Battle of Nihriya
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Battle of Nihriya
Battle of Ni?riya
Datec. 1237 BC
Location
Ni?riya
Result Assyrian victory
Belligerents
Hittites Assyria
Commanders and leaders
Tud?alia IV Sulmanu-a?ared I

The Battle of Ni?riya was the culminating point of the hostilities between the Hittites and the Assyrians for control over the remnants of the former empire of Mitanni.

When Hittite king ?uppiluliuma I (r. c. 1344-1322 BC) conquered Mitanni, he created two provinces (Aleppo and Carchemish), and distributed the large part of territories of this kingdom between his allies. The rest of what had been the empire of Mitanni retained its independence as a Hittite vassal state called ?anigalbat. During the reign of the Hittite king Mursili III (better known as Ur?i-Te?ub), ?anigalbat was conquered by the Assyria Empire and the Assyrians controlled the East bank of the Euphrates.[1] When ?attusili III ousted his nephew Ur?i-Te?ub and seized the Hittite throne, he had to be content with the permanent loss of ?anigalbat to the Assyrians despite its former status as a Hittite vassal state.

The Assyrian involvement in Syria continued under the command of king Sulmanu-a?ared I and precipitated a crisis with ?atti. The Hittites considered Assyrian involvement to be a clear attack on the frontiers of their empire and went into battle under their king: Tud?alia IV, ?attusili's son and successor. This led to a major battle which is known today as the Battle of Ni?riya. A letter (RS 34.265) giving details of the campaign and its outcome was sent by Sulmanu-a?ared to Ugarit.[2]

In addition, information within Hittite document KBo IV 14 has been interpreted to show that the battle must have occurred around the 20th year of Sulmanu-a?ared's reign.[3]

The former idea that Ni?riya was to be equated with Na'iri, along the Upper Tigris, has been shown to be wrong.[4] As per the Mari and Dur-Katlimmu letters, Ni?riya was located in the Upper Balih region.

Outcome

The conflict between the two great powers took place in the neighborhood of Nihriya, with the Assyrians gaining a decisive victory. The Assyrian victory shook the Hittite state to its foundations as its king Tudhaliya IV faced several internal revolts against his reign. Tudhaliya IV would ultimately overcome all these challenges to his authority and retain the kingship of Hatti. Hostilities between Assyria and ?atti continued for some five years before a peace was negotiated and maintained.

Notes

  1. ^ The 'Eternal Treaty' from the Hittite perspective pp.3-4 by Trevor Bryce
  2. ^ Manfred Dietrich, "Salmanassar I. von Assyrien, Ibir?nu (VI.) von Ugarit und Tud?alija IV. von Hatti", Ugarit-Forschungen 35 (2003) 103-139.
  3. ^ A.A. Nemirovsky, "Synchronism of the Era of Hattusili III and the "Low" Chronology of the Late Bronze Age Century" ( ?.?., " III ? «» ? ? ?."), ? ? ?, (2003/2) 3-15.
  4. ^ Jared L. Miller, "The Location of Nihriya and its Disassociation from Na'iri". In: H.D. Baker, K. Kaniuth and A. Otto, eds. Stories of Long Ago. Festschrift für Michael D. Roaf (Alter Orient und Altes Testament 397). Ugarit-Verlag. Münster: (2012) 349-372.

See also


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