TIGLATH PILESER III

"Pulu"

745-727 BC

By

ABRAHAM S. ANSPACHER

 

NOTE

 

The following thesis by Dr. A. S. Anspacher gives the most succinct account of the reign of Tiglath Pileser III which has yet been attempted. The author has systematically endeavored to place a number of localities, mentioned in the documents of this great Assyrian king, and in so doing he has made a distinct contribution to ancient geography. Tiglath Pileser's map has always been somewhat uncertain, and, in his work, Dr. Anspacher has succeeded not only in establishing several new locations, but he has traced, more carefully than has been done hitherto, the routes of march of the principal campaigns inaugurated by this notable conqueror.

In compiling the tale of an ancient nation, it is necessary to specialize on the material of each period, and also on that of each important reign; and this is what Dr. Anspacher has done. While it is true that all the riddles of the history of a vanished people can never be satisfactorily solved, a careful study, such as this dissertation undoubtedly is, cannot fail to be of value to the historian.

 

J. DYNELEY PRINCE.

Columbia University, New York City,

 

 

INTRODUCTION

The attempt to solve all the problems connected with the life and history of Tiglath Pileser III can never be fully successful as long as we remain without new inscriptional material by means of which to fill in the lacunae which so unfortunately abound in the existing tablets. With but one exception, all the inscriptions which we now possess were found by Layard in the Southwest Palace of Nimrod. Some of the tablets came originally from the Northwest, some from the Central Palace; and since all three of the mounds which mark the sites of these three palaces have been thoroughly explored, it is perhaps too much to hope that more records of Tiglath Pileser's reign will come down to us.

This thesis is an attempt to fix in some detail the principal facts in the history of Tiglath Pileser III. Although every standard work on Assyrian history has some pages devoted to this theme, no author has treated it with such detail as to present the full story. The entire subject has appealed to me as one deserving far more consideration than is usually accorded to it in the histories. The reign of Tiglath Pileser III was from one point of view the most important in Assyrian history, and the revolutionary tendencies which characterized it are of as much importance to civilization as they were to the then welfare of Assyria itself. It needed a revolution to make the conservative Assyrian politicians of the time realize that the very existence of the state was in danger. To curtail the immense revenues of the priests so that sufficient means to carry on the extensive military operations always necessary to Assyria's safety might never be lacking was the immediate aim of the revolution. That result it speedily achieved. But from the viewpoint of world history it also accomplished a far more valuable work, in that it gave Tiglath Pileser the opportunity so to shape Assyria's policies as to give her a longer lease of life than would otherwise have been hers.

When Tiglath Pileser III came to the throne, Assyria was already beginning to succumb to the forces of decay. Her dependencies were being gradually taken from her, and her armies were meeting frequent reverses. It needed a great warrior and statesman to save her, not only for herself, but for the accomplishment of her cultural work. The value of this king to civilization, therefore, lies not in the fact of his extensive conquests themselves, but rather in the fact that without him Assyria would not have endured long enough to bequeath anything to the world.

The proper fixing of the geographical locations mentioned in the inscriptions is of prime importance. I have, wherever possible, tried to determine these and also the routes of march by the aid of all the historical inscriptions that were available to me, and believe that I have fixed some of these with exactness. One fact I wish to note here. At first thought it would seem that the Arabic geographers should yield material for the determination of some of the localities in question, but on the contrary no such aid is forthcoming. They deal with a later period of the history of Western Asia, and only a very few of the geographical names of the times of which they treat preserve even a reminiscence of old Assyrian nomenclature.

In conclusion I wish to thank Professor Prince, under whom I have studied my major subject, Assyriology, and whose aid and suggestion as well as able instruction have given to my work whatever value it may possess.

To Professor Richard Gottheil I also owe a debt of gratitude for many helpful suggestions, and have much pleasure in expressing my appreciation and gratitude.

ABRAHAM S. ANSPACHER.

 

CHAPTER I

THE SOURCES

 

 

From the time of the destruction of the Babylonian Empire until the middle of the last century, when Layard began his excavations, Tiglath Pileser III was known only because of the mention of his name in a few Biblical verses. Nothing was certain about him, except that a king of that name had ruled in Assyria and had made his power felt in Palestine. All knowledge of his history had passed from human memory, and even the inscriptions which finally proved to be his, when they were unearthed and deciphered, presented many a puzzling problem. The mutilated condition in which the tablets were found did not, at the time, promise much for a future solution of the difficulties ; besides which, one of the tablets, the longest inscription, was so badly cracked and broken in shipment to the British Museum that many attempts to correct the first faulty piecing together were for a long time unsuccessful. When this had finally been accomplished, it was discovered that about a hundred lines were missing altogether.

When Layard had in the course of his excavations reached what he afterwards called the Southwest Palace of Nimrod, he found that the whole interior of one of the large halls remained fairly intact, and that it was panelled with slabs brought from elsewhere. Some of the slabs came originally from the Northwest, some from the Central Palace. "The bas-reliefs always, when left entire, turned toward the wall of sun-dried brick, . . . and upon the faces of most of the slabs forming wall E were the marks of a chisel; . . . the bas-reliefs had been purposely destroyed. Only parts of the wall F had been finished. Many of the slabs not having been used and still lying in the centre of the chamber, ... it was evident that these were entire, having only suffered from fire. They were, moreover, arranged in rows with great regularity, and, in one or two instances, heaped the one above the other".

The analysis of these inscriptions, at whose interpretation several partial attempts were made before Schrader's authoritative work, was all rendered secondary by that scholar's investigation. Schrader divided the inscriptions into Annals and the so-called Prunkinschriften : the last being arranged not chronologically, but geographically. Both have been published, transliterated, and translated in part, by many scholars. Schrader divides the Annals into those composed of 7, 12, and 16 lines, respectively. Of the seven-line inscriptions (seven in number), Layard published five. They are those which in his collection are designated as 69, A, 1 ; 69, A, 2; 69, B, 1 ; 69, B, 2; and 34, B. The last was translated by Smith, and the remaining two inscriptions of this set were published by the same author. The second group is made up of twelve-line inscriptions, although one. Lay. 45, B, in its present condition contains only eight lines, the first four being broken away. Another, III R 9, No. 1, is so badly mutilated that not a single line remains intact. Lay. 50, A (III R 9, No. 3, p. 41-52) is in a very fair condition and is continued in Lay. 50, B, and Lay. 67, A ; both these last being written on one stone ; while Lay. 67, B, is a continuation of Lay. 67, A; making of the four inscriptions a complete sub-group. Lay. 51, A, and 51, B, are written on tablets the last half of which is entirely broken away, but what remains is perfectly legible ; Lay. 51, B, being damaged to the extent of only a small lacuna in the last line. Lay. 52, A, and Lay. 52, B,10 are fairly well preserved and form a continuous narrative. The third group (16 lines), is made up of inscriptions which are badly mutilated; viz. Lay. 71, B, which is continued in Lay. 73, A, the merest fragment. Only about a third of the original tablet has come down to us. Lay. 71, A is scarcely in a better condition, and is continued on the same stone by Lay. 71, B. The two inscriptions are separated by a perpendicular line through the width of the stone, so that Lay. 71, B, line 1, is the continuation of Lay. 71, A, line 16.

There remain a few Annal Inscriptions which cannot be classified by the number of their lines : viz. III. R. 9, No. 2 ; a fragmentary 19 line tablet ; viz. III. R. 9, No. 3, lines 22-41 (Lay. 65), a 20 line inscription; the very badly broken 18 line tablet, Lay. 66; III. R. 10, No. 2, consisting of the broken parts of an originally 47 line inscription, and III. R. 10, No. 3, composed of 24 lines.

Schrader's second division, the Prunkinschriften, includes a long fragment of a tablet which was inscribed on both sides, the middle portion (about 50 lines on the obverse, and 50 on the reverse, i.e. about 100 in all), being missing. It was published II. R. 67; and translated by Smith, Eneberg, and S. Arthur Strong. The duplicate of this inscription (Brit. Mus. D. T. 30) is of special interest, having been found by Smith at Kalah in the Temple of Nimroud, and is apparently a Babylonian copy. It was published by Schrader, and translated by Smith. Lay. 17, F, is a 36 line tablet, translated by Schrader, Menant, and Oppert. In 1893 P. Rost supplied the need of a complete edition of all the inscriptions, with a new set of autographs, a transliteration, and translation. In it he publishes for the first time three small tablets. He was fortunate enough to discover a squeeze of Lay. 17/18 ; which was made before the tablet was broken.

To what kings these mutilated sculptures and tablets belonged was for a long time a puzzling question. Layard himself, having compared them with a pavement slab of the same period and with reliefs of the Central Palace, concluded that they all belonged to the same king. After Hincks had deciphered on one of the reliefs the name of Menahem, king of Israel, as a tributary to the Assyrian king in the eighth year of the latter's reign, on the basis of a reference to 2 K. xv. 19 and 20, and 1 Chr. v. 26, Layard concluded that this king must be "an immediate predecessor of Pul, Pul himself, or Tiglath Pileser". With the discovery of the Eponym Canon the possibility of this king being an immediate predecessor of Pul was obviated. But on the other hand, the difficulty was not lightened, because Pul is mentioned in 2 K. xv. 19, as the conqueror of Menahem, and again, together with Tiglath Pileser in 1 Chr. v. 26. He was not recorded in any Assyrian inscriptions, and, of course, not in the Eponym Canon. It would have been easy to have ascribed the tablets to Tiglath Pileser without further debate. But although no name was found upon what afterwards turned out to be the mutilated Annal Inscriptions of the king in question, yet to have thus arbitrarily assigned them to Tiglath Pileser still left the question of the identity of Pul undecided.

