positions were soon ceded to him, including even Madara, whose fourfold circuit of walls did not avail to save it from the conqueror.** After a brief respite at Tushkhan, he set out again one evening with his lightest chariots and the pick of his horsemen, crossed the Tigris on rafts, rode all night, and arrived unexpectedly the next morning before Pitura, the chief town of the Dirrabans.*** It was surrounded by a strong double enceinte, through which he broke after forty-eight hours of continuous assault: 800 of its men perished in the breach, and 700 others were impaled before the gates.

* It is difficult to place any of these localities on the map: they ought all to be found between the ford of the Tigris, at Diarbeldr and the Euphrates, probably at the foot of the Mihrab-dagh and the Kirwantchernen-dagh.

** Madara belonged to a certain Lapturi, son of Tubusi, mentioned in the campaign of the king's second year. In comparing the facts given in the two passages, we see it was situated on the eastern slope of the Kashiari, not far from Tushkhan on one side, and Ardupa—that is probably Mardin—? on the other. The position of Ortaveran, or of one of the "tells" in its neighbourhood, answers fairly well to these conditions.

*** According to the details given in the Annals, we must place the town of Bitura (or Pitura) at about 19 miles from Kurkh, on the other side of the Tigris, in a north-easterly direction, and consequently the country of Lirra would be between the Hazu-tchai and the Batman-tchai. The Matni, with its passes leading in to Nairi, must in this case be the mountain group to the north of Mayafarrikin, known as the Dordoseh-dagh or the Darkosh-dagh.

Arbaki, at the extreme limits of Eirkhi, was the next to succumb, after which the Assyrians, having pillaged Dirra, carried the passes of Matni after a bloody combat, spread themselves over Nairi, burning 250 of its towns and villages, and returned with immense booty to Tushkhan. They had been there merely a few days when the newt arrived that the people of Bit-Zamani, always impatient of the yoke, had murdered their prince Ammibaal, and had proclaimed a certain Burramman in his place. Assur-nazir-pal marched upon Sinabux and repressed the insurrection, reaping a rich harvest of spoil—chariots fully equipped, 600 draught-horses, 130 pounds of silver and as much of gold, 6600 pounds of lead and the same of copper, 19,800 pounds of iron, stuffs, furniture in gold and ivory, 2000 bulls, 500 sheep, the entire harem of Ammibaal, besides a number of maidens of noble family together with their dresses. Burramman was by the king's order flayed alive, and Arteanu his brother chosen as his successor. Sinabu* and the surrounding towns formed part of that network of colonies which in times past Shalmaneser I. had organised as a protection from the incursions of the inhabitants of Nairi; Assur-nazir-pal now used it as a rallying-place for the remaining Assyrian families, to whom he distributed lands and confided the guardianship of the neighbouring strongholds.

* Hommel thinks that Sinabu is very probably the same as the Kinabu mentioned above; but it appears from Assur-nazir- pal's own account that this Kinabu was in the province of Khalzidipkha (Khalzilukha) on the Kashiari, whereas Sinabu was in Bit-Zamani.

The results of this measure were not long in making themselves felt: Shupria, Ulliba, and Nirbu, besides other districts, paid their dues to the king, and Shura in Khamanu,* which had for some time held out against the general movement, was at length constrained to submit (880 B.C.).

* Shur is mentioned on the return to Nairi, possibly on the road leading from Amidi and Tushkhan to Nineveh. Hommel believes that the country of Khamanu was the Amanos in Cilicia, and he admits, but unwillingly, that Assur-nazir- pal made a detour beyond the Euphrates. I should look for Shura, and consequently for Khamanu, in the Tur-Abdin, and should identify them with Saur, in spite of the difference of the two initial articulations.

However high we may rate the value of this campaign, it was eclipsed by the following one. The Aramaeans on the Khabur and the middle Euphrates had not witnessed without anxiety the revival of Ninevite activity, and had begged for assistance against it from its rival. Two of their principal tribes, the Sukhi and the Laqi, had addressed themselves to the sovereign then reigning at Babylon. He was a restless, ambitious prince, named Nabu-baliddin, who asked nothing better than to excite a hostile feeling against his neighbour, provided he ran no risk by his interference of being drawn into open warfare. He accordingly despatched to the Prince of Sukhi the best of his Cossoan troops, commanded by his brother Zabdanu and one of the great officers of the crown, Bel-baliddin. In the spring of 879 B.C., Assur-nazir-pal determined once for all to put an end to these intrigues. He began by inspecting the citadels flanking the line of the Kharmish* and the Khabur,—Tabiti,** Magarisi,*** Shadikanni, Shuru in Bit-Khafupi, and Sirki.****

* The Kharmish has been identified with the Hirmas, the river flowing by Nisibis, and now called the Nahr-Jaghjagha.

