Download Brotherhood of Kings: How International Relations Shaped the by Amanda H. Podany PDF

By Amanda H. Podany

Amanda Podany right here takes readers on a bright journey via one thousand years of old close to jap background, from 2300 to 1300 BCE, paying specific realization to the vigorous interactions that came about among the nice kings of the day.

Allowing them to talk of their personal phrases, Podany finds how those leaders and their ambassadors devised a remarkably subtle procedure of international relations and exchange. What the kings cast, as they observed it, was once a courting of friends-brothers-across thousands of miles. Over centuries they labored out methods for his or her ambassadors to shuttle competently to at least one another's capitals, they created formal principles of interplay and how you can figure out disagreements, they agreed to treaties and abided via them, and their efforts had paid off with the trade of luxurious items that every state sought after from the opposite. Tied to each other via peace treaties and strong tasks, they have been additionally usually sure jointly as in-laws, due to marrying one another's daughters. those rulers had virtually by no means met each other in individual, yet they felt a powerful connection--a actual brotherhood--which steadily made wars among them much less universal. certainly, anybody of the nice powers of the time can have attempted to take over the others via war, yet international relations often prevailed and supplied a respite from bloodshed. rather than scuffling with, the kings discovered from each other, and cooperated in peace.

A extraordinary account of a pivotal second in international history--the institution of overseas international relations millions of years prior to the United Nations--Brotherhood of Kings bargains a vibrantly written historical past of the quarter referred to as the "cradle of civilization."

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Additional resources for Brotherhood of Kings: How International Relations Shaped the Ancient Near East

Sample text

Why pay traders for expensive items if you could deal directly with the kings in whose lands they were found, and perhaps even identify something they wanted from you in exchange? It’s possible that Irkab-damu had no idea where Hamazi was located or how far away it was. He might not have known what language was spoken there, and he might never have met his “brother” the king of Hamazi (they certainly were not true brothers). His messengers and stewards would have taken care of all the details. They presumably knew the way to Hamazi, the layout of its town, and the appropriate ways to behave when they got there.

Any one of the great powers of the time could have tried to take over the others through warfare, but diplomacy usually prevailed and provided a respite from bloodshed. Instead of fighting, the kings learned from one another, and cooperated in peace. The focus of this book is, then, on the ties and interactions between ancient peoples, who often lived at great distances from one another, and how those contacts gave shape to a shared international community spread over a vast area. The expression “international community” is often used in modern times in reference to the United Nations.

The Ebla scribes created a record of their world as they listed the commodities that went in and out of the palace, and it was a world in which many kingdoms, local and more distant, were at peace with one another—not accidentally but deliberately at peace. These peaceful episodes were not necessarily long-lasting (though the farther away an allied city was located, the less likely it was to go to war against Ebla). But even the fact that peace was a goal is noteworthy. The ways in which the kings maintained their alliances were wisely constructed and are worth our attention.

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