George Smith conjectured that Pul was, . . . "either, Vul-Nirari III, who might still have been reigning in 772, or a monarch immediately succeeding Ashurdan II or III, or that Pul and Tiglath Pileser are identical". This last theory had already been propounded by Sir Henry Rawlinson, and independently by R. Lepsius. It was finally established as the correct one by Schrader. We may add here what is the clinching proof. In one of the Babylonian King Lists, we read, Col. iv : 

line 5. Nabu-sum-ukin his son for one month and 12 days.

line 6. The 31 (years) of the dynasty of Babylon.

line 7. Ukin-zira of the dynasty of Sasi for three years.

line 8. Pulu for 2 (years).

Compare this with the Babylonian Chronicle, Col. 1.

line 17. For 2 months and . . . days Suma-ukin reigned over Babylon.

line 18. Ukin-zira seized upon the throne.

line 19. In the 3d year of Ukin-zira, Tiglath Pileser.

line 20. When he had descended into the country of Akkad.

line 21. Destroyed Bit-Ammukani and captured Ukin-zira.

line 22. For three years Ukin-zira reigned over Babylon.

line 23. Tiglath. Pileser sat upon the throne of Babylon.

A comparison of lines 7 and 8 of the first inscription with lines 17 ff. of the second proves conclusively the identity of Tiglath Pileser and Pul, showing that the impartial Babylonian historian gave him the respective names he bore in both Assyria and Babylon.

All this is in perfect accord with the entry in the Ptolemaean Canon, which notes for the year 731, the year in which Tiglath Pileser was crowned in Babylon, "Chinzirus and Porus". This is, of course, the Ukin-zira and the Pulu of the Babylonian King Lists; Porus being a Persian corruption of Pul. The fact that Berosus makes Pulu, "Rex Chaldaeorum", is in agreement with the above evidence. It simply means that Tiglath Pileser III came to the throne of Babylon only after having conquered Ukin-zira, head of the Bit-Amukkani, a powerful Chaldean tribe. Finally, Schrader settled for all time that all the inscriptions belong to Tiglath Pileser.

There is in all these sources of Tiglath Pileser's reign scarcely any specific reason for doubt as to the accuracy and trustworthiness of the reports which they give us. We have not, for instance, as is the case with Sargon, any variant records and versions of the inscriptions; and while they are, of course, subject to such doubt as always attaches to the official records of a time which so far lacks the historical sense and the morale of the scientific historian, as to glorify a king or a nation at the expense of exact truth, still, we find no contradictory testimony in them. Even the figures in the records of captives and of tribute furnish scant reason for doubt.

If we possessed contemporaneous documents from other nations to control the official records, there could be no hesitancy in using them to check the inscriptions, but in the one instance where we do possess such a contemporaneous inscription, an inscription mentioning the name of Tiglath Pileser, the latter's reports are confirmed. And this is also true of the Biblical references to him. The clues given us in the Eponym Canon, the Assyrian Chronicle, the Ptolemaean Canon, the Babylonian Chronicle, and the Babylonian King Lists, refer, of course, mainly to the fixing of dates, and in the case of Tiglath Pileser at least, confirm each other, although they are independent witnesses.

The reign of Tiglath Pileser III is especially important, because with him began a new era in Assyrian history. This king prepared the way for that period of his country's progress in which Assyria attained her greatest territorial extent. Perhaps in his time it was not yet evident that Assyria was too small a nation to hold her own against the half civilized hordes which later on accomplished her downfall. The fact that Assyria remained intact long enough to establish much which has become valuable and even essential to civilization and culture is in no small degree a credit due to this great warrior, who founded a well-organized Empire upon foundations which his predecessors had enfeebled, and who was a personality great enough to have dominated his day. This was so not only because the times into which he was born invited revolution and change, but because his own power as warrior, statesman, and organizer, forced even the priesthood, always a tremendous influence, to bow to his energy and will. A great pity it is that his 'literary remains' fell prey not only to the ravages of time and accident, but also to the desecrating hand of one of his great successors, Esarhaddon, who willfully mishandled the records of Tiglath Pileser and is mainly responsible for the sadly mutilated condition in which they have come down to us.

 

 

CHAPTER II

ACCESSION

 

 

The Eponym Canon for the year 745 announces that on the 12th day of Airu, Tiglath Pileser III ascended the throne of Assyria. Because of the entry for the previous year 746, "rebellion in Kalah", it has been assumed that his accession was due to a military revolution, and every known fact tends to corroborate that view. Certain it is that Tiglath Pileser only gained the throne because of the condition of Assyrian affairs, and not because he was the legitimate successor to the royal office. The Empire was in very deep trouble. Its prestige was at low ebb. Abroad its influence was fast waning, and at home all the elements of a vast political upheaval had for some time been steadily tending toward revolution. The land was priest-ridden. Its wealth swelled the coffers of the temple treasuries, and its soldiers nourishing the traditions of ancient prowess had to be content with feeding upon the memories of former national glory. There was crying need for a leader of real ability. The land was not a victim of natural impoverishment. There were means sufficient for all purposes of national aggrandizement, could but the man be found who possessed the requisite qualities of leadership, the man who could compel the greedy priesthood to relinquish its hold upon those resources which it had come to look upon as rightful and legitimate prey. The people and the army demanded a sufficient portion of the national income to defray the cost of military and civil affairs.

It must have been a sad reflection for the Assyrian soldier to review the fortunes of his country for about a century before the year 745. Persistently and steadily ancient foes were encroaching upon Assyrian territory. The mother country was still intact, but on every hand the buffer states which great conquerors had been at extreme pains to erect as barriers against invasion, had thrown off the yoke; and even worse, powerful monarchs of other nations, taking advantage of the lethargy which had come over Assyria, were conquering lesser peoples and building empires which in their new greatness boded ill for Assyria's future. Since 860, when Shalmaneser II ascended the throne, lasting and effective victory was seldom with Assyria, although royal scribes, courtier-like, record a number of military triumphs. With the exception of Ramman-Nirari III (810-782), no able, vigorous king had ruled. That king reigned over a vast empire which stretched from the borders of Elam on the south, to Nairi and Andia in the north, and as far as the Mediterranean on the east. He was warlike, and only one of his reign years, the eleventh, was spent at home. Four campaigns against Hubuskia, and six expeditions to the East, are a proof of the energy which Assyria, under him, was exerting in its efforts for conquest. Even against the successor of Hazael of Damascus, who had conquered and probably ruled over Israel, Amnion, and Philistia, he ventured to war and probably took Damascus. But during his reign he was stoutly opposed by the growing power of Urartu.

Menuas of Urartu took from Assyria the tribes around Lake Urumia, and annexed large parts of Hubuskia, erecting on the rocks of Rowandiz Pass the steles which record his achievements. He drove the Assyrians from Lake Van, and got as far East as beyond the Euphrates, levying taxes on Miletene. His son Argistis continued the work of his mighty father, and from at least one passage of his Annals, we must conclude that he defeated the Assyrians in a great battle. The year 778 in the Chronological Lists records a campaign against Urartu. This is the defeat suffered by Shalmaneser at Sarisadas. The years 776 and 774 both record Urartian campaigns, in both of which Assyria lost ground. Thus Assyria, under the feeble rule of Shalmaneser, lost her northern possessions and those of Miletene. In 773 and 772, in order to hold the West, campaigns had to be undertaken against Damascus and Hadrak, the former of which had been thoroughly subdued by Ramman-Nirari III. There must also have been disturbances in Syria, for the land of Patin of Ashurbanipal has already in the time of Tiglath Pileser III become split up into the four principalities of Unqi, Samal, Yaudi, and Patin. Also against Hatarika, which had become the dominant power in Northern Syria, Ashurdan had twice to wage war, while in 754 he was engaged with Arpad, which together with Hatarika had come to share supremacy in Northern Syria. Thus it will be seen that Assyria was gradually losing its grip, and the revolt recorded for 746 in Kalah, which resulted in the enthroning of Tiglath Pileser III, by showing the feebleness of his predecessors, only emphasized the weakness which had come over Assyria. Now there was need of a great man, a need which was supplied in the person of the soldier who, whatever his real name was, seized the reins of government and began his rule, assuming the name of one of Assyria's greatest conquerors, and becoming Tiglath Pileser III.

The fact that he gained the crown raised the uprising to the dignified status of a revolution; and it was certainly anti-priestly in its essential character. So much is evident from the history of his successors, from Shalmaneser to Esarhaddon. As long as the tribute of dependencies was available for military purposes, so long the imposition of the temple taxes by the priesthood caused no appreciable fiscal difficulties. Once this source of income became curtailed, the immense revenues of the priesthood must have loomed large in the eyes of all divisions of secular society. And these revenues were exempt from the ordinary uses of the state. The larger cities (these were of priestly origin) also enjoyed such privileged exemptions that an anti-priestly movement would be sure to arouse antagonism from them. Hence a successful revolution certainly did not receive its inspiration from them. For the country population, however, and those interested in them, it would provide relief. Upon them the burden of taxes fell with impoverishing force as soon as the stream of tribute ceased to flow into the imperial coffers. This state of affairs found in Tiglath Pileser the man who knew how to take advantage of the situation.

His son had in the nature of things to follow the policy of his father. But, whereas the former could rest his demand for popular approbation upon the success of his military exploits, and did not have to support his reputation for anti-priestly feelings on an exaggerated repression of the priesthood, his son, lacking the glamour of military achievements, could only prove his loyalty to the forces which had crowned his father and himself by consistent antagonism to the priests and the priestly cities. He went so far as to levy tribute upon the sacred city of Ashur. The statement that Ashur in his anger gave the throne of Shalmaneser to Sargon can only mean that the priestly party, profiting by the feelings of revulsion which this sacrilege must have caused, regained sufficient power to overthrow the military party. How basic the conflict between priest and people was can be determined from the actions of the subsequent kings, Sennacherib, Esarhaddon, and Ashurbanipal. The first once again favored the military party, and the last followed in his footsteps, while Esarhaddon, like Sargon, never failed to exalt the hierarchy. The affiliations of Tiglath Pileser III are amply evidenced when we compare his attitude towards Babylon with that of the two last named kings. He was as hostile as they were favorable. Esarhaddon indeed showed his feelings by an act unique in Assyrian history. In providing materials for the building of his palace at Kalah, he purposely mutilated and then removed the sculptures and tablets of Tiglath Pileser from the Central Palace of Shalmaneser II.

