By Arthur Cotterell
From one of many world's top historians?a finished narrative of the 3,000 years that experience shaped Asia's humans, tradition, and worldwide destiny
Tracing its origins in Mesopotamia to its sleek function at the international geopolitical level, historian Arthur Cotterell deals a compelling, full of life, and readable account of 1 of the main culturally assorted, and sometimes misunderstood, elements of the realm. starting with the emergence of the world's earliest civilization in 3000 BC, Asia: A Concise historical past offers a desirable examine the worldwide convulsions?like the increase and fall of Assyria and Persia, the medieval states that flourished after the appearance of Islam, and the fashionable differences prompted through the lightning conquests of imperial Japan?that have formed the continent. * Covers the nice occasions and figures of Asian historical past, besides a glance on the huge is still that undergo witness to these instances: the ziggurats of Iraq, the Taj Mahal, the nice Wall of China, the temple of Angkor Wat* comprises attention-grabbing slices of historical past, together with funeral preparations for Qin Shi Huangdi in 210 BC; an extract from Lord Macartney's magazine of his 1793 diplomatic challenge to the Qing emperor Qian lengthy; and Toyotomi Hideyoshi's edict of 1587 banning firearms in Japan* good points boxed inserts of distinct interest?like a Babylonian recipe for lamb stew circa 1500 BC* includes over a hundred illustrations, maps, and pictures* different books by way of Cotterell: The Minoan World, The First Emperor of China, The Encyclopedia of Mythology, and Chariot
Destined to turn into a reference staple for background buffs and scholars of Asian background, Asia: A Concise heritage deals readers a wide ranging narrative and wealth of element that make the formative sessions, key occasions, and personalities from this as soon as distant a part of the realm come alive.
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Additional info for Asia: A Concise History
Not until the Hittites crushed Mitanni in the fourteenth century BC, and two centuries later Hittite power itself disintegrated under the impact of the Sea Peoples, was there scope for the Assyrians to pursue imperial ambitions of their own. The reasons behind the great migration of the so-called Sea Peoples are still not fully understood, but cities and palaces were razed to the ground in Greece, Asia Minor, Syria and Palestine. Assyria fought off those migrants who attempted to enter the Euphrates–Tigris valleys, while Ramesses III turned back most of the Sea Peoples in two hard-fought battles on the borders of Egypt.
Under his energetic successors, Cambyses and Darius I, Persian rule rapidly spread across all of ancient West Asia, except Arabia, and over Egypt as well as northwestern India. Darius in particular did not relax his efforts in extending the imperial frontiers. Long before the aid sent by the Athenians and the Eretrians to his rebellious Greek subjects in Asia Minor provoked him enough to dispatch in 490 BC an expeditionary force to Greece, Darius’ ambitions in Europe were public knowledge. Persian ships had reconnoitred the Mediterranean coastline as far as Italy before Darius’ crossing from Asia in 513 BC, so as to mount an offensive against the Scythians.
It might be said that the whole world had been programmed solely for their benefit. To continue with the computing analogy, the Sumerian account of creation contains an explanation of the glitches in the programme as well. After Enki fashioned from clay the first human servants, the gods gathered at a celebratory banquet, at which, overcome by strong beer, Enki and his wife Ninhursag became involved in a creation competition. Declaring that for each person she made it would be her decision whether “the fate is good or bad”, Ninhursag’s ineffectual creations set a challenge for Enki in finding them suitable employment.