The Persian Empire
The Persian Empire
The Persian Empire was established by Cyrus and the Great in the 6th century BC, conquered and changed by Alexander the Great in 330 BC, and finally overthrown by the rise of the Islamic civilization in 537 AD. After Alexander the Great died, his empire fractured into numerous satrapies, one of which was the Seleucid Empire. At its height about 500 BC, the Persian Empire had conquered Asia as far as the Indus River, Greece, and North Africa including what is now Egypt and Libya. The Achaemenids were the ruling dynasty of Cyrus the Great and his family over the Persian Empire, from 550-330 BC.
The new capital city occupied an area of about 900 acres, around which Ashurnasirpal constructed a mud brick wall 120 ft. thick, 42 ft. high, and 5 miles long. From the ninth to the seventh century B.C. The first great Assyrian king was Ashurnasirpal II (r. 883–859 B.C.), who undertook a vast building program at Nimrud, ancient Kalhu; until it became the capital city under Ashurnasirpal, Nimrud had been no more than a provincial town. "Beasts of the mountains and the seas, which I had fashioned out of white limestone and alabaster, I had set up in its gates. I made it the palace fittingly imposing." Such limestone beasts are the human-headed, winged bull and lion whose name is lamassu that is 10 ft. 3 1/2 in. (313.7 cm). The early history of man in Iran goes back well beyond the Neolithic period, it begins to get more interesting around 6000 BC, when people began to domesticate animals and plant wheat and barley. The number of settled communities increased, particularly in the eastern Zagros Mountains, and handmade painted pottery appears. Throughout the prehistoric period, from the middle of the sixth millennium BC to about 3000 BC, painted pottery is a characteristic feature of many sites in Iran.
In 879 B.C. Ashurnasirpal held a festival for 69,574 people to celebrate the construction of the new capital, and the event...