In Babylon, King Kashtiliash IV has a problem. His kingdom is in decline. And so he takes bold actions to shake up the Mesopotamian order, but ends up shaking far harder than he could have ever imagined. Meanwhile, Tukulti-Ninurta takes power in Assyria and spends his early years asserting dominance against the Hittites and Babylonians, … Continue reading Episode 90 – Kassite 5 Tukulti-Ninurta’s Victories
Today we watch the decline of Kassite Babylon, from which distressingly little survives. We look at the prosperity they have achieved, and the ultimate hollowness of its economic foundations, before the long standing rivalry between Assur and Babylon re-ignites with disastrous consequences for the ancient city of Marduk.
Today we will take a journey through the cultural achievements of Kassite Babylon, which are beginning to reach their famous heights at the cultural intersection of what we would today call science and magic, though of course for the ancients these were one and the same. This will include a look at the remarkably well … Continue reading Episode 88 – Assyria 5 The Destruction of Mitanni
Finally, the city of Assur wakes up and shakes off the dust of its centuries long obscurity, rising from minor Mitanni vassal to major world player in a single generation, thanks to the personal skill of king Assur-Uballit I. This is an episode of glorious conquest, and also one where we get to take a … Continue reading Episode 87 – Assyria 4 Rebirth of an Old City
Here it is, the greatest battle of the late bronze age. Pharaoh Ramesses II of Egypt faces off against Muwatalli II of the Hittites, with control over the Levantine coast as the prize. This is a huge deal historically for a number of reasons. It was absolutely massive, involving as many as 90,000 men. It … Continue reading Episode 86 – Hittite 18 The Battle of Kadesh
Everyone is excited for the buildup to the great battle of Kadesh, but before we get to the battle itself, there is quite a lot going on in the reign of King Muwatalli that often gets overshadowed in the rush to the greatest battle of the late bronze age. Muwatalli is going to build a … Continue reading Episode 85 – Hittite 17 New Cities and New Villains
While he can easily be overshadowed by the military accomplishments of his father Suppiluliuma and his son Muwatalli II, Mursili II is one of the most significant kings in Hittite History, and one of the most well documented. Unlike most kings, for whom we have pretty much just state records, we have personal details of … Continue reading Episode 84 – Hittite 16 Mursili’s Plague
We have a bit of a hodge podge here as we finish up the reign of Suppiluliuma and move into his successors, Arnuwanda II and Mursili II. But there is a common thread of vengeance woven throughout. We will see the level of violence rise, both in terms of more combat which has been recorded … Continue reading Episode 83 – Hittite 15 Vengeance, Mortal and Divine
In the aftermath of one of the greatest campaigns of the bronze age, Suppiluliuma’s Hittites need to consolidate control over Syria. This is complicated by matters of Egyptian and Mitanni politics, as well as the endless politicking of the tiny Syrian states, but it turns out if you have a massive army and a military … Continue reading Episode 82 – Hittite 14 Suppiluliuma Irritates Egypt
Today we will start the great and storied reign of Hittite Great King Suppiluliuma I and his campaigns against the Mitanni. However, because this happens to be the age of Amarna, we are in the unusual position that his opponent in Mitanni is not a faceless non-entity. There is a fair bit we can say … Continue reading Episode 81 – Mitanni 9 King Tushratta Begs and Runs Away
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