About the ancestry of Tiglath Pileser III we know little. But despite the fact that he was a usurper, which may only mean that he was a younger son and not in the direct line of succession, there is no need to assume that he was not of royal blood. In truth he never mentions his father. But that proves little, for the same is true of Sennacherib, whose relationship to Sargon we know only from the words of Esarhaddon. Nor does Esarhaddon's desecration of the Central Palace monuments compel us to deny royal lineage to the usurper. As we have seen, this can be reasonably explained as Esarhaddon's protest against the actions of an 'impious king'. In fact, there is good reason to believe that he was the son of Adad-Nirari IV.

The personality of the new ruler can only be drawn in meagre outline. We have no evidence by means of which to characterize him, further than to say in the most general way that he was brilliant and energetic as a military leader, and that his natural endowments as a statesman were fully equal to the demands of the circumstances surrounding him. That he was far-sighted, his policy of colonization, which we discuss elsewhere, proves. He seems to have set a new fashion quite remarkable for an ancient conqueror, in that no indication of wanton cruelty can be cited from the inscriptions. As with his successors, Sargon and Esarhaddon, torture and wholesale slaughter are limited to occasions where such actions arose out of imperative need. Nor can he be justly charged with mere lust for conquest. As an usurper he had of course to make good his position.

But his continuous campaigning, with its accompanying exploitation of foreign territory, and the imposition of enormous tribute, arose out of the needs of the Empire when he came to the throne. If he had to make extensive conquests for any other reason than to enlarge the Empire, it was only to secure a steady inflow of tribute with which to relieve the burdened financial condition of the people. Only in that way could he verify the contention of the revolutionists, that the current poverty was due to the unreasonable exactions of the priesthood. Had the mere lust of conquest animated him, he would have been an usurper of only the common Oriental type. An examination of the records strongly militates against such a conclusion. While the Assyrian chronologists, not being historians in the modern sense, tell us nothing of the circumstances leading to the revolution, we are enabled to infer the truth of the situation from one very significant fact. The first care of an ordinary usurper is to secure himself against the claims and operations of the legitimate heir whom he has displaced. In the case of Tiglath Pileser III, the party of the natural heir was the priesthood. Had the demand for a complete change not been nation-wide, he could not have ventured to leave his capital shortly after his coronation. Hardly had six months elapsed, however, i.e. in the first half of his first regnal year, when he went forth upon his initial campaign. No merely usurping adventurer would have dared to risk such a move.

 

 

CHAPTER III

THE SOUTHERN AND WESTERN FRONTIERS

 

From the very first it was evident that Tiglath Pileser had formulated plans to meet the problems which faced him and his country. So far as mere conquest was concerned many of his predecessors had been eminently successful. It was only when the question of organizing conquered territory and peoples had arisen that they had failed. Up to Tiglath Pileser's time, conquest and revolt succeeded one another with almost unfailing regularity, and the length of time during which most dependencies remained loyal was in direct proportion to the military capacity of the then ruling king. Tiglath Pileser planned to make an end of such opportunist allegiance. He inaugurated a system of colonization designed to make of the Assyrian Empire a well-regulated and organic whole, whose farthest possessions would be firmly united with the imperial country by organic ties. In this respect Tiglath Pileser was an innovator; but in the general plan of conquest which former kings pursued he could well afford to be an imitator. They had followed a perfectly natural and reasonable course. The practical aim of all these monarchs was identical; viz., on the south Babylon was to be held as a dependent vassal, and on the east the tribes which had colonized in Babylonia had to be restrained, lest, obtaining a permanent foothold there, they might prove a serious obstacle to Assyrian expansion in that direction.

In the north the people of Urartu and their natural allies had to be weakened by the constant embarrassment of battle, lest by an alliance with the Armenians they should finally displace Assyria as mistress of the 'Four Quarters of the World'. The large stretch of territory on the west which reached to the Mediterranean contained no single nation sufficiently powerful to threaten the domination of Assyria, but the peoples settled in that region were rich in many products required by Assyria. In the imperial plan these western lands were destined to furnish a field for territorial expansion, to provide the means necessary to keep Assyrian finances abreast of its great needs, and to supply the country with the desired commodities of import. In full accord with this traditional plan Tiglath Pileser III undertakes his first campaign against Babylonia, setting out in September 745.

But to think that he moved against Babylon as an enemy is to miss entirely the statesman-like insight which he displayed throughout his reign. Assyria was the suzerain of Babylon; and it is very probable that Nabunasir, the Babylonian king, seeing that an energetic man of ability now ruled at Kalah, was glad to be able to invoke his aid against the Arameans and the Chaldeans who were threatening the eastern and southern borders of Babylonia. Tiglath Pileser's prompt response to the appeal was not only animated by the need of checking these tribes, but also by personal and political considerations. He was king by right of revolution, but no religious consecration had legitimized his accession. In Assyria he could not stoop to receive such consecration, for the priesthood would not have accorded it, and the military classes, whose antagonism to the priesthood had fathered the revolution, would not have condoned him had he accepted it. To them it would have appeared that he had secretly compounded with the Temple interests; but from the Babylonian priesthood, whose consecration made his rule just as valid as that of the priests of Assyria, he could and did receive religious sanction. Nor would they withhold it provided he consented to come to the aid of their king and country, threatened as it was by powerful foes on the frontier. Under their auspices he could offer sacrifices to Bel, Nebo, Nergal, to Sarpanit and Tasmit, in those Babylonian cities which he visited during his first campaign. Then he could return home as a king whose coronation had lost the last vestige of illegitimacy because the gods had accepted his offerings and granted him victory.

It would also for another reason have served no profitable purpose for Tiglath Pileser to play the role of enemy against Babylon at this time. In his first campaign a usurper must be victorious. Had he gone forth as the avowed enemy of Babylon in this campaign, he could not have claimed a complete victory, unless he had succeeded in dethroning Nabunasir. Doubtless he could have done so, for Nabunasir was in no position to offer effective resistance, but such a step would have caused Tiglath Pileser great embarrassment. To make his coronation legitimate, he would then have been compelled to 'grasp the hands of Bel'. This, as we shall see below, he was unable to do at this time, and to have omitted that ceremony would have spelled a capital offence against the priesthood of Babylon. At home he could afford to antagonize the priesthood, but he could not risk a similar policy in Babylon. Unlike their compeers in the north, the Babylonian priests were at this time normally powerful in the political affairs of their country. Their influence was also strongly felt in Assyria. The Assyrians, although they had very recently participated in a revolution against their own priesthood, had no feeling of antipathy to the priests of Babylon. On the contrary, the religious influence of Babylon over Assyria was never really enfeebled during the entire period of Assyrian supremacy. It was very strong at this time. Had Tiglath Pileser crowned himself king of Babylon without 'grasping the hands of Bel', he would not only have been looked upon as a sacrilegious despot by the people of the South, but also by his own countrymen, and he would have earned the enmity of a proud vassal state whose sense of independence was strong in addition to the opposition of a large part of Assyrian society. If on the other hand, in 745, he had submitted to priestly coronation, he might have gained power and popularity at home and in the South, but such added popularity would have been short-lived, especially in Babylonia, for the ceremony of “grasping the hands of Bel” had to be repeated annually in the city of Babylon. To have missed it only once would have invalidated his sovereignty. Had he attempted despite the omission to retain the crown, the feelings of the priesthood and of all Babylonians would have been outraged, and in their eyes Tiglath Pileser would have ranked as a ruthless tyrant trampling the rights and cherished convictions of his subjects under foot. He would have provided for himself a tireless enemy at his very gates and endangered his great plans. In the years to come all his campaigns would have to be arranged with a view to being present in Babylon for the imperative annual ceremony. A king whose future operations were already mapped out, and who in accordance with them would have to travel as far afield as Urartu, or even the Caspian Sea on the north and the Mediterranean on the west, had to postpone the assumption of full kingship over Babylon until such a time as his farthest provinces were enduringly bound to the Empire, and his governors and lieutenants had learned, under his own tuition, how to hold the king's possessions by the aid of the system which the crown intended to inaugurate.

His purpose in this campaign was, then, not to subjugate Babylon, but to prevent its falling into the hands of the Arameans and Chaldeans. These tribes were his first concern, since to leave them unmolested might at some future time have occasioned serious obstacles to the full prosecution of any distant expedition in which he might happen to be engaged; and it is conceivable that while he was in the far West they might even seriously threaten Assyria. Later on he had to wage strenuous war with the Chaldeans, and their power is shown by the fact that, even when he did get an opportunity to devote his undivided attention to them, they were strong enough to hold Sapia, their capital, against every exertion of Tiglath Pileser, although at that time (733) his troops were veterans, and he a mighty conqueror with a long record of brilliant victories.

