What were the Primary Sources for Assyrian History?
Scholars recognize that the primary sources for the study of ancient Assyria are the Assyrian Annals, the Assyrian Chronicles and Eponym Canon, The Assyrian King List, Assyrian Sculptures, and the Bible.
The Assyrian Annals. The scribes of the chief cities of the Assyrians wrote the accounts of the king’s military campaigns on cuneiform tablets, and clay prisms or cylinders. The accounts are very reliable, even though the accounts do not speak negatively of the Assyrians and are meant to glorify the king. The annals also give much detail to geography and Chronology. It is interesting how accurate the Assyrians were with dates, they made use of an Assyrian Kings List or the Eponym Canon.
The Assyrian Chronicles and Eponym Canon. The Assyrian scribes organized their national events whether military, political or religious every regnal year. The Babylonian Chronicles were structured the same way. Assyrian records were kept very carefully, they took their dating and their history seriously. They attached their record of events with the solar year and with the name of an official who was known as the “limmu.” Their was a new limmu appointed every year. They recorded military, political and religious events in every year and made references to eclipses. The Assyrian records are highly dependable and allow Biblical scholars a very accurate way of dating events and designating “eponyms” for 244 year in Hebrew history, from 892-648 BC.
The Assyrian King List. The Assyrian King List reveals a list of the kings of ancient Assyria in chronological order, from the 2nd millennium BC to 609 BC. It lists the name of the king, his father’s name, the length of his reign, and some great achievements.
Assyrian Sculptures. The limestone bas-reliefs discovered from the palace walls of major Assyrian capital cities like Nineveh (Kuyunjik), Nimrud (Calah), Khorsabad (Dur-Sharrukin), and the bronze bands on the Balawat Gates reveal a wealth of history. The illustrative events were carved be professional Assyrian artists like a modern day photographer on the scene. The carvings reveal the military might and tactics of the Assyrians, as well as the futility of those nations that defied their might. These sculptures are on display in museums around the world, for example: The British Museum in London, The Louvre in France, The Iraqi Museum, and The Oriental Institute in Chicago.
The Bible. The Old Testament records the history of the Kingdoms of Israel and Judah, along with the battles of other nations. It includes the fall of the 10 tribes in northern kingdom of Israel in 722 BC by the Assyrians, as well as the fall of the southern kingdom of Judah in 586 BC by Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon. The Bible also records miraculous events surrounding people like Elijah, and Jonah, as well as the slaying of 185,000 Assyrians at Jerusalem by the Angel of the LORD. The events recorded in 2 Kings generally agree with Assyrian and Babylonian sources.
Colossal Lion of Assyria
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- Ancient Assyrian Social Structure
- Ancient Babylonia
- Ancient Canaan During the Time of Joshua
- Ancient History Timeline
- Ancient Oil Lamps
- Antonia Fortress
- Archaeology of Ancient Assyria
- Assyria and Bible Prophecy
- Augustus Caesar
- Background Bible Study
- Biblical Geography
- Fallen Empires - Archaeological Discoveries and the Bible
- First Century Jerusalem
- Glossary of Latin Words
- Herod Agrippa I
- Herod Antipas
- Herod the Great
- Herod's Temple
- High Priest's in New Testament Times
- Jewish Literature in New Testament Times
- Library collection
- Map of David's Kingdom
- Map of the Divided Kingdom - Israel and Judah
- Map of the Ministry of Jesus
- Matthew Henry Bible Commentary
- Messianic Prophecy
- Nero Caesar Emperor
- Online Bible Maps
- Paul's First Missionary Journey
- Paul's Second Missionary Journey
- Paul's Third Missionary Journey
- Pontius Pilate
- Questions About the Ancient World
- Tabernacle of Ancient Israel
- Tax Collectors in New Testament Times
- The Babylonian Captivity
- The Black Obelisk of Shalmaneser
- The Books of the New Testament
- The Court of the Gentiles
- The Court of the Women in the Temple
- The Destruction of Israel
- The Fall of Judah with Map
- The History Of Rome
- The Incredible Bible
- The Jewish Calendar in Ancient Hebrew History
- The Life of Jesus in Chronological Order
- The Life of Jesus in Harmony
- The Names of God
- The New Testament
- The Old Testament
- The Passion of the Christ
- The Pharisees
- The Sacred Year of Israel in New Testament Times
- The Samaritans
- The Scribes
- Do any Archaeological Discoveries Mention Israel?
- How Did the Ancient Sun Dial Work?
- How did the ancient Mayans develop their sophisticated calendar system?
- What Islands are in the Aegean Sea?
- Do any Archaeological Discoveries Mention King David?
- Who Was Delilah?
- Why was Hadrian’s Arch Erected in Jordan?
- What were the Boundaries of the Roman Empire?
- Who was the Roman Emperor when Jesus was Born?
- What were the major gods and goddesses worshipped in ancient Greece?
Bible Study Questions
- What are the different covenants in the Bible and their significance?
- What is the Church?
- How do we discern false teachings or heresies in light of biblical truth?
- What is the name of Ramallah in the Bible?
- How do we reconcile the existence of evil with the idea of a loving God?
- What is the role of the Holy Spirit in the life of a believer?
- What is the significance of the Psalms in personal and corporate worship?
- What is the biblical perspective on marriage and family?
- How do we grow in spiritual maturity and develop a deeper understanding of the Word?
- How do we interpret the parables of Jesus?