City of Wonders
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Babylon by Irving L. Finkel
Book DescriptionThis book presents a strikingly-illustrated short introduction to Babylon, a powerful and sophisticated ancient city and the home of the fabled Hanging Gardens of Nebuchadnezzar, one of the 7 Wonders of the World. Over the centuries Babylon was lost to view, and survived only in a rich and bizarre set of half-fantastical stories and traditions, until painstaking archaeological work uncovered the real city once more. The city of Babylon flourished for nearly 2,000 years on the River Euphrates in what is now central Iraq. After its conquest by the Persians in 539 BC it slowly faded from prominence and over time was lost from the historical record almost completely. One of the greatest cities of the ancient world lived on only in popular belief and legend. Amalgamating fact and fantasy, stories about the city and the kings of Babylon survived through the Middle Ages into modern times and were the inspiration for many pieces of art and literature in Europe between the 17th and 19th centuries. The Tower of Babel the Madness of Nebuchadnezzar the Writing on the Wall the Hanging Gardens of Babylon Daniel in the Lions Den - such stories and images grew famous over the years, while the city itself became little more than a name. However, the real city and its kings have re-emerged into the light thanks to the endeavours of many scholars and archaeologists in the 19th and 20th centuries. Today we can visualise a splendid city of massive walls (once counted among the Seven Wonders of the World), towering pyramid-shaped temples, vast royal palaces and gardens, and monumental gateways. Festivals and processions dedicated to the gods passed along streets lined with colourful glazed-brick reliefs of lions and mythical beasts. The glory of Babylon was expressed not only in physical buildings but also in the learning and scholarship of the city. Babylonian achievements in mathematics, astronomy and medicine had far-reaching effects on the Classical world and even on our own times we get our sixty-minute hours from Babylonia. This city of real wonders is brought back to life in these colourful pages.
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Book DetailsISBN: 9780714111711
(185mm x 150mm x mm)
Imprint: British Museum Press
Publisher: British Museum Press
Publish Date: 24-Nov-2008
Country of Publication: United Kingdom
Books By Author Irving L. Finkel
Cuneiform, Paperback (May 2015)
Cuneiform script on tablets of clay is, as far as we know, the oldest form of writing in the world. This book brings the world in which the cuneiform was written to life for the non-expert reader, revealing how ancient inscriptions can lead to a new way of thinking about the past.
Ark Before Noah: Decoding the Story of the Flood, Paperback (October 2014)
THE ARK BEFORE NOAH: Decoding the Story of the Flood by Dr Irving Finkel is a compelling investigation of one of the most famous myths in the world - and how the re-discovery of an ancient tablet challenges our view of ancient history in a new and exciting way.
Lewis Chessmen, Paperback (March 2014)
The Lewis Chessmen were found on the Isle of Lewis in mysterious circumstances. Consisting of elaborately worked walrus ivory and whales teeth in the form of seated kings and queens, bishops, knights, warders and pawns, this curious chess set is strongly influenced by Norse culture. This title deals with this topic.
Cyrus Cylinder, Hardback (March 2013)» View all books by Irving L. Finkel
The unearthing in today's Iraq (in 1879) of a clay cylinder-shaped decree from Cyrus the Great, founder of the Achaemenid dynasty of Persia, stands in the same tradition of game-changing discoveries from antiquity as Hammurabi's famous law code or the intact tomb of the boy-king Tutankhamun.
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