The Ancient East. History, society and economy
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In this major classic, the reader will find three millennia of history (3500-500 BC). Based on the documentation brought to light by the latest archaeological expeditions (the most noteworthy being Ebla), and on his own research conducted over twenty-five years, Mario Liverani recounts, in this historical rather than primarily philological account, the lives of the populations with such evocative names as the Sumerians, Hittites, Assyrians and Babylonians. The rich and varied illustrations for each historical period present the most characteristic and representative exhibits, testifying to the productive skills and technical prowess of the peoples of the Ancient East.
This new edition, twenty years after it was first published, was made necessary by "a time full of discoveries in the ancient East, following on from one another at a much faster pace than in other sectors of ancient history, and notwithstanding the obstacles posed by war and political conditions, which have stood in the way of archaeological activity in various countries... so that the new finds were not distributed in a uniform manner but were concentrated in those countries where it proved possible to work. The major innovation in the last twenty years has been the adoption of a method of reasoning and 'systemic' analysis of problems, which we owe to the spread of technology to the field of history. But this is an innovation that concerns more the technical aspect of the work and not its general assessment."