Now, in 745, these Aramean and Chaldean tribes had come within striking distance of Babylon. A branch of these two tribes on the east of the Tigris was nomadic, but the most dangerous although not the more numerous sections had possessed themselves of several important cities on the right bank of the Euphrates, any one of which might be used as a base of operations for an attack upon Babylon. That city once in their hands, they would have been in a position to threaten Assyria itself. Marching directly south, Tiglath Pileser attacks and takes in order the cities which were held by his enemies. These were Dur-Kurigalzu, Sippar, Pazitu, Pahhaz, Nippur, Babylon, Borsippa, Kutu, Kis, Dilbat, and Uruk. He drove the Aramean tribes from the banks of the Lower Zab to the banks of the Uknu River. He redug the Patti-Canal, and on the site of Til-Kamri which is called Humut he built a fortified city, to which he gave the name Kar-Assur; also a second city the name of which was written at the end of Annals, line 21, but which has been broken away. Host thinks it may have been Dur-Tukulti-apil-isarra. These two cities became the central garrison-posts of the conquered districts, where he settled his lieutenants, having put the territory under the jurisdiction of the two neighboring provinces of Barhazia and Mazamua. The lieutenants had not only to raise sufficient revenues for the purposes of military occupation, but had also to deliver a considerable sum to the imperial treasury, since their annual assessment was fixed at the large sum of ten talents of gold and one thousand talents of silver, besides tribute in cattle and other goods. From E-sagila, E-zida, and E-sitlam the priests brought gifts as tokens of their submission to the conqueror.

With the completion of his first conquest Tiglath Pileser began to put into practice his policy of colonization. The conquered peoples were scattered and their lands repeopled with colonists from Mazamua and Barhazia. His object was of course to obviate future opportunities for conspiracy or revolution, and he rendered the subjugated tribes impotent, both by garrisoning their land and by scattering them in widely different colonies, thereby preventing the possibility of concerted action on their part.

But, although in this campaign he penetrated as far as Nippur in the south and had subjugated the country all the way to the foothills of Elam, clearing the plains and river basins of hostile tribes, his work would eventually have gone for nought, had he not penetrated to the hill-tribes in their mountain fastnesses in the country beyond. To have left these unmolested must have invalidated his exertions in the lowlands. From the highlands an unconquered enemy could have descended into the plains to undo all the victorious results of the first campaign.

To make Assyria secure, and to settle matters on his immediate southern frontier and his eastern borders, he undertook in the following year (744) his second expedition, that against Namri.

However, the southern frontier could not be considered safe until the passes east of the Diala had been secured. Their occupation and fortification would serve the double purpose of a defensive border outpost, and in case of any future advance into the country beyond, the roads would be clear for any invasion he might contemplate. Not only is it probable that Tiglath Pileser divided his army into two corps for this campaign, but in all likelihood one of these corps moved in at least two columns. One corps operated to the south. Starting from a point not far north of modern Bakuba, it followed a course generally parallel to the east bank of the Diala and presumably crossed the divide where one of the branches of the Konchitum River breaks through the hills, not far from modern Imam-Esker; proceeding east they overran Erinziasu, Bit-Hamlan, Bit-Sumurzu, Bit-Barrua, Bit-Zualzai, and then Ari­arma, Tarsarranihu, and Saksukni.

The northern corps under the provincial governor Assur-danin-ani, had the task of subjugating the 'mighty Medes'. They succeeded in conquering so extensive a territory that it is more than probable that they operated in at least two separate columns. But the Annals give us little aid in tracing their respective routes. It is probable, however, that they did not divide forces until they had reached the plain of the Shehrizor. This, so far as the nature of the country is concerned, they could have entered most easily by marching along the west bank of the Diala, south of the Segrime Dagh, and continuing parallel to the Shirwan, a branch of the Diala. At some point which commanded the various roads into Media, perhaps near modern Behistun, they separated. One division, going northwest, overran Bit-Abdadani and Bit-Zatti, then turning to the northeast, on the right flank of their former route, they defeated the troops of Bit-Tazzaki. The second division, starting in the direction of the south-east, overcame Bit-Istar, and thence going south, carried its victorious arms through Bit-Sangibutti and Bit-Sangi. A half turn round towards the north brought them to Bit-Kapsi and finally still further north to Arazias and Parsua. The two divisions had together traced an almost complete circle, and now probably reunited their forces at the appointed rendezvous. Most likely this was their point of departure near Behistun. Here it seems was the site of Nikur, the fortress which in Annals was recorded as having been destroyed. It was rebuilt as a strategic base, to control the whole country which had been overrun by both corps. Here a large number of people from the various conquered tribes were settled and a provincial governor was placed over them, while others from the north were colonized in Bit-Sumurzu and Bit-Hamban, and still others in Zakruti. Before arriving at Nikur, the two corps had effected a junction, possibly in Arazias, which they may have conquered together. Whether Arakuttu and Nisai were also reached in this year cannot be determined. Neither is mentioned in the Annals. More probably their turn did not come until 737, when a second war was waged in the regions here considered.

The booty yield of the campaign must have been enormous. Horses, mules, large and small cattle, camels, weapons, precious metals and stones, and all manner of products were carried away as trophies and as profit. A tribute of 300 talents of uknu stone (lapis lazuli) and 500 talents of silver was imposed, and 65,000 prisoners were deported for colonization in other dependencies.

The nearest foes were now helpless. At the end of two years' reign enough tribute and booty must have been brought into Assyria to satisfy even a people whose previous supply for some years had been a minimum. Tiglath Pileser had undoubtedly made his position so strong that for the future his campaigns might carry him to great distances without his having to fear that any revolution at home would seriously threaten his crown. These first two expeditions had proved brilliantly successful. The usurper had justified all prophecies as to his powers. Whole districts were in ashes. Old fortified towns, which had become a menace, were destroyed. Powerful enemies had been terrified by the sight of heaps of their slain and wounded, and were taught to understand what the future held in store for Assyria's foes. At important points Tiglath Pileser had erected calam sarrutia, "images of my royalty". Much booty was dedicated to the god Assur, and his terror was ever before the eyes of the smitten peoples.

Although not all the conquered districts were formally incorporated into the Empire, Tiglath Pileser had, in 744, begun the real work of assimilation and amalgamation. These eastern tribes were mostly Iranian and Kassite. The last had at one time established a dynasty of thirty-six kings in Babylon, and as late as 702, Sennacherib had found it necessary to suppress them. Their traditions must have made them cherish a degree of independence so strong that it proved well-nigh impossible to subdue them entirely. Perhaps it was because of this close cherishing of their independent Babylonian identity that Tiglath Pileser's plan of colonization never really resulted in their full assimilation, and they may have been the cause of his campaign of 737.

 

Tiglath-Pileser III Receiving Homage

 

CHAPTER IV

SYRIA AND THE WEST

 

The object of the campaign of 743 did not contemplate direct conflict with Urartu itself. The day for such a vital move was not yet at hand. The triumph over Median foes, although decisive, was in no way to be compared with the struggle which Sardurri III of Urartu was prepared to wage for supremacy in Asia. He was a foe worthy of the utmost consideration; nor would he and his people fight the less furiously and bitterly against Assyria, because the gage of the coming battle was not some petty principality, but overlordship of the whole of the northern half of the continent or perhaps independence itself. There was no room for two great powers of equal strength and resources in Asia. Great nations had not yet learned how to live amicably side by side. Between them there was sure to be constant conflict until one or the other was either thoroughly subjugated and rendered dependent upon its conqueror or was altogether annihilated. To be less powerful than a neighboring people was in itself a prophecy that independence would be short-lived.

As the situation now stood in Asia, either Assyria or Urartu must expect to bow to the superior prowess of the other, and the issue might hinge upon the result of a single engagement. Nor was that issue at all a foregone conclusion. Assyria's glorious tradition was a valuable asset in the struggle to come, but this great tradition was not by any means her only weapon. As has been seen, when Tiglath Pileser III came to the throne, Assyria was in a state of lethargy, but her fundamental vitality and vigor were not impaired. It only needed a vigorous, able ruler, with whom the majority of the nation should be in full accord, to arouse her to great endeavor. That Tiglath Pileser was such a man his two previous campaigns clearly indicated; but the Urartian, too, had become accustomed to victory, and not only over petty nations, but over Assyria itself. As we saw in Chapter II, from the time of Ramman-Nirari III, up to the very date of Tiglath Pileser's coronation, Urartian power had been steadily increasing. Menuas had measured strength with Assyria, and both he and his son Argistis had proved themselves the most aggressive and successful monarchs of their dynasty. Tiele has made a list of the most important of the possessions of Menuas, and it includes the land of the Hittites, Melitene, Man, and Urmedi. He in his turn bequeathed to his successor, Sardurri III, an empire the largest part of which had been wrested from Assyria, and had been among her most valuable possessions. When Tiglath Pileser came into contact with Sardurri, Urartian territory had attained its widest extent. Its northern and northeastern boundary line ran through the Plains of Alexandrapal and Gokcha Lake (Transcaucasia) and stretched on the northwest to Hassankala near Erzerum, Aschgerd, and Delibaba. On the west was the Murad Tschai, with the furthest outposts at Masgerd north of Kharput, and at Isoli. On the south its line ran along the mountain range between Armenia and Mesopotamia, and on the extreme east, from Gokcha Lake to Ordaklu. Nor does this large empire seem to have hung together loosely. The manner in which many of the independent states resisted Tiglath Pileser proves that the Urartian kings had succeeded to a surprising degree in rendering vassals and tributaries firm in their fidelity. The determined and bitter opposition which the Syrian princes offered to the arms of Tiglath Pileser, compelling him to spend three years in the West before they could be forced to forswear their adherence to Sardurri, indicates the large measure of Urartian mastery over very wide territorial possessions.

