From Iran Elamite City Of Anshan Found In Southwest Iran -- By: Anonymous
BSP 3:1 (Winter 1974) p. 10
Elamite City Of Anshan Found In Southwest Iran
“And it came to pass in the days of Amraphel king of Shinar, Arioch king of Ellaser, Chedorlaomer king of Elam, and Tidal king of nations. . .”
So opens one of the most enigmatic chapters in the Bible — Genesis 14. It is in this chapter that we read of Lot being captured by these four Mesopotamian kings and of Abraham’s heroic rescue of his nephew.
Scholars have puzzled over Genesis 14 for generations. Some even said it was mythological — that is, until W. F. Albright researched it and found that it is very much authentic. Albright found that the names mentioned are authentic place names and personal names and the language throughout is very archaic. He concluded that it records an actual historical event during the days of Abraham.
We don’t know very much about these kings or their kingdoms. Recent excavations, however, are shedding new light on one of the nations — Elam, land of Chedorlaomer the leader of the Mesopotamian coalition.
Elam In History
Elam is mentioned a number of times in the Bible and it appears frequently in Assyrian and Babylonian clay tablet texts. The Elamites developed a high culture during the third and second millenia before Christ. They occupied a rich plain and the adjacent
BSP 3:1 (Winter 1974) p. 11
hill country east of the Tigris River and the Persian Gulf. Known as a warlike people, the Elamites periodically threatened the Babylonians and the Assyrians.
Early in the second millenium B.C., around the time of Abraham, the Elamites invaded Mesopotamia and established a dynasty at Larsa. Shortly afterward they became masters of Erech, Babylon, and Isin, although Hammurabi of Babylon was able to check further expansion. By the 14th century B.C. the Elamites had reached the peak of their culture. Their power came to an abrupt end in about 1130 B.C. when Nebuchadnezzar I reduced Elam to the status of a Babylonian dependency.
After the turn of the millenium, the policy of Elam was dominated by its alliance with Babylonia against Assyria. The Assyrian kings Sargon, Sennacherib, and Esarhaddon all waged campaigns against the Elamites. Ashurbanipal completely destroyed their power and almost exterminated the Elamites about 645 B. C. Although Elamite history ends at this time, the territory of Elam became a favored part of the later Persian Empire.
A Lost City Found
Accounts of relations between Elam and Mesopotamia occasionally mention an Elamite city named Anshan, one of their four major cities. In the 19th century B.C....
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