Monthly Archives: July 2015

Ankhesenamun’s End Game – The Zannanza Incident part 2

– Suppililiuma’s response to Ankhesenamun’s request for a Hittite prince expresses not only his surprise, but also his disbelief. In this episode we see a rare example of a Bronze Age king sharing his diplomatic prerogative with his court. Suppililiuma saw the Egyptian queen’s letter to be of such note that he assembled his commanders and high ranking nobles at his field camp near Carchemish to advise them of his actions. (Full Article)

A Statue of Ankhesenamun

A Statue of Ankhesenamun

The Death of Tutankhamun – The Zannanza Incident part 1

– When Suppililiuma was notified of the joint Mittani and Egyptian attacks, he may have feared for his newly won empire. The text of the Deeds tell that Suppililiuma had just completed participating in the spring religious festival of sowing at the city of Uda. He would likely have expected a coordinated attack by Mitanni and Egypt to be followed by opportunistic revolts against the Hittites within Anatolia itself. (Full Article)

The citadel hill at Carhemish.

The citadel hill at Carhemish.

 

Tutankhamun’s War

– Suppililiuma’s one-year campaign, often called ‘The Great Syrian War’ devastated The Hurrian Kingdom of Mitanni and left the Mitanni King Tushratta struggling to hold onto his throne from feuding factions. Over a period of a several decades beginning around 1350 BCE Suppililiuma launched an additional series of campaigns into Western Syria that eventually stripped away all Mitanni possessions west of the Euphrates and left only a narrow strip of northern Mesopotamia and the central stronghold of Karkemish in Mitanni hands. (Full Article)

Tutankhamun's Restoration Stele.

Tutankhamun’s Restoration Stele.

The Great Syrian War; Suppililiuma’s One Year Campaign

– After years of intrigue and border wars the Hittite King Suppililiuma’s diplomatic maneuvering had bore fruit yet there was still a propaganda war to be won before a proper assault into Syria could begin. It was important for a Hittite king to maintain the image of a just ruler so letters were sent back and forth with the other great kingdoms making the case that the Hittite Kingdom was merely defending itself and its allies. Meanwhile the Mitanni king Tushratta protested that vassals of the Hittites had begun to raid across the Euphrates into Mitanni territory. Suppililiuma and Tushratta even wrote each other in a series of letters that would eventually led Suppililiuma to call the Mitanni king out to battle; a call which the Mitanni king would refuse. (Full Article)

The Plains of Northern Syria

The Plains of Northern Syria

The Rise of King Suppililiuma the Great

– During the 14th century BCE the Hittite Kingdom of Hatti was overrun by its enemies and the capital city of Hattusa was abandoned, sacked and burned. A single Hittite text from the 13th century BCE recounts the entirety of the catastrophe which befell the kingdom and how a prince named Suppililiuma helped his father to save it. In a preamble of a decree from the Hittite King Hattusili III, who reigned a century after the events, a list of the invaders is provided along with the lands that each conquered. The land of Hatti was said to have been overrun, its cities lain to ruin, its people sent to flight into mountain strongholds. (Full Artlicle)

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Hittite kings in the afterlife.

The Hittites

– During the last 150 years the belief that the Hittites were an obscure tribe mentioned in the Bible has evolved into an understanding that these intrepid warriors were actually one of the great kingdoms of the Late Bronze Age. (Full Article)

The Lion Gate of Hattusa.

The Lion Gate of Hattusa.