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Dictionary of the Ancient Near East [Hardcover]

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Item Specifications...

Pages   352
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 10.28" Width: 7.18" Height: 1.18"
Weight:   2.39 lbs.
Binding  Hardcover
Release Date   Mar 31, 2000
Publisher   University of Pennsylvania Press
ISBN  0812235576  
EAN  9780812235579  

Availability  0 units.

Item Description...

Selected by Choice magazine in 2000 as an Outstanding Academic Book

The earliest farms, cities, governments, legal codes, and alphabets developed in the ancient Near East. Four major religions---Judaism, Zoroastrianism, Christianity, and Islam---began in the region. Ideas, inventions, and institutions spread to all parts of the globe from the urban centers of the ancient Egyptians, Syrians, Hittites, Assyrians, Babylonians, and other peoples of the biblical world. For good reason is the ancient Near East known as the cradle of civilization.

The only single-volume dictionary to embrace the whole of the ancient Near East, this major reference work covers Anatolia, Mesopotamia, the Levant, and the Arabian peninsula from the earliest times, through the Old Testament period, until the fall of Babylon to the Persians in 539 B.C. From "Achaemenids" to "Ziwiye," "administration" to "ziggurat," in 500 concise, cross-referenced, and comprehensively indexed entries, the Dictionary of the Ancient Near East describes and explains the major ideas, institutions, places, peoples, and personalities that shaped the earliest development of Western civilization.

Architecture, literature, economics, labor, religion, and society are all extensively treated, as are such subjects as crime, dreams, drunkenness, shipwrecks, and sexual behavior (and misbehavior). Each entry, written by a scholar of international standing, includes up-to-date bibliographic references. The book is richly illustrated with photographs, maps, and plans of major sites.

Douglas Baird (Lecturer in Near Eastern Archaeology, University of Liverpool), Jeremy Black (University Lecturer in Akkadian, Oriental Institute, Oxford University), Paul T. Collins (freelance lecturer in the Ancient Near East, London), Stephanie Dalley (Shillito Fellow in Assyriology, Oriental Institute, Oxford University), Anthony Green (Lecturer in Near Eastern Archaeology, Free University of Berlin), Gwendolyn Leick (Lecturer in Anthropology, the American International University, London), Michael Macdonald (Research Fellow, Oriental Institute, Oxford University), Roger Matthews (Director, British Institute for Archaeology, Ankara), Gerald L. Mattingly (Lecturer, Johnson Bible College, Knoxville, Tennessee), Graham Philip (Lecturer in Archaeology, University of Durham), Geoffrey Summers (Lecturer in Archaeology, Middle East Technical University, Ankara).

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More About Piotr Bienkowski

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! Piotr Bienkowski is Professor in the School of Arts, Histories and Cultures at the University of Manchester. He was editor of the archaeological journal Levant from 1987 to 1992 and has directed archaeological projects in Jordan. He is the author or editor of many publications on the archaeology and culture of the ancient Near East and Egypt, including Jericho in the Late Bronze Age, Early Edom and Moab: The Beginning of the Iron Age in Southern Jordan, and Treasures from an Ancient Land: The Art of Jordan. Alan Millard is Rankin Professor Emeritus of Hebrew and Ancient Semitic Languages at the University of Liverpool. He has participated in archaeological projects over much of the Near East; among his scholarly and popular works on the subject are The Eponyms of the Assyrian Empire, 910-612 B.C., Treasures from Bible Times, and Discoveries from the Time of Jesus.

Piotr Bienkowski has an academic affiliation as follows - University of Liverpool.

Piotr Bienkowski has published or released items in the following series...
  1. Library of Hebrew Bible/Old Testament Studies

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1Books > Subjects > History > Ancient > General   [3788  similar products]
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Reviews - What do our customers think?
Great discovery!  Aug 2, 2000
This new work put out under the auspices of the British Museum has what it takes to become THE standard desk reference on the Ancient Near East. Entries are clear and concise (the longest run to two and a half columns). Also, they are good about letting the reader know which archaeological and historical issues are still matters of dispute (in other words, there seems to be no faking of certainty). Although there are no color plates, almost every page has a well-chosen and informative photograph or illustration. Maps and charts are simple and easy to absorb. The editors and their staff get major points for the quality and extent of their cross-referencing and indexing. It's very easy to spend hours following all the interesting leads and connections from one article to another. Many alphabatized reference works don't even bother with an index ("The Oxford Companion to Classical Civilization" is an example of a work that desperately needs one); but, as anyone who has to do quick look-ups on the fly knows, an index is a great asset in any single-volume desk reference work.

Information the publisher should have given to this (1) The definition of the Ancient Near East the editors follow is the one used by the British Museum: Mesopotamia, Iran, Anatola, the Caucasus, the Levant and Arabia; (2) The chronological range covered by the entries stretches from 1.5 million years ago to the fall of Babylon to the Persian Cyrus the Great in 539 B.C. [Yes, dates are identified as "B.C.", not "B.C.E."]; (3) Besides information about the ANE that you'd expect to find, this dictionary includes information on the discoverers as well--the people and institutions who made significant contributions to ANE studies. (Although I'm not qualified to judge, I suspect the Brits are over-represented.)

Things I would like to see added in subsequent editions: (1) A general introduction that give the reader some context and background; (2) A timeline that relates what was happening in the ANE to the growth of civilization in Egypt. (I accept the need to limit discussion of Egypt in the individual entries, but would have appreciated a schematic that gave me a workable overview. Don't the Assyriologists ever talk to the Egyptologists at the British Museum?)

Overall an excellent work! I'm glad to own a copy.


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