** Tabiti is the Thebeta (Thebet) of Roman itineraries and Syrian writers, situated 33 miles from Nisibis and 52 from Singara, on the Nahr-Hesawy or one of the neighbouring wadys.

*** Magarisi ought to be found on the present Nahr- Jaghjagha, near its confluence with the Nahr-Jerrahi and its tributaries; unfortunately, this part of Mesopotamia is still almost entirely unexplored, and no satisfactory map of it exists as yet.

**** Sirki is Circesium at the mouth of the Khabur.

Between the embouchures of the Khabur and the Balikh, the Euphrates winds across a vast table-land, ridged with marly hills; the left bank is dry and sterile, shaded at rare intervals by sparse woods of poplars or groups of palms. The right bank, on the contrary, is seamed with fertile valleys, sufficiently well watered to permit the growth of cereals and the raising of cattle. The river-bed is almost everywhere wide, but strewn with dangerous rocks and sandbanks which render navigation perilous. On nearing the ruins of Halebiyeh, the river narrows as it enters the Arabian hills, and cuts for itself a regular defile of three or four hundred paces in length, which is approached by the pilots with caution.*

* It is at this defile of El-Hammeh, and not at that of Birejik at the end of the Taurus, that we must place the Khinqi sha Purati—the narrows of the Euphrates—so often mentioned in the account of this campaign.

Assur-nazir-pal, on leaving Sirki, made his way along the left bank, levying toll on Supri, Naqarabani, and several other villages in his course. Here and there he called a halt facing some town on the opposite bank, but the boats which could have put him across had been removed, and the fords were too well guarded to permit of his hazarding an attack. One town, however, Khindanu, made him a voluntary offering which, he affected to regard as a tribute, but Kharidi and Anat appeared not even to suspect his presence in their vicinity, and he continued on his way without having obtained from them anything which could be construed into a mark of vassalage.*

* The detailed narrative of the Annals informs us that Assur-nazir-pal encamped on a mountain between Khindanu and Bit-Shabaia, and this information enables us to determine on the map with tolerable certainty the localities mentioned in this campaign. The mountain in question can be none other than El-Hammeh, the only one met with on this bank of the Euphrates between the confluents of the Euphrates and the Khabur. Khindanu is therefore identical with the ruins of Tabus, the Dabausa of Ptolemy; hence Supri and Naqabarani are situated between this point and Sirki, the former in the direction of Tayebeh, the latter towards El-Hoseiniyeh. On the other hand, the ruins of Kabr Abu-Atish would correspond very well to Bit-Shabaia: is the name of Abu-Sbe borne by the Arabs of that neighbourhood a relic of that of Shabaia. Kharidi ought in that case to be looked for on the opposite bank, near Abu-Suban and Aksubi, where Chesney points out ancient remains. A day's march beyond Kabr Abu-Atish brings us to El-Khass, so that the town of Anat would be in the Isle of Moglah. Shuru must be somewhere near one of the two Tell-Menakhirs on this side the Balikh.

At length, on reaching Shuru, Shadadu, the Prince of Sukhi, trusting in his Cossoans, offered him battle; but he was defeated by Assur-na'zir-pal, who captured the King of Babylon's brother, forced his way into the town after an assault lasting two days, and returned to Assyria laden with spoil. This might almost be considered as a repulse; for no sooner had the king quitted the country than the Aramaeans in their turn crossed the Euphrates and ravaged the plains of the Khabur.* Assur-nazir-pal resolved not to return until he was in a position to carry his arms into the heart of the enemy's country. He built a flotilla at Shuru in Bit-Khalupi on which he embarked his troops. Wherever the navigation of the Euphrates proved to be difficult, the boats were drawn up out of the water and dragged along the banks over rollers until they could again be safely launched; thus, partly afloat and partly on land, they passed through the gorge of Halebiyeh, landed at Kharidi, and inflicted a salutary punishment on the cities which had defied the king's wrath on his last expedition. Khindanu, Kharidi, and Kipina were reduced to ruins, and the Sukhi and the Laqi defeated, the Assyrians pursuing them for two days in the Bisuru mountains as far as the frontiers of Bit-Adini.**

* The Annals do not give us either the limmu or the date of the year for this new expedition. The facts taken altogether prove that it was a continuation of the preceding one, and it may therefore be placed in the year B.C. 878.

