History of Iraq: The Cradle of Civilization

History of Iraq: The Cradle of Civilization Last updated on Tuesday 20th April 2010

The territory of present-day Iraq is approximately equivalent to that of ancient Mesopotamia, which fostered a series of early civilizations. Â The earliest of these was known as civilization of Sumer, which arose probably in the 4th millennium BC and had its final thrive under the 3rd dynasty of Ur at the end of the 3rd millennium BC. Ur of the Chaldees was a great and famous Sumerian city, dating from this time.

The following stages saw periods of control by Babylonia and Assyria. Cyrus the Great of Persia gained control of the region in 539BC and the region remained under Persian rule until its conquest by Macedonian king Alexander the Great in 331 BC. Following Alexander's death, the Greek Seleucid dynasty ruled Mesopotamia for some 200 years and linked the region to the Hellenistic culture. Afterwards, a long period dominated by Arsacids, Sassanids followed until Muslim Arabs conquered the region in the 7th century AD.

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