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The historical landscape at the lower course of the rivers Euphrates and Tigris in the south of today's Iraq is considered one of the cradles of viticulture and wine culture. Around 4000 BC, the area was settled by the Sumerians and was subsequently divided into numerous city-states. These were, for example, the cities of Haran, Kush, Ur (according to the A. T. of the Bible the home of Abraham) and Uruk. The legendary Sumerian king Gilgamesh probably ruled over the latter between 2750 and 2600 B.C. Under the famous king Hammurabi (1728-1686 B.C.), it reached its greatest expansion with the capital Babylon and encompassed almost all of Mesopotamia. In the 13th century B.C. Babylon fell to Assyria. The city of Babylon was completely destroyed in 689 BC by the Assyrian king Sanherib (705-681 BC), who made Nineveh the capital. The Babylonian king Nabupolossar (626-605 B.C.) overthrew the rule of the Assyrians and probably had the Tower of Babel built. Under his reign the New Baylonian Empire was founded.

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