** The campaign of B.C. 878 had for its arena that of the Euphrates which lies between the Khabur and the Balikh; this time, however, the principal operations took place on the right bank. If Mount Bisuru is the Jebel-Bishri, the town of Kipina, which is mentioned between it and Kharidi, ought to be located between Maidan and Sabkha.

A complete submission was brought about, and its permanency secured by the erection of two strongholds, one of which, Kar-assur-nazir-pal, commanded the left, and the other, Nibarti-assur, the right bank of the Euphrates.*

This last expedition had brought the king into contact with the most important of the numerous Aramaean states congregated in the western region of Mesopotamia. This was Bit-Adini, which lay on both sides of the middle course of the Euphrates.** It included, on the right bank, to the north of Carchemish, between the hills on the Sajur and Araban-Su, a mountainous but fertile district, dotted over with towns and fortresses, the names of some of which have been preserved—Pakarrukhbuni, Sursunu, Paripa, Dabigu, and Shitamrat.*** Tul-Barsip, the capital, was situated on the left bank, commanding the fords of the modern Birejik,**** and the whole of the territory between this latter and the Balikh acknowledged the rule of its princes, whose authority also extended eastwards as far as the basaltic plateau of Tul-Aba, in the Mesopotamian desert.

* The account in the Annals is confused, and contains perhaps some errors with regard to the facts. The site of the two towns is nowhere indicated, but a study of the map shows that the Assyrians could not become masters of the country without occupying the passes of the Euphrates; I am inclined to think that Kar-assur-nazir-pal is El-Halebiyeh, and Nibarti-assur, Zalebiyeh, the Zenobia of Roman times.

** Bit-Adini appears to have occupied, on the right bank of the Euphrates, a part of the cazas of Ain-Tab, Rum-kaleh, and Birejik, that of Suruji, minus the nakhiyeh of Harran, the larger part of the cazas of Membij and of Rakkah, and part of the caza of Zor, the cazas being those represented on the maps of Vital Cuinet.

*** None of these localities can be identified with certainty, except perhaps Dabigu, a name we may trace in that of the modern village of Dehbek.

**** Tul-Barsip has been identified with Birejik.

To the south-east, Bit-Adini bordered upon the country of the Sukhi and the Laqi,* lying to the east of Assyria; other principalities, mainly of Aramoan origin, formed its boundary to the north and north-west—Shugab in the bend of the Euphrates, from Birejik to Samosata,** Tul-Abni around Edessa,*** the district of Harran,**** Bit-Zamani, Izalla in the Tektek-dagh and on the Upper Khabur, and Bit-Bakhiani in the plain extending from the Khabur to the Kharmish.^

* In his previous campaign Assur-nazir-pal had taken two towns of Bit-Adini, situated on the right bank of the Euphrates, at the eastern extremity of Mount Bisuru, near the frontier of the Laqi.

** The country of Shugab is mentioned between Birejik (Tul- Barsip) and Bit-Zamani, in one of the campaigns of Shalmaneser III., which obliges us to place it in the caza of Rum-kaleh; the name has been read Sumu.

*** Tul-Abni, which was at first sought for near the sources of the Tigris, has been placed in the Mesopotamian plain. The position which it occupies among the other names obliges us to put it near Bit-Adini and Bit-Zamani: the only possible site that I can find for it is at Orfah, the Edessa of classical times.

**** The country of Harran is nowhere mentioned as belonging either to Bit-Adini or to Tul-Abni: we must hence conclude that at this period it formed a little principality independent of those two states.

^ The situation of Bit-Bakhiani is shown by the position which it occupies in the account of the campaign, and by the names associated with it in another passage of the Annals.

