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Paper Topic:

history and significance of ancient baghdad

History and Significance of Ancient Baghdad

Baghdad developed into a jeweled center of great learning , science , and urban organization . An immense library and academies were established Civilization soared as dozens of scientists , physicians , mathematicians philosophers , scholars , and artisans converged to advance human knowledge and achievement . Boasting more than peace , scholarship , and governance , Baghdad arguably became the world 's most exotic city spawning such stories as A Thousand and One Arabian Nights (Black 37

The ancient city of Baghdad had been a relatively minor settlement in the Middle East until the 8th

century AD , when it rapidly developed into the capital of an early Islamic empire . Baghdad spreads over both banks of the Tigris River , about 30 miles from the Euphrates River . The land between these two rivers had fertile soil for farming , unlike most of the arid Middle East . This area was part of the land that was historically known as Mesopotamia . Some of the world 's greatest ancient civilizations were developed in this area . This region is often called the Cradle of Civilization . Powerful and important cities have flourished in the region for thousands of years : Uruk , Sumer , Babylon and Nineveh . The Persian Empire was ruled from Ctesiphon , just 20 miles south of Baghdad , until A .D . 637 . However , Baghdad had itself been a small Persian hamlet , until the Abbasid Caliph Abu Mansur laid the foundations of his new city in A .D . 762

Mesopotamia witnessed the world 's most ancient states with highly developed social complexity . The emergence of urban societies in Southern Iraq occurred almost four thousand years before the golden age of Greece circa 5th century BC . The conquest of Alexander the Great marked the end ' of Mesopotamia , and the beginning of a period of Hellenization of the Near East . However , the ancient Mesopotamian city and civilization did not die out suddenly with the end of Mesopotamia 's political independence . Many traditional aspects of urban life continued to exist from the fifth century BC long into the first centuries of the common era . New influences altered aspects of religion and culture , and the economy of certain cities was changed due to the enormous expansion of international trade . The urban civilization of Mesopotamia may have really begun to disappear only during the agricultural decline of the region in the early Islamic period . Even then , centers like Baghdad perpetuated the earlier traditions . Baghdad truly inherited the power and prestige of Babylon and Ctesiphon

When spotted by Mansur , the site of Baghdad had every advantage for trade , communications and water supplies (the waters of the Diyala flowed down in abundance from the Zagros mountains . The Caliph began zealously preparing the ground for a city , with a great army of forced labor . The canals in the area were improved , developed and covered over aqueducts and fortifications were built , and the city was planned so as to absorb near-by small settlements . Mansur established a military encampment . He assigned lands surrounding the city as fiefs to his relatives , followers and officers . He...

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