The Amarna Letters

Illustration

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published on 13 September 2016

These clay tablets (letters) were found in the ruins of Akhenaten's capital, Tell el-Amarna, Egypt. They were inscribed with Babylonian cuneiform inscriptions, not hieroglyphs. The letters represent the diplomatic correspondence sent by various vassal princes of the Egyptian Empire to the pharaoh Amenhotep III, Akhenaten, and Tutankhamun. They document a turbulent period when Egypt's preoccupation with domestic policy led to insurrection and instability throughout the Empire. The Amarna letters make reference to the Hapiru, depicted as roving bands of stateless people, based in the hill country, and conducting raids on cities. These "alternative Canaanites" formed the basis of the Biblical Hebrews. 14th century BCE. From Tell el-Amarna, Egypt. (The British Museum, London).



About the Author

Osama Shukir Muhammed Amin
Associate Professor of Neurology and lover of the Cradle of Civilization, Mesopotamia. I'm very interested in Mesopotamian history and always try to take photos of archaeological sites and artifacts in museums, both in Iraq and around the world.

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