Bit-Zamani had belonged to Assyria by right of conquest ever since the death of Ammibaal; Izalla and Bit-Bakhiani had fulfilled their duties as vassals whenever Assur-nazir-pal had appeared in their neighbourhood; Bit-Adini alone had remained independent, though its strength was more apparent than real. The districts which it included had never been able to form a basis for a powerful state. If by chance some small kingdom arose within it, uniting under one authority the tribes scattered over the burning plain or along the river banks, the first conquering dynasty which sprang up in the neighbourhood would be sure to effect its downfall, and absorb it under its own leadership. As Mitani, saved by its remote position from bondage to Egypt, had not been able to escape from acknowledging the supremacy of the Khati, so Bit-Adini was destined to fall almost without a struggle under the yoke of the Assyrians. It was protected from their advance by the volcanic groups of the Uraa and Tul-Aba, which lay directly in the way of the main road from the marshes of the Khabur to the outskirts of Tul-Barsip. Assur-nazir-pal, who might have worked round this line of natural defence to the north through Nirbu, or to the south through his recently acquired province of Laqi, preferred to approach it in front; he faced the desert, and, in spite of the drought, he invested the strongest citadel of Tul-Aba in the month of June, 877 B.C. The name of the place was Kaprabi, and its inhabitants believed it impregnable, clinging as it did to the mountain-side "like a cloud in the sky."*

* The name is commonly interpreted "Great Rock," and divided thus—Kap-rabi. It may also be considered, like Kapridargila or Kapranisha, as being formed of Kapru and abi; this latter element appears to exist in the ancient name of Telaba, Thallaba, now Tul-Aba. Kapr-abi might be a fortress of the province of Tul-Aba.

The king, however, soon demolished its walls by sapping and by the use of the ram, killed 800 of its garrison, burned its houses, and carried off 2400 men with their families, whom he installed in one of the suburbs of Calah. Akhuni, who was then reigning in Bit-Adini, had not anticipated that the invasion would reach his neighbourhood: he at once sent hostages and purchased peace by a tribute; the Lord of Tul-Abni followed his example, and the dominion of Assyria was carried at a blow to the very frontier of the Khati. It was about two centuries before this that Assurirba had crossed these frontiers with his vanquished army, but the remembrance of his defeat had still remained fresh in the memory of the people, as a warning to the sovereign who should attempt the old hazardous enterprise, and repeat the exploits of Sargon of Agade or of Tiglath-pileser I. Assur-nazir-pal made careful preparations for this campaign, so decisive a one for his own prestige and for the future of the empire. He took with him not only all the Assyrian troops at his disposal, but requisitioned by the way the armies of his most recently acquired vassals, incorporating them with his own, not so much for the purpose of augmenting his power of action, as to leave no force in his rear when once he was engaged hand to hand with the Syrian legions. He left Calah in the latter days of April, 876 B.C.,* receiving the customary taxes from Bit-Bakhiani, Izalla, and Bit-Adini, which comprised horses, silver, gold, copper, lead, precious stuffs, vessels of copper and furniture of ivory; having reached Tul-Barsip, he accepted the gifts offered by Tul-Abni, and crossing the Euphrates upon rafts of inflated skins, he marched his columns against Oarchemish.

* On the 8th Iyyar, but without any indication of limmu, or any number of the year or of the campaign; the date 876 B.C. is admitted by the majority of historians.

The political organisation of Northern Syria had remained entirely unaltered since the days when Tiglath-pileser made his first victorious inroad into the country. The Cilician empire which succeeded to the Assyrian—if indeed it ever extended as far as some suppose—did not last long enough to disturb the balance of power among the various races occupying Syria: it had subjugated them for a time, but had not been able to break them up and reconstitute them. At the downfall of the Cilician Empire the small states were still intact, and occupied, as of old, the territory comprising the ancient Naharaim of the Egyptians, the plateau between the Orontes and the Euphrates, the forests and marshy lowlands of the Amanos, the southern slopes of Taurus, and the plains of Cilicia.

Of these states, the most famous, though not then the most redoubtable, was that with which the name of the Khati is indissolubly connected, and which had Carchemish as its capital. This ancient city, seated on the banks of the Euphrates, still maintained its supremacy there, but though its wealth and religious ascendency were undiminished, its territory had been curtailed. The people of Bit-Adini had intruded themselves between this state and Kummukh, Arazik hemmed it in on the south, Khazazu and Khalman confined it on the west, so that its sway was only freely exercised in the basin of the Sajur. On the north-west frontier of the Khati lay Gurgum, whose princes resided at Marqasi and ruled over the central valley of the Pyramos together with the entire basin of the Ak-su. Mikhri,* Iaudi, and Samalla lay on the banks of the Saluara, and in the forests of the Amanos to the south of Gurgum. Kui maintained its uneventful existence amid the pastures of Cilicia, near the marshes at the mouth of the Pyramos. To the south of the Sajur, Bit-Agusi** barred the way to the Orontes; and from their lofty fastness of Arpad, its chiefs kept watch over the caravan road, and closed or opened it at their will.

