Cover image for Babylonia, the Gulf Region, and the Indus: Archaeological and Textual Evidence for Contact in the Third and Early Second Millennia B.C. By Steffen Laursen and Piotr Steinkeller

Babylonia, the Gulf Region, and the Indus

Archaeological and Textual Evidence for Contact in the Third and Early Second Millennia B.C.

Steffen Laursen and Piotr Steinkeller

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ISBN: 978-1-57506-756-8

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Mesopotamian Civilizations

Babylonia, the Gulf Region, and the Indus

Archaeological and Textual Evidence for Contact in the Third and Early Second Millennia B.C.

Steffen Laursen and Piotr Steinkeller

During the third millennium BC, the huge geographical area stretching between the Mediterranean in the west and the Indus Valley in the east witnessed the rise of a commercial network of unmatched proportions and intensity, within which the Persian Gulf for long periods functioned as a central node. In this book, Laursen and Steinkeller examine the nature of cultural and commercial contacts between Babylonia, the Gulf region, and Indus Civilization. Focusing on the third and early second millennia BC, and using both archaeological data and the evidence of ancient written sources, their study offers an up-to-date synthetic picture of the history of interactions across this vast region. In addition to giving detailed characterizations and evaluations of contacts in various periods, the book also treats a number of important related issues, such as the presence of Amorites in the Gulf (in particular, their role in the rise of the Tilmun center on Bahrain Island); the alleged existence of Meluhhan commercial outposts in Babylonia; and the role that the seaport of Gu’abba played in Babylonia’s interactions with the Gulf region and southeastern Iran.

 

  • Description
  • Table of Contents
During the third millennium BC, the huge geographical area stretching between the Mediterranean in the west and the Indus Valley in the east witnessed the rise of a commercial network of unmatched proportions and intensity, within which the Persian Gulf for long periods functioned as a central node. In this book, Laursen and Steinkeller examine the nature of cultural and commercial contacts between Babylonia, the Gulf region, and Indus Civilization. Focusing on the third and early second millennia BC, and using both archaeological data and the evidence of ancient written sources, their study offers an up-to-date synthetic picture of the history of interactions across this vast region. In addition to giving detailed characterizations and evaluations of contacts in various periods, the book also treats a number of important related issues, such as the presence of Amorites in the Gulf (in particular, their role in the rise of the Tilmun center on Bahrain Island); the alleged existence of Meluhhan commercial outposts in Babylonia; and the role that the seaport of Gu’abba played in Babylonia’s interactions with the Gulf region and southeastern Iran.

Preface

1. IntroductionWorking Premise 

Confronting and Combining Archaeology and Texts

Some Methodological Considerations

2. The Prehistoric Foundation (ca. 6000–2650 BC)

3. The Pre-Sargonic Period (ca. 2650–2350 BC)Archaeology

Texts

4. The Sargonic Period (ca. 2350–2200 BC)Archaeology

Texts

5. Makkan and Tilmun between ca. 2200 and ca. 2100 BC

6. The Ur III Period (ca. 2100–2000 BC)Archaeology

Texts

The Role of Amorites in Tilmun and Makkan

7. The Post-Ur III Period (2000–1800 BC)Archaeology

Texts

8. The Role of Guʾabba as Babylonia’s Main Seaport and a Major Textile Production Center1. Guʾabba, the Seaport

2. Guʾabba, the Town2.1. The Shipyard

2.2. The Caravanserai

2.3. The Weaving EstablishmentExcursus: The Textile Industry at Ur

9. Contacts between Babylonia and Meluhha in the Late Third Millennium1. A Meluhhan Settlement in Southern Babylonia?

2. Contacts between Babylonia and Meluhha

10. Conclusion

Appendix 1. The Ur III and Isin Texts Bearing on the Gulf Trade

Appendix 2. The Seaworthy Ships of Babylonia, the "Makkan Ships," and the Cylinder Seals of the "Big Ships" Personnel from Failaka and Bahrain1. Big Ships and Big Ship Captains

2. Ships of Makkan

3. Boat Construction

4. The Cylinder Seals Owned by the Personnel of "Big Ships" from Failaka and Bahrain

Appendix 3. The Babylonian Burial Jar in the Gulf Countries

Bibliographic Abbreviations

Bibliography

Index

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