Ancient Babylonia - Geography

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Where is Mesopotamia?

Babylonia was situated in the area known as Mesopotamia (Greek for "between the rivers"). Mesopotamia was in the Near East in roughly the same geographical position as modern Iraq. Two great rivers flowed through this land: the Tigris and the Euphrates. Along these two rivers were many great trading cities such as Ur and Babylon on the Euphrates.


Tigris and Euphrates

Babylonia rests on a flat plain with the two large rivers flowing through it, the Tigris and Euphrates. Their course runs from Anatolia and Syria to the Persian Gulf. Mountains surround the East and North sides of the plain, the Zagros chain and Kurdistan, and the Syrian and Arabian deserts guard the west and south.


In the summertime the climate is hot and dry, and the winter is cold and wet. In the spring the Tigris and Euphrates rivers overflow their banks, flooding great portions of the plain. Lots of water and proper control enabled man in ancient times to produce abundant crops, mostly barley and sesame, with abundant grazing land in the lush meadows for the cattle, sheep and goats.

As the hot dry south wind came faithfully the date palm was cultivated and its fruit was ripened. The abundant clay was formed into bricks to build houses and monumental structures, and also provided clay tablets for writing purposes.

In order to acquire precious metals, stones and sturdy timber the inhabitants engaged in foreign trade. The vast resource of petroleum was all but useless to ancient man. Today the physical features of the region along with its climate are similar to how it was in the ancient world, and the Arabs who live there still live in a manner very similar to their ancient predecessors.

Ideal for Trade

Because Babylon was situated on the river Euphrates it was an ideal place for trade. To the north they could trade up the river to Syria and beyond and could act as a staging post with the cities of Sumer to the south. When Babylon became important, people would have wanted to live there because of the economic benefits it would give being in a large city with lots of merchants and tradesmen passing through. An important city like Babylon would also give a greater degree of security to its inhabitants.

In Babylonia and in all of southern Mesopotamia there is lots of clay which people could bake and make into bricks with which to build houses. This helped the development of civilization in the area.

Ancient Babylonia
Ancient Babylonia
by R. Russell

2 Kin 24:13-14 "And Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon carried out from there all the treasures of the house of the LORD and the treasures of the king's house, and he cut in pieces all the articles of gold which Solomon king of Israel had made in the temple of the LORD, as the LORD had said. Also he carried into captivity all Jerusalem: all the captains and all the mighty men of valor, ten thousand captives, and all the craftsmen and smiths. None remained except the poorest people of the land."

Also see: Ancient Babylonia Map

Fall of Babylon Heart Message




History of Babylonia

Old Babylonian Period (2000 - 1595 BC)

The Amorites, Isin and Larsa, Hammurapi of Babylon, Classical Period, The Language, Religion Law Science and the Arts, Babylon, The KassitesThe People of the Sealand, The Hittite Kingdom

Middle Babylonian Period (1595 - 1000 BC)

The Kassite Dynasty, Kadashman-Enlil I and Burnaburiash II, Kurigalzu II, Elam and Assyria, Dur Kurigalzu a New Capital, The Kudurru, Nebuchadnezzar I, The Aramaeans, The Culture

Neo Babylonian Period (1000 - 539 BC)

Assyria, Nabu-nasir, Tiglath pileser III, The Babylonian Chronicles, The Chaldeans, Sennacherib, Ashurbanipal, Nabopolassar, Nebuchadnezzar II, The Fall of Babylon


Sumerian Origins, Schools of Scribes, Numbering Tablets, Aramaic and Greek, Poetry, Music, Myths, The Gilgamesh Epic, The Babylonian Flood Myth, Biblical Flood, Prayers and Hymns, Wisdom Literature, Prophecy, Cuneiform


Marduk and his son Nabu, Babylonian Gods, Temples and Rituals, Priests, Personal Idols, Divination, Astrology, Extispicy, The New Year's Festival, Morality, Prayers and Hymns, Prophecy

Law and Justice

Shamash the Sun God, Civil Law, Law Codes, Hammurapi and Retaliation, Code of Hammurapi Text, Legal Disputes, Labor, Criminal Law, Prisons Slaves and Women, Legal Documents

King and State

Monarchy, The King's Palace, The King's Harem, Communication, Roads, Scribes, Nebuchadnezzar II

Economy and Social Structure

Houses and Farms, Irrigation, Artisans, Manufacturing, Trade, Social Hierarchy, Family and Tribe, Domestic Relations, Schools


Scientific Knowledge, Astronomy, The Calendar, Mathematics, Medicine, Nature


Gilgamesh Tablet, The Hammurapi Stele, Ancient Map, Clay Model of a Sheep's Liver, Mathematics Tablet, Sheeps Liver Cuneiform, Seal Impression, Israelite Seal to Pedaiah, Clay Cylinder of Nabopolassar, The Striding Lion, The Ishtar Gate, The Dragon of Marduk, Nebuchadnezzar's Babylon, The Babylonian Chronicles, Basalt Block Inscription, The Ziggurats, Nabonidus Stele, Cyrus Cylinder

Biblical History

David Anoints Solomon, Solomon's Choice, Solomon's Temple, God's Ideal King, The Divided Kingdom, The Northern Kingdom Israel, The Southern Kingdom Judah, Judah's Kings, Hezekiah, The Destruction of Jerusalem, The Babylonian Captivity, Daniel and the Prophets, Nebuchadnezzar, The Return from Babylon

Questions about Babylon Answered in the Bible



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