British Praise for Ancient Mesopotamian Tyrants

The British Museum has recently assembled a sumptuous visual feast of an exhibit of the material culture of ancient Mesopotamia for the general public called Mesopotamia -- Inventing Our World. You can see it now at the Royal Ontario Museum in Toronto, Canada. The underlying theme of the exhibit is that Mesopotamia (the land in and around modern Iraq, including its desert and highland hinterlands) is where civilization as we know it today first began with all its historic firsts -- the rise of cities, urban living, city planning, royal palaces, temples (and ziggurats like the Tower of Babylon), writing, arithmetic, astronomy (and astrology) accounting, law, irrigation, politics, leadership, city states, kingdoms, and conquering empires each with its own pantheon of polytheistic gods and attendant spirits. The exhibit features 150 objects from the time of ancient Sumer (3300 BC) to Babylon in the sixth century BC. These include early administrative tablets, cylinder seals, drinking...(Read Full Article)