Babylon


Bab·y·lon

noun \ˈba-bə-ˌlän, -lən\

Definition of BABYLON

:  a city devoted to materialism and sensual pleasure

Origin of BABYLON

Babylon, ancient city of Babylonia
First Known Use: 14th century

Bab·y·lon

geographical name \ˈba-bə-lən, -ˌlän\

Definition of BABYLON

ancient city of Babylonia; its site ab 55 miles (89 kilometers) S of Baghdad near the Euphrates

Babylon

noun    (Concise Encyclopedia)

Ancient Middle Eastern city. The city's ruins are located about 55 mi (89 km) south of Baghdad, near the modern city of Al-Hillah, Iraq. Babylon was one of the most famous cities in antiquity. Probably first settled in the 3rd millennium BC, it came under the rule of the Amorite kings around 2000 BC. It became the capital of Babylonia and was the chief commercial city of the Tigris and Euphrates river system. Destroyed by Sennacherib in 689 BC, it was later rebuilt. It attained its greatest glory as capital of the Neo-Babylonian empire under Nebuchadrezzar II (r. 605–c. 561 BC). Alexander the Great, who took the city in 331 BC, died there. Evidence of its topography comes from excavations, cuneiform texts, and descriptions by the Greek historian Herodotus. Most of the ruins are from the city built by Nebuchadrezzar. The largest city in the world at the time, it contained many temples, including the great temple of Marduk with its associated ziggurat, which was apparently the basis for the story of the Tower of Babel. The Hanging Gardens, a simulated hill of vegetation-clad terracing, was one of the Seven Wonders of the World.

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