نموذج رقمي لبابل قيد التطوير يعتمد على كل من المواد الأثرية والنصوص القديمة بشكل مفصل لإعادة إعمار هذه المدينة القديمة الشهيرة الكترونيا. وسيتم استخدام برامج الحاسوب المعمارية لبناء النموذج الذي سيتم وضعه في سياقات بيئية وتاريخية. ويخطط لتحليل نظم المعلومات الجغرافية المتكاملة وعلاقة المدينة بالمناطق المحيطة بها على مستويات مختلفة وسيبين هذا النموذج مدينة بابل في مختلف العصور القديمة ومن المقرر أن يكون النموذج متاحا تدريجيا على شبكة الإنترنت.
A digital model of Babylon is under development. Both archaeological material and ancient texts are used on a detailed level for the reconstruction of this famous ancient city. Architectural computer programs will be used for building the model, which will be placed in environmental and historical contexts. An integrated GIS analysis is planned for the city’s relation to the surroundings on different scales. The model will be used for developing and testing alternative reconstructions, creating new questions and providing answers. The development of the city will be shown on different historical levels. The model is planned to be gradually available on the Internet.
The ArchiCAD program is used for the model and the Artlantis program for the renderings. The preliminary work has been part both of the Urban Mind Project at Uppsala University supported by Mistra, and the Excellence Cluster Topoi at Freie Universität Berlin.
This project will be part of the planned Babylon project in Berlin, where a reworking of the findings of Koldewey’s famous excavation 1899-1917 is in preparation. It is the intention in the coming years to use the model for detailed interpretations of the different periods of the city’s history thereby including both the large numbers of contemporary ancient texts and the archaeological material. The large scale excavation with registration of find spots of huge numbers of objects combined with the use of modern technology allow for promising advances in the interpretation of Babylon.
Probably at least from late Old Babylonian times until the beginning of the reign of Nebuchadnezzar II, ca. 1600-600 BC, Babylon consisted of two town areas with the Euphrates flowing in the middle. The central areas with the Marduk temple, the zikkurrat and the Ishtar Gate, and probably also the palace were situated on the eastern riverside in the same traditional places as well-known from later periods. Town walls with moats surrounded the city. Most of the buildings were constructed with unbaked bricks, the traditional building material in the Ancient Near East.
During the reign of Nebuchadnezzar II (604-562 BC), when Babylon was the centre of the large Neo-Babylonian Empire and the leading world metropolis, the city area was doubled and a new town wall with moats was built in the east. Many of the monumental buildings were rebuilt on a much larger scale and baked bricks, not the traditional unbaked ones, were used in huge quantities as building material. During the following 2500 years these good brick walls were gradually demolished and the bricks were reused for buildings in other cities. The German excavations some 100 years ago finally succeeded to stop most of the demolishing and provided a rather well documented basis for all further studies.
For a few limited areas of Babylon, it has been possible to add more details to the model. The Street of Procession north of the Ishtar Gate has on the walls in the model received parts of the well-known decorations with glazed relief brick. On the walls of the street, several of the famous glazed relief lions can be seen, and some trials of bulls and dragons have been preliminary placed on the Ishtar Gate. Other walls known to have had such decoration, but where the details has to be studied, is just covered with blue bricks in the present state of the model.
The reconstruction of the different levels of the elevations of the Street of Precession during the reign of Nebuchadnezzar in the area north of the Ishtar Gate can be given as an example of the technical possibilities. The street was elevated some 20 meter during the 43 years of Nebuchadnezzar's reign according to excavations and cuneiform texts. The section of the street taken from the model shows the five Nebuchadnezzar levels as they are presently reconstructed. The uppermost level had the decoration of glazed bricks on the side of the street. The third street level from above, marked reddish brown in the model, is the level, which today can be seen when visiting Babylon. During the periods with the lower levels of the street, there was only a gate; the palace walls along the part of the street shown here belong to the later upper levels. The documentation of the reconstruction will be published elsewhere.
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