* Mikhri or Ismikhri, i.e. "the country of larches," was the name of a part of the Amanos, possibly near the Pyramos.

** The real name of the country was Iakhanu, but it was called Bit-Gusi or Bit-Agusi, like Bit-Adini, Bit-Bakhiani, Bit-Omri, after the founder of the reigning dynasty. We must place Iakhanu to the south of Azaz, in the neighbourhood of Arpad, with this town as its capital.

They held the key of Syria, and though their territory was small in extent, their position was so strong that for more than a century and a half the majority of the Assyrian generals preferred to avoid this stronghold by making a detour to the west, rather than pass beneath its walls. Scattered over the plateau on the borders of Agusi, or hidden in the valleys of Amanos, were several less important principalities, most of them owing allegiance to Lubarna, at that time king of the Patina and the most powerful sovereign of the district. The Patina had apparently replaced the Alasia of Egyptian times, as Bit-Adini had superseded Mitani; the fertile meadow-lands to the south of Samalla on the Afrin and the Lower Orontes, together with the mountainous district between the Orontes and the sea as far as the neighbourhood of Eleutheros, also belonged to the Patina.

Drawn by Faucher-Gudin, from a sketch by Perrot and Chipiez.

On the southern frontier of the Patina lay the important Phoenician cities, Arvad, Arka, and Sina; and on the south-east, the fortresses belonging to Hamath and Damascus. The characteristics of the country remained unchanged. Fortified towns abounded on all sides, as well as large walled villages of conical huts, like those whose strange outlines on the horizon are familiar to the traveller at the present-day. The manners and civilisation of Chaldaea pervaded even more than formerly the petty courts, but the artists clung persistently to Asianic tradition, and the bas-reliefs which adorned the palaces and temples were similar in character to those we find scattered throughout Asia Minor; there is the same inaccurate drawing, the same rough execution, the same tentative and awkward composition.

Drawn by Boudier, from a photograph reproduced in Peters.

The scribes from force of custom still employed the cuneiform syllabary in certain official religious or royal inscriptions, but, as it was difficult to manipulate and limited in application, the speech of the Aramaean immigrants and the Phoenician alphabet gradually superseded the ancient language and mode of writing.*

* There is no monument bearing an inscription in this alphabet which can be referred with any certainty to the time of Assur-nazir-pal, but the inscriptions of the kings of Samalla date back to a period not more than a century and a half later than his reign; we may therefore consider the Aramaean alphabet as being in current use in Northern Syria at the beginning of the ninth century, some forty years before the date of Mesha's inscription (i.e. the Moabite stone).

Thus these Northern Syrians became by degrees assimilated to the people of Babylon and Nineveh, much as the inhabitants of a remote province nowadays adapt their dress, their architecture, their implements of husbandry and handicraft, their military equipment and organisation, to the fashions of the capital.*

* One can judge of their social condition from the enumeration of the objects which formed their tribute, or the spoil which the Assyrian kings carried off from their country.

Drawn by Boudier, from a bas-relief.

Their armies were modelled on similar lines, and consisted of archers, plkemen, slingers, and those troops of horsemen which accompanied the chariotry on flying raids; the chariots, moreover, closely followed the Assyrian type, even down to the padded bar with embroidered hangings which connected the body of the chariot with the end of the pole.

Drawn by Faucher-Gudin, from a bronze bas-relief on the gates of Balawat.

The Syrian princes did not adopt the tiara, but they wore the long fringed robe, confined by a girdle at the waist, and their mode of life, with its ceremonies, duties, and recreations, differed little from that prevailing in the palaces of Calah or Babylon. They hunted big game, including the lion, according to the laws of the chase recognised at Nineveh, priding themselves as much on their exploits in hunting, as on their triumphs in war.

Drawn by Boudier, from a photograph by Hogarth, published in the Recueil de Travaux.

Their religion was derived from the common source which underlay all Semitic religions, but a considerable number of Babylonian deities were also worshipped; these had been introduced in some cases without any modification, whilst in others they had been assimilated to more ancient gods bearing similar characteristics: at Nerab, among the Patina, Nusku and his female companion Nikal, both of Chaldaean origin, claimed the homage of the faithful, to the disparagement of Shahr the moon and Shamash the sun. Local cults often centred round obscure deities held in little account by the dominant races; thus Samalla reverenced Uru the light, Bekubel the wind, the chariot of El, not to mention El himself, Besheph, Hadad, and the Cabin, the servants of Besheph.

1  2  3  4  5  6  7     Next Part
Home - Random Browse