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Articles on Ancient Mesopotamia

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Cylinder seal (left) and modern impression (right) showing two people drinking beer through long straws. Khafajeh, Iraq (Early Dynastic period, c. 2600–2350 B.C.). Courtesy of the Oriental Institute of the University of Chicago

Brewing Mesopotamian beer brings a sip of this vibrant ancient drinking culture back to life

Beer was extremely popular in ancient Mesopotamia. Sipped through straws, it differed from today’s beer and was enjoyed by people from all walks of life.
Ashurbanipal, last major ruler of the Assyrian Empire, couldn’t outrun the effects of climate change. British Museum

Climate change fueled the rise and demise of the Neo-Assyrian Empire, superpower of the ancient world

What caused the rise and then collapse 2,600 years ago of this vast empire centered on Mesopotamia? Clues from a cave in northern Iraq point to abrupt climate change.
The National Museum of Iraq photographed in February 2018. Many of the pieces discovered at the ruins of Ur, arranged and labelled by Ennigaldi-Nanna, can be found here. Wikimedia Commons

Hidden women of history: Ennigaldi-Nanna, curator of the world’s first museum

Ennigaldi-Nanna is largely unknown in the modern day. But in 530BC, this Mesopotamian priestess worked to arrange and label various artefacts in the world's first museum.

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