Monday, 21 May 2012

Ancient Bablyon under threat

How it may have looked
According to RT the remains of the Hanging Gardens of Babylon in what is now Iraq, are under threat. 

Certainly the remains of the ancient city are situated near present-day Al Hillah in Babylon Province south of Baghdad and the country has long been trying to get UNESCO World Heritage status for what was once one of the Wonders of the Ancient World.

But now it appears that there has ben a volte-face for the Oil Ministry now plans to lay an oil pipeline right through the archaeological site from north to south.

No doubt that this is a potential catastrophe for the heritage of Iraq, but it may not in fact damage the remains of the Hanging Gardens, for it has never been definitely proven where the garden was in fact constructed.
The Hanging Garden at Nineveh
In fact, the general consensus is that the garden was constructed by king Sennacherib (r.701-681 BC) and not Nebuchadnezzar II (r.605-562 BC) and in Nineveh rather than Babylon.

Sadly, just as the remains of Ancient Babylon are under threat, so are those of  Nineveh.  Saving Our Vanishing Heritage a project under the umbrella of the Global Heritage Fund, an ‘international conservancy that has worked for nearly a decade to protect and preserve the most significant and endangered cultural heritage sites in the developing world’ has Nineveh listed as a site on the verge of ‘irreversible loss and destruction’.

For those wish to know more about the question of Nineveh and the Hanging Gardens, the following article has much more information, but I can't find a link for it: ‘Nineveh, Babylon and the Hanging Gardens: Cuneiform and Classical Sources Reconciled’ by Stephanie Dalley and published in the journal Iraq: vol. 56 (1994), pp. 45-58.

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