Sardurri had also shown his capacity for military accomplishments. By the year 755 he had conquered Melitene, and by 744 the countries of Taurus and Amanus were also his. Upon these and the support of Arpad he could depend in the contest now before him. It is indeed a matter of wonder that he did not press on to the further West and conquer both Damascus and Israel. The first was at this time very weak, and Israel, though apparently prosperous during the reign of Jeroboam II, was, as Amos testifies, not inherently strong. The weakness of neighboring kingdoms fully accounts for the outward glory of Jeroboam's reign; and even this was beginning to fade during the last years of his life. Perhaps Sardurri realized that it was impolitic to attempt further extension of territory at this time, because Tiglath Pileser had shown that he was no weakling. It would suffice the Urartian king for the time being, if he could only hold his own against Assyria. Nor was it any part of his plan to push further west away from his home provinces, and leave a strong enemy in his rear. He could afford to let the Assyrian make the first move. This, Tiglath Pileser was compelled to do. Perhaps one of the secret wishes he entertained in making his campaign of the previous year in Armenia and the East was that Sardurri would leave Van and come south to meet him on neutral ground. But Sardurri did not stir. To have attempted to march against Sardurri's capital and strike at the very centre of things would have meant a long trying journey through snow-bound mountain passes, easy for the Armenian to defend. For a hazardous attempt of that kind Tiglath Pileser was not prepared in 744. He dared not risk the chance of a reverse. In that case the Urartian allies would have clung all the closer to their allegiance, and it was with these allies, particularly with the Hittites and Syrians, that much of Sardurri's power lay.

The most promising plan, therefore, was to strike somewhere in Northern Syria. The tribute and taxes from this rich part of Asia were essential to Sardurri, and their threatened loss would not fail to bring him from his mountain-guarded capital into the plains. Here without incurring the danger, fatigue, and delay of a long march around Lake Van, the advantage was with Tiglath Pileser. Should Sardurri stay at home, he would be the loser, since that must have amounted to a confession of fear, and as such have been a moral blow at the influence of Urartu.

The sources mention Agusi, Qummuh, Melid, Samal and Gargum, as the active allies with whom Tiglath Pileser had to deal. Early in 743 he marched west, and the Canon entry for that year reads, 'ina Arpadda', in the city of Arpad. Nowhere in his inscriptions does Tiglath Pileser hint of a battle or a siege which secured to him the possession of the city in this year. There is no justification, with Rost, to change the preposition from, ina, to ana, and on that basis postulate a situation wherein Tiglath Pileser besieges that city and was forced to raise the siege when he heard that Sardurri was coming to the relief of his ally. The Canon distinctly reads, Ina Arpadda. But we do not know how he entered and took possession of it. Tiele thinks that in 744 Arpad was in possession of Assyria, and that Tiglath Pileser meant to use it in this campaign as a base of operations. At any rate, although we do not know how Tiglath Pileser entered the city, for it was the capital of Mati'ilu, the strongest ally of Sardurri, we are forced to admit the fact. While there preparing for operations against the surrounding small states, the news of Sardurri's approach was announced. From the northeast the Armenian came through Kilhi and Ulluba, across the Tigris, and then east of the Euphrates into Qummuh. He had reached a point between Kistan and Halpi when Tiglath Pileser appeared, and the rivals joined battle between the two cities. Sardurri sustained a bad defeat. He fled the field on the back of a mare. His loss was 72,900 men (Annals 66). His baggage-train, horses, mules, chariots, even his personal ornaments, became the spoil of the victor; and the servants and skilled workmen who had followed the army were made captives. Yet despite all this the battle was not decisive. A single victory had not decided the fate of the West, nor was Sardurri entirely helpless. The picture of a complete triumph with which the Annals would impress us is not the full story. The victory must have cost Tiglath Pileser much of his strength. He was compelled to return to Nineveh and prepare his forces for another campaign in Syria. The allies were not intimidated because of Tiglath Pileser's victory. He found them even more difficult to overcome than Sardurri himself; and this is especially true of Mati'ilu of Agusi. It was he who made Tiglath Pileser spend three years in Northern Syria, prosecuting secondary campaigns, but principally endeavoring to reduce the city of Arpad. We have seen that the Canon for 743 records the entrance of Tiglath Pileser into Arpad. The year 742 tells of another expedition against the same city; likewise the entry for 741, adding that it took three years to capture Arpad. As has been said, in 743 Tiglath Pileser left Arpad to meet Sardurri in Qummuh. Thus, if that city only surrendered to the Assyrian king in 741, it appears that while Tiglath Pileser was engaged in Kistan, the allies in Syria took Arpad during his absence. And the great king, exhausted by the all-day battle in Qummuh, could do nothing more in 743 than capture a few cities in that land. Ezzida, Harbisina, and Ququsansu, he sacked after crossing the Euphrates.

While Tiglath Pileser was wintering in Nineveh preparing for a resumption of operations in Syria in the following year, Mati'ilu made ready for the inevitable siege of Arpad. He would have made his peace with Tiglath Pileser, and had he done so, it is probable that he would have received reasonable terms. But Sardurri had escaped into his own land, and his ally expected him to gather a new force with which to come to the help of the beleaguered confederates in Syria. When therefore the Assyrian again appeared before Arpad he faced a very sturdy opposition. How well Arpad must have prepared for this siege is evident from the time it required to take the city. Certainly Tiglath Pileser did not sit down idly before the walls and quietly await the starvation of the city. Expeditions from his armed camp were sent out in all directions and the allies were carefully watched, in order to prevent concerted action. When in 740 the city at last capitulated, all the members of the league save one were anxious to compound with the victor. The fate of Mati'ilu was sealed. He lost his throne, and were the records complete, we should undoubtedly hear of his execution. Uriarik of Que, Pisiris of Karkamis, Kustaspi of Qummuh, and Tarhulara of Gargum hurried to Arpad in person to make peace with Tiglath Pileser and acknowledge his overlordship. The terms he exacted were heavy. The Annals, wherein the amount of tribute was stated, are broken (Annals 89-90); all that remains is the mention of ivory, elephant skin, purple cloth, lead, silver, and gold. But the measure of their humiliation was complete, and they had no desire to prolong resistance. Had they seen fit to do so, a new leader would have proclaimed himself in the person of Tutamu of Unqi. Unqi, originally only the western edge of Patin, had at this time gained control of the whole country. It lay between the Euphrates and the Orontes rivers, and stretched north beyond the Afrin. The capital city was Kinalia, and against it Tiglath Pileser proceeded without delay. From a passage in Asurb. III. 70-92, we may determine the route which the army followed. They started from a point between Karkemis and Til-Barsip and had to cross the Afrin before reaching Kinalia. But they first reach Hazzaz (Azaz). This being an important city, there was probably a military road from Karkemis and Hazzaz, which led to the Afrin River. In later (pre-Grecian) times, such a road went from Birejik (Zeugma), a little south of the site of Karhemis to Aintab. After capturing Hazzaz, Tiglath Pileser dealt similarly with Aribua, and continuing south struck the road which comes up from Aleppo, runs a little south of Hazzaz, and thence through the Syrian Gates to Beilan and the coast. He came to Kinalia after following this road across the Afrin, and took it without much difficulty. In the course of the attack it was destroyed. This we must infer because in Annals 97 we are told that it was rebuilt. Unqi was placed under a provincial governor, and much booty compensated for the expense and trouble of the campaign. Tutamu forfeited his life. His fate was a dire warning to all neighboring princes, and it was lucky for Hiram of Tyre and Rezin of Damascus that their emissaries had been hastened to Tiglath Pileser with tokens of submission shortly after he had reduced Arpad.

Tiglath Pileser was not yet finished in the far West, but it will perhaps be better for us, for the time being, to disregard the chronological order of his campaigns, and leave his activities in Ulluba (739), and the expeditions against Media (737), and Mt. Nal (73G), and that against Urartu (735), for other chapters, and to continue here the details of his work against Syria, Phoenicia, Philistia, Israel, and Judah, which occupied him in 738, and again from 734 to 732 inclusive.

The principal countries of the West which remained independent of Assyria after Tiglath Pileser's campaign of 740, were Syria, Israel and Judah, Phoenicia and Philistia. With these in his possession the Assyrian king would have been supreme from the Tigris to the Mediterranean Sea. Perhaps he had originally intended to devote the year 739 to the subjugation of these countries and the reduction of the entire West. But during that year trouble broke out among the Nairi peoples and a campaign had to be undertaken against Ulluba. The uprising in that country was probably incited by Sardurri. Seeing that Tiglath Pileser was rapidly becoming master of the West, the king of Urartu fomented trouble in Ulluba, hoping thereby to compel his Assyrian rival to hurry back to the East and thus give the western kings an opportunity to form a league against their conqueror. In this Sardurri was more than successful. Princes and principalities which had been subdued in 740 rebelled against the Assyrian yoke. Thus when the work of 739 in Ulluba was completed Tiglath Pileser naturally prepared for a second western campaign, and accordingly in 738 we find him once again in Syria. Up to this year Sardurri's plan of fomenting rebellions against Tiglath Pileser in one part of Asia while the latter was busy in another, had been successful. While the Assyrian king was engaged in the West, rebellions inspired by the Urartian monarch broke out in the East. And when Tiglath Pileser hurried East to crush them, Sardurri incited revolts in the West. It was because of this fact, as we have seen, that Tiglath Pileser was compelled to operate in Ulluba in 739, instead of devoting that year to a continuation of the Syrian campaigns of 740. But Tiglath Pileser was too great a conqueror to be long diverted from his great purpose by such machinations. With Ulluba conquered he was only one step nearer to his ultimate goal; viz., the conquest of Urartu. Nor did Sardurri gain much by the formation of the new league of western kings with which Tiglath Pileser had to deal in 738. For the latter defeated the western confederacy, and when he was ready to come to a final accounting with Sardurri, it was no longer necessary for him to do preliminary work in Ulluba, since that country was already his.

