Cradle of Civilization

A Blog about the Birth of Our Civilisation and Development

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  • The Fertile Crescent

    The Fertile Crescent is a term for an old fertile area north, east and west of the Arabian Desert in Southwest Asia. The Mesopotamian valley and the Nile valley fall under this term even though the mountain zone around Mesopotamia is the natural zone for the transition in a historical sense.

    As a result of a number of unique geographical factors the Fertile Crescent have an impressive history of early human agricultural activity and culture. Besides the numerous archaeological sites with remains of skeletons and cultural relics the area is known primarily for its excavation sites linked to agricultural origins and development of the Neolithic era.

    It was here, in the forested mountain slopes of the periphery of this area, that agriculture originated in an ecologically restricted environment. The western zone and areas around the upper Euphrates gave growth to the first known Neolithic farming communities with small, round houses , also referred to as Pre Pottery Neolithic A (PPNA) cultures, which dates to just after 10,000 BC and include areas such as Jericho, the world’s oldest city.

    During the subsequent PPNB from 9000 BC these communities developed into larger villages with farming and animal husbandry as the main source of livelihood, with settlement in the two-story, rectangular house. Man now entered in symbiosis with grain and livestock species, with no opportunity to return to hunter – gatherer societies.

    The area west and north of the plains of the Euphrates and Tigris also saw the emergence of early complex societies in the much later Bronze Age (about 4000 BC). There is evidence of written culture and early state formation in this northern steppe area, although the written formation of the states relatively quickly shifted its center of gravity into the Mesopotamian valley and developed there. The area is therefore in very many writers been named “The Cradle of Civilization.”

    The area has experienced a series of upheavals and new formation of states. When Turkey was formed in the aftermath of the genocide against the Pontic Greeks, Armenians and Assyrians perpetrated by the Young Turks during the First World War it is estimated that two-thirds to three-quarters of all Armenians and Assyrians in the region died, and the Pontic Greeks was pushed to Greece.

    Israel was created out of the Ottoman Empire and the conquering of the Palestinian terretories. The existence of large Arab nation states from the Maghreb to the Levant has since represented a potential threat to Israel which should be neutralised when opportunities arise.

    This line of thinking was at the heart of David Ben Gurion’s policies in the 1950s which sought to exacerbate tensions between Christians and Muslims in the Lebanon for the fruits of acquiring regional influence by the dismembering the country and the possible acquisition of additional territory.

    The Christians are now being systematically targeted for genocide in Syria according to Vatican and other sources with contacts on the ground among the besieged Christian community.

    According to reports by the Vatican’s Fides News Agency collected by the Centre for the Study of Interventionism, the US-backed Free Syrian Army rebels and ever more radical spin-off factions are sacking Christian churches, shooting Christians dead in the street, broadcasting ultimatums that all Christians must be cleansed from the rebel-held villages, and even shooting priests.

    It is now time that the genocide against the Pontic Greeks, Assyrians and Armenians is being recognized, that the Israeli occupation, settlements and violence against the Palestinians stop, and that the various minorities in the area start to live their lifes in peace – without violence and threats from majority populations, or from the West, and then specificially from the US.

    War in the Fertile Crescent
    https://aratta.wordpress.com/2013/11/13/war-in-the-fertile-crescent

    Everyone is free to use the text on this blog as they want. There is no copyright etc. This because knowledge is more important than rules and regulations.

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The Gargareans and the Amazons

Posted by Sjur Cappelen Papazian on February 26, 2015

In Greek mythology, the Gargareans were an all-male tribe. They had sex with the Amazons annually in order to keep both tribes reproductive. Varying accounts suggest that they may have been kidnapped, raped, and murdered for this purpose, or that they may have had relations willingly.

The Amazons kept the female children, raising them as warriors, and gave the males to the Gargareans. Jaimoukha suggests that the myth might have been a nod to the similarity between Circassians and Dzurdzuks, despite their very different languages.

The Gargareans are held by some historians to be a component of the ancestry of the Chechen and the Ingush peoples, and equivalent or at least related to the Georgian name Dzurdzuks.

Gaius Plinius Secundus also localizes Gargarei at North of the Caucasus, but calls them Gegar. Some scholars (P.K. Uslar, K. Miller, N.F. Yakovleff, E.I. Krupnoff, L.A. Elnickiy, I.M. Diakonoff, V. N. Gemrakeli) supported that Gargarei is earlier for of Ingush ethnonym.

Jaimoukha notes that Gargareans is one of many Nakh roots- gergara, meaning, in fact, “kindred” in proto-Nakh. If this is the case, it would make Gargarei virtually equivalent to the Georgian term Dzurdzuk (referring to the lake Durdukka in the South Caucasus, where they are thought to have migrated from), which applied to a Nakh people who migrated North across the mountains to settle in modern Ingushetia.

The Ancient Greek chronicler Strabo mentioned that Gargareans had migrated from eastern Asia Minor (i.e. Urartu) to the North Caucasus, before intermixing with the local population.

In addition to their importance to the ancestry of Chechens and Ingush, the Gargareans have also been considered possibly central to the formation of the Èrs, another historical (albeit now extinct) Nakh people living in Northern Armenia, Caucasian Albania and Hereti (the name Hereti is derived from them).

Strabo wrote that “… the Amazons live close to Gargarei, on the northern foothills of the Caucasus mountains”. The Amazons were attributed to the Circassians via the root maze.

The city of Amasya, the Amaseia or Amasia of antiquity, stands in the mountains above the Black Sea coast, set apart from the rest of Anatolia in a narrow valley along the banks of the Yeşilırmak River.

Although near the Black Sea, this area is high above the coast and has an inland climate, well-suited to growing apples, for which Amasya province, one of the provinces in north-central Anatolia Turkey, is famed.

It was the home of the geographer Strabo and the birthplace of the 15th century scholar and physician Amirdovlat Amasiatsi. Located in a narrow cleft of the Yesilirmak (Iris) river, it has a history of 7,500 years which has left many traces still evident today.

According to Strabo (64/63 BC – c. AD 24) the Greek name comes from Amasis, the queen of the Amazons, who were said to have lived here. The name has changed little throughout history: The name are all found on ancient Greek and Roman coinage and continue to be used in Modern Greek.

Amastris (Greek: killed c. 284 BC) also called Amastrine, was a Persian Princess. She was the daughter of Oxyathres, the brother of the Persian King Darius III.

Amastris was given by Alexander the Great in marriage to Craterus, however Craterus later decided to marry Phila, one of the daughters of Antipater. She later married Dionysius, tyrant of Heraclea Pontica, in Bithynia, in 322 BC. She bore him two sons named: Clearchus II and Oxyathres.

Amastris married Lysimachus in 302 BC. However, he abandoned her shortly afterwards and married Arsinoe II, one of the daughters of Ptolemy I Soter, the first Pharaoh of Ptolemaic Egypt. During the brief marriage of Lysimachus and Amastris, she may have borne him a child, perhaps a daughter who may have been the first wife of Ptolemy Keraunos.

After the death of Dionysius, in 306 BC, she became guardian of their children. Several others joined in this administration. After her marriage to Lysimachus ended, Amastris retired to Heraclea, which she governed in her own right.

She also founded shortly after 300 BC a city called after her own name Amastris, or Amasra, on the sea-coast of Paphlagonia, by the fusion (synoecism) of the four smaller towns of Sesamus, Cromna, Cytorus and Tium.

One of these towns, Tium, later regained its autonomy, but the other three remained part of the city of Amastris’ territory. She was drowned by her two sons about 284 BC.

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