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published on 28 April 2011
The area designated by the word has changed over time. Classically, Syria lies at the eastern end of the Mediterranean, between Egypt and Arabia to the south and Cilicia to the north, stretching inland to include Mesopotamia, and having an uncertain border to the northeast that Pliny the Elder describes as including, from west to east, Commagene, Sophene... [continue reading]
Assyria was a Mesopotamian empire that grew out of the city-state of Ashur. It was one of the greatest empires in Mesopotamia, together with the Akkadian Empire of Sargon the Great and the Babylonian Empire under Hammurabi. At its height, the Assyrian Empire extended from Anatolia in the west, to Armenia in the... [continue reading]
The Near East is traditionally regarded by archaeologists and ancient historians as the region of southwest Asia, specifically the area encircled by the Mediterranean Sea, the Black Sea, the Caspian Sea, the Red Sea and the Persian/Arabian Gulf. In modern times this region includes the countries of Israel/Palestine, Lebanon, Syria, Turkey, Jordan, Iraq and western... [continue reading]
Palestine in the ancient world was part of the region known as Canaan and, later, the region where the Kingdoms of Israel and Judah were located. Palestine is a designation of an area of land, which the Philistines occupied a very small part of (the Canaanites/Phonecians and the Israelites, among others, having established themselves in the area much earlier... [continue reading]