Portal:Ancient Near East

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Zoroastrianism is an ancient Persian religion and philosophy based on the teachings ascribed to the prophet Zoroaster (Zarathustra, Zartosht). The Zoroastrian Magi were an important priestly class in the Medean and Achaemenid empires, the creed becoming the dominant religion in the Achaemenid Empire. Zoroastrianism is uniquely important in the history of religion because of its possible formative links to both Western and Eastern religious traditions. As "the oldest of the revealed credal religions", Zoroastrianism "probably had more influence on mankind directly or indirectly than any other faith" (Mary Boyce, 1979).

The Avesta is the collection of the sacred texts of Zoroastrianism; the most ancient are written in an old or Gathic Avestan language, and the majority of the texts are probably from the Achaemenid era (648–330 BC).

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Ashurbanipal (Akkadian, Aššur-bāni-apli, "Ashur created a son", reigned 669 – c. 631 BC) was the last great king of the Neo-Assyrian Empire. He established the first systematically organized library, known as the Library of Ashurbanipal.

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File:Vase Entemena Louvre AO2674.jpg

Credit: Jastrow
Entemena's Vase
Sumer, ca. 25th century BC (Louvre)

Silver vase dedicated by Entemena of Lagash to the god Ningirsu in Girsu

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Silver cup from Marvdasht with Linear Elamite inscription on it, c. 3rd millennium BC (National Museum of Iran)
...that the ancient Elamite language is proposed to be distantly related to the modern Dravidian languages? It is attested from c. 2500 BC, and a still undeciphered "proto-Elamite" goes back to c. 3000 BC.

...that the earliest attested Semitic language is Akkadian, c. 2500 BC?

...that the earliest attested Indo-European language is Hittite, from c. the 18th century BC?

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