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The Amorites were an ancient Semitic-speaking people that dominated the region of Mesopotamia, Syria and Palestine from 2,000 BC. until 1,600 B.C.
Grouped in nomadic tribes that took for themselves the lands they needed and were feared for being fierce warriors.
They conquered Babylon and Mesopotamia twice, at the end of the third millennium and the beginning of the first millennium BC, they founded new city-states, the most famous of them Babylon, one of their best-known kings, Hammurabi, was the first king of the Babylonian Empire.
The Mesopotamian sources of Sumer, Akkad and Assyria speak of the Amorites as a nomadic people of clans ruled by tribal chiefs, who settled on land they needed to graze their flocks.
The Amorites had close contact with the Sumerians for a long time, so it is possible that they adopted elements of the Sumerian religion. The Amorites incorporated a new god into the Sumerian religion, Marduk, whom they raised to the supreme position, above the rest of the gods.
The Amorites They wrote a dialect of Akkadian that was found on tablets from the ancient city of Mari (in modern Syria today) that were dated to 1,800 BC.
Since their language was discovered to display Northwest Semitic forms, words, and constructions, it is believed that it was a northwestern branch of the Canaanite languages. During the dark ages, between 1,600 B.C. and in 1100 BC, the Amorite language disappeared from Babylon and the Euphrates.
In Syria and Palestine where it became dominant, Amorrite can be found in ancient inscriptions dating from around the end of the 2nd millennium BC.
The weakening of the Sumerian language in Mesopotamia coincides in time with the famous Amorite invasion. The last Sumerian dynasty fell around 2,000 BC. and Mesopotamia was plunged into conflict and chaos for nearly a century.
Around 1,900 BC, the Amorites managed to gain control of most of the Mesopotamian region. Inscriptions and tablets from the early Babylonians indicate that they occupied parts of Syria in 1,900 BC.
Once established in the middle of Mesopotamia, The Amorites began looting the neo-Sumerian cities, even conquering Babylon and making it their capital in 1959 BC.. Ur, the capital of the Sumerian civilization, survived for nine years, until it was taken over by the Elamites.
The Amorites placed their capital in the city of Babylon, which was originally known as Akkad, and later served as the center of their empire. For this reason, the Amorites are known as the ancient Babylonians, which lasted from 1,900 BC. to 1,600 BC
The Amorites were ruled by King Hammurabi in 1792 BC. to 1750 BC. He is known to have established the 'Code of Hammurabi', the first known code of laws in history. With his death in 1750 BC, the Babylonian Empire disintegrated into smaller cities ruled by kings who were weaker.
In northern Mesopotamia, the Amorites and Babylonians were led from Assyria by Puzur-Sin, an Akkadian ruler, around 1740 B.C. At the same time, the Akkadians bypassed the Babylonians in southern Mesopotamia, although they were able to survive for another 100 years.
In 1659 BC, the technologically advanced Hittites conquered Babylon. After his downfall, the Amorite dialect disappeared and was replaced by a kind of Assyrian-Akkadian dialect. In the last half of the second millennium, the Amorites migrated or were driven west towards Canaan.
There, the Israelis treated them as enemies and left numerous records of their defeat by Israeli heroes like Joshua. The Amorites disappeared from the chronicles as a distinct population around the 6th century BC..