For the Syrian campaign of 738 the Canon makes the objective point Kullani. Its ruler probably played an important part in the uprising, but the real leader was Azriau of Yaudi. Yaudi had been governed by the house of Panammu of Samal, and undoubtedly under that dynasty had, as a result of the conquest of Arpad, become attached to Assyria. Now that a new coalition, independent of Urartian leadership, proposed to contest supremacy with Tiglath Pileser, the kingship of Azriau, who was not of the house of Panammu, points to the overthrow of the pro-Assyrian party in Yaudi. The confederacy, including the 'XIX districts of Hamath', was made up of cities and states situated between the Mediterranean and the Orontes north of Lebanon. It is not probable that Israel or Damascus was actively involved in this uprising, although it is somewhat surprising that Rezin was not the prime mover. He had begun about this time to make himself felt in Northeastern Syria, and was certainly the most powerful monarch in that part of the country. His resources were ample for a determined conflict, as he proved in 732. Now, he and Menahem of Israel hasten to render tribute as soon as the news of Azriai's defeat reached them, and all the confederated kings swore fidelity to the great conqueror. Qummuh, Tyre, Que, Gebal, Karkemis, Hamath, Samal, Gurgum, Melid, Kask, Tabal, Atun, Tuhan, Istunda, and Husimna, and even the land of an Arabian queen, Zabibi, became vassals of Assyria. The tribute they were obliged to render included money, precious metals, wood, cloth, camels, horses, and herds of cattle. The booty was so large that it seems as though Tiglath Pileser's object was not only to reimburse himself for the cost of the campaign, but also to make Middle and North Syria too poor to dream of the possibility of revolt for years to come. With that end in view he also colonized the territory with settlers from Western Media, where, while he was occupied with the Syrian league, a rebellion had arisen. Sardurri, unable to face the Assyrian king on the open field, sought to hamper him by diplomacy and intrigue; for doubtless the uprising among the Median tribes in this year was due to Urartian influence. But if Sardurri thought that Tiglath Pileser would hurry east and leave the allies in Syria free to throw off the yoke, he miscalculated. Tiglath Pileser did indeed find himself compelled to leave Syria after crushing the rebellion, and to postpone the conquest of South Syria, Israel, and Judah, and the Lebanon region until another time; and he had in 737 to proceed against Media itself. But he was able to deal with Azriau and his allies in 738, and subdue them so thoroughly that, when four years later he traversed their lands, en route to Damascus, they were harmless to harass him. The revolt on the Babylonian border was soon checked by the governors of Nairi and Lullumi, who sent about 25,000 prisoners to Tiglath Pileser. He settled them in the cities of Unqi, and then had thousands of the Hittites scattered throughout the Nairi lands.

For three years there was peace in the West. On the surface of things, all the princes who had sworn allegiance to Tiglath Pileser continued faithful, and he, satisfied that further operations in that direction could wait until Sardurri had been reckoned with, did not return until 734. For that year, according to the Canon, Philistia was the objective point. But it would have been strange if the real trouble had not proceeded from another quarter. In 738 Rezin had hurried to placate Tiglath Pileser with gifts. (The tribute list for 738 includes North and Middle Syrian rulers; viz., Hamath, Samaria, Phoenicia, i.e. Tyre, and Gubal. In that of 734 Damascus is missing, but new names occur; viz., Armad (modern Island of Ruad); , Ammon, Moab, Askalon, Judah, Edom, Gaza).

But, as has been observed, Damascus was a powerful state. Its position among the Middle and South Syrian kingdoms was a leading one, and some of its earlier rulers had proved their power, even in conflict with Assyria itself. Ramman-Nirari, despite his boastful language, had found its king Mari a strong foe; and now in 734 Rezin had again succeeded in making his kingdom of Damascus a state to be reckoned with. No doubt Tiglath Pileser had his eyes fixed on the countries beyond Damascus, including Palestine. It is also almost certain that this great king had planned a future conquest of Egypt. Damascus was the real obstacle in his way. Cappadocia and Que on the north shore of the Gulf of Iskanderun were his; so was Syria south of Damascus, and even that together with Israel was already nominally in his hands, but since Mati'ilu of Arpad had opposed him for three years, Rezin was prepared to do no less. Why the Canon makes the principal goal of this year's expedition Philistia we do not know. The mutilated condition of the Annals for the two succeeding years compel us to go to the Biblical sources for a picture of the operations which follow.

The record of Menahem's tribute is the point of departure. This king came to the throne as a result of anarchy in Israel. His short reign was unsettled; and his successor, Pekahiah, was murdered by Pekah, the captain of the palace guard. Anarchy in the north gave Judah her long-expected opportunity. Alone, in her troubled state, Israel was in no position to cope with her southern opponent. She had to invoke outside help, and the logical ally was Damascus. Pekah called Rezin to his aid, and the two together laid siege to Jerusalem. Ahaz, who had only recently come to the throne of Judah, did not know whither to turn for succor. Isaiah's advice he rejected. The enemies without the gate had to be repulsed. Nor did they seem to Ahaz to be as insignificant as 'two tails of a smoking firebrand'. Of what good was it to him that before many years the riches of Damascus and Israel would 'be carried away before the eyes of the king of Assyria'. And of what use was faith in God while Pekah was hammering away at the gates? 'The waters of Shiloh that go slowly' (Is. VIII. 6) were not quenching the firebrands. It became imperative to enlist help from some quarter, and there were but two possibilities, Egypt or Assyria. Of these two, Assyria was the logical ally, because Israel had traditionally made alliance with Egypt (Hos. VIII. 12). Ahaz appealed to Tiglath Pileser, since from him he could expect more consideration than from Pharaoh. 'I am thy servant and thy son; come up and save me out of the hands of the king of Syria and out of the hands of the king of Israel' (2 K. XVI. 7). No second invitation was needed. Menahem had already paid tribute, but now Tiglath Pileser had an excuse to overrun the country. He came, but had no need to proceed against Samaria or against Damascus as yet. Ahaz had invoked his aid, but the Assyrian had his own plans. En route to Jerusalem there were other lands to conquer. Moreover, Rezin and Pekah went each his own way; the one to Samaria, the other to Damascus.

Probably taking the usual route through the Lebanon depression in the Orontes valley, Tiglath Pileser made several Phoenician cities tributary, and an expedition into Philistia under one of his generals succeeded in subduing that land. Hanno of Gaza, not daring to resist and unwilling to surrender, fled to Egypt. We may see from this circumstance that the eye of Egypt was upon current events. Egypt was never safe without outposts in Syria and never failed, when possible, to secure and hold these. Tiglath Pileser was working his way rapidly into the zone where every advance step must have caused apprehension to the Pharaoh. The latter probably had promised aid to Hanno, as he had often done with Israel and Judah; for it was very necessary for him to keep a buffer between himself and Assyria, but he failed to keep his promise. Gaza's independence was important to Egypt, for it was the nearest city on the trade route between Egypt and Syria, and controlled this route. With Hanno a fugitive, Gaza fell into Tiglath Pileser's hands. He now proceeded to deal with Pekah. On the western borders of Israel (2 K. XV. 29), "The king of Assyria took Ijon, and Abel-beth-maacah, and Janoah and Kedesh and Hazor and Gilead and Galilee and all the land of Naphthali, and he carried them captives into Assyria". Pekah must have resisted valiantly, and the losses of Israel would doubtless have been greater but for the presence of a pro-Assyrian party. Pekah's folly in allying himself with Rezin and thus becoming the indirect cause of Assyrian intervention, probably accounts for his murder (2 K. XV. 30). The new king, Hosea, certainly the leader of the pro-Assyrian party, was allowed by Tiglath Pileser to retain his throne as a tributary. That he swore fidelity to Assyria we see from 2 K. XVII. 3, 4. There we are told that Shalmaneser "found conspiracy" in him, . . . or he had sent messengers to So, king of Egypt.

Tiglath Pileser was now free to deal with Damascus. Assyria and Syria had met on the battlefield in past times, and both had registered victories, but Rezin seems to have lacked both the ability and the prudence of his predecessors. It is not clear why he separated from Pekah instead of remaining with him to face the common foe. Perhaps Rezin feared that should the battle take place in Israel, Tiglath Pileser had a sufficient force to send troops against Damascus while he himself was busy helping to defend Israel. Such an expedition was actually sent against Philistia, while the main army was engaged in Western Israel. Also Rezin had other allies. That he may have considered it better policy to keep Tiglath Pileser busy in Israel, west of Anti-Lebanon, and cause him to weaken his forces in fighting Pekah, so that he himself could gain time to form a new confederacy, is possible. Perhaps in his view that was a wiser course than to trust to the issue of a single battle.

The Syrian proved as difficult to overcome as Sardurri, but the latter at least saved his capital. Rezin after a long siege had to surrender his royal city, but not until his outlying dominion was ravaged from one end to the other, and its cities, towns, and hamlets sacked. Rezin himself suffered death. The inhabitants of Damascus were transplanted to Kir. The districts which were conquered in 732 were placed under a provincial governor with his residence at Damascus.

Metena of Tyre, and Mitinti of Askalon, who had formed the new coalition with Rezin, lost heavily in tribute, and the last, crazed by his misfortunes, was replaced by his son Rukiptu, as an Assyrian vassal. To add to the wide extent of the conquest, an Arabian queen, Samsi, who may have been an active ally of Rezin's, was pursued into her home country, and after the defeat of her troops, and the payment of heavy tribute, was allowed to keep her throne. Many of the Arabian tribes were made tributary, and of these, one, the Idibi'il, were stationed to guard and control the Arabian Mucri.

Now the princes of all the West hastened to do homage to the conqueror. At Damascus he established a temporary court, and from far and near came trembling rulers with promises of loyalty and with presents. The booty which they were compelled to deliver was enormous. Only one prince, Uassurmi of Tabal, dared to absent himself, and for this presumption he had the humiliation of seeing a "nobody" placed on his throne.

Assyria was now mistress of Asia, from the Uknu River to the Philistian coast, in the south, and on the north, from the Mediterranean to Qummuh. The East, to the Caspian, had been conquered in 736. Media had been thoroughly subdued in 737. Urartu had been rendered harmless in 735. Only the work of freeing Babylonia of the Chaldeans remained to be done. We may now pro­ceed to review the campaigns of 737, 736, 735, 731, and 730.

