Episode 16 – The Assyrian

“And Pul, the King of Assyria, came against the land.” – II Kings, 15:19 In 745 BC, Tiglath-pileser III reformed the administrative and military structure of the Neo-Assyrian Empire, and led the armies of Assur in a virtually-unbroken string of regional conquests.

So Here’s What’s Up

I wasn’t planning to take another extended break so soon, but, well, “man plans, god laughs” and all that.  First off, my wife and I have (surprisingly) just managed to purchase our very first house, and are devoting a fair amount of time to TCB-ing […]

Episode 15 – Holding Action

During the first half of the eighth century BC, Egypt, Babylonia and Assyria all struggled against the forces of entropy and decline.  In the absence of the Aramean threat, Israel and Judah resumed their perpetual struggle.  Urartu expanded its regional influence at the expense of […]

Episode 14 – In the Midst of the Seas

“I received the tribute of the kings of the seacoast – namely, the lands of the peoples of Tyre, Sidon, Byblos, Mahallatu, Maizu, Kaizu, Amurru and the city of Arvad, which is in the midst of the seas – silver, gold, tin, bronze, a bronze […]

Episode 13 – Civil War

“My brother Ashur-danin-apli, in the time of Shalmaneser, his father, acted wickedly, bringing about sedition, rebellion, and wicked plotting, caused the land to rise in revolt, prepared for war, brought the people of Assyria, north and south, to his side, and made bold speeches, brought […]

Episode 12 – Legacies of East and West

The Olmec of Mesoamerica and the Chavin of Peru laid strong cultural foundations that would influence regional civilizations down through the first European encounters with the New World. The longest-lasting Chinese Dynasty, the Zhou, bore witness to eras of unity and conquest, the devolution of […]

Episode 11 – The Rise of Assyria

“I slew 14,000 of their warriors with the sword. Like Adad, I rained destruction on them. I scattered their corpses far and wide, and covered the face of the desolate plain with their wide-spreading armies. With my weapons I made their blood to flow down […]

Episode 10 – Picking Up The Pieces

At the dawn of the first millennium BC, the collapse of the great Near Eastern powers allowed the cultures of Canaan to flourish.  While the Phoenicians embarked on a bold new era of maritime expansion, the Hebrews and Arameans carved out new Iron Age kingdoms […]

Episode 9 – The Other 99 Percent

“Regarding what you wrote me before:  ‘Enemy ships were observed at sea!’  If it is true that ships were observed, reinforce yourself.  Where are your troops and chariots?  Are they not with you?  If not, who will deliver you from the enemy?  Surround your cities […]

Episode 8 – Look Upon My Works

“…And on the pedestal these words appear: ‘My name is Ozymandius, King of Kings, Look on my works, ye Mighty, and despair!’ Nothing beside remains.  Round the decay Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare The lone and level sands stretch far away.”  – Shelley, […]