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Assyria - Room 89

Please note that this room is rarely open to the public

King VII: ASHURBANIPAL (681 - 627 BC)

Defeat of King of Elam (WA 124802) at the Ulai river.

The empire of Elam (the Elamites) in the East were always fighting the Assyrians in the north. Ashurbanipal conquered Egypt as far as Thebes - it had been a long ambition of Assyria to make Egypt its empire. When this was finally done, they turned to end the menace of the Elamites.

These panels show the battle between the Elamites (under King Teumman) and Assyria at the River Ulai. Teumman and his son, the crown prince, are fleeing the lost battle in his chariot. It overturns, and the prince attempts to help his wounded father, who has an arrow in his back. The Assyrian approach is inevitable, so they turn and make a final stand, to be overtaken and killed. Teumman is decapitated, and his head whisked away to Ashurbanipal.

Ashurbanipal had now completed his two ambitions: he had defeated Egypt in the west, and he had defeated the Elamites in the east.

This is a picture of the River Ulai full of debris and bodies from the battle, as the Assyrians present their king as the next king of Elam. It was in this same location that Daniel later fasted and prayed for 21 days (Dan 8:2).

These victories proved too costly in manpower and weakened the economy, and Assyria never recovered its strength. It had won the victories at such an expense that it proved to be the beginning of the end the for the empire.

Annals of Tiglath-pileser III (WA 3751) - (3 of 3)

These contain the accounts of his building operations and military campaigns. He mentions kings of Judah, Ammon, Moab, Askelon, Edom, Gaza, Tyre. These are almost exactly the same nations that Amos prophesied against (Amos ch 1-2): Damascus, Gaza, Askelon, Tyre, Edom, Ammon, Moab, Judah, which were fulfilled in the invasions of Tiglath-pileser III

This tablet also records Tiglath-pileser receiving tribute from Judah and taking some of the northern kingdom of Israel into exile. He also records that Pekah was overthrown and he placed Hoshea on the throne of Israel, "I received the tribute of Jehoahaz (Ahaz) of Judah. Israel and all its inhabitants and their possessions I led to Assyria. They overthrew their king Pekah and I placed Hoshea as king over them. I received from them ten talents of gold, 1000 talents of silver as their tribute and brought them to Assyria."

This is the same event as recorded in the Bible
In the days of king Pekah of Israel, King Tiglath-pileser of Assyria came and captured Ijon, Abel-beth-maacah, Janoah, Kedesh, Hazor, Gilead and Galilee, all the land of Naphtali, and he carried the people captive to Assyria. Then Hoshea son of Elah made a conspiracy against Pekah son of Remaliah, attacked him, and killed him; he reigned in place of him ... (2 Kg 15:29-30).

Assyrian Treaties, Weapons and Armour

These are suzerainty treaties made between Assyria and other nations. They are far more cruel than the earlier treaties made by the Hittites (similar to Deuteronomy). Ones here are treaties with Babylon and Syria.

This room also has examples of Assyrian armour - as would have been used in the attacks of Israel.