 

 

CHAPTER V

MEDIA AND URARTU

 

 

In 743, Tiglath Pileser had come into direct conflict with Sardurri at Kistan in Qummuh, and although victorious, had been so far crippled by the battle, as to prevent him from following up the Urartian king. During his march into Qummuh he had lost Arpad, and since that was the objective point of that year’s campaign, he returned to besiege it in 742. But although Arpad remained for the time being in the hands of Mati'ilu, its rightful king, and despite the fact that Sardurri had made his escape, Tiglath Pileser was not so far exhausted by the battle of Kistan, but that he could cross the Euphrates and raid the cities of Ququsansa, Harbisina, and Ezzida. However, he neither desired at the time nor was he able to press on nearer to the Urartian capital, and invade Ulluba and Kilhi. Arpad had first to be taken and Northern Syria to be conquered.

But Ulluba and Kilhi were the objective points in 739. They had to be in Assyrian hands before Sardurri could be searched out in his home land, and doubtless the work of this year was only another step towards the investment of Van, which was undertaken in 735. The particulars of the campaign are meagre, for the Annal record is missing, and the remaining inscriptions give few details. The Canon furnishes only the bare announcement, to Ulluba. In 831, Shalmaneser II had been compelled to send an expedition into Ulluba and Kilhi, for the Urartians had already at that time annexed those two countries, and they had been under the control of Urartu ever since. Now in 739 Tiglath Pileser inaugurates that series of campaigns which was designed to culminate in a final reckoning with Sardurri, whom he had from the beginning recognized as Assyria's most dangerous foe. If he can conquer Ulluba and Kilhi and so administer them as to keep them loyal, he will not only have destroyed the buffer state which protected Urartu on the west, but will open a way for his troops to Sardurri’s very door. The brevity of the sources does not give the impression that great importance was attached to the accomplishments of the year. We are told that a city, Assur-iki-sa, was established, where the cult of Assur was instituted, and where a governor was installed to administer the two conquered provinces. In Plimmir he erected an image of his royalty.

The following year finds Tiglath Pileser again in the West, and in 737 he was engaged in Media. But in 736 his operations are prosecuted in nearly the same territory which engaged his attention in 739. At the foot of the Nal Range were fortresses and natural conformations which would be of great defensive value to Urartu should Tiglath Pileser attempt to invade it. Furthermore, the Assyrian had to possess them in order to feel secure against a raid by Sardurri into Ulluba. At Kistan Sardurri had suffered a stinging defeat, and since then his best provinces had been taken from him. Although ho had not ventured into open conflict all the while he was being despoiled, and was seemingly content to remain quietly at home, he could not be trusted to remain a passive spectator altogether. There was no telling what sudden enterprise he might institute or at what point he might unexpectedly emerge. Kilhi adjoined Urartu on the southwest, and it was from that direction that he could most quickly appear. He had to gain only one victory and Tiglath Pileser would have suffered a setback perhaps sufficient to hamper his plans for years. The Urartian was at all times a dangerous enemy against whom precaution was as imperative as active campaigning. All the more therefore did Tiglath Pileser need to secure the Nal region. To hold it, once Ulluba, and Kilhi were in his hands, made the conquest of these lands complete and the possession of Nairi final.

Tiglath Pileser took the most important cities of the district. Ten thousand prisoners were captured, and over 20,000 head of cattle, together with a large number of mules and horses, made up the profits of the campaign. Why Tiglath Pileser did not penetrate Ulluba and Kilhi in 739 we do not know; perhaps because of lack of time; or it may be that only a part of his army was engaged at the time while he was busy preparing for other campaigns. Perhaps, too, Sardurri, pursuing his favorite policy, fostered sedition against Assyria in Media, while Tiglath Pileser was busily engaged in the North and the East. At any rate, one of the years intervening between the campaigns of 739 and 736 was spent in the East, and the following one, as the Canon has it, was devoted to 'mat'. A part of the country subdued in this campaign had been dealt with in 744. That it had to be reconquered does not speak well for the thoroughness of the first expedition, but does not warrant our thinking that the work, was laxly done at that time. In the first place, Tiglath Pileser had to contend with the machinations of Sardurri, and no conquest could be considered final until the latter was thoroughly routed. As in the West and the North, so here in the East, uprisings were undoubtedly fathered by him. People who would never have dreamed of throwing off the yoke so soon after having experienced the power of Assyrian arms, were incited to rebellion by Urartian persuasion. Then, too, the campaign of 744 was only Tiglath Pileser's second one. He had not yet conquered a sufficiently large number of peoples to transplant into these Median and Elamitish districts, thus to impair the homogeneity of the original population. There were still enough of the native inhabitants left to allow of concerted action. It must also be remembered that in 744 Tiglath Pileseris possessions were not yet extensive, and he had not sufficient land in which to scatter conquered tribes. Hence the work of 744 had to be repeated. The sphere of operations as located by Billerbeck was in the valley of the Derund, about Sinna, the territory between the Pendsch-Ali and Talvantu-dagh, and also in the vicinity of Sakkis. Whether, as in the first campaign in this region, the army moved in one or more corps, is not to be decided, for we have no hint as to the original base of operations, and the various districts mentioned cannot be located with such exactness as to determine the line of march. The country covered was very extensive, and perhaps some of the lands mentioned, especially those already conquered in 744, were brought back into control by the invasion of few regiments, since garrison posts had been established in 744. It is not to be supposed that the uprising in each district spread over its entire extent.

At any rate, the country from Bikni in the far north-east, to Niqu in the southwest, was overrun. Perhaps Niqu was taken on the return march after crossing over the Pushti-Kuh Mountains. Tiglath Pileser had on his way south thought it necessary to take Til-Assur; and this he reached, if Ann. 158 gives the actual route followed, after passing through Bit-Zualzas and Bit-Matti. Til-Ashur and Bit-Istar reveal by their names that they were originally Assyrian, or were near enough to Assyria to have been incorporated into the Empire, or to have at least retained their Assyrian character. Of course, these names may have been given them after their conquest.

Some of the conquered tribes, like the Bit-Sangibutti were of Babylonian origin; others were located on the southwestern border of Media. At various places in the district conquered, Tiglath Pileser erected images of his royalty. The spoils of victory included all those productions in which the territory abounded, and as usual Tiglath Pileser did not stint his share. Horses, canals, cattle, mules, “without number I carried away”. Sixty-five thousand persons were deported to other dependencies.

From the borders of Urartu on the north and Rhagian Media on the northeast, to the eastern frontiers of Babylonia and the boundaries of Assyria proper, Tiglath Pileser was now undisputed master. No enemy was left to contest his supremacy except Sardurri. With him ho was now ready to deal. There was in fact no other alternative. Any attempt to penetrate further west than he had gone in 742-740 and in 733, was not likely to be completely prosperous as long as Sardurri was loft unmolested in the rear. In the immediate neighborhood of Urartu and in the stretch of country between Lake Vam and Lake Urumia on one side, and between Van and Assyria on the south, no vassals were left to Sardurri except perhaps in Parsua and Bustus, and these were not powerful. The time for Tiglath Pileser to strike at the centre of Urartian power had come. He was not the man to delay. In 735 the road led to Turuspa. Sardurri h ad ventured forth only once, and he had good reason to remember the consequent defeat at Kistan. If he would not come forth to battle a second time, Tiglath Pileser must go to him. Bui it was no easy task; in fact, no Assyrian king ever undertook a more arduous one. To reach Turuspa, the capital of Urartu, no approach was feasible, save from the north. On the south the Arjerosh mountains reached almost to the shores of Lake Van. The passes were possible both because of the snow and the ease with which they could be defended against an invading army, nor was the way via the Tigris and the Bitlis-chai and thence west along the shore of the lake easier. The bridle paths along the south shore of the lake were naturally fitted for opposition to a big army. From the south and the cast the difficulties were also forbidding, for the Khoturdagh Range would have proved snowy graves for the Assyrian soldiers. There were but two possible routes. One led from the north shore of Lake Urumia by Tabris and Khoi to Bejazet. Just before reaching Bejazet the road turns off southwest to Lake Van. The second, the one which Tiglath Pileser took, led across the Murad-Tschai, between Musch and Manesgard, then through Dajaini, and northward along the base of the Sipa Dagh, straight to Lake Van and Turuspa. Before reaching Turuspa Tiglath Pileser sent a detachment to Mt. Birdasu, northwest of Lake Van, though just what this move was calculated to gain for him we do not know. The main body of the troops ravaged Urartu throughout its extent. Cities and villages were sacked and the country plundered. Sardurri was cooped up in his hill citadel, where he was safe, but as far as his eye could reach, the track of the Assyrian army was marked by a line of fire and heaps of ashes. Turuspa, however, was impregnable. Tiglath Pileser could not starve out the garrison without a fleet to cut off the food supply that came into the citadel by way of the lake.

At the base of the citadel hill Tiglath Pileser set up the image of his royalty and turned back homeward. Sardurri lived, but Urartu's power was dead. Ruas, son of Sardurri, rebuilt Turuspa on an even more impregnable rock, and we find him in conflict with Sargon some years later, but as far as danger to Assyrian supremacy was concerned, Urartu could henceforth be safely disregarded. Assyria had vindicated her right to the mastery of Western Asia.

To the west or the south, as occasion might demand, Tiglath Pileser could now turn his attention without fear of the foe who had up to 735 obstructed every step. We have seen how in the following years, 734-732, this freedom from Sardurri's influence made the western campaign easy. Now but one foe of account remained. From the Mediterranean to Mt. Bikni and the Caspian on the north, and from Judah to farthest Media on the south, Assyria was supreme. It only remained for Tiglath Pileser to gain the crown of Babylon, and Assyria would be without a rival state in Asia Minor.

