Interesting Facts About the Hittites and Assyrians and Their Contribution to the World
The Hittites were shepherds from the north near the Caspian Sea and Black Sea. These Indo-European speaking people established their primary cities along the Halys River and called their home the “land of the Hatti” and their capital city is Hattusas. Hittite means “people of Hatti. The Hittites conquered Babylonia and extended their empire by conquering Syria and Egypt.
Here are some interesting facts about the Hittites
1. The Hittites were the first to discover and use iron.
2. The crime of rebellion had the heaviest penalty of all crimes.
3. The Hittites worshipped many gods and goddesses.
4. Their leader is called “Great King” or “Great Sun”. He is the military leader as well as the religious leader.
5. All citizens under the jurisdiction of the Hittite Empire have rights. Even slaves had the right to own properties.
6. The Hittites used 9 languages within their territories. The Akkadian language is used for communication while the Sumerian language is used for literature.
7. They attain economic prosperity because of iron and they regarded iron five times more precious than gold and 8 times more precious than silver.
8. They subdued and conquered many territories because of their superior weapons made of iron.
9. Agriculture was the main livelihood of the Hittite people.
10. They domesticated asses, horses, cows and raised honey bee.
11. The Hittites planted grapes, apple, pomegranate, trigo and barley.
12. The Museum of Anatolian Civilizations houses the richest collection of Hittite and Anatolian artifacts. It is located in Ankara, Turkey.
13. The Hittites were mentioned several times in the Bible.
Contribution of the Hittites to the World
14. Discovery of iron
15. Used of iron as weapons
16. Usage and respect of different languages
17. Land titles and list of titles
18. Inventory of land and products that became the basis of taxation
When the Hittites abandoned Babylonia it was occupied by the Kassites and remained up to 900 BCE. The Kassites were attacked and conquered by the Assyrians – the cruelest, the most aggressive, the most troublesome, terror, and war-loving people of the Ancient World.
Here are some interesting facts about the Assyrians
1. The Assyrians occupied the northwestern part of Babylonia and established their own city-state called Assur. The name is taken from the name of their chief god – Assur.
2. One of the most recognized Assyrian kings was Ashurbanipal II who ruled from 884 BCE to 859 BCE. He expanded the Assyrian empire with his army armed with iron weapons.
3. Assyrian army was composed of chariot warriors, cavalry, infantry and engineers. The Assyrians were the best fighters of the Ancient World.
4. The Assyrians have had the largest empire in the Ancient World. They occupied the entire Fertile Crescent including Israel, Syria and Egypt.
5. Other popular Assyrian kings were Tiglath-Pileser III, Sargon II and Shalmaneser V.
6. Wealthy Assyrians wore linen clothes and lived in beautiful houses and palaces.
7. The Assyrian king’s power and authority is limitless. Everything and everybody was under his control.
8. The capital of Assyria was Nineveh. It was a walled-city with walls up to 15 meters thick and a height of up to 30 meters. It has 15 entrances and the wall stretched for over 11 kilometers in length.
9. The city of Nineveh was the most durable and the strongest city in the Ancient World.
10. Andre Agassi, one of the greatest tennis players in history, is an Assyrian. Today, there are more than 4 million Assyrians worldwide.
11. About 750,000 Assyrians were slaughtered by the Ottoman Empire armies and their Kurdish allies in the so-called Assyrian genocide during the First World War.
Assyrian Contributions to the World
12. They were the first group of people who developed a strong and effective system of governing an empire.
13. Despite their notorious characteristics, the Assyrians built the first ever library in history. This library had 200,000 clay tablets. The library was located in the empire’s capital.
14. They constructed beautiful and orderly roads and highways.
15. The Assyrians introduced to the world the first and effective postal service.
As you can see, there is a great deal of history that still affects us all today and in the news, especially when it concerns the Kurdish people, Iraq, Turkey and Syria. The Kurdish people of northern Iraq are always in the news even today when it comes to the fight against terrorism. This has been going on for centuries now. Learning about this history can help us all know more about the region and what is going on today. Hatred of certain groups lasts many centuries, and it does affect our current political events today in the world.