“The Age of Empires”: Judah under Assyrian, Babylonian and Persian Rule

·         Credit: 4

·         Lecture: Prof. Oded Lipschits

·         Semester: 1 + 2

·         Wednesdays 

The aim of this seminar is to describe the history of Land of Israel between during the 400 years when it was under the rule of the great Mesopotamian Empires. We will begin at the end of the 8th century BCE, when the Assyrian Empire conquered the Kingdom of Israel and destroyed it, and when Judah became an Assyrian vassal Kingdom, continue with the 7th century BCE, when it was an Assyrian and then Babylonian vassal Kingdom, and until its destruction at the beginning of the 6th century BCE. We will further discuss the history of Judah during the 6th century BCE (the “Exilic Period”) and its history under Persian rule (the period of the “Return”). During the lectures we will discuss the methodology of historical reconstructions of the Biblical periods, using the Biblical and other historical sources, as well as the way to combine archaeological material in the historical discussion.