 

 

CHAPTER VI

THE CONQUEST OF BABYLONIA

 

 

 

For Tiglath Pileser III to gain the crown of Babylonia was to acquire the unique distinction of being the first Assyrian king to rule simultaneously in both countries. There can be no doubt that this had been his aim from the very beginning, and its achievement marks him as the greatest of Assyrian conquerors. Nor had his ambition outrun his power to accomplish a wonderful work. Of all the nations in Western Asia only Babylonia retained a measure of real autonomy, and of that autonomy the Babylonians were exceedingly proud and jealous. Tiglath Pileser, because his vast empire was at peace, might be prepared to 'grasp the hands of Bel'. But it is doubtful whether or not the Babylonians would have been equally anxious to welcome him as their king, had all been well with them. Perhaps internal trouble would not have been sufficient excuse for Tiglath Pileser to march south into Babylon in 729, as he had done in the first year of his reign. At any rate, he waited until a disruption of government in Babylonia led to the interference of the Chaldeans in Babylonian affairs; and fortune played into his hands. In 730 Tiglath Pileser was prepared for any eventuality, for there was no disturbance in any part of his wide realm. Babylon alone was in a ferment. From 745 and up to his death, Nabunasir had remained loyal to Tiglath Pileser. But in all probability there always existed a pro-Babylonian party in Babylon, which had never ceased to agitate against the overlordship of Assyria, and had rendered Nabunasir's reign precarious. The fact that Borsippa revolted is significant, for it was one of the cities captured by Tiglath Pileser in 745.

Nabunasir was succeeded by Nabu-nadin-zir, who, after a very brief reign, was killed by Nabu-sum-ukin, an usurper. He was perhaps successful in his usurpation because the anti-Assyrian party were his Sponsors. Throughout all this turmoil of rapid regnal and dynastic change Tiglath Pileser remained at home, watchful and apparently passive. As long as the strife in Babylonia was purely domestic he had no urgent need to fear for his own plans; but soon the inevitable happened. The Chaldeans, who never allowed an opportunity of gaining a foothold in Babylonia to escape them, took advantage of the disturbed conditions of government. Their most powerful tribe, the Bit-Ammukani, under the leadership of Ukinzir, entered Babylon. Ukinzir proclaimed himself king. Tiglath Pileser's excuse had come. As the suzerain of Babylon, he was her natural protector from foreign foes, and he could not allow the always dangerous Chaldeans to come into such threatening proximity to the Assyrian border line. If no Babylonian could hold the throne, certainly neither must a Chaldean be permitted to do so.

Tiglath Pileser marches south, his objective point being Sapia, the capital of Ukinzir and the metropolis of the Bit-Ammukani. En route he conquered the Puqudu and thoroughly subjugated them. Their cities, Hilimmu and Pillutu, were sacked and the whole district placed under a governor whose seat of administration was at Arrapha. A large number of the inhabitants of the conquered territory were transported into Assyria and settled there in scattered colonies. The Silani people fared even worse. Nabu-usabsi, their king, was killed, and Sarrabani, his royal city, ruined, while the cities of Tarbapu and Iabullu were added to the number of ash heaps left in the wake of the destroyer. The whole territory gave up 55,000 prisoners.

Next came the Bit-Saalli. Their king must in some way have perjured himself. He retreated into his capital, Dur-Illatai, which he fortified, but to no purpose. The city was obliged to surrender, and together with Amlilatu, rendered up its treasure and contributed its large quota to the 50,400 prisoners who were parcelled out into widely distributed settlements. But the city which Tiglath Pileser was most anxious to take, Sapia, successfully resisted every siege device. All its surrounding country was devastated, but Ukinzir retained his capital, at least for the time being. To complete the subjugation of the Chaldeans was impossible while Ukinzir remained unsubdued, but all the rest of the tribes were made tributary. Balasu, too, of the Dakkuri, sent tokens of submission; while Merodach Baladan of the Bit-Yakin, a country no king of which had ever done homage to Assyria, journeyed to Tiglath Pileser's camp while the latter was besieging Sapia, and rendered his voluntary tribute of precious metals and the products of his swamp-land country, To the list of subject princes was added Nadin of Larrak. All that now stood between Tiglath Pileser and the throne of Babylon, was Ukinzir. To achieve his ambition, the Bit-Amukkani and their leader had to be put out of the way. The year 730 Tiglath Pileser spent at home, preparing for the final campaign.

In all likelihood, this interval of preparation was a busy time in diplomacy and intrigue. Even with Ukinzir out of the way, there was still an anti-Assyrian party in Babylon, who could be depended upon to resist to the last the crowning of a foreigner. These pro-Babylonians would accept Tiglath Pileser’s aid in freeing their country of the Chaldean danger, but would insist on having a native sovereign. How did the always powerful priesthood stand in the matter? In 745, while a native king ruled, they had hailed Tiglath Pileser as king of Assyria, and as such had brought him gifts for clearing their country of her enemies. Would they accept him as king of their own land in 729? To ascertain their attitude with surety Tiglath Pileser during his stay at home in 730, probably carried on negotiations with the priests. Perhaps the defeat of Ukinzir was part of the price which the priests exacted in exchange for any aid they might promise to render to the Assyrian king, in his efforts to gain the Babylonian crown. Cyrus in later times probably gained just such an easy access to Babylon because of a previous compact with the priesthood, and it demands no great stretch of the imagination to think that Tiglath Pileser too had a perfectly clear understanding with the priestly caste. At any rate in 729 he proceeded south a second time, and this time his operations against Sapia were successful. Ukinzir was captured and of course executed. The way to the throne of Babylon was now clear. On the New Yearis day Tiglath Pileser III 'grasped the hands of Bel', and was crowned under the name of Pulu. De facto and de jure king of Assyria, king of Sumer and Akkad, conqueror of Western Asia, a prince without rival, the usurper of 745 has become the master of civilization.

Great pity it is that the records are mutilated. Were the sources not so meagre, a fuller knowledge would perhaps compel us to class Tiglath Pileser III as the equal of Cyrus, than whom the Eastern world produced no mightier warrior and administrator. From the Caspian to Egypt, all of Asia was dependent upon Assyria. No future king would hold his empire more firmly than Tiglath Pileser had held it, nor inspire greater respect and fear of his mighty power. In 728 Tiglath Pileser repeated the ceremony of coronation at Babylon, and in 727, in the month of Tebet, he died. His son, Shalmaneser IV, succeeded him, but the dynasty was short-lived, for Shalmaneser ruled but five years, and in 722 the stranger Sargon founded a new line. He, too, was a usurper, his succession to the throne resulting from a reaction to the tendencies which had been responsible for the elevation of Tiglath Pileser. The latter king's reign was only of comparatively brief duration, but t sufficed him to make Assyria strong enough to endure until her cultural work for civilization was finished. In modern eyes that must consti­tute his chief glory.

During his reign he had time to build but one palace, and that, as has been noted, was dismantled by Esarhaddon. But better than a palace, he builded an empire, far-flung, but well governed and fairly compact, despite the heterogeneous elements of which it was composed. The central problem of Assyrian statecraft was to weld the subject races and peoples into a homogeneous unit. Such a task was never fully accomplished, either by Assyria or by any of the great world powers that succeeded her, but Tiglath Pileser approximated to it sufficiently well to erect a structure far more stable than that of any of his predecessors and to render Assyria safe until her work was done.

After he had conquered a territory, he, like his predecessors, placed it under the administrative supervision of the governor of the immediately adjoining province, or else made an entirely new province out of it. Tiglath Pileser's innovation consisted in this: whereas former kings had colonized a newly acquired land with settlers from Assyria proper, and had placed portions of the conquered subjects in scattered colonies throughout Assyria, he kept his Assyrian subjects at home. His empire was too extensive to do otherwise. Had he colonized subject lands with Assyrians he must soon have depleted the native and homogeneous population of the home country. Instead, he effected a transfer of subjugated peoples from one dependency to a far distant one. His aim was to keep Assyria intact and thus to minimize the danger of rebellion and revolt. He allowed no colony of foreign settlers to be large enough or near enough to one of their own affiliation to permit the possibility of any concerted action against the imperial government. The colonies were so located that their thought-habit, their customs, their religion, and even their language made them, if not offensive to their new neighbors, at least a segregated unit among them. No collusion, in fact, no bond of sympathy between the old and the new population was possible. It might even happen that an uprising on the part of the old settlers would operate to attach the new colonists more closely to Assyria. For the first step in a rebellion is generally a demonstration against the stranger within the gates. In the event of such demonstrations the new settler would have no recourse but to appeal to Assyria. He had no greater love for Assyria than had the strangers among whom he had been settled, but to feed fat his grudge and nurse vengeance would in no wise answer his need of self-preservation. Assyria had to be petitioned for help, and granting it, came naturally to be regarded as a deliverer. Thus a measure of real loyalty was secured, and it was probably in this way that Panammu of Samal was rendered faithful. The Assyrian army was never so numerous as to permit large detachments to be stationed at garrison posts. At most, a governor might have a small company to aid him in the enforcement of his authority. The realization that Assyria was ready to back up her officials might not deter a determined people from revolt. If the rebellion arose in a district far from Assyria, and might be long in coming and the uprising have assumed very serious proportions before its arrival; but with Tiglath Pileser's plan in effect there was a colony of strange settlers on the spot. These had no affiliations with the indigenous population and could readily be pressed into service to aid the governor until reinforcements arrived. It is more than probable that this plan of colonization resulted in furnishing a source of recruiting for the army which obviated too great a drain upon the male portion of Assyrian population. With only a fair-sized force from home, a considerable contingent of vassals could be enlisted en route to the seat of disturbance, together with a number of troops from among the foreign colonists in the vicinity.

It was this system of colonization that gave Assyria the lease of life which she enjoyed. It might even have insured her a longer national existence, had she not been far too small to hold out against the barbarians who later on overran Babylonia and put an end to its career. To his high ability as a warrior, and the glory with which he graced his country's name, there must be ascribed to Tiglath Pileser III as his greatest credit, that administrative system which conserved the existence of the Empire until